by Francisco G. Gómez
There are many reasons why people fear bees and they are all valid. This fear is called melissophobia as coined by the Greeks, but is also known as Apiphobia. At the top of the list is the fear of being stung. Anyone who has experienced being stung by one of these little critters can tell you how extremely painful it is. For some individuals the experience can be life threatening. If you are susceptible to bee venom, then you understand what anaphylactic shock is. For those that don’t, it is a severe allergic reaction when the venom enters your body. Swelling, cold sweats and a number of other maladies can be experienced if you are allergic to bees.
Now if you’re not allergic, then it is simply an issue of overcoming the fear associated with the possibility of being stung. Another of the main reasons why people fear bees is the buzzing sound they make. Certain people have a tremendous aversion to this sound, especially when close to the hive and around the multitude of bees flying about; it can be unnerving! Then there is the fact that some individuals just don’t like bugs. And lastly, there are people who have learned to be afraid of bees through suggestion, most often without even realizing it. An example of this might be that you were reared in a home where a parent, grand parent or other relatives were fearful of bugs, bees in this case. There are probably a number of other reasons for the fear of bees, but that’s not the point of this article.
Raices just began its new bee initiative last week and already we have been contacted by people who are interested in starting their own hives, but are reluctant to do so because of fear. Perhaps the six facts listed below may help those timorous individuals begin to overcome their fear:
1. There are bee suits, so little chance of being stung.
2. Honey bees are not out to sting you. However, If they feel threatened, you may be stung.
3. Things that threaten bees are – accidentally bumping or stepping on one, wearing perfume or scents that are not to their liking, wearing loud clothes, sudden and quick movement in their vicinity, exhibiting nervousness around them.
4. Treat them as beings very closely related to you; they can feel your love, respect and unfortunately, your fear.
5. Start to understand and feel their vibrations and tune in your inner self to the sounds they make; it is very calming and healing.
6. Read as much as you can and see as much video as you can about bees.
A wise man once said, “The only thing you need to fear is fear itself.” Don’t let your doubts and fear keep you from enjoying one of the most rewarding experiences you will ever have. Once you take the initial step in understanding these magnificent little creatures, you’ll be astounded and amazed how quickly your apiphobia disappears.
Stay tuned for the coming bee workshops Raíces will be presenting in the near future.