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Psychology » Scopophobia: Fear of Being Watched

Scopophobia: Fear of Being Watched


Scopophobia (or scoptophobia) is the fear of others, fear of disappointing them. Sometimes, people suffering from this disease cross the line. For example, it is necessary to go out because of emergency but a person stays at home in order to make up and look good. It may seem ridiculous but in reality, it is a pity.

Causes of scopophobia

The main causes of the disease are hidden in childhood and they are associated with stress and psychological trauma. Everyone in one way or another has some features of scopophobia: fear of public speaking in high school, fear of disappointing relatives and friends.

little boy

Often parents cause the development of scopophobia, who use mockery in the nurture of their children. Every child was said: “John is studying better than you, and you are lazybones! You are not able to do simple tasks.” It leads to the lack of confidence. It is especially difficult for teenagers. Everyone is waiting more from them, parents want them to know: who they want to become, with whom to friend and who is a bad company. Not every adult is able to clearly answer these questions and statements! Children become detached and isolate themselves from society, thus creating another barrier between them and society.

Excessive control of parents and relatives has a negative impact on the child. It results in the development of various phobias, including fear of being mocked. Being a favorite and loved one, children do not make any effort but only consume. There are always help and caring from parents. Thus, the child becomes dependent on other people.

In adulthood, people who have scopophobia are modest and shy. They want to change but they experience the lack of will.

Symptoms of scopophobia

  • Shame. The lack of confidence makes a person think that the work is done badly. Self-importance is on the fictional level, i.e. it is not evaluated in a proper way.
  • The shame because of the disorder. A person develops hypochondria. He thinks that everyone is aware of his illness and laughs at him.
  • Panic attacks during communication.
  • Inattentiveness (a person who suffers from scopophobia focuses on himself, not on his interlocutor).
  • The feeling of imaginary loneliness (nobody loves me, I have no friends).


Doctors use words in order to treat scopophobia. Often the disease is confused with depression and different sedatives are prescribed. Such treatment will provide only a temporary result slowing down the nervous system.
Tell your parents about your fears. They are the closest people who will support and understand. Make them think that you are an adult and independent person and deserve a proper respect as an individual.

If you want to be honest with friends, it makes sense only if you trust them. Childish and teen jokes only need to show off and express oneself as a leader. Usually, it is because of age. The older the person, the less he jokes in that way, and these jokes are  perceived in a different way.


Psychologists recommend to treat yourself with humor, not to pay attention to the hurtful jokes. It is important to remember that those who want you to be upset or offended, they  want to see your pain and suffering. The more you react, the happier the foe is. When we look through the prism of humor, life seems happier and “evil tongues” are silent.

Scopophobia is treated in 9 of 10 cases. Sometimes the mental illness goes passively and goes away on its own if we find the solution to the problematic situation. If panic attacks are continuing, it is necessary to seek professional help (of the psychologist).