Hi, I’m Tanya, And I’m A Coulrophobic.


I have a lot of irrational fears. I’m scared of a number of things, in general, and it isn’t entirely my fault.

I think I have a mild case of coulrophobia. I say “mild” because, while I am not terrified of clowns, they do make me uncomfortable and my heart does skip a couple of beats when I see them, unexpectedly.

This probably stems from an early age, because when I was little, I remember watching this old Indian movie which was about a poor boy, whose father used to be a world-famous clown, until an unfortunate accident (involving a trampoline) ended his life. Since then, his mother, who never fully recovered from her husband’s death, disliked circuses with deadly passion and always kept her family away from them. Anyway, long story short, this boy grew up and found it impossible to stay away from circuses. Eventually he became a clown, and along the journey, he fell in and out of love numerous times, as is the norm in Bollywood movies.

What bothered me out the most was that he always had a little doll with him. It was a clown doll, with a little waistcoat and frizzy hair, but the eyes, oh sweet Lord, the EYES. They were blank and evil. I kid you not.

I’d never miss the opportunity to watch this movie, because of how morbidly curious I was about the clown doll. It fascinated me and repulsed me at the same time, so much, that it caused my parents to conclude that this movie was one of my favourites now. My dad even bought me a clown doll, similar to the one the boy owned in the movie.

I remember I had a lot of favourite toys that I played with frequently, but I never touched the clown doll. It used to sit on top of my shelf, blankly staring at me with its eyes, but I never touched it. It got to such a point, that I disliked sleeping in my room alone, with the lights off, while the clown doll had the opportunity to come to life and smother me with my pillow, while my silent screams slowly faded, as I suffocated to death.

You have to remember, I was only about four years old.

Once my mother realized that it scared me way too much for my own good, she gave it away. I could breathe easily again.

Over the years, this dislike of clowns seemingly ebbed away, until I was around twelve. Back then, I was an avid bookworm (actually I still am, bleeee) and my favourite types of books were horror stories with gore and violence. What can I say, I was a disturbed child. 😛

One day, instead of going to sleep at night, I decided to read the latest book I borrowed from the library. It had thirteen short stories in it, and consisted of a medley of authors, one of which was R.L. Stine.

One story stuck with me in particular, mainly because it was about clowns. It was about a boy who suffered from deathly fear of clowns, and that was why he never frequented places like circuses and fairs and kiddy-style birthday parties.

On his birthday, his family decides to surprise him and they get tickets for this circus that’s visiting their town. He refuses to go, but his dad drags him, and pretty soon, he finds himself sitting around a circus rink, while clowns of all sizes amble around him.

Anyway, what happens in the end is that apparently, those clowns of that particular circus could somehow sense a child’s fear towards them, and they would kidnap that child secretly, and transform him into a clown.

At first, this boy struggled like crazy, fear numbing his vocal chords, while he was bound up in a chair, backstage of the show, while his parents looked for him, wondering where their child went.

The very last sentence of the story said that this boy went on to become the most successful clown in that part of town.

How messed up is that? Just the thought of clowns kidnapping me terrifies me. I would go insane if I were left in the company of psychopathic clowns. Wouldn’t you?

I never did like Ronald McDonald either. It was his face. And his eyes.

I know it’s a silly and irrational fear. Not even a fear, more like a dislike. I don’t like them, but it’s not to say I will start hyperventilating if I’m in the same room as one.

I should get over this, especially now that I only have about four months until I turn eighteen.

Sigh.

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