A Girl With the World's Most Bizarre Phobias - Fear of Buttons

by Hannah Punitha on  April 22, 2008 at 5:06 PM Lifestyle News
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A Girl With the World's Most Bizarre Phobias - Fear of Buttons
A 22-year-old Britain girl is battling with one of the world's most bizarre phobias - fear of buttons.

Gillian Linkins can't even stand in the same room as friends and family, who wear them. The sight of buttons sends her into panic attacks.

She realised her phobia at the age of seven, when she refused to put on her school blouse.

"I've had the fear as long as I remember. My mum says I freaked out when it was time to get dressed," The Sun quoted her as saying.

Moreover, her boyfriend Nate Dorrington, 23, also wears clothes with zips.

"I have always been fearful of buttons, especially when they are grouped together."

"For me touching a button would be like touching a cockroach. It feels dirty, nasty and wrong. When I was younger my brother used to tease me by opening my mum's button tin. I hide in my bedroom until he put them away.

"My cousin was wearing a button necklace one day and in the end she had to take it off,"

"I could not stand being in the same room as her," she added.

Linkins, of Waterlooville, Hants, struggled hard to hide her phobia from school friends and has even tried hypnotherapy to cure herself, but nothing could benefit.

"Some people don't believe me and I try to joke about it. I've tried things like self-help tapes and hypnotism but nothing has worked.

"Watching the children's TV show Button Moon is like being made to watch a horror movie. People just think I'm weird," she added.

The phobia named Koumpounophobia, affects one in 75,000 people.

"The phobia often affects children and the problem can persist into adulthood," said a spokesman for The National Phobics Society

"We suggest cognitive behavioural therapy as a way to self-manage the phobia," spokesman added.

Source: ANI

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I have the same phobia and have had since I was around 5 years of age. My parents would have jars of them (buttons) around the sewing room (WHY?) like you would need that many! I would place tea towels over the jars, so that I would know they (the nastiness of them) couldn't get to me. To see someone, especially women wearing ornate buttons on dresses or anything just makes me cringe. I was 23 before I could even wear Levi 501 jeans with their tabs instead of zippers, but I was determined to beat the phobia and wear 501's. I think I must have choked on one, or something like a penny to cause the fear to start so early, I hope I never find out.

I only wear t-shirts, sweaters, pull-overs, etc. I'll wear a dress shirt to a wedding or funeral (putting them on with gloves).


hi, my name is kafi and i come from south africa. i have also had a fear of buttons since the age of seven and i hate loosened buttons on shirts. the problem is that my problem extends to hating shirts in general, linens, corners of clothes or sewing threads. it makes my life hell because i can't even eat when they are around in the room.

I too suffer from this phobia and for many years thought I was alone. I have done a bit of research and it would seem that there are many of us out there. The fear of buttons even has a name, koumpounophobia.


i also suffer from the fear, my mom and sister tease me about it alsmost everyday. i thought i was the only one.


I as well suffer from that fear and have my whole life. I would do anything to have it rid of

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Anxiety Disorder Agoraphobia Phobia Phobias Xenophobia Trypophobia Paranoia 

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