Underwater Largeness Phobia

Lisa, because I yelled at her until she gave in to my demands asked her nicely, wrote this post about something she calls Underwater Largeness Phobia. The instant she called it that in a passing reference (in another post), I knew what she meant. Or I THOUGHT I probably did, and that’s why I hoped she’d write more about it so I could see. And she did, in the post I linked to. And it turns out she and I share a phobia. And now you’re all caught up.

What Lisa and I are wondering is if there are other people who have this–and if so, what it’s called. I started to do some research online, and I found references to it, but (1) nothing helpful, like a name–more like other people mentioning the same phobia, and (2) their descriptions of what they were afraid of were making me gag. (Lisa, skip to the next paragraph; I’m about to give examples.) Huge tree trunks under water. The underwater workings of flume rides. Huge boulders under water. Seriously: gagging and feeling horrified/hot/sick.

For me, it is basically a fear of Large Things that are Under Water. (You can see why I thought Lisa’s name for it was so apt.) One of the worst things I ever saw (sorry, Lisa, it’s more examples) was the cover of a Jaws paperback: the swimmer balanced on the surface of the water, the huge shark coming up from underneath, and so much water still below the shark. I also look away if a movie shows a submarine coming up to the surface: all the water running off the sides FREAKS ME OUT.

145 thoughts on “Underwater Largeness Phobia

  1. d e v a n

    hmm, I seem to have something similar. I am terrified of anything (yes even little fish) under me in the water. It freaks me out to the point where I shake and run uncontrollably out of the water, shrieking. (not becoming of an adult…)
    If I can SEE and the water is very CLEAR – I’m OK. Otherwise, forget it.
    Also, that JAWS cover you’re describing totally freaks me outl.

  2. Kelsey

    Okay I originally read the title of this post as underWARE largeness phobia and I was like, “Oh yeah, I totally have that too.” And then I realized my mistake. And laughed, even in my sickened state.

  3. jen

    I don’t have that, and I think it’s kind of thrilling to watch a sub come up and all that water splash out (sorry) BUT I do think I can identify with depth. As long as I know where the bottom is, I’m good with being over my head but I prefer to be where I can touch, and still have this obsession with constantly touching, just to reassure myself. I think if I was in the middle of a deep ocean I’d feel like it was going to suck me in.

    I have an intense.. discomfort? thinking about myself swimming under very very deep water and being disoriented and wondering if I’d know whether I was swimming up or down in my attempts to get to the surface and wondering if I was gonna make it in time.

    I also have a “fear” of squishy grossness at the bottom of a lake and won’t swim in one because of that.

  4. Stephanie

    At first glance, I totally thought this said UnderWEAR Largeness Phobia. Like, you’re scared of having to wear very large underwear? I think that would’ve been a very interesting post – maybe tomorrow?

  5. jen

    I was actually trying to think of what this was, like maybe being underwater makes you feel really, really large, and that’s freaky? Or something.

  6. Tessie

    Well, clearly that Jaws cover is messed up. You don’t have to be mental to feel that way.

    I’m thinking that LOTS of people have this, especially with the LIVING THINGS under the water. The tree trunks and boulders, maybe not so much. Unless they could be MISTAKEN for living things, in which case, GULP.

  7. anatomist

    ha! i totally thought this was a diet post and i could totally relate! i am very afraid of the largeness of my behind when it is underwater. that is why i don’t swim. also stingrays. they are the other reason i don’t swim. really though, my fear of water is most associated with the small things that i can’t see. like fishies that nibble and slimey things. clearly there are a lot of reasons i don’t swim.

  8. Pickles & Dimes

    This is really interesting! I don’t have a phobia of things underwater relative to their size, but like Jen, I don’t like touching squishy stuff at the bottom of water (it feels like something alive).

    I also don’t like being in murky water. When I was snorkeling one time, the water was really murky and I actually started hyperventilating because I was so petrified some giant fish was going to come right up to me and I wouldn’t notice until it was too late.

    I also really despise weedy lakes with rocky bottoms.

    (Remind me never to tell you the story about how a perch in murky water BIT ME on my stomach – twice. The panic, it was unprecedented.)

  9. Pickles & Dimes

    This is really interesting! I don’t have a phobia of things underwater relative to their size, but like Jen, I don’t like touching squishy stuff at the bottom of water (it feels like something alive).

    I also don’t like being in murky water. When I was snorkeling one time, the water was really murky and I actually started hyperventilating because I was so petrified some giant fish was going to come right up to me and I wouldn’t notice until it was too late.

    I also really despise weedy lakes with rocky bottoms.

    (Remind me never to tell you the story about how a perch in murky water BIT ME on my stomach – twice. The panic, it was unprecedented.)

  10. Pickles & Dimes

    This is really interesting! I don’t have a phobia of things underwater relative to their size, but like Jen, I don’t like touching squishy stuff at the bottom of water (it feels like something alive).

    I also don’t like being in murky water. When I was snorkeling one time, the water was really murky and I actually started hyperventilating because I was so petrified some giant fish was going to come right up to me and I wouldn’t notice until it was too late.

    I also really despise weedy lakes with rocky bottoms.

    (Remind me never to tell you the story about how a perch in murky water BIT ME on my stomach – twice. The panic, it was unprecedented.)

  11. js0512

    Oooooooo you ladies RULE! I don’t think my fear is as bad as the two of you. But still? Freaks. Me. Out! That’s the reason I refuse to swim in a lake. Or the ocean. I stick to pools (shallow end) where I can SEE what’s lurking (gag) below. It freaks me the bejesus out that things that large exsist. And are…creeping along…lurking…underwater.

    I feel kinda skeevy now. (huge shudder)

  12. -R-

    I have never heard of this fear before, but I can kind of understand it. I have my own phobia, which I think is a common one, but I am not going to talk about it because I will freak myself out.

  13. Jess

    I don’t have this phobia, but I really really hate to have things floating around me in water. In Florida a school of little tiny fish swimming around me totally traumatized me. And when I got stung by the jellyfish it wasn’t the stinging itself that upset me as much as it was the fact that it was floating in the water near me, even though I could see it. I was completely terrified and ran out of the ocean as fast as I could.

    So I could totally see how big things under the water could scare you. I feel like all that stuff comes from the same root. I bet a lot of people have this phobia. Weird that it doesn’t seem to have a name.

  14. Maddie

    Mine is sort of the same, Swistle. I’m not afraid so much of large things – whales, dolphins, etc don’t freak me out, but it’s the thought of all the dangerous and unknown things that could be under me that really freak me out. ESPECIALLY when I can’t see the bottom.
    In Mexico we used to go on banana boat rides – where you sit on a huge banana and a boat pulls you around – and it tipped over way out into the ocean. I had a major panic attack because of how deep it was and how dark and SHARKS and other animals and such – and I haven’t been on it again. In 16 years.
    Yeah. I think I have a phobia.

  15. J.

    Just de-lurking to say that I have a variant of this. If the water is very clear, I’m fine with it. And swimming pools are okay, but lakes, rivers, the ocean — I get scared because I can’t see all the way through.

    Basically my fear isn’t so much of LARGE things, so submarines aren’t really scary, but I’m very very scared of anything in the water TOUCHING me. So fallen leaves, branches, SEAWEED OMG, jellyfish, little fish, ANYTHING in the water that sort of moves in a fluidy, unpredictable way, which might COME INTO CONTACT WITH ME.


  16. Alice

    haaaa. i didn’t know this was a phobia! in fact, i read the title, and assumed the fear was that you might appear larger, while in water, than you actually are. like, the light refracts weird through the water and makes you look whaleish. this especially happens for pale people. uh, i’ve heard.

  17. Moderndayhermit

    I always thought I was an odd-ball for having this type of fear. I love the ocean–from afar. I’ll get it in but I am secretly terrified.

    While in Hawaii a group of us were in the water and a huge sea turtle (over 7 feet long) was bobbing about. They went to grab their underwater cameras to take photos next to the turtle and I got the hell out of dodge.

    Big boats, submarines, water creatures and all things of that nature unnerve me to no end.

  18. Erica

    I’m afraid of anything ALIVE in the water. Hell, I get scared of sharks IN A FRICKIN’ POOL!

    I stay out of all water that I cannot see through. No lakes, rivers or murky oceans. I’ve been snorkeling and swimming in the Carribean, but it was crystal clear and I wasn’t scared at all, even though that’s where the scary things live. Weird, huh?

  19. Linda


    Yes, I have this, too. My husband can’t understand why I’ll NEVER EVER EVER go scuba diving with him. There are HUGE MONSTERS under the water that want to eat me. Obviously. I also get more freaked out in water that is murky or deep. Although if I let my mind wander, I can freak myself out in a swimming pool as well.

    Interesting, I always assumed my fear was subconciously (sp?) related to the fact that I had an older sister who drowned before I was born.

    Every hear of the movie Open Water? OUR WORST NIGHTMARE.


  20. K in the Mirror

    So those movies where they think they hit a sandbar and then the hill blinks and they realize they’re actually standing on a ginormous sea creature about to drag them away from land forever? Those must freak you out real bad, huh?

    me too. For me the worst thing is being on a bridge over water, because first you have the falling and then the water trauma. so yucky.

  21. Shannon

    I’m scared of sharks and underwater monsters (haha!). I do scuba dive, though, but only because my husband makes me. Well, not MAKE, but he needs a buddy and that buddy is me. I freak out until I get under water and it is beautiful and gorgeous and peaceful.

  22. Misty

    I am an acrophobia kind of girl myself.

    I have never heard of this. But just reading about is giving me the creeps.

    But I am highly suggestable, like that. (Hey, Misty…see that grape? Oh sure it looks innocent, but beware! *Run screaming from the room*)

  23. Sandy C.

    I’ve never heard of this fear, but it sounds very real. I can relate a bit. I have the same feeling, but when I’m up in the air. I’m terrified of height, and more so if there is a large space below my like being in an airplane or bridge.

  24. Kate

    This is very interesting, I’ve never heard of anything like it. I also scuba dive and so it is hard for me to understand because like Shannon mentioned, once you are under the water everything is so beautiful and peaceful. I do get very freaked out over heights though. I’m always afraid I’m going to fall, even when I’m completely enclosed, so I’m assuming the feeling of hot flashes and nausea is similar.

  25. Beth A.

    Oh, I’m so glad I’m not the only one who feels like this. I don’t necessarily consider being scared of sharks a phobia, since really, it’s entirely rational to be scared of underwater death machines. But it’s a lot less rational when I have to fight against worrying about sharks when I’m swimming in Lake Michigan or worse, a swimming pool. I’ve always avoided watching shark movies at all costs, because afterwards I think I would be scared to go in the bathtub.

    I have a theory that deep water and water monsters can freak people out because you’re pretty helpless in the water. If your car breaks down, you can always walk to safety and you can always hope to outrun dangerous animals but if you’re in the middle of the ocean and your boat goes down, it’s not likely you’ll have the strength to swim to shore. And even less likely that you’ll be able to outswim anything that goes after you.

  26. Sundry

    I HAVE THAT. Yes, and now I’m glad to have found a name for it. I can’t even be comfortable in the deep end of a SWIMMING POOL because oooh the water is murky and dark and what is down there, exactly? WHAT?

    My husband — who LOVES to do insane things like scuba dive *shipwrecks*, gaaahh — has a family cabin on the Umpqua River in Oregon and everyone loves loves loves to swim there except for ME because 1) submerged trees? Yes, 2) algae? YES, 3) big ooky rocks and fish? YES, and 4) once we found a DEAD SEAL floating JUST BELOW THE SURFACE OF THE WATER in that river and I have never, ever, ever forgotten it.

    Blah. Water. Ergh.

  27. Carmen

    Ooh, I share part of your fears but not all. There can be anything in water, under the water, floating, on the bottom, alive, dead, whatever — as long as I’m not in the water with it. I cannot swim in water where I can’t see the bottom. The fear is mostly that there is something down there that will come up and grab me, and I’ll never be seen again. Swimming pools and clear water are fine. I can snorkel, as long as I can see the bottom. I cannot snorkel out over a ledge where the bottom drops away quickly. Holy crap – there could be a shark out there. Or worse.

    Someone else also mentioned that they are scared of things touching them in the water. Me too! Weeds in particular. Ook. Freaky. My fear is that they will wrap themselves around my legs and pull me under.

  28. Swistle

    Linda- I had trouble with the COMMERCIALS for Open Water.

    ModernDayHermit- OMG, TURTLES. The thought of turtles is gaggy. (Unless they’re on land, in which case I like them.)

    Beth A.- I wonder if it’s an “out of our element” fear?

    Sundry- Submerged floating dead seal wins whatever prize there might be for Underwater Largeness Phobia Experience.

  29. Laura

    In my world, sharks lurk even in the tub. I can’t help myself. I have always felt that way. I took the kids to a waterpark/hotel and became freaky zoided out mom for not wanting to do the intertube down the dark slide thing because what if there was an open mouth with jaws full of teeth at the end? And then, when I went down the body slide, I came out, clawing for the surface like a neo zoomed out dweebie, only to realize it wasn’t a pool at all, just a slide. If I was that life guard I’d be taking video of freaks like me and sending them in.

  30. Pickles & Dimes

    Linda, I was traumatized for days by Open Water and also, I’m ashamed to admit, Lake Placid. Coincidentally, the day after seeing Lake Placid, we went fishing with my dad and he asked me to lean over and pull up the anchor, and I thought, “oh HELL no.”

  31. Pickles & Dimes

    Linda, I was traumatized for days by Open Water and also, I’m ashamed to admit, Lake Placid. Coincidentally, the day after seeing Lake Placid, we went fishing with my dad and he asked me to lean over and pull up the anchor, and I thought, “oh HELL no.”

  32. Pickles & Dimes

    Linda, I was traumatized for days by Open Water and also, I’m ashamed to admit, Lake Placid. Coincidentally, the day after seeing Lake Placid, we went fishing with my dad and he asked me to lean over and pull up the anchor, and I thought, “oh HELL no.”

  33. Mary

    I never knew other people felt this way! I’m also afraid of being in the water when a very large tourist boat goes by. I’ve actually wondered if I’m reincarnated from the Titanic nonsurvivors- and I don’t even believe in reincarnation!

  34. Stimey

    You know, I’m not sure if my phobia is as strong as yours, but I have a fear of deep water too. I’m okay in swimming pools, but large, deep bodies of water freak me out. Oceans are particularly frightening. ‘Cause really, ANYTHING could be down there. I could never scuba dive. I’m not afraid of drowning, just encountering something freaky. Even snorkeling past a certain depth wigs me out.

  35. Stimey

    I see mention of the movie Open Water. That was just about the scariest thing I’ve ever seen. I loved it though because I love scaring myself. (Not by actually going into the water, mind you, but rather by watching others do it.)

  36. Mairzy

    Hmmm. I grew up swimming in creeks and lakes. I used to wade into our creek and drag large limbs (from trees, not humans)out of the sand just for the fun of it. So, um, not really clicking with you here, Swistle.

    But I did keep myself up most of a night once worrying that the extremely large flying beetle that landed on my screen was going to find a way into the house, up the stairs, under my door, and into my bed. That’s a much more reasonable phobia, you see.

  37. Kristi

    Yes! I so have this too! The submarine surfacing thought makes me want to throw up – and just try imagining yourself swimming next to a big ship! AHHHHHHHHH!!! I’d hyperventilate to death. My husband also has this and we’ve determined that it’s because our parents let us watch WAYYY too much inappropriate crap in the 70s (um, hello – Damien?!?) and that we were severely traumatized by Jaws, et al.

    Good post once again Swistle.

  38. Kristin H

    Until I got to the third paragraph, I thought you were talking about Underwear Largeness Phobia. Note to self: Read more carefully.

    Aaaannnd now that I scroll through the comments, I see I am not alone!

  39. Pregnantly Plump

    I have a major fear of quicksand, thanks to many viewings of “Beastmaster” as a child. I cannot believe my parents let me watch that show! But I absolutely cannot stand to be near mud, just in the off chance that it might swallow me up.

  40. Shannon

    I once watched a James Bond movie (I think it was at least…I was very young) where the bad guy opened doors and released sharks into a swimming pool! Ruined them for me for a verrrrry long time.

  41. Saly

    This fascinates me! I am terrfied of water in general, but nothing to do with what’s underneath.

    My one irrational phobia? The one that makes me shake and sweat and want to vomit? Feet. I once signed up for a martial arts course, and when I realized there would be several pair of naked feet on the same mat I was on, I ran (almost screaming)out the door, never to return. They freak me right out!!

  42. laughing mommy

    I think I have something similar. If I swim in a pool alone I have to do a lot of positive self talk to convince myself there is not a shark at the deep end of the pool.

    I cannot swim in the ocean. There are large things in the dark waters of the ocean. And that makes it unacceptable for swimming.

  43. Pann


    This sounds like agoraphobia to me; a mild case, and one which is triggered by this Depth and Largeness fear.

    According to wikipedia…. “Agoraphobia is a condition where the sufferer becomes anxious in environments that are unfamiliar or where he or she perceives that they have little control. Triggers for this anxiety may include crowds, wide open spaces or traveling, even short distances. This anxiety is often compounded by a fear of social embarrassment, as the agoraphobic fears the onset of a panic attack and appearing distraught in public.[1]

    Agoraphobics may experience panic attacks in situations where they feel trapped, insecure, out of control or too far from their personal comfort zone.”

  44. Jeninacide

    I totally have this fear. Not necessarily as strongly as I have spent a LIFETIME supressing it- but I am still TERRIFIED of large bodies of water. I am afraid when I cannot see what’s around me in the water but I am also afraid when I CAN see the bottom/what’s around me. I am terrified of large boulders underwater in particular as I grew up in Lake Tahoe and it is crystal clear and that is where I developed the phobia as a child. OMG. I thought I was the only one. Constantly scrambling out of swimming pools, and lakes, freaking out while snorkeling on my honeymoon…


  45. Katie

    This is FASCINATING. I just found out there is a name for my phobia “emetophobia.” The fear of vomit. It is the sixth most common phobia in the world. I wonder if there is an actual name for the underwater largeness phobia!

    When I first read the title, I thought you meant you had a fear of looking huge when swimming. Because, if you do look at people from outside the pool and see what the underwater portions of them look like…it is weird.

  46. the Girls' Moma

    Oh my goodness! I am VALIDATED!!!

    The cover for Jaws? Oh, yeah, NO. And the large boulders and tree trunks are completely unacceptable. COMPLETELY.

    And yes, Sundry does win with the submerged dead seal. Her award is she never has to go in that water ever again!

    I laughed out loud at the underwear and the confusion about what-exactly-is-large when we’re underwater confusion. Ahh!

    Large Things that are Under Water is much better!

  47. the new girl

    This is funny. I have an intense fear of all kinds of really big things, especially in/on the water. I once sidled up next to a GINORMOUS ship, a huuuuge tanker that was docked on one of the great lakes. It was at night and it was all dark. It must have been like, five stories high and a city block long.

    Freaked me right the fack out.

    One time, I was the first car at a bridge opening (drawbridge) and I looked up and saw what must have been the counter-weight or whatever that brings up the bridge. It was a gigantic, huge block of cement. I swear I lost my breath. How weird is that?

  48. Marie Green

    I don’t like seaweed, or the thought of seaweed, creeping up and touching me leg while swimming. Otherwise, I love water. Oh, wait, when snorkling, I don’t like so many fish around me that they are nearly TOUCHING me. That makes me shudder.

  49. Emblita

    Oh I hear you all! I went snorkeling in Thailand a few years ago and we had to jump off the boat a bit away from the shore … I don’t think I’ve ever swam as fast as then… the fear of some big creature even just nudging me *SHUDDER* It didn’t help that the guide told us that this was a prime area to see whalesharks. EEeeeeeeeeekkkkk

    Can’t say that submarines coming out of the water freak me out. However, submarines imploding at the bottom of the sea freak me out badly. Can’t even think about it… feel all freaked out now. I’m stopping.

  50. jen

    You need to write an entry on emetophobia – the vomit one.. I am freakishly scared of anyone who so much as coughs in public. I swear, if my kid starts coughing, I will put him down because he might BARF on me!!! I once read a whole web site about emetophobics, it’s quite the little underground society.

  51. Jessica

    Wow, I didn’t know anyone else had this. I am absolutely terrified of large things underwater. I remember going canoeing with my family, and being in the middle of a shallow lake when I looked over the edge of the boat and in the water below saw a gigantic dead tree, looking all skeletal and reaching up out of the murk. I get tingly feet just thinking about it D:
    If anyone knows what this is really called (there’s most likely a name for it somewhere, there are names for phobias like fear of sticky things -.-) Then lemme know!

    Also, anyone afraid of how large ships are? I live in a harbour town, there are always ships coming in. I can’t walk near them… You can see the giant propellers in the water. *shivers*

  52. Suzi

    I came across this blog because I was researching “fear of big ships” or “phobia of large things underwater”. I have not been able to find a name for this, but I am terrified. To the point where my sons will put the movie Titanic on the TV just to call me in the room just to laugh at me as I run screaming back out of the room.

    I have been afraid of large ships for as long as I can remember. Especially if they are old and rusty. I imagine being in the water next to them and looking up at the hugeness. Also the thought of how big they are UNDER the water is enough to give me a panic attack. I am getting anxious just writing this. I once swam in a quarry and there was a crane under the water. I almost had a heart attack. On my honeymoon I decided to try and snorkel to overcome my fear…I almost drown my husband trying to get away from sandbags that were placed under the water to rebuild the beach after Hurricane Wilma.

    If anyone finds any information about this, please post it here.


  53. alex

    i always thought i was the only one like this.big ships freek me out.just the thought of swimming next to one gives me the creeps,especialy submarines.things that big shouldnt move.i would watch the discovery channell and wonder how people could swim next to wales or ships or even ship wreks.im glad im not the only one like this

  54. Anonymous

    Wow… I’m so glad to find out someone understands this fear. Whenever I mention it to any of my friends they laugh because they think it’s ridiculous. I was curious to see if it had a name, so I googled it and found this post. Submarines in movies freak me out, but it’s more the shot of them underwater than them surfacing, although that’s discomforting. The Poseidon movies didn’t sit well with me, and I don’t know if you’ve seen the movie Sphere, but that didn’t sit well with me. Anything from shipwrecks to pier or bridge pilings, to submarines, to large ships or even whales. I second Alex’s comment about people swimming next to whales. I would have a heart attack. With how many other people have this fear, it should definitely have a name.


  55. Anonymous

    Oh my god, a page full of people with the same phobia as me!! I totally agree with alex (just above) – my sister thinks it’s funny to say ‘look at this picture’ – cue me running up to the computer screen only to be met with a dark green murky shot of a huge ship wreck – cue me almost screaming and running away from the screen!! I think it’s a cross between bathophobia (fear of depths) and batophobia (fear of standing next to large objects, which I heard on ‘QI’). It seems completely irrational, but I feel so weird when I see ship wrecks – especially vast complete ones in the dark water!! (Toes and knees curdling!!)I also hate the idea of swimming alongside ships – the bottom of ships on the surface also freak me out…I almost can’t even type this!!
    So, it seems, the fear is real and we’re all experiencing it! Rational or not! And, no, I can’t think of any childhood experiences that might explain it.
    Perhaps we should start the ‘we are freaked out by large things underwater, be it animal or mineral’ club!

  56. Anonymous

    Cool! A shared irrational fear! I first experienced this kind of fear when I was swimming off the only (man-made) beach on the island of Malta – there under the water was a row of metal loops – like the tops of numerous buried anchors. I was scared of them – I couldn’t undertand why. Then a few years later I was snorkelling off Barbados and there under the water was a telegraph pole (ooh scary!). I tried to fathom why it scared me and the only thing I can think is that I have a fear of man-made objects underwater – things that shouldn’t be there. I sometimes daydream about walking along the bed of the ocean – it’s murky – and looming ever closer is a dark mass – getting bigger and bigger as I walk forwards – only to realise that it’s a massive sunken supertanker. I’m getting goose bumps just thinking about it. Go figure!

  57. Anonymous

    Aaaahhh! I wish I hadn’t read the comment above!! That’s a daymare not a daydream!! HOwever, I must admit that I sometimes walk in my local woods through enormous tree, which I absolutely love…and then I think to myself “if i was walking on the sea bed instead and these trees were here, being all big and dark and stuff (!), I’d freakin’ well freak OUT” !

  58. Anonymous

    You all are not going to believe this but I am currently a commercial diving student in Seattle and I have the same fears that are described in this blog. I remember a time when I was snorkeling in the channel islands off the coast of Santa Barbara with my family…along time ago. Anyway, for those who do not want to hear this…skip to the ****

    We were crossing this lagoon and the water was very clear. I looked down not thinking about it and there was huge sunken ship with these gapping black holes inside. I could not see into the darkness and I freaked the hell out. the ship was covered with algae and the rigging on it were swayuing with the current. To top it all off, there was an underwater cave at the end of the lagoon.

    ****I totally feel this fear and I do not like it. I have been facing this fear for many years to try and overcome it. I SCUBA dive and my soon to be profession is going to put me in the maelstrom of my fear. Underwater oil rigs and pipelines. If there is anything anyone could tell me or how to overcome it or what, please reply to this…Craig M

  59. Anna Gray

    Oh my gosh..OH MY GOSH! I thought there wasn’t ANYBODY that had this same fear! When you mentioned the huge tree trunk and big underwater things my heart started racing! Sunken ships that you can see from above, anything like that! I don’t know the name, nor do I have any remedy, plus like you I can’t remember any tramatizing experience, I’ve always been like this. I hope you find out, because then maybe you’ll tell me??!!!

  60. Anna Gray

    Fox- I went to that link (very cautiously, putting the picture below my screen so I couldn’t see it at first and slowly creeping up on it) and I actually started crying, got sick to my stomach and started shaking. I have this real bad, and I’m still amazed at how perfectly these people’s phobias and mine go together! Again, I thought I was the only one too, and I used to get made fun of for it. One time *don’t read if youre as easily scared as me* my hubby and I were fishing in a canoe and I was staring down to the muddy bottom when all of a sudden a huge root mass was passing below us. My skin is crawling. I couldn’t talk and my husband looked up because I was hyperventilating so loud and I shook for a half hour afterwords! What’s worse was that there was a current in the lake that drifted us that way again, and I had to experience the same fear twice! I’m NEVEr going out on that lake again!

  61. Anna Gray

    ps. NEVER look up Big Tub Harbour on google images. Unless you want to try and face your fear. I’ve tried it too many times and now I’m petrified! hehe, fyi

  62. Anonymous

    i have this phobia.
    i think it started with tree trunks, SO SCARY. well and anything, not even just large.

  63. Anna Gray

    i honestly am still flabberghasted that others have this too. this was mentioned in a different section, but does anyone who has this fear have the fear of giant things, like those insanely huge american flags or blimps or giant culverts and stuff? It doesn’t have to be underwater all the time (although underwater is 600 X worse)! please someone let me know! PLEASE!

  64. Anonymous

    Oh my God. I feel you I am so scared of any underwater creatures. I can’t go in the the deep end of a pool, damn I am even scared of taking a bath. I feaked out at Disney Land last year cause I didnt want to go on the Finding Nemo ride. Even looking at pictures of sea creature on the internet scares me.

  65. brit6132

    I have a phobia very, very similiar to this. I am so afraid of trees, branches, logs…etc. under water; whether it be in a river, pond or lake. I can barely stand on a bank or shore and look into the water at the tree without feeling the most discomfort. I dont have a fear of creatures or anything swimming in or around the water. I have never really had a big fear of sharks, snakes, turtles or anything of the sort…just fallen trees, logs or branches. I am so glad someone else shares this phobia because peole have always thought I was insane for this. If anymore information is discovered regarding this phobia, I would love some information.

  66. Anonymous

    Anna Gray, I think you’re describing one of my fears I mentioned earlier (december 9th) called batophobia “An abnormal fear of being near an object of great height, such as a skyscraper or mountain or of standing next to large objects.” Apparently it’s vertigo but in reverse!! I went to Australia a few years ago and canoed down a river with my sister and we had to go under this huge bridge with deep footings…and there were dark shadows all over the place in the river itself – probably just plant life but as scary as hell!
    I also get a really strange feeling, similar to batophobia, when I go into, for instance, a cathedral, and you look up into the huge domes they usually have – all that contained space?! It’s unfortunate because I love such buildings but the scale of height inside these buildings is usually immense! Makes me feel incredibly small and shaky!

  67. Anonymous

    I don’t know you, but my sister and I both have this phobia. And we are both terrified of boat propellers both in the water and out. It is just too much for us to handle. And I totally know what you are talking about with the JAWS poster. I think that is where my phobia started. :( You are not alone and it sure is nice to know that I’m not either!

  68. Amy

    oh my god. i cannot even begin to describe how dizzy/sick i get thinking about large objects underwater. i have this fear that one day i will be stranded in a little boat in the middle of the ocean and a giant whale will swim underneath my boat and tip it a little. i also drive by this pond/swamp every so often that has a crane poking out the top of the water and it almost makes me pass out in fear looking at it!

  69. Anonymous

    ME tooo! I think it started when I took swimming lessons when i was little and the large black stripes painted on the bottom of the pool reminded me of giant whales that would rise up from the depths…haha. Submarines freak me out too.

  70. Kim

    I have this!

    “Jaws” cover absolutely! When I was little my cousin had a “Jaws” game where you fish items out of Jaws’ mouth and I could hardly touch the thing. I remember we’d be playing with it and I’d just sit there freaked out, staring at the game and the pictures on the box.

    Submarines, Titanic, shipwrecks (Ugh!), submerged cars, the now defunct “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” ride at Disney World.

    Funny story, just the other day I was watching a video on YouTube; some old Disney World footage. I was enjoying it and then it ended with the “20,000” ride. The minute it came on the screen, I felt a jolt to my system and just sat there freaked out with my heart pounding.

    Same with that cheesy Jaws shark that pops out of the water on backlot tour at Universal Studios.

    Oh yeah. I’d love to know if there’s a name for it, too.

    Just reading all your entries gave me chills.

  71. Anonymous

    Things that scare me…Big dark shapes underwater…submarines…photo’s of shipwrecks…a wreck partially submerged…the ship on the beach in Pirates of the Caribbean…the fishy ship going underwater and coming out of the water in the same film…new hotels that have MASSIVE aquariums that take up whole walls and you stand and look into the depths…suddenly coming upon a photo attachment in an email that your evil sister has sent to you – and it’s a tanker wreckage or similar…I could go on but my legs are turning to jelly.

  72. candace

    I just google searched this topic trying to figure out what it was exactly that I have. I was hoping for a name, and I found something similar but it’s not totally exact with what I feel, but it’s possibly closer to what you have– Megalophobia; the fear of large objects in or around water, or just large objects in general.

    I went to Six flags with a friend of mine and as we were standing in line for a ride. I noticed that the scenery surrounding the waiting line area had fake alligators in a small “pond”. The water was a rather deep red and there was a huge plastic alligator head sticking straight out of the water. I kept thinking to myself that I would have a panic attack if I was to even dip a finger into the water. It was incredibly horrifying to think about, and I felt like I just really wanted to get away. Scared the hell out of me. I realized that I felt that way about anything big in the water; sunken ships, large animals, etc. I don’t know why I feel this way, but the idea of it all freaks me out.

  73. Schaffer

    Oh man….this is EXACTLY what I have. Its good to know that someone else out there can relate. Ick….big things in water. Even bridge posts that go down in the water…..yuck! I wish it had a name.

  74. Anonymous

    I can’t believe this post ~ I’m not ALONE anymore!! I’ve had this fear of trees / tree trunks in and just under the water. I remember exactly the point in life where it hit me. I was about 15 y.o. and boating in Leech Lake (MN) when I passed over a tree trunk that was about 2-3 feet under water. I freaked out and headed straight for shore. I knew exactly where it was and avoided it from that point on. Ever since then I can’t stand to see trees sticking out of water or just under the water. Other objects don’t bother me – fish or rocks.

    There’s a man made lake in El Dorado, KS where a stretch of I-35 goes right through it. There are these HUGE trees on either side of the road and it’s a challenge to drive across it. I break out in a cold sweat every time, most recently on a driving vacation in July. I do try to laugh it off, but I’m very glad to not live near it any more.

    Is there a support group for this phobia? :)

    Good Luck coping, everybody!!
    Phoenix, AZ

  75. mandy

    I have gone most of my life feeling like a total freak because of my extreme fear of large objects (particularly man-made) in water. Docks, boats, dams, bridges, submarines. *shudder* It freaks me out so badly that my heart starts racing and I usually start crying. If I were actually somehow IN the water next to any of these things I think I would probably have a heart attack. Not kidding. Thank you for posting this!

  76. Trista

    I also have this phobia! my boyfriend and I were just this moment discussing it and I decided to see if there were any sites mentioning anything similar. one of the very first things that set me off with this was the scene in the beginning of “Titanic” where they show the propellers starting as it sets off from Southampton. TOO CREEPY.

    I can’t go into water with seaweed or limbs/tree trunks/roots. come to think of it, I don’t enjoy swimming in anything other than a pool… or even being off of land! pictures of submarines, shipwrecks, large animals (especially whales), boulders, etc.

    my mom is the same way. I’m glad I’m stumbling across more and more things about this fear. it’s so strange!

  77. Anonymous

    Count me as another one who doesn’t like big objects in water. I don’t have it as strongly as some here, but I do definitely get an “eerie” feeling, esp. when a large object breaks the surface of the water. Think bridge pilings, trees sticking out of the water, half-sunken boats, half-sunken docks, etc. Creepy.

    I had this odd semi-phobia even when we did a lot of boating on the KY river (very murky) when I was a kid. I spent a lot of time in the water anyway, and I would even swim under our pontoon boat and pull myself down the anchor line to the really cold water from time to time. But let us pass by a pole sticking up out of the water, while I was ON the boat and I’d still get that weird feeling in the pit of my stomach.

    About 15 years ago, when I was in my 30s, I was snorkeling by myself in the Keys in fairly murky water (there had been storms or something). As I swam out from the beach, the bottom fell away very quickly at one point, and I could make out the trestles from the bridge somewhat nearby disappearing into the murk. That, combined with all the strange ocean sounds (clicks, groans, etc.) sent me back to the shallow water post-haste.

  78. Brittany

    OMG THIS! I have this! The depth, that there could be things so large below me, miles and miles below me, I just can’t function with that thought. No boats or swimming in deep water. It’s just, too mammoth and unknown.

  79. fiona lewis

    I’m so glad I found this blog.

    I thought I just had a fear of sharks..I can’t even look at a picture of a shark with its jaws coming at me. But then I realised I have to look away from the tv if it shows anything large underwater. The Planet Earth documentaries on the sea are so bad. Not only the huge whales but the huge plants that twist round and down and go on for miles(ok maybe not miles but it felt like that and I couldn’t carry on watching it long enough to find out). Also when they explore the underwater caves. It makes me feel sick just thinking about it.

    Looking at the front of huge ships scares me too, but also large planes, I have to look away if a plane is on tv/a film and flies towards/past the screen. I think its to do with large objects in a large space.

    But its 100 times worse when in water. Probably because I’m ‘out of my depth’.

    I freak myself out in baths by imagining I’m really small and its the ocean, then I have to get out a.s.a.p because its the same horrible fear.

    I can’t go in the sea, I’m ok on a boat or paddling in shallow water, I just can’t go anywhere near deep water or water I can’t see/feel the bottom of.

    One of the comments on here made me feel so sick..

    ‘We were crossing this lagoon and the water was very clear. I looked down not thinking about it and there was huge sunken ship with these gapping black holes inside. I could not see into the darkness and I freaked the hell out. the ship was covered with algae and the rigging on it were swaying with the current. To top it all off, there was an underwater cave at the end of the lagoon.’

    and I got my brother to go on that link someone posted…he told me definitely NOT to look at it, it’ll make me cry.

    I’m just happy that I’m not on my own with this fear! Just need a name for it now!

  80. Mark Basedow

    Oh my Jesus the description of the tree trunk nearly had me in tears, I’m exactly the same way!! The scariest thing I’ve ever seen was when I was in an inflatable boat in a murky river and I saw a VERY large rusty girder jutting forth from the brown darkness, just reaching out for me, I freaked the fuck out.

  81. Anonymous

    This is a great blog. I have never seen any formal gathering of people online who had this fear. I’m 19 and I’ve had it for as long as I can remember. Not everything mentioned on this blog scares me. The worst thing for me is seeing large submerged shipwrecks from ABOVE the surface. Photos of shipwrecks taken from below the surface don’t bother me as much. Watching large ships break apart or sink is difficult for me too. One thing I think is interesting is I also have a fear of very large objects in the air. If zeppelins and huge airships were still around today, I might have a problem with them, especially if they flew at low altitude. Well, anyway, just wanted to put my two cents in. Cheers.

  82. Anonymous

    I have had a very similar fear as long as I can remember. I am deathly afraid of things underwater. Fish, reefs and things like that don’t bother me at all and my fear is not relative to the size of the object. I have nightmares all the time of seeing statues underwater. I can’t even look at pictures of things like ships, or planes, or even little things underwater without getting extremely freaked out. Statues underwater are really my biggest fear though.

  83. Anonymous

    Fiona Lewis – I think you’re a bit like me – testing yourself by getting your brother to go the link mentioned earlier. I am fascinated by shipwrecks yet supremely scared of them, but there’s a morbid sense of wanting to see them on tv and scare myself silly!! And yes, the lagoon description made me feel very sick too!!

  84. Anonymous

    I have exactly this fear. When I was young I used to be terrified of buoys in the water. It was the portion of the buoy that was below the surface that terrified me. The ideas of ice bergs also scares me. One time I was jet skiiing and there was a large vessel parked on the side of a harbor and I was far away, maybe 100 yards, and the idea of the jet ski konking out and me drifting near it scared me so I sped up. Last week I was in Cancun and went snorkeling in a coral reef and thats when I realized just how bad my fear was. I would be swimming in what would be open water maybe thirty feet deep, crystal clear water. Then in from of me I would see a giant rock and was forced to swim over it to stay with the group. I was so afraid that the rock would touch me as I swam over it, as it seemed to get closer to the surface, I know this is my fear because I was not nearly as afraid of seeing a large sting ray on the trip. I also at one point, in order to get back was forced to to swim in between to large underwater rock formations the both extended out of the water. On the top of one of the rocks was a large amount of water vegetation that extended out into the water a bit and I didnt want to be near that either. As I approached this hell-hole I had to constantly look above the water to watch out for the plants and below to not get too close to a rock. I almost panicked, my breathing and heart were extremely fast. Glad to know that I am not alone.

  85. Luke

    Oh my god I never knew anyone else had this fear! I’d always thought it was just me being stupid, but thinking of how scared I am of it, I knew it was a phobia.
    Although seeing an overturned ship on land, for instance, scares me, it’s nothing compared to it underwater. It’s hard to explain, but how big it is, and that it’s in something as big as the ocean, its horrible!
    I remember going to the cinema with my friends, and an advert for transformers 2 came on, during which an aircraft carrier gets sunk. When it showed the massive thing slowly sink from under the surface, I was just paralysed with fear.
    But anyway, its kinda cool to know there are other people with this fear and i’m not just being weird. It does deserve a name though.

  86. Anonymous

    I am ABSOLUTELY TERRIFIED of seaweed. I can’t go near it. I remember once I was surfing, my step dad was helping me. I looked behind me and saw this absolutely HUGE seaweed right behind me. I completely panicked!
    I can’t even look at pictures of seaweed, once I was reading a book about things underwater. That was when I saw one of the most terrifying pictures I’d ever seen. I freaked out so much that I screamed and accidentally threw the book across the room. Luckily no one noticed.
    When I go to the beach, I always worry that there will be seaweed in the water.

    I think it’s not just seaweed, I’m also scared of big rocks under water, usually when I mistake them for something else, and those floating buoys that are anchored to the bottom, or pretty much anything artificial that’s underwater. And they are usually covered in algae.
    (Seaweed again! D: )

    Wouldn’t it be scary if you fell in the water and saw this huge sea mine right next to you. Sorry, that was random. Sea mines look scary.

    It’s interesting that so many people have similar fears to me!
    I remember getting freaked out by some of the comments. Especially with the sunken ship in the lagoon

  87. Anonymous

    I am scared of EVERYTHING underwater. Especially if I cant see under me(murky water). If my foot touches something under water like a big rock or something, I completely freak out. I don’t even like to think about the cover of jaws. Also, I do hate submerged ships and such.

  88. Anonymous

    Oh, and also, I couldn’t watch the part in titanic when the ship sank because I was so scared to watch it sink, it terrified me.

  89. Anonymous

    I think this all falls under the name Megalophobia. I have it as well, pretty badly. I once had to pass along a very narrow path that ran alongside an old quarry that had since filled with clear water. I could see machinery under the water and had to virtually crawl along the path, a shaking wreck. What a wuss.

  90. Anonymous

    Awwwww….. Man. That’s what I have. I’m terrified of large things in the water
    I was snorkling and my friends all said ” why you shakin’ so much?” the only way I get in the water, is if it is totally clear.

    But at least I am not the only one.

  91. Guest

    I’m so happy I found this I feel better knowing I’m not the only one with this strange fear of extremely large, dark objects under water. I’m not really scared of sharks even though they eat everything including people, I am mostly terribly afraid of weird looking objects/ sea animals like stingrays, mantarays, gulper eels, whales, whale sharks, sea lions everything that is dark and huge!

    If I see a submarine underwater that is the worst for me. I would much rather see it on the surface and even seeing how big it is would bother me.

  92. Guest

    To Anonymous on Nov.3, If you’re still reading this I know exactly what you mean about the Zeppelins and airships. One day I saw a blimp at night and it had lights everywhere…sooo creepy it scared me so much! I’m even scared to imagine standing close to it so big and with all those lights 8|

  93. Anonymous

    Nice to know I’m not alone – though I have no idea if this is a “recognized” fear, with a name, etc. The types of things that would completely fill me with dread would be: the idea of swimming up to an enormous ship, and seeing the submerged part of the hull materialize out of the blue gloom, and then seeing the propellers and rudder, and maybe having to swim under it — yikes! Or perhaps getting too close to the huge submerged ducts in an artificial-wave ride, and seeing the underwater workings… Or worse, swimming towards the underwater spillways and ducts of a giant dam…!! Or swimming in the ocean and suddenly realizing I’m seeing the enormous hull of an submarine coming slowly toward me…!!! I can’t stand writing this anymore!!

  94. Anonymous

    Nah i not scared of anything to do with the water…just generally things getting bigger…any1 know what the phobia name for this?

  95. Anonymous

    Same here folks, large things underwater creep me out of my mind. I don’t have any other phobias, I am not afraid of large things, I am not afraid of small things underwater, it’s somehow the combination of the two…I’m not going to name examples…

    Oddly enough, this fear came about in my late 20’s, early 30’s. I used to swim a lot as a kid and had no fear of deep water at all. Now it’s seems to be getting worse as time passes…

  96. Anonymous

    Wow, I just did a random Google search on this fear and this blog came up!

    I have a fear of large things that move in water–namely large boats, whales, and thick, rolling waves. (*cue goosebumps*!)

    I’m also scared of bridges, not riding over them, just their large expansive size.

    I’m not scared of what could be in the water, my fear is centralized simply on the large objects, and as someone said above, I believe this is termed Megalophobia. I’m so glad to have found a diagnosis!

  97. Johannah

    I have this!!! As a kid I was terrified of the deep sea tank at the Seaquarium in Miami. In fact, I was even scared of the large fish at the pet store and would stay in the car when my family went in there. This fear has since evolved into a fear of abandoned man-made things submerged or partially submerged in a body of water. Even a piece of patio furniture on the bottom of a pool is enough to set me off.

    Just yesterday, my husband and I were driving around the sticks, looking for some fun. We came across an abandoned river cruise attraction and decided to drive through it. My husband was scared of the creepy half-gutted restaurant and the two rotting trailer homes full of junk (and yes, these things were creepy, as was the 15′ alligator we saw on the river). However, what freaked me out like you wouldn’t believe was the half-submerged river boat rotting in the swamp. OMG. This was 1000x worse than the restaurant (which was probably full of rats and dead bums) and the two trailer homes (which were totally rattlesnake habitats/ax murderer hideouts). Just thinking of it now gives me the heebie jeebies!

    So thank you, blog, for assuring me that although this fear may be irrational, it’s not my irrational fear alone.

    Oh, and to the person afraid of underwater statues: DO NOT go on the glass bottom boat ride at Silver Springs. This ride will destroy you.

  98. Jeremy Erickson

    I too suffer from this fear. I’ve had a few nightmares/dreams about being at the bottom of the ocean and having huge fish and whales swiming next to me. Totally freaks me out. Clear,merky, doesn’t matter. Sometimes with the merky water I’m just like “Thank god I can’t see to the bottom, cause I don’t even want to know what’s down there” I feel like for the first time I’m not insane for having this. Thanks. We should all get together and have a party and make fun of each other for this rare disorder, just no pics of sunken ships or old trees please!

  99. Anonymous

    I have this !
    I don’t like swimming in anything but a pool (even tho my imagination can make the deep end creepy too) and for me it’s especially the idea of whales/sea monsters/other underwater animals . altho it for sure includes the submarines and boats and anything massive that’s in the water , especially lakes or oceans (big expanses of water) .
    It’s mostly the idea of something big in the water with me , but it’s uncomfortable for there to be fish or seaweed around my feet .

    whenever I picture me under dark water with let’s say a whale near me , I get completely freaked out and have to pull up my feet cause i just get all shaky and have a little spazz .
    omg ! mehhh !

    but I’m glad I’m not the only one (:

  100. Samantha

    I have this exact fear. They are doing an exhibit at our musuem of things found underwater from the Titanic and I saw pictures and it made me throw up. I also started crying about 2 weeks ago when they showed a submarine going underwater on Discovery channel. The scene of the Statue of Liberty walking through water in Ghostbusters is scarier to me than any horror film. I’m glad im not insane on my own.

  101. Anonymous

    Thank god I’m not the only one! Seeing anything half-submerged in water freaks me out completely. Submarines, the underside of piers, the spot where the bottom of a boat meets the water — I can’t even look at that! Sadly, I’m even terrified of those little pool cleaning things that scoot along the bottom of swimming pools.. I refuse to get in a pool with one of those in them. Living animals & such don’t really freak me out, save for rational fears (sharks, being stung by a squid.. whatever). Seems like for the most part its just man-made items being underwater (half-submerged really). Shipwrecks in theory don’t freak me out because I love all the treasure hunting romance of it.. but I don’t think I could stand to actually see one in real life.

    My mom says she thinks this fear stems from a time when I was very little & we were on a ferry crossing from the continent to England & she was holding me & talking to my grandmother about how she’d had this nightmare the ferry had crashed & water was rushing in & she wasn’t able to get to me or my sister. I suppose that could be a valid theory.. but I dunno.

    Wish I knew what this fear was called, since there’s obviously plenty of people that share it in some form or another.

  102. Anonymous

    I’d think underwater diving on a large wreck, such as an aircraft carrier or battleship would get my batophobia going. Like standing in your back yard, a shadow covers you, you turn around and an airship like the Hindenberg is right on top of you. I imagine the same thing at the beach…a cool breeze, a shadow, you turn around and you’re faced with a 100′ tall wall of water. My ears would droop like Bugs Bunny.

  103. louiseb35

    Anonymous knows me! The description of a large airship shadow, just thinking about that makes me wanna cry, too overwhelming. Driving near those enormous electrical towers gives me the Bugs Bunny ear droop, suddenly I feel small and vulnerable and very afraid for some reason. Just looking at pictures of those big wind turbines is too much. Swimming in deep water can seize me with fear too, not from drowning, but my awareness of the sprawling enormity beneath me. A couple of summers ago I was suntanning in the backyard and thought I had the nozzle set to “mist”, but it was set to “jet” and it shot water straight up over me and the sight of that blast of water so high over me paralyzed me with sheer terror. Even sound of the water splatting back down on the patio struck terror. I’m a reasonable rational person and this fear is completely irrational and extreme. I don’t understand where it comes from but there’s some comfort in knowing I’m not alone. :-)

  104. Anonymous

    I, too, share this fear. My girlfriend loves underwater activities, yet I can become rather disturbed by it. I think it might have something to do with elements in reality becoming overtly distorted. It messes with your perception. Water, always moving, delivers a very non-static view of the world. Objects are magnified, shapes and angles are warped. Light doesn’t flow through it cleanly, sounds are obfuscated. Essentially, the underwater world creates a very different picture. The senses we rely on are manipulated.

    Anyway, to put it simply, I feel it has to do with distorted reality. Things don’t look like they’re supposed to look. They don’t behave like they’re supposed to behave.

    You couple this with a few rational fears; sharks, drowning, dark, unfamiliarity, etc. It’s a cocktail for disaster.

    I don’t think the term “fear of unfamiliar surroundings” accurately captures the essence of this fear. I feel that implies that I am unfamiliar with whatever objects might be within the water.

    Distortion grants us a better grasp of the picture. We are familiar with those objects, but the environments they’re in dynamically alter their presence. With the help of water, these objects acquire disturbing attributes.

    It isn’t so much unfamiliar, as it is disturbingly different from what it should be.

    Of course, this fear could also be an assortment of other phobias. I can only imagine what megalophobia and this, combined, could do to a person, in fact, I have some of that myself.

  105. Shira hadid

    Ok, im reading everyone’s posts and relalizing that they are taking parts of your phobia and relating it to theirs, such as having a fear of water. Well, thats not the case, the case is that you fear large objects in water, im guessing this includes being next to a cruise ship even if u are in a small boat next to it, oil rigs in water, even a large water buoy? Well Im one person to tell you that I have the exact same fear. These things terrify me, and having a panic disorder only makes it worse. I am researching it myself because Ive had it forever. You arent alone, but we do need a proper diagnosis before fixing the issue.

  106. Anonymous

    i am affraid of things under waters like seeing on tv the titanic, when they show thee ship under water i have to look away, and seeing things like bikes, logs, fish, and stuff like that under water makes me freak out, i like scream, is there anyone who could help me get through this? please contact my email naderz.lamoureux@hotmail.com

  107. Anonymous

    Listen…i am not being evil; i have this fear as well (i made the comments on Feb 05) if you want to face your fear google “underwater lake in gulf of mexico”. Seriously, go try it (i mean, if you feel like it)

  108. Anonymous

    Yeah see its weird as hell that there no name for this. I have this huge fear of things underwater like one time, I was swimming in a clear water lake and someone had stolen a bus and drove it off the cliff in the water. I hadn’t relized it until a buddy told me to look down and when I did, it felt like the buss was rising up to me, after that I can’t handle anything that massive in the water. Big pipes built under water of dams to pump out water, submarines, cars (like I had mentioned), I guess fish but I really haven’t seen a big fish close up, boat anything of the sort.

  109. Anonymous

    I too have this. I love to swim, but have an intense fear of large objects in water. I love to go boating, but get very nervous when bobbing up and down near the boat. I once went to see the Queen Mary in Longbeach CA, and looked through an opening in the hull at one of it’s giant propellers. I was scarred to even look at it. I don’t really have any other fears, and again love all things water related. I JUST HAVE THIS WEIRD DAMN FEAR!!!

  110. Anonymous

    WOW! It’s nice to know others understand this phobia! I was in my 40’s and had been an avid scuba diver. We were swimming to a shipwreck which I was excited to do and all of a sudden, the thought of it coming into view started freaking me out! I had to skip the dive and get back on the dive boat. From that point on, I can’t stand to think about big things under water and the thought of a submarine surfacing, an iceberg (so much under water), swimming with a whale, or even pictures of any of these events make my heart race! Family and friends don’t understand and think I’m being silly. I am relieved to know I am not the only one…..and that Jaws book cover…..eeekkkkkk!!!!

  111. Anonymous

    I absolutely have this phobia as well and I’m relieved to find I’m not alone. The thought of swimming above a giant whale or submarine – whether in clear or murky water – absolutely paralyzes me with fear.

  112. James

    Yup – I’ve totally got this phobia. And to clarify – I’m not scared of water; I’m not scared of “seamonsters”; I’m not scared of swimming or being next to large objects (a cruise ship or a bridge); I’m not scared of small objects under water. Nope. I’m absolutely terrified of swimming above large objects. I was an absolute fish as a kid and teen – but I remember one day swimming the backstroke in the deep end of the pool and imagining a massive blue whale below me. I don’t think I’ve ever gotten out of a pool quicker. The thought of a submarine passing below me or swimming above a giant wreck terrifies me. Or even worse: swimming above a massive skyscraper submerged beneath the water. Ugh.

  113. Anonymous

    I fear anything in the water that I cannot see. Some things, like little fish, I don’t fear to the point of feelings sick or anything. But larger things I fear to the point of near hyperventilation. I also have an occassional anxiety issue with things anywhere that I cannot see. Basically, if my back isn’t against a wall, it freaks me out. I’ve been looking for names for these fears but have not as of yet found anything either.

  114. Anonymous

    http://jawdrops.com/ see the splash landing pic (if U dare)..I am terrified of large objects in the water, specifically man made. My fear isn’t as bad as some, only thoughts of being in the water with it FREAK ME OUT! Pictures not so much…always thought I was crazy or a Titanic victim reincarnated lol. I found this site after seeing this pic and googling my fear…WE ARE NOT ALONE! Thank goodness!

  115. Anonymous

    Oh my god I’m not alone ! I have a giant fear of underwater trees , like if a big pine tree has fallen over into a lake I can’t go over it , in a boat or kayak or anything I can’t go over it and if I see one my heart just like stops and I have a panic attack just thinking of them makes me cringe and swimming over it I cannot imagine , I was one accidentally on top of one and I almost drowned… Someone please tell me the name of this fear if it exists and please tell me I’m not alone !!!!

  116. Anonymous

    I am so pleased to realize there are other people with this phobia. I am not afraid of water or the creatures living in it just of seeing boats or large rocks under the surface. As a matter of fact, I would love to swim next to a whale( friendly one, of course)

  117. danna

    I feel like I have the same phobia. What makes me afraid is like parts of rides that are underwater like at Disneyland a long time ago they had that underwater ride where you sat in the sub and saw sea creatures. I hate that, or like when you see big ponds and they have those pipes on the bottom. I can’t stand it.

  118. Anonymous

    i have the same thing! it really bothers me…especially trees under the water…sick! i get creeped out when i see a tree under the lake/creek water…or big boulders but its just mainly the trees or those huge bush looking things. i want to cry when i peek over the boat at night because there is always some nasty looking tree under there…I love to swim, but have an intense fear of large objects in water. and the weird thing is, is that I love to go boating, but get very nervous and uncomfortable especially at night time…but at day time when i go tubing i cant fall off because i know there are billions of trees under the water…or when we stop in a cove to swim, i have to look all around the boat and if i see no trees lurking under the water i can jump in, on the other hand if there is a tree i panic. my family thinks i am crazy and my dad even threw me in one time not knowing how afraid i really was of this. i felt as if i were gonna go into shock. i was in the water alone swimming to the boat as fast as i possibly could. now i am more comfortable with people in the water with me if there is a tree but i can NOT be alone. (even with people i still panic.) i wish i knew what this was called…but im glad to hear im not the only one…if anyone would like to talk about this please email me. crazy_esterline_808@yahoo.com

  119. Anonymous

    Oh god..

    I’m cringing at all of this..

    I have megalophobia (fear of gigantic objects in general) and bathophobia (fear of depth in general). So the two of them combined is my greatest nightmare.

    Even in video games I’m petrified! I was playing a game a while back that required me to go to the bottom of some lake and find a sunken plane.. Never finished that game. Baha

  120. Anonymous

    I just wanted to put this out there, I may have a variation of this. I am petrified of trees underwater, not fish or boulders, just trees. They don’t have to be completely submerged, it scares me even if they are partly submerged. This phobia makes Scuba diving in lakes terrifying…

  121. Anonymous

    I absolutely have this phobia. Anything underwater really, especially a log or pipe or something deep down. Or say a chain underwater covered in slime or the bottom of a dock. Just reading other people’s posts about stuff like this makes me cringe and gag. Wish they would make an official name so we don’t all look just normal crazy

  122. Anonymous

    I hae a phobia or fear of the bottom od ships or ferries etc. I can’t even look at them on the telly or in reality, though I am fine at walking on or off ferries.

  123. Simone

    I have a phobia of anything underwater, especially boats or ships, I cannot go anywhere near them or if I know there are any nearby I will have panic attacks, feel numb and start to go hot/cold, I freak if I see tree trunks or roots underwater and no not because I confuse it with something living, I haven’t found a name for it either and wonder why it is that I am so afraid as there is no rational reason to my phobia.

  124. Anonymous

    Wow, glad I found this site. My biggest thing is looking at Google Earth, and coming across a large body of water. I feel like I’ll see something large under the water. I can feel the anxiety build up til I have to close the program. I always wondered if others felt this way…

  125. Anonymous

    ive had this same fear my whole life. my biggest fear would be like if a shipwreck or a airplane crash at sea happend and somehow i found myself swimming over it accidentally. i would have a heart attack right then and there. i know that sounds funny but to me a 20 year old guy that shit would freak me out

  126. Anonymous

    I am so relieved to find that I am not the only one with this extreme phobia. I am only 16 years old and have been struggling with this fear my whole entire life. Whenever I tell people about they always say something to the affect of “OH I have that too! I’m scared of sharks and whales!”. But I can’t help but think that they truly don’t understand. Not only has this phobia made me afraid of water, but it’s stopped me from doing things that only come around once in a life time. I think this fear started at a young age. I was at summer camp and swimming in the lake with some friends. I believe I was 6 or 7. One of the kids yelled “look below us!” everyone looked under the water and to my surprise (and absolute fear) there was a completely submerged green John Deere tractor about 15 feet below us. I had never felt that type of fear before. I couldn’t breathe. I swam as fast as I could. I didn’t really swim though, it was more of a desperate doggy paddle. Ever since I have been afraid of man made things under the water. (i.e buoys, chains, trees, poles, boats, anchors, floating docks chained to the bottom, even bottles). It is extremely debilitating and hope that someone can reach out to me to talk. Please email me at hannah.farley4@gmail.com. Good luck everyone!

  127. onur

    OMG! same for me!! i can’t look anything that is human made underwater. i don’t afraid of sharkes not at all but to see seomthing big underwater scares me alot. and i am 27 years old i ve been swiming a lot since i am 3-4 years old. i dont like pools i always prefere to swim in the sea but i tell you. such as the example above my message. i would freak after if i would see a tractor underwater.. i had many nightmares about a submarina passing by me in the sea :) honestly i don’t know the reason..

  128. Anonymous

    My identical twin sister and I both have this phobia. We are great swimmers and love the water, but…. I get hot, and want to throw up just thinking about all of this. I also dont like big things out of the water, ie. ship in dry dock, large windmill blades etc, etc. Did anyone find a name for this?


  129. Anonymous

    I have this fear also. i can’t look too long at large things underwater. I’m just thinking how larger can you get and why isn’t the water running out! But as I sat here and thought about it more, I think we have that fear because there is more to us than we let others see. We hide ourselves under the surface and refuse/ don’t want to deal with it, or share it with other so what ends up happening is we start to fear things below the surface. Its like agoraphobia, but underwater. Perhaps if we could expose the thing we are hiding, we could free ourselves from this fear that grips us.
    ~Just a thought.

  130. Brooke

    I know this is really stupid but I’m scared of stuff like sharks, snakes, alligators, fish, monsters, ect. in not only lakes and the ocean but also my pool and bathtub. I’m okay in stuff like that if someone else is with me though but I cant be in water by my self. Is that the same thing as Underwater Largeness Phobia or do I have something different?

  131. kayla

    I have this feaR. Stuff such as iceburgs, big boats, coral reefs and what not absolutely terrify Me. Just the thought of it. ….. makes my heart beat fast

  132. Adriaan

    I was first amazed and then surprised that there are other people out there with exactly the same fear as myself and here I thought for many years I’m a little bit crazy for this strange fear that I have for big rocks, boulders any thing in deep clear water especially caves with water holes etc freaks me out! One day almost drowned while snorkeling at a beautiful beach with my parents as a young boy and remember the fist time a freaked out totally when we came across these huge rocks and boulders laying on the sand underneath us and I totally freaked out and my dad couldn’t make out what’s wrong with me and I never went back into the water that day.

    For some strange reason I actually laughed out loud reading every ones experiences I guess the main reason is it’s a feeling of relief realizing you or I am not the only one for this strange fear!

    By the way, one day on our local radio station they actually informed listeners about a talk show later that day about exactly the same issue and had actually a name for it but I couldn’t catch it the first time and missed the talk show unfortunately.

    Glad I came across others that have the same phobia here on the net in my quest to get a name for it, just as well.

  133. Che Mandoora

    YES! I discovered that this was a thing for me when I was in Hawaii and went to the Pearl Harbor Memorial. For those who don’t know, the memorial is a small dock in the middle of the ocean that straddles the USS Arizona. It is an enormous battleship and from afar, the only thing you can see if it is a few pipes that peak up out of the water for a couple feet. When you are on the dock however, you can look down and see an entire battleship sitting underneath you. The water makes the whole thing bob and just thinking of it makes me want to ralph. While I was there, I was scared but the terror started that night. I would close my eyes and somehow become convinced I was on that dock and really close to the edge. When I showered, I would close my eyes to wash my hair then start to panic at the idea of the ship sitting behind me. I took pictures when I was there looking directly into the water and to my horror when I got them back, you could see the ship better than you could while you were on the memorial. I have had issues with those big cruse ships and pictures of underground shipwreck’s but this is the first time it hung with me after no longer seeing it or being around it.

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