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 Post subject: Introduced to Spiders.
Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2015 1:52 am 
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Journeyman Hunter
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So, I'm a huge arachnophobe. I can't help it. It's just hard for me to even look at a spider without getting chills, shivers, and a nibble of fear in my head. It's almost funny for my friends because I'm a man that can't handle spiders. But I almost passed out when I was younger in science class and we were forced to each hold a giant rosy-something tarantula. That had been spitting and hissing and trying to bite the teacher as he took it out of the enclosure.

Anyways. Found a zebra jumping spider in my home recently. Panic ensued briefly, and of course, I hit it as hard as I could with a shoe.

ANYWAYS. The thing was so weird, so creepy...I've had little experience with jumping spiders, and the thing seemed so much more...aware? Active? It was twitching around, and the eyes literally made me want to scream.

So, naturally, I pondered this strange creature, and looked them up. With several drinks of cold water to help steady myself throughout the wikipedia articles and google images, I actually found jumpers to be pretty neat. Especially zebra spiders.

For all you spider lovers, I'm sure this is common knowledge, but I was really fascinated with how intelligent jumpers are, and how complex their hunting patterns are! They are one of the few spider species, and predators of their size, that will lose sight of their prey to reposition and remember exactly where it is. It seems silly, but that's not too common and pretty outstanding for the little buggers.

Also, zebra spiders, again, are one of the few spiders that are aware of being observed! This is an almost jumper-exclusive trait, and some of them don't even have it. That explains why it was acting so weird when I showed up. This spider, about the size of a nickel, was aware of me, a gigantic human, watching it. It was probably studying me and trying to figure out what I was going to do.

Plus, their little rectangle heads and binocular eyes are kinda cute.
And the dance. Oh. My. Gosh. The mating dance. All the cuteness.


So, to wrap up this kind of pointless anecdote in some fashion, simply learning about spiders helped me overcome some of my fear. Now, I'm not by any means saying I'm going to stop having such violent reactions. That will take time, if ever, to be overcome. BUT! I do have a healthy respect for jumpers at least, and especially my little native bros, Zebra Spiders. The sheer intelligence of such a tiny creature is just astounding, and I can definitely appreciate jumpers and maybe take the time to 'rehome' them instead of slamming them with a sole.

The moral of the story is to try and learn about what you're afraid of, if you can. Spiders are worth learning about.

P.S. I still hate the regular ones.

P.P.S. I feel bad for squashing that one zebra.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2015 3:22 am 
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Illustrious Master Hunter
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Educating yourself really is one of the best ways to overcome that sort of fear. :) Jumping spiders are completely adorable, and they can make terrific little pets if you ever wanted to catch one to study it! Here's a great guide to catching and caring for one (spider pictures in link, of course): http://sir-p-audax.tumblr.com/post/1055 ... pider-care

Arachnophobia is a strange western cultural phenomenon that became prevalent because of the way society likes to reinforce the idea that spiders are "scary". Kids grow up with it in media, see other people freak out about them, and next thing you know almost everyone claims to be arachnophobic, but it's so easy to overcome! I have had numerous people over the years tell me how my personal love of spiders has eventually rubbed off on them, and that even just seeing spiders every day or hearing about them in a positive way made them realize they weren't so scared. My best friend used to be intensely arachnophobic, she was terrified of them, but after she became my roommate and got to know my tarantulas she warmed up to them, and now she's the one who saves the spiders at work and puts them outside when her coworkers go to stomp them. I think there's a lot of people out there that just assume they're scared of spiders because it's what everyone expects and it's how a lot of people grow up, not questioning it or pausing to investigate that feeling. There have been countless studies done on the subject and it's been proven multiple times taht that's all it is, a learned fear, not something instinctive or hard-wired into our brains. It's entirely cultural.

Whenever I hear about people taking a step to overcome their fears it makes me smile, or when I get a message from someone saying that thanks to my passion about them they started to change their minds about spiders. They really aren't so bad, and they're such amazing creatures. :D

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2015 3:40 am 
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Illustrious Master Hunter
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It's good you are trying to get over your fears!.

I have nothing against spiders but I do get peeved at spider lovers sometimes!. Well Tumblr ones mostly!. You would not treat someone with a fear of deep water or cars like and idiot so why treat someone with Arachnophobia as one? Some people might really have it ya know? It might be a cultural thing but you should treat it like what it is a phobia at least that's what I think.

Sorry bout that rant but I needed to say it.

BTW I'm glad Vephriel is such a nice spider person :3 She's always good. (also I'm scared of caterpillars so you could be scared of worse things :lol:)

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2015 9:06 am 
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Artisan Hunter
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I'm so glad to hear you're learning about them! They are such fascinating creatures.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2015 1:07 am 
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Master Hunter
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Jumping spiders are what I used to help me get over my fear of spiders. I was always fascinated by them. I loved the shiny chelicera on the black ones when I was a kid. I loved to watch them move around and watch me.. I'd even try to taunt them with a finger, then scream when they'd jump at it.

Today at work I jumped at a big black spot on the wall, then realized it was a jumper. I then played with a little, tapping my fingers on the wall and watched him follow the movement. I then shooshed him off the wall into my hand where he jumped about leaving safety web strings all over me. The other girls freaked out about me picking it up, but I was perfectly comfortable holding him. I just watched as he moved about my hand and how agile he was jumping from finger to finger. I took him outside after a bit and put him on the wall. He never once tried to bite me. Had it been any other kind of spider, I would have gotten one of our hand sweeps to move him outside. Which is a step forward, as at one time it would have been splatted as soon as I saw it.

They are wonderful little spiders. They're so curious the way they look at you when they notice you. They are also cute in their own little way. I've debated catching one and trying to keep it as a "pet" but I'd hate to take him from his "home" outside. Just seems selfish.

Here's a great example of how they tilt and turn to look at you:
http://static.boredpanda.com/blog/wp-co ... ahan-9.jpg

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2015 7:14 am 
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 Community Resource
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brrr.. ick ...ewww.. ARRGGH..

ehhm what i mean is well done you! i just peaked on the pictures and my whole body began to shake.. I HATE spiders..well not hate but i fear them with every fiber in my body. I have been to several arachnophobia treatment courses but none have helped.. AT ALL.


those eyes.. shiver...

weirdly enough.. im NOT afraid of virtual spiders

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 25, 2015 5:09 am 
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Grand Master Hunter
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props to you for learning bout your fear.
I had quite a few really nasty spider scares when i was little, always had to deal with a lot of black widows and hobo spiders and had numerous close calls and watched my mom suffer through a few nasty bites so I have always had a pretty deep fear of spiders... but those jumping spiders... i have to admit they are kind of cute lil buggers. they always get a free pass from me. I leave them be or try to get them back outside. I too took notice of how they would often stop and watch you when you walked into a room. I think it was what originally made me pause and give the lil guys a break.

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