When you have an abnormal fear of getting ridiculed, it is called catagelophobia. People face teasing or ridicule at least during some point of life, but most get through by coping in their own personal way. But people with this phobia take mockery or being laughed at very seriously and consider it to be the most embarrassing thing that can possibly happen to them.
The fear of being ridiculed may start taking root in early years of childhood. A child is more sensitive emotionally and any exposure to inconsiderate criticism or condemnation leads to an offended psyche. Children who grow up in an environment bereft of affection and love suffer from low self-esteem. As a result they may become reclusive and withdrawn. Catagelophobia causes people to shun and avoid others as they have an underlying fear of getting mocked or teased by others.
Symptoms can vary among those affected and depend on the intensity of fear one has developed. As this phobia is often deep rooted in the affected person’s psyche, managing or controlling it is often a difficult task. Those with severe symptoms associated with this phobia may become hypersensitive in their reactions and may even on occasions, run away from a place they think they will be ridiculed.
Compassion focused therapy and other forms of behavioral therapy are effective methods that may be used to treat individuals with high levels of embarrassment and self-criticism.