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Gynophobia: Why he's scared of you

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

As a female, it's normal for you to wonder WTH is going on in his head. You've met this new guy and he's yet to call, doesn't seem to take visual hints, or read expressions.
If it weren't for your openness and bold declarations of what could happen, he'd probably still be sitting over in the corner someplace. And yet, here he is, in your life, albeit, barely.
Why hasn't he "manned up" and jumped at the chance to know you?
Maybe, because he's scared of you.
Yes, yes, afraid of you, and mostly, all women that showed even a glimmer of interest in him. See, women are'n't the only ones who get so gun shy that it cripples them.
Gynophobia (also spelled as gynephobia) is an abnormal fear of women. In the past, the Latin term was used, horror feminae, literally meaning "fear of women". The word caligynephobia is also coined to mean the fear of beautiful women. For the latter one the expression venustraphobia is also used.

It should not be confused with misogyny, which is dislike of or prejudice against women, although the term may be seen used in this meaning as well.

Gynophobia used to be considered a driving force toward homosexuality. Havelock Ellis in his 1896 Studies in the Psychology of Sex wrote:
"It is, perhaps, not difficult to account for the horror — much stronger than that normally felt toward a person of the same sex — with which the invert often regards the sexual organs of persons of the opposite sex. It cannot be said that the sexual organs of either sex under the influence of sexual excitement are esthetically pleasing; they only become emotionally desirable through the parallel excitement of the beholder. When the absence of parallel excitement is accompanied in the beholder by the sense of unfamiliarity as in childhood, or by a neurotic hypersensitiveness, the conditions are present for the production of intense horror feminae or horror masculis, as the case may be."
And it should be noted that many females are afraid of males, too, for several reasons.
Wilhelm Stekel, author of "Sadism and Masochism: The Psychology of Hatred and Cruelty" discusses horror of a male masochist that many women feel.
According to Wikipedia, some authors consider the myths about Amazons evidence of gynophobia in Classical Athens.
Are you (gasp)... afraid?



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