For a while, Philip refused to draw with yellow markers or crayons. While eating fruit snacks, Philip often leaves the yellow ones.

Xanthophobia is the fear of the color yellow or the word yellow. I’m not claiming that Philip has this phobia since his avoidance of yellow objects comes and goes. However, I do notice that he can be very particular when it comes to colors.

Sometimes, I comprehend the logic of his behavior.  It made perfect sense why Philip wasn’t using yellow crayons-you can’t see what you are drawing on white notebook paper. Plus, I’ve tasted the fruit snacks. While I wouldn’t say the flavor gushes into your mouth with each bite, I’ll concede that each color has its own distinct flavor. I guess that Philip doesn’t like the “lemon” ones.

Philip also went through a phase where he wouldn’t play with blue toys. He had one of those rainbow-colored wooden stacking toys from which he removed the blue and indigo rings. He continued to play with the violet one for reasons that I couldn’t fathom. Then there was his set of soft stacking blocks. He would only play with the red, yellow and green ones. He got upset if an adult tried to add the blue one in. This evening, he would only eat the pink mini-marshmallows.

Playing with the yellow block

Playing with the yellow block

I could become stubborn and try to force Philip to use things regardless of color, but I won’t. This isn’t a matter of “you pick your battles.” Instead, I see no reason why he can’t be picky. Fortunately for Philip, there is no single color that induces great anxiety. Instead, his sensitivity to color is just a way he is different, another part of his neurology that I can accept as is.

I’m blogging about autism acceptance as part of the April A to Z Challenge. X is for xanthophobia.

2 thoughts on “Xanthophobia

  1. I didn’t know about Xanthophobia and I have no experience with autism, but I agree. It would seem to me that color sensitivity is just a difference as others may be sensitive to light or sound or crowds of people.


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