We all have things that make us wary, or perhaps even terrify us. Personally, I grew up in a household in which I learnt not to be scared of things that perhaps other people are – like spiders or clowns. There are very few things that scare my stoic mom and my plucky brother, and I’m probably considered the wimp of the family.
We went to theme parks every year so any fear I would have had of rollercoasters or heights was zapped out of me. I was lucky enough to travel abroad every year from when I was very little, so I’ve never been scared of flying.
And I’d say I’m reasonably uncomfortable with the idea of dying, but it’s not something I care to think about very much.
It’s generally not things or potential circumstances that worry me. It’s people – there’s nothing that strikes more fear into me than having to interact with people. Some people think that’s weird, but when you can’t relate to something, it’s easy to label it as abnormal.
I really can’t for the life of me wrap my head around the idea of having an irrational fear of holes, bumps and patterns, for example. But it’s a phobia that very much exists and goes by the name of Trypophobia.
Now while I’m not in any way a sufferer of trypophobia (the irrational fear of irregular patterns or clusters of small holes/bumps), even I was pretty repulsed when I saw a certain video making waves on the internet. A 24-year-old woman called Bridgette Trevino has shared a clip of someone’s hand, a hand that is completely covered in tiny “bleeding holes”.
It was shared over 60,000 times but there were a number of people who were outraged by the video, namely those claiming to have trypophobia.
Texan native, Bridgette Trevino, is an amateur makeup artist and she embarked on a project to create an illusion of a gruesomely wounded hand. She used wax and a range of different tools to help her achieve this.
When Bridgette uploaded the video, she was compelled by Facebook to put a disclaimer on the post that the wounds were not real after it was flagged by other Facebook users.
Facebook even took further precautions by displaying this message at the start of the video: “This video may show graphic violence or gore.”
While Bridget was pleased that her latest project had gotten so much attention, she wasn’t prepared for the backlash it received:
“I’ve had a lot of reactions, some good and some bad. People have gone as far as reporting my work and have sent me messages of concern to check I hadn’t seriously hurt myself.
Many of the complaints came from people claiming that Bridget’s video triggered their trypophobia:
“I understand that trypophobia is a real thing, although only a small population actually has this. A lot of people have claimed to have had panic attacks because of my work.”
However, Bridget has refused to take the video down because she is proud of the attention it has received, especially because thousands of people initially believed it was genuine.
“I’ve even had threats to try to make me take down the video and pictures. I sympathize, but it also only encourages me more. If it’s not scary or doesn’t get that response I’m not doing my job properly.”
Personally, I’m incredibly impressed by Bridgette Trevino’s ability to single-handedly create a realistic illusion of a wounded hand. She’s not even a professional makeup artist and so kudos to her for duping us into believing that the hand in question had suffered such a gruesome injury!
I’m sure trypophobia is an unpleasant condition, but instead of censoring the internet, we should be focusing on treating people with the condition.
Take a look at the full video that had the internet up in arms.
Could you get through it?