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5 Easy Steps for Catching and Releasing a Spider Without Flipping Out

5 Easy Steps for Catching and Releasing a Spider without Flipping Out

Hello, Women of the Internet!

This adorable fuzzy creature crawled under my bathroom door the other day, which reminded me that I’ve been meaning to tell you something. People, seriously, you need to quit being freaked out by spiders.

5 Easy Steps to Dispatching A Spider Without Flipping Out

This lady, which the Internet tells me is a female Dark Fishing Spider* is among the biggest in our area. She’s harmless. So are the vast majority of spiders ’round here, unless you’re a mosquito. 

The only reason that you’re afraid of spiders is that someone taught you to be. They taught you that girls cross their legs when wearing a skirt, have skinny ankles, shiny hair, and delicate opinions. They told you that spiders are freaky, and a proper girl squeals and calls her man to deal with such menaces. The person who taught you that may be a wonderful human being who is right about many, many things, but…she’s wrong about the spiders.  

Every time you give in to the urge to go all Psycho Shower Scene at the sight of a creature who weighs less than your annual toenail clippings, you’re teaching your kids that a spider is stronger than you are. 

Here’s the thing: Even if you’re extremely new to motherhood, you’ve grown life itself in your midsection. You’ve handled gallons of human fluids, coming from every possible orifice. Regardless, as a female adult, you made it through puberty and high school. Put your shoulders back. You can handle a spider. I promise. Here’s how. 

Step 1: Place a see-through container over the spider. Big glass bowls are great. It’s a spider jail and a spider viewing center, wrapped up in one. 

Step 2: Call your kids. Say, “WOW,” I wonder how many bugs this guy can eat? 

5 Easy Steps to Dispatching A Spider Without Flipping Out
Go a little Wild Kratts and name her Mama Fuzz. Count legs. Count body segments. Identify species using any of the tools available on the Internet. Learn something. 

Step 3: Slip a paper under her. Gently. See? Look at that. NBD! You now own a spider, and you can pick her up with your bare hands. Lucky you!

5 Easy Steps to Dispatching A Spider Without Flipping Out

Step 4: Transport to freedom. If your kids haven’t gotten distracted by Legos and/or fidget spinners, they can join you in the Great Freedom Parade to the yard. Yell “FREE WILLY”. Choose a spot near where you got your last bug bite, and imagine that you’re exacting your revenge. Take THAT, bug. Mama Fuzz is on the case. 

Step 5: Breathe a sigh of relief. You’re done with creepy crawlies for the time being, and you handled yourself with dignity. Give yourself a self-five and take a deep breath. If you’re new to spider wrangling, maybe pour yourself a tiny bit of wine. Hey, it’s 5 o’clock somewhere, right? Who am I to judge?

And honestly, I promise this won’t be the scariest thing you do today. You’re doing the constant, sticky, endless work of raising kids who face their fears. Go, you. 

*Arachnologists? Google tells me that fishing spiders are frequently misidentified as wolf spiders, but the former is generally found on vertical surfaces, the latter on horizontal. This cutie was on a horizontal, and I’d assumed she was a wolf spider. But when I looked it up, the bands on her legs seemed more like a fishing spider thing. Thoughts? 

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