I want to talk a little bit about "exposure".
You see. . . the exercises in the dreaded book are all aimed at getting the unknowing victim to experience prolonged exposure to a feared animal so that they become desensitized and are no longer afraid.
But even the word "exposure" scares me. . . and it keeps getting all twisted around in my brain.
I think we've established by now that I'm a semi-sane-and-intelligent adult. And I'm no stranger to words. . . we all know that for sure. But that blasted word keeps playing tricks on me.
I guess my trouble all comes down to this: Which preposition is following the word?
Am I exposed "to"?
Or am I exposed "by"?
Because, even though they intend me to be exposed "to" rats and mice by these exercises, I can't help but feel that I'm the one being exposed here. . . that it's me who has placed myself in a vulnerable position and been exposed "by" these exercises.
Not only that. . . I am exposing myself to fear. . . exposing myself to terror. . . and exposing myself to my own internal pain and humiliation.
And it's interesting - is it not - that the word "exposure" is also associated with having uncovered a certain truth that someone would like to keep hidden.
And what's more. . . I think one can die of "exposure". . . can they not? Yes, I'm quite certain that I've seen it as a cause of demise on a death certificate. . . the dear deceased died from EXPOSURE. . .
I do not like that word, Mr. Cat.
I think I like the word "desensitization" much better.
'Cause I get that.
I know how not to feel. In fact, I've made a living out of THAT word.
And I'm almost positive that no medical professional has ever been forced to list "not feeling" as a cause of death. In fact, the term "not feeling" is usually the result of death, not the cause of it.