Marriage is a scared bond that binds two individuals together. While many people wait their whole life to be together forever with the person they love, the story may be different for some others. For some people however, the boundations of marriage are scary as hell. Any such irrational fear of getting married or committed is known as gamophobia.
It has been derived from Greek word “gamos” meaning marriage. Gamophobia is signified by intense, irrelevant and constant fear of marriage and commitment. The person is specifically scared to get into a marriage which implies spending the whole life with a single person. A gamophobic person’s fear of marriage is similar to the fear of dying. A gamophobic person may be in relationship with someone, but drift away and get nervous if the topic of marriage comes up. This phobia is totally different from Anuptaphobia (fear of being single) and Philophobia (fear of falling in love)
Gamophobia is a common phobia that occurs in people, especially men. Men tend to fear marriage due to the personal, financial and social risks that come along with marriage. Thus, gamophobia can be caused by:
Major symptoms that can occur with someone having gamophobia (both in men and women) are:
Gamophobia can be treated using different psychotherapies and medications. The effective psychotherapies for successful elimination of the fear are:Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
CBT is one of the most effective treatment therapies for gamophobia. Gamophobia may be related with a previous distressful memory and experience. The behavioral therapist counsels the person and tries to dig out the negative thoughts one has towards marriage. A gamophobic person tends to have a rush of fear due to the negative and disturbing images associated with marriage, and not due to marriage directly. The therapist conducts healthy talking and sharing sessions and guides to replace these negative images with positive ones.Exposure Therapy
Exposure therapy is also another effective psychotherapy used for treatment of gamophobia. In exposure therapy, the therapist makes the person confront a setting similar to marriage or brings up discussion on marriage. Alongside, the therapist also guides the person to keep oneself calm and relaxed during the session. Through regular exposures, the person gets habituated with it and will be able to develop tolerance for the anxiety.Family Therapy
Family therapy is an important component during the whole treatment process. The therapist works with the family, and makes them aware of the phobic situation. In fact, the regular counseling sessions with family develops support and motivation for the person from family sources. This can be a major lift up for the entire treatment process