Medical Definition of Autophobia

Autophobia: An abnormal and persistent fear of loneliness, of being alone. A fear of solitude. Sufferers from autophobia may experience anxiety even though they realize that being alone does not threaten their well-being. They may worry about being ignored and unloved, or they may worry about intruders, strange noises or the possibility of developing a medical problem.

Autophobia also has another sense, that of an irrational fear of oneself, intense self-fear that is groundless.

The word "autophobia" is derived from two Greek words: "autos" (self) and "phobos" (fear) = literally, self-fear, fear of oneself. "Autos" has given us many English words such as "automatic" and "automotive" (self-moving) and "autonomy" (self-governing). And "phobos" has bequeathed us a vast number of phobias such as "claustrophobia" (fear of closed places) and "acrophobia" (fear of heights).

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Last Editorial Review: 5/13/2016

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