How did Douglas develop an aversion to water?


What happened at the YMCA swimming pool which instilled fear of water in Douglas’ mind?


Answer – 

Since the age of three or four, when the author accompanied his father to the beach, he realized that he disliked water. He would get frightened by the power of the waves which threw him, swept over and he was buried in water.

Later, at the age of ten – eleven years, he decided to learn swimming. He joined swimming classes at a swimming pool at the Y.M.C.A.

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It was just when he had started feeling comfortable that an incident took place. A big boy picked up the author and threw him in the pool at the deep end. He got water in his mouth and sank to the bottom of the pool. He got suffocated due to lack of air, could not scream, moved his arms desperately but all his efforts failed. He sucked in water and then suddenly all his efforts to save himself stopped. He was relaxed, peaceful, fearless and sleepy, almost dead.

It was due to these experiences that the author developed an aversion to water.



Check out more Questions and Answers from Deep Water


Why does Douglas as an adult recount a childhood experience of terror and his conquering of it? What larger meaning does he draw from this experience?

Describe the efforts made by Douglas to save himself from drowning in the YMCA swimming pool.

How did the instructor make Douglas a good swimmer? 

‘This handicap stayed with me as the years rolled by.’ Which handicap is being referred to and what are the events that made Douglas handicapped?

The childhood experience of terror of Douglas made him stronger and more determined. Elucidate the above statement supporting it with evidence from the text.

How does Douglas overcome his fear of water?


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