By Lavendrick Smith, The Charlotte Observer
Do you know what gamophobia is? What about ophidiophobia? Well, if you live in the Carolinas, you might have one of them.
Gamophobia, or the fear of commitment, is North Carolina’s most searched phobia on Google, according to a list compiled by home security company Your Local Security. The company looked at each state’s most searched phobia over the past year.
In South Carolina, people are most likely to search for ophidiophobia, the fear of snakes.
Though phobias are characterized as being irrational fears or aversions, a fear of snakes could make sense for South Carolina. The state has 38 different snake species, though only six of them are venomous, according to the state Department of Natural Resources.
Triskaidekaphobia, the fear of the number 13, was America’s most searched phobia, according to the list.
Xenophobia, defined by Merriam-Webster as the “fear and hatred of strangers or foreigners or of anything that is strange or foreign,” was another commonly searched phobia nationally.
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And if you’re scared of clowns, you’re not alone. Coulrophobia was near the top of the list as well.
Americans are also fearful of corrupt government officials, a survey from Chapman University in California found.
The school presented more than 1,200 people with a list of items on a range of topics, from not having enough money in the future to North Korea using weapons.
Corrupt government officials were by far the most feared, with 74.5 percent of respondents saying they were “afraid or very afraid” of them.
The same topic topped the list in 2016, when the study found 60.6 percent of people said they were afraid or very afraid at them.
Other top fears in 2017 include pollution, expensive medical bills, and the possibility of another world war, according to the study.
LaVendrick Smith; @LaVendrickS