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Thread: How to overcome a fear of deep water?

  1. #21
    Junior Member Chesapeake Pod Siren Lily's Avatar
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    I was looking for a thread like this, earlier! Swimming in the ocean is one of my bigger fears. It's more a fear of what I can't see (at the beach), and a fear of very large aquatic animals that can move in any direction (elephants, for example, I'm not scared of) in an abyss of darkness... yikes. I know there's no real reason to be afraid of anything if you behave yourself. I think it's just an instinctual thing. Big fish/predatory fish, sharks, whales... they all do it for me.

    That doesn't make me any less enthused to explore, though!

  2. #22
    Senior Member Pod of Cali
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    Quote Originally Posted by Siren Lily View Post
    I was looking for a thread like this, earlier! Swimming in the ocean is one of my bigger fears. It's more a fear of what I can't see (at the beach), and a fear of very large aquatic animals that can move in any direction (elephants, for example, I'm not scared of) in an abyss of darkness... yikes. I know there's no real reason to be afraid of anything if you behave yourself. I think it's just an instinctual thing. Big fish/predatory fish, sharks, whales... they all do it for me.

    That doesn't make me any less enthused to explore, though!
    It was that fear (to a t) that made me create this thread. I figured I couldn't be the only one right! Plus there is so much I want to see below the surface!
    User formerly known as "Allie free".

  3. #23
    Junior Member Chesapeake Pod Siren Lily's Avatar
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    Absolutely! Me too! Just because I'm intimidated by sharks and whales does not mean that I don't one day want to swim with them! It's something that'll fade with time and experience, I hope.

  4. #24
    Senior Member Pod of Cali
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    Quote Originally Posted by Siren Lily View Post
    Absolutely! Me too! Just because I'm intimidated by sharks and whales does not mean that I don't one day want to swim with them! It's something that'll fade with time and experience, I hope.
    Exactly! I hope that it will for both of our sakes!
    User formerly known as "Allie free".

  5. #25
    I think it's totally natural to be afraid of things we can't see! For that reason, I'd maybe suggest getting a good-fitting snorkel/scuba mask and popping your head under water to start so that you can see what's down there. Personally it's gotten way less scary (I used to jump a foot when little minnows would brush against my leg in the lake when I was a kid!) and now I feel like the lake/ocean is just amazing because I can see everything that's going on!

  6. #26
    I used to be terrified of the water, then I found out about mermaids and I thought well, I can either get over it and be a mermaid, or let my fear control me and not be a mermaid. I'm still scared sometimes and did my first open water in the middle of the ocean shoot a few weeks ago and have another tomorrow, and I just trust that I'm not supposed to die yet, and if I am then it was gonna happen whether I was in the water or not. :-) Also Coradion always gives me a lecture about animals eating things way smaller than them and won't be interested in me, apparently we're gonna go shark swimming soon, I'm nervous but we'll sort it out!
    "It is your choice to hide in a shell, or to be shrimply fintastic by being yourself"
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  7. #27
    Senior Member Undisclosed Pod Coradion's Avatar
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    Shark swims will be awesome!

  8. #28
    Senior Member Undisclosed Pod Coradion's Avatar
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    I don't think deep water is that scary, but I've grown up with it. I think a big thing with it is if you feel like you belong in it you'll be okay. Also with a tail on there are very few things that would bother you, you're bigger than most sea creatures, you're foreign to them which is scary, and really the odds of you running into anything big much less it being interested in you are really swim.

  9. #29
    Senior Member Pod of Oceania Mermaid Jaffa's Avatar
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    My biggest worry would be, do sharks see in color? And are we a big tasty snack?
    Formerly known as ireneho

  10. #30
    Senior Member Undisclosed Pod Coradion's Avatar
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    Yes, but their color range is different. Most sharks eat prey items that will fit entirely in their mouths. Many sharks prefer foods with higher fat content, remember with a tail on we're all like six feet long at the minimum. Not only that but we're something strange and our behavior and look does not resemble something that they know to be food. If you happened to come across a large shark in the water, something over like six feet or something chances are it wouldn't bother you. I have a lot of friends that have been out in 30 feet of water near shore in Hawai'i and run into large tiger sharks over 10 ft. None of them were bothered by the animals.

  11. #31
    Senior Member Chesapeake Pod Nyx's Avatar
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    I'm curious Coradion, what do you mean with behavior??

  12. #32
    Senior Member Chesapeake Pod Nyx's Avatar
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    On another note, I recently discovered that I'm much more comfortable swimming in the ocean with tail than without it.
    I guess it's knowing that I'm bigger than anything I might run onto in that particular area, as well as the fact that my legs are covered and not touching the floor so that if something rubs on me while swimming by it won't freak me out as much.
    One of my biggest fears (even though it's silly) is stepping on something in the sand.
    It could be absolutely harmless, even seaweed, and it will freak me out.

  13. #33
    Senior Member Pod of Texas Seatan's Avatar
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    Nyx, by "behaviors" Coriadon means the way a shark's natural prey acts as opposed to the way we, as divers, act. The reason that surfers tend to get bitten by sharks more than divers is because the way they paddle with their big, fat boards makes them resemble a seal. Also, they surf at dawn and dusk in relatively shallow waters (when and where sharks hunt). Note that almost no surfers are actually killed by the sharks--they take an arm or a leg and then go "OH, WOW, THAT IS TOTALLY NOT SEAL YUCKYUCKYUCK BYE NOW!" They were expecting seal blubber and instead got bone and little flesh.

    SCUBA divers and freedivers, on the other hand, rarely dive at dawn or dusk (it's usually either a full out day dive or a full out night dive) and they don't hang around in the shallow waters where the sharks hunt for food. Without a surf board to give them the appearance of being a big, fat, blubbery thing sitting on the surface, we simply don't look like food. We're too big for a "quick bite" like a fish and too skinny for a "big kill" like a seal. We move in motions unnatural to underwater creatures, and we usually are packing a ton of weird metal equipment all over us (in SCUBA, at least). People either dive off boats directly into deep water or move very quickly from the shore into deep water, which is NOT where sharks are looking for food. Sharks' ability to hunt is based off of millions of years of evolution, and we do not fit the "prey guidelines" they have developed. While diving sharks tend to swim right by. The exception to this is when divers are spearfishing. They are then surrounded by a cloud of blood which confuses the shark's already not great sight and hypes his senses up for the kill. So sometimes spearfishermen get bit. But even that is fairly uncommon, as you'd have to make a lot of big kills to fill the area with enough blood to confuse a shark. I HAVE seen a shark swim up and take a diver's prize right off the end of their spear, though. Note that it had NO interest in us--it just wanted the dead, bleeding fish. It then swam away.

    Overall, the whole Jaws things really blew shark attacks out of proportion. You're not afraid of sperm whales because of Moby Dick, right? Then you shouldn't worry much about sharks either. The likelihood of being bitten by a shark is low to medium as a surfer who likes to hit the waves at dawn and dusk in areas known to be inhabited by sharks, but as a diver it's VERY VERY VERY unlikely a shark will do anything but swim past you. You are not a part of its world, so it isn't going to risk its own safety by attacking an unknown basically equal to it in length unless it feels VERY threatened.
    Once upon a time I was known as Seavanna. Going by Seatan these days. I always wanted to be the high lord of underwater hell.

  14. #34
    Moderator Pod of Cali Mermaid Wesley's Avatar
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    *applause* very much yes.


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  15. #35
    Senior Member Chesapeake Pod Nyx's Avatar
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    @Seavanna thank you for the explanation!

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  16. #36
    Senior Member Undisclosed Pod PearlieMae's Avatar
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    Honestly, I get more freaked out when I bump into a wad of sea/lake weed than anything else.

  17. #37
    Senior Member Pod of Texas Seatan's Avatar
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    LOL, my biggest freak out when I first started diving was when I was swimming near the bottom and I knocked up all the sand, sending myself tumbling butt first into the reef! I actually ended up using my mermaid skills on my few first ocean dives because I knew EXACTLY how I could move when doing the dolphin kick and turning, hovering, or even backing up with my feet together... But swimming with scissor legs I was a MESS!!! I would do what I THOUGHT would get me AWAY from the coral, and practically run face first into it. So I just started "mermaiding" with my tank on in "tight" areas and suddenly I could navigate the reef as well as my divemaster! All of that practice doing tricks in the pool paid off. I now prefer scissor kick for its low impact and easy sailing, but when I am squeezing into small places, getting VERY close to a coral wall, going in a cave, or hovering near the bottom I still use my mermaid swimming/dolphin kick! Also when I want to swim along with sea turtles!
    Once upon a time I was known as Seavanna. Going by Seatan these days. I always wanted to be the high lord of underwater hell.

  18. #38
    Senior Member Undisclosed Pod PearlieMae's Avatar
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    I haven't drunk the SCUBA KoolAid yet, but I'm sniffing the glass!

  19. #39
    Senior Member Pod of Texas Seatan's Avatar
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    Be ready for an ADDICTION. I am 100% ADDICTED. MUST GO UNDER THE OCEAN. MUST SWIM WITH THE SEA TURTLES. MUST DIVE 100 FEET DOWN A CORAL WALL. MUST IGNORE THE FACT THAT MY BODY TEMPERATURE HAS DROPPED 2 DEGREES AND I'M SHAKING 'CAUSE I DON'T WANNA COME UP.

    SCUBAddiction. It's very real. I just keep buying more wetsuits...
    Once upon a time I was known as Seavanna. Going by Seatan these days. I always wanted to be the high lord of underwater hell.

  20. #40
    Senior Member Pod of The South SeaMonkey's Avatar
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    sharks have bad eyesight
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