In another question "i naerhet" meant "in the area". So it definitely means physical closeness. I guess it probably means emotional closeness too in a metaphorical way.
I typed "he's afraid of the area" and was marked wrong. I wonder what the difference is.
It would probably be more like "he's afraid of the close surroundings" but that would not make any sense.
It may sound better to say "He is afraid of intimacy" or "He is afraid of getting too close to others", something like that. Closeness... sounds odd in this context.
So to summarize...is this about "intimacy" or claustrophobia...or both?...
If this sentence is related to emotional intimacy as suggested by fveldig, I wonder why it is in the places skill. A better sentence would have been related to claustrophobia.
How would you say: He was afraid of closeness, when talking of being in a claustrophobic environment? Or what is a better sentence for this concept?
Maybe he is afraid of living near something, maybe he lives close to a dangerous neighbourhood, anyway I think it can mean both depending on the context