I had a near death experience with drowning at the age of 18. I am currently 26 and I am scared of drowning. I took swim lessons as a child and did alot of swimming in boy scouts for merit badges. I am a decent swimmer, still to this day. I am not scared of the water but of just drowning. When a buddy decides to dunk me I used to freak out. But, now, I go on float trips, fight in pools and rivers and do much better. Im not worried in the water unless I get forcibly stuck under water. I think that is because that is what happened in my experience at 18. But, the point is, that I moved forward and got more and more comfortable with swimming. But I believe the fear, however small or controlled, is still there somewhere.