Facing Up To The Fear



DryShiteDublin writes:

The Fear: How we accepted a self induced depressive mood swing into everyday life.

To wit:

Having ‘The Fear’ is something that I think has been rolled into the Irish weekend experience. It’s an accepted and joked about phenomenon.

I didn’t really know what this was referring to when it crept into the parlance. I dialed up the arbiter of actual everyday speech, Urban Dictionary, and found what it apparently meant. The Fear, and stop me if I’m wrong, seems to be a foreboding feeling of regret with regards to one’s drunken behaviour the night before. From my own experience and from talking to my acquaintances, cases of the fear can go one for hours or days.

It has been embraced into the weekend warriors programme of events. ‘The Fear’ enables the fear-ee (the sufferer of The Fear) to comfort ones self. A Saturday afternoon spent keeping an eye on your facebook feed should throw up statuses and pictures of people indulging themselves with pajamas, any manner of comfort food, Disney movies,  and so on and so forth.

By publically glamorising ‘The Fear’ it becomes accepted into socitey and then leads the ‘fear-ees’ to feel like this is just a part of the weekend. In my experience, The Fear is a depressive mood swing brought on by aggressive consumption of alcohol.

I fear that accepting ‘The Fear’ as a cultural phenomenon is legitimising people bringing themselves into serious depressive states.

There is a real acceptance and openness to discussion of mental health in Ireland at the moment. Yet, at the same time we seem to embracing how drink effects our mood.

(Image: Eoin Whelehan)

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56 thoughts on “Facing Up To The Fear

  1. jeremy kyle

    People drink specifically because it effects their mood? I thought it was just that they liked the taste.

  2. JimmytheHead

    Ah here Dr Dryshite, go away will ye. I’d pay actual money to be cocooned in quilts with the dog on my lap and some brain melting daytime tv right now :-(

  3. Anomanomanom

    The “fear” is more of a- Holy crap I did something bad but can’t remember what- feeling. Ah the “fear”, great time indeed.

  4. munkifisht

    WOW… now there’s a pointless article. The Fear is what we used to call a hangover when you’d overdone it. There’s no glamorising.

    1. Tony

      Is it not about the normalising of binge drinking and resultant hangovers among de yoot?

      Fair point what with Ireland’s massive drink problem I guess.

      1. munkifisht

        That’s a different issue. Point is The Fear, that feeling of creeping dread you have the next day when you are hangin, is just a phrase. The word itself holds no real meaning. If people weren’t saying they had the fear on their FBs, they’d be saying how hungover they are. When I was in my early 20s (long time ago) there was a thing about saying how hungover you were the morning after. The Fear wasn’t even a phrase back then.

    2. Skerries

      yeah that’s not the fear, the Fear is when you are so hungover that you feel like you are dying with heart palpitations and paranoia
      the only way to ‘cure’ it is to start drinking again as your body goes into shock

  5. 15 cents

    yea, this is why we need constant referendums, without them, people turn to being outraged by nonsense

  6. Janet

    xanex, roast chicken, duvet , dog + best friend who is ideally suffering equal measures of fear, sparkling g water = all better in 6 hours or your money back.
    Seriously though every weekend ? The odd time and it’s usually enough to scare you back off the over indulging. That’s the function of a hangover to remind you being a langer regularly hurts.

  7. Fluter Bad

    The Fear is what separates men from boys. Boys get the fear, men are the ones laughing at them.

  8. Janet

    I’d say there’s a world of fear across Ireland today ;) smug yeah for bank holidays !

    1. The Old Boy

      It’s only a bank holiday in the UK. Ireland’s (or at least the southern 26, before Ultach has my head on a plate) is this day week.

  9. fits

    I actually think its good there is a name for it and that it is linked with over indulging. Cos then you know you are not thinking rationally and that it will pass (and remember to go a bit easier next time). I have suffered badly from it in the past.

  10. fluffybiscuits

    I hadnt drank in three months and celebrated the referendum at the weekend and am suffering badly with it. To add to it there is the need to check in with friends to ensure nothing wrong was done ! (Whcih is wasnt!) Mind you I dont have it as bad as I had before but it was a reminder why I dont really drink all that much now!!

    1. Janet

      I bet you were flufftastic ! Feet up head down it’ll be grand. Do people under 35 get the Fear ?

  11. _d_a_n_

    Fear: A hangover in one act.

    Fear: Oh hey!
    Dan: Oh for fupps sake
    Fear: What? I didn’t do anything. You on the other hand
    Dan: I don’t need this right now, I can’t handle it
    Fear: You’ve made your bed. I wouldn’t be here unless..
    Dan: I don’t want to know.
    Fear: Fine, I’ll just release small
    Intermittent flashbacks throughout the day, so when you’re queuing for a burrito or talking to your mother your chest will get tight and your utter inadequacy as a human will become so terrifyingly stark it will feel like your eyes are going to fall out
    Dan: This is why no one likes you. You wonder, but this is fupping why.
    Fear: Have you checked your bank balance yet?
    Dan: Fupp off
    Fear: That image you have of Kieth looking at you funny is because you said he.
    Dan: I know. Christ.
    Fear: Don’t cry.
    Dan: I think you enjoy this.
    Fear: I’m merely a function of your glaring deficiencies.
    Dan: Don’t absolve yourself of responsibility. You..
    Fear: Responsibility? Really.
    Dan: Fair point.
    Fear: How’s your ex?
    Dan: I’m going to end it all.
    Fear: Even that would be a bit pathetic. It’s just a fupping hangover.


    Dan: Oh god.
    Fear: yes?
    Dan: I didn’t.
    Fear: Yes, come on, nearly there.
    Dan: I didn’t
    Fear: You fupping did.
    Dan: Oh god. I can’t even look.
    Fear: She wrote back too. Shall
    I read it to you?
    Dan: No.
    Fear: you may as well read it now, it’s just going to be sitting there torturing you all day.
    Dan: Fine.


    Dan: She’s completely right.
    Fear: Yep. You’re a dick. Look I’m going to take lunch, I’ll be back about six, just when you think it’s over.
    Dan: Please, have mercy, you’ve done enough.
    Fear: You’re a terrible person and you’re going to die alone.
    Dan: Grand, talk to you about six.

    It continues, but you get the gist. My own personal experience of The Fear.

      1. Janet

        “Cleverly” deleting all your texts so you can’t worry about them the next day only to frantically try remember what you wrote while sweating coldly over your phone log …

  12. Spaghetti Hoop

    Alcohol is both a stimulant and a depressant. If you don’t want really bad hangovers and you find you’re wasting your weekend in ‘The Fear’, or it’s exacerbating an existing depressive condition, just drink less.

          1. The Old Boy

            Wurly burger and a curry chip for me, thanks. Feel the hangover abate as your arteries harden.

          2. The Old Boy

            A batter burger in a bun with cheese, ketchup , garlic mayonnaise and optional lettuce and onions.

    1. Mick Flavin

      There’s an Onion headline along the lines of “Moment of clarity dismissed as panic attack”.
      That sums up the Fear for me; that worry that the horrible lifesickness is warranted, and that we can ignore it when we’re not hungover.

          1. Joe the Lion

            Blame it all on my roots .. Oh that’s the other lad as well .. Seriously though Mick you can take the man out of the bog but sure ye can’t take the gran out of Granard

            Stand beside me stand beside me

          2. Joe the Lion

            To coincide with Mick’s Scottish Tour our 2nd Annual Scottish bus trip takes place from Thursday 28th May to Monday 1st June. We will be visiting Langholm, Dundee, Invergordan, and Keith. The price of this 5 day package is €520pps. (single supplement will apply). The package includes Bed and Breakfast for 4 nights, full use of luxury coach, return fast ferry and admission to shows on each night. For bookings contact Whartons Travel, Crossdoney, County Cavan on 049 43 37000.

            Cheap at twice the price

          3. Mick Flavin

            Sounds good Joe, but where’s the sense in having a flight of money across the border to Breifne, when Kanes and Donnellys are only over the road?

  13. Dough Berman

    I’ll never understand why people who get this continue drinking. Never had it in my life. Hangovers, sure, but I don’t think Panadol cures this “Fear” business.

  14. LiamZero

    “Glamorising” the Fear? There is nothing glamorous about the Fear. Absolutely nothing.

  15. Clampers Outside!

    New movie…

    Fear & Foreboding Next Day in Mass – An oddball journalist and his psychopathic lawyer travel to Mass for a series of psychedelic escapades around being dragged out of bed for the weekly Sunday run to 10am Mass and they still whack-a-doo from the night before.

    Needs a script, actors, budget of course and a crew to make it. Should be good though.

  16. Blah

    I agree.
    A lot emphasis in Irish society is put on drinking and binge drinking.
    The fact that we have the whole fear thing is a evidence of this.
    Being away from it for a number of years, I see Ireland from a different perspective, it’s almost shocking.

    All the ‘dryshyte’ type comments here reinforce this… You’re not really in the group if you don’t get drunk.

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