Although the full phobiafree app isn't finished I have now been the 'lab rat' for over six months and I think simply having to watch and think about spiders has had a beneficial effect on the level of my phobia. I'm still scared, but probably don't react quite so badly.
This can have it's down side especially when mixed with Christmas toys and 'new baby fatigue'. I was pottering around the kitchen half awake when I noticed a plastic spider on the floor which had come out of one of the numerous Christmas toys or crackers. I laughed to myself thinking how much better I was about spiders and how in the past I would have looked ridiculous running away from a toy.
Well it wasn't a toy! It was so big I could see it wink at me.
My initial response was to swear and run in three different directions, once I regained my senses I went through to the lounge were my wife and four-year-old daughter were watching TV.
I desperately don't want to pass my phobia on so in a slightly trembling voice informed my wife "there's a big err, umm, arachnid in the kitchen can you get rid of it". My wife shook her head, sighed and dutifully went. I sat on the sofa pleased with my ingenuity under pressure.
After a couple of minutes my young daughter looked up from the TV and said "was it hairy with big legs? Maybe it was Itsy!" and started laughing, possibly at me!
Looks like I need a new code word for spiders!