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I was visiting an Occupational Therapist, and she saw the book I was reading. It was a suspense novel, my favourite genre. I forget which book. She said she is always surprised to see people who have anxiety disorders reading these types of books. Don’t they make me feel worse?

Truly, no they don’t! Some reasons I like them:

  1. Seeing my fears in print, spelled out in black and white, there is something reassuring about it. Somebody else has thought of the same scenario, so I am not totally warped! Or I am in good company.
  2. You can close the book, or stop reading it. Not so much with real life.
  3. The “victims” in the books have a variety of solutions and coping skills that help them survive, and I have picked up some ideas that I now use.
  4. I love that suspense books get me thinking and problem-solving.
  5. I get drawn into the story easily, as there is always a sense of urgency.
  6. It is satisfying when the villain gets caught or punished.
  7. Unlike a movie, I am in charge of providing the visual, whatever I imagine. I can control my response, to some extent.
  8. Somewhere in the pages of the story, there is hope.

I read other fiction as well, but my first love is a good suspense novel. Can anybody relate to any of this, or do scary books make your anxiety worse?

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2 thoughts on “I Like Suspense

  1. Nice analysis. I had never thought of it, but I have to say that I agree with you. Suspense novels do not increase my level of anxiety. In fact, no matter the scenario, I am usually intrigued & entertained; bonus if I can relate. Like you suggested, it may be a confirmation of our own story.

    Any novel is an escape…a pleasant one.

    Liked by 1 person

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