The Anxiety & Phobia Treatment Center
Offering the keys to recovery since 1971

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I Hate to Have My Picture Taken!

I have had a phobia of having my picture taken since I was just a toddler. I am OK with handling cameras, seeing pictures of myself and having others see the pictures. It’s the process that is the problem.  My worst experience was just a year ago. I went into panic attack mode and I’ve never done that before. I’ve never met anyone with this problem but I need help.

You are suffering from some variant of a social phobia. In any case, it does sound like a true phobia and should respond to the usual treatment of desensitization. Try taking your own picture with a time delay camera, then maybe have a close friend or relative practice taking your picture from a long distance away then approach to take pictures in a closer and closer range. Remember, this is only a feeling you get, it is only anxiety not a real danger. Count backwards from 100 by 2’s during the photograph taking so your attention is focused on something other than your anxiety. That way, you can handle the momentary anxiety that being the center of attention during a photograph requires.

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