FDR’s Fears

President Franklin D. Roosevelt

President Franklin D. Roosevelt encouraged Americans to overcome the challenges of the Great Depression by boldly proclaiming, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” He could have saved time by saying, “We all have phobophobia.” That is the technical term for “a fear of fears.”

Despite his assertion that fear was the only thing to be afraid of, FDR had a couple of other phobias. He was very much afraid of fire (pyrophobia), resulting in orders that doors to his room never be locked. He also feared Friday the 13th (paraskevidekatriaphobia) and managed to avoid Friday the 13th of April, 1945 by dying the day before.

A little extreme, when you think about it…

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