I looked extensively on Google and could not find a proper term for the phobia surrounding outhouses. I discovered the term ‘Paruresis’ which is the fear of public toilets and learned about ‘Portaphobia’ which is a phobia of using portable toilets but neither fit the definition of a fear of the big ol’ outhouse.
I am going with something from my own imagination: “SomethingIsGoingtoBiteMyRearEndobia” or “OHMYGAWDIsThatASpiderOrIsItSomethingElseobia” or “SomeoneIsStandingOutsideTheDoorAndCanHearMePeeobia” and finally, “TheSmellIsTerribleOMGWhatIsThatSmellobia”.
Why did I spend ten minutes of my life trying to find a term for the phobia about using an outhouse? Because someone in Alaska just experienced my biggest fear: “Bear bites woman’s bare bottom from outhouse toilet in Alaska” (headline on Global News online).
You know something? A bear hiding in the outhouse hole was not really on my list of potential hazards. My rational mind had always assured me that, “there was no way a bear could get down there…. could it?”. I spent my formative years worried about things like a wasp or spider nest, maybe even a snake hiding in the depth of the outhouse, ready to strike my fanny when I was at my most vulnerable. It didn’t matter that there was 0% chance that a rattle snake would be down the hole, I doublechecked for the sound and the beady little snake eyes before resting my hiney on the seat.
Rewind to when I was a child when my family spent a few weeks each summer at a lake in Northern Alberta. We stayed in our 5th wheel trailer that came equipped with a lovely bathroom complete with a toilet. Did we use that lovely bathroom with the comfortable, clean toilet? No, THAT toilet was off limits – we were sent to the campground outhouse for our business.
I said that I would refuse to poop for the entire time we were on vacation.
I was terrified of the outhouse; the smell, the flies buzzing up in the ceiling, the fear that someone would walk in while I was doing my business and finally, the fear that a wasp/spider/snake/thing would attack my behind.
I probably gave myself a UTI.
I would rather use the bush than use the outhouse. Now I have to worry about bears biting my rear.
Judy Kucharuk would rather use the bush then use the outhouse.