Musings, Personal, Special Days

Phobias or why I hate Bonfire Night

The fifth of November in the UK is day we commemorate Guy Fawkes whose plan to blow up the Houses of Parliament failed in 1605. Generally known as Bonfire Night, people not only build bonfires but let off fireworks traditionally to mark this event. This is probably my least favourite time of the year here. Why? I’m scared of fireworks.

I’ve had this phobia since I was little – my mum remembers having to take me out of my first firework display after I freaked out. There is no known reason for my fear – I never had anything bad happen to me that might relate to fireworks. In this life anyway 🙂 I avoid firework displays and generally stay in a round this date in anticipation of them. It’s the noise that scares me. I can appreciate the prettiness of the fireworks but not the noise they make as they explode.

I hate having such an irrational fear but phobias are strange things – hard to talk yourself out of. 

Do you have a phobia?



34 thoughts on “Phobias or why I hate Bonfire Night”

  1. This whole weekend has been so stressful with fireworks going from early evening into late at night… I personally do not mind them, but my dog does! I wish there was just one day of it…enough already… are you also afraid of thunder? As fireworks sometimes sound similar…

  2. I wondered what Guy Fawkes Day was! Fireworks are loud…no wonder many dogs and children are frightened! I hated the touch of velvet and shivered and cried when made to wear those pretty velvet Christmas dresses, crazy I know!

  3. I have a phobia over big bugs, especially ones that crunch and fly like beetles or cockroaches or palmetto bugs. It’s kind of dumb because I am much bigger than they are and can eliminate them easily. The thought of them, though, makes my skin crawl.

  4. I have the same problem! I’ve never been able to stomach fireworks, no incidents with them or anything, just a big fear since I was small.
    I avoid them too.
    Maybe one day we’ll enjoy a display, maybe.

  5. Don’t mind fireworks, but only if they are at organised displays with safety standards built in. When I was a child a friend’s father set off a rocket which went up and came straight down again inside the neck of his open coat. I did not see the result, but I know it was dreadful. I don’t believe fireworks should be sold to the general public unless they are part of a ‘cake’: we have a manufacturer locally who sells such ‘cakes’ and they are tried and tested and nobody is anywhere near the things when they go off.
    Selling stuff like this in supermarkets etc. is mad. The rest of the year you need a black powder license to cause this sort of mayhem. I don’t understand who two weeks in October/November should change that ruling.
    And I can’t stand creepy-crawlies – yuk!

  6. This makes me think of the movie V for Vendetta…one of the only times I’ve heard mention of Guy Fawkes day. And I know I learned the poem when I was in school–“Remember Remember the fifth of November…”

    If you’re afraid of fireworks, make sure you never have an extended stay in China! While I lived there, people set off fireworks nearly every day (and most of the time they didn’t even wait until it was dark…I tried to ask about this one time, why they would want to set off fireworks in the daytime when they can’t even see them, and someone explained to me that “the sound is very beautiful.”) It took me a long time to stop immediately thinking that it was gunshots. Towards the end of our stay, I joked with my husband that if there ever were gunfire in the street, I would probably react like, “No big deal….it’s just some fireworks,” and end up getting shot. Is it the initial sound that just startles you, or do you continue to be frightened even after the fireworks display has been going on for several minutes?

  7. I don’t know if it’s a phobia but I can’t stand when someone looks over my shoulder when I’m on the computer. I mean my heart starts palpitating, my palms start sweating, and I have to turn around and acknowledge them and send them on their way. I’ll tell ya when I worked at a call center my supervisor found that out right away. Fire me, but don’t look over my shoulder to see what I’m doing. I even put customers on hold to turn around and say “Can I help you?” lmao. Just thinking about it… Okay, I’m just nuts.

  8. I am a teeny-tiny bit claustrophobic and I am massively terrified of heights. Oh, and I don’t like the idea of things crawling all over me, especially if I’m locked in a box. There was this wacky reality show that I caught a glimpse of once that had people do things like that–climb into boxes with spiders or roaches and stay in there, locked up. I get shivers just thinking about it. I love spiders and all creatures, but they have their space and I have mine.

  9. For me it’s spiders and deep water. I hate any kind of water where I can’t touch the bottom without my head going under. Even the deep end of the swimming pool! (I can swim — I’m just not an amazingly strong swimmer, so maybe that’s partly why…)

  10. Hi, I realize that this post is years late but I just stumbled upon your page. I too am so incredibly afraid of fireworks and, like you, it’s the sound that I fear the most. I cannot stand the way they sound and even hearing the whistles or crackles terrify me. I’m in America so I always dread summer coming around because of July 4th. Hopefully this year won’t be bad. It’s nice to know that I’m not alone in my fear though, that really helps!

  11. Hello I have hated loud noises since I was little too. I am probably worse than a dog or cat as we had a dog years ago he was so scared he got himself trapped in a cupboard of course we thought it was funny at the time poor thing. He wasn’t hurt just stressed!
    I don’t mind watching fireworks from my window but hate the LOUD ones that have no warning there going to go off. I have anxiety and anticipate when the next one will be. Luckily where I live seems quieter this year but the bad weather predicted for the weekend doesn’t stop people. It was foggy last year and you still got them. I wear wireless headphones for my TV so find it helps to block out the sound. I would love to go to a display but tremble at the thought of the noise…I even hate cars that back fire, I find myself cringing or jumping out of my skin. No cure unfortunately.

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