According to my personal psychologist, priest, and physician Google, I am not a germophobe. I know this without a doubt because Google has informed me that to be diagnosed with an anxiety disorder it has to be intense, it has to last a long time, and it has to severely interfere with daily living. I don’t have vats of anti-bacterial hand sanitizer strategically placed throughout my apartment. I don’t wear a SARS mask to the grocery store, though I received one for Christmas. I only take Airborne once per day before school and each time I enter an airport.
I do wash my hands after every bathroom visit because I learned in kindergarten that this is basic hygiene. Washing my hands seven times during the process of handling raw chicken is a different phobia called Alektorophobia. I will cop to that, but I am definitely not suffering from a fear of germs, otherwise known as Mysophobia. Aside from my admitted phobia in relation to fleshy naked fowl I also endure an almost crippling case of Coprophobia, a fear of toilets. It’s the closest term Google can find to describe my crushing anxiety over self-flushing toilets. This does not mean that I have an anxiety disorder, however, as my most recent trek to a public restroom will clearly demonstrate. While this experience was indeed intense it only took a half an hour of my day, therefore it doesn’t qualify for duration, nor did it severely affect my daily living as I was only at school for two hours that day. Read more