Why I don’t like cats

I do not like cats.  Well that’s actually an understatement.  I’m terrified of cats.  I’m not sure how or when it started I just know that I can’t even look at a picture of a cat.  It’s specific phobia.  I’m not terrified of dogs or snakes (although I’m not necessarily fond of either) but cats put me in a paralyzed panic.  My earliest memory of “cat fright” was when I was about five.  Before I give the detail of that I guess it’s necessary to say that where I grew up is right at the mouth of the Cape Fear river in North Carolina.  When I was a child there was a fish factory and a crab factory right at the water’s edge.  The smell of fish was pervasive in the air, i guess that drew a lot of cats.  There were stray cats everywhere.  At night they would jump out of trees onto backs, if you left your front door open (which we often did in those days because most people didn’t have central air) you may find a cat in your house.  So, when I was five, my older cousin was visiting from out of town and we were listening to Make Me Yours by Betty Swan.  My the time we got to the chorus: “Now that I found you I wanna stay around you so make me yours”, a cat ran into the house.  Apparently there was a slight separation between the screen and the frame and the cat just came in the house.  Did he like the song? Was he a she?  I have no idea, I just know that this cat ran into the house and it terrified me.  Even recounting this episode causes the hair on the back of my neck to stand up.  If i go to someone’s house for the first time I ask if they have a cat.  If they say yes i don’t go inside.  I can tell when there is a cat around even if I don’t see it.  One day my daughter and I went into (now defunct) Isabella Grape in Southport looking for a prom dress.  My feline senses (kinda like spidey senses) began to tingle but all I saw was a few stuffed animals.  I continued to move from room to room looking at the dresses and there it was, looking at me with those eyes.  A big fat cat!  I was outside before I even had a chance to blink.  My daughter didn’t have to ask what the problem was.  The proprietor was kind enough to put the cat in a different room behind a closed door.  I don’t expect or ask people to remove their cats for me because i understand that I always have a choice not to be there.  There are so many stories of me and cats but I think that biggest reason that I don’t like cats is because ever since i was very small i’ve had dreams about cats attacking me.  Though the location is different the scenario is always the same.  I am minding my own business and somehow I disturb a cat.  It could be that I accidentally step on it or trip over it or something, and then the cat stalks me.  It gets closer and closer.  I try to get away but no matter where i go the cat is there.  Finally it lunges for my throat and I wake up.  My sympathetic nervous system is going crazy and it takes hours for me to get back to sleep.  Anything that moves quietly in the dark causes me extreme alarm.  There is a part of me that knows that this is an irrational fear, but it still doesn’t stop the reaction that I have to cats, even in pictures.  That other part of me (the not so rational part) believes that a cat will be the cause of my death.  So that’s why I don’t like cats.

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~ by Diva2de on April 11, 2012.

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