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  1. Do some people never recover?

    Im sure I have mentioned before, but I’ve had a few glasses of wine this evening, so sorry if I’ve forgotten, but if you haven’t then look up Imposter Syndrome.
  2. Do some people never recover?

    Have you ever gone the ‘full fear’ with this obsession? Just given in and assumed it’s true, given up trying to fight it? Incidentally there is no straightforward dichotomy between a true thought and an OCD thought. OCD is where your thoughts spiral out of control. Most of mine are based in some kind of truth, but that get more and more warped. You need to get to a place where your OCD isn’t convincing you that a drunken pass is a crime. It isn’t. When you’re past this episode you still won’t know all the details of what happened but you won’t care about knowing.
  3. Do some people never recover?

    Like I have complete intolerance to bad feelings and must avoid them. I’ve tried to make friends with bad feelings and accept them as part of life blah blah, but I’m still pretty rubbish at it. It goes: this thing doesn’t objectively matter, I know this - but it will make me feel bad - therefore it does matter.
  4. Do some people never recover?

    I think this is the missing piece for me in this puzzle. I think I feel like thoughts follow feelings rather than the other way round - so x situation made me feel bad once, x is a bad thing to happen, x must never happen.
  5. Do some people never recover?

    I feel like I have an issue with how I feel about things, rather than the things themselves.
  6. Do some people never recover?

    I sometimes wonder on the same line, do we ever truly come to believe what we are retraining our brains to believe? I really know what I’m supposed to think about things and I can tell myself those things, but I don’t FEEL like I really believe what I’m telling myself. If I’m honest with myself those things still FEEL important. I don’t want to believe those things, and objectively they don’t matter to me, and if my fears happened to someone else I would say all the right things and truly believe what I was saying to them. But it just doesn’t feel true when applied to me. If that makes any sense.
  7. OCD about morals and honesty

    I always used to have dreams about being back in my home town and in my dreams I would see people I knew and would hide and hope to not be seen. Now though, in my dreams I turn and face them and speak to them. I think this is definitely due to me trying to make an effort to change how I think about all this stuff.
  8. OCD about morals and honesty

    I don’t even visit my home town! I really should. Good luck - I know people who just talk about all the crazy stuff they did in their teenage years and I’m truly envious that they have no shame! They are as happy as Larry!
  9. I think you should generalise ‘trigger point’. You may have had an idyllic childhood but you have almost certainly experienced negative emotions whilst growing up. These can act as trigger points I think. I once got falsely accused of something by a teacher aged 9. It was rectified in seconds, but the awful feeling that I had left a very big scar, and a life lesson of ‘be very careful not to get in trouble, it feels dreadful’. I don’t think you need look for major trigger.
  10. Morning Anxiety

    Your cortisol levels spike in the morning. It’s evolution’s way of getting you up and looking for food. But with cortisol comes stressful thoughts unfortunately. The absolute worst thing you can do is lie in bed tossing and turning. Get up, get breakfast, get busy and things will improve. But I agree it’s very unpleasant.
  11. OCD about morals and honesty

    Interesting - I just read what you said about your partner saving you from yourself by reigning in your behaviour. I also think this - if I were allowed to go running about like a teenager behaving stupidly my life would be a mess! So in a way the fear of judgement has served me quite well, but also made me mentally ill. Go figure!
  12. OCD about morals and honesty

    Hi GBG. This has been an interesting thread to read. I wonder if my experience has any similarities with your dilemma: you may or may not remember that a few years ago I had a really terrible theme of being murdered. This theme was the most intense I have ever had but on the plus side is what prompted me to finally put into practice what I had learned. Anyway, it seems so implausible now and I will try to summarise really briefly how I realise in hindsight that it all came about. 1) Ongoing rumbling source of anxiety relating to me being a bit adventurous in my late teens. I was fine about myself when I was a teen, but over the years I have settled down and become part of a ‘respectable’ community miles away from anywhere I grew up or anyone who knew me in those days. 2) The more years that go by with me as a respectable person, the bigger the gap there seems between the ‘old’ me and the ‘respectable’ me. 3) The bigger the gap, the more anxious I have become about being ‘found out’ as a ‘non-respectable’ person. It feels like not one person around here has had any kind of adventurous past, and that they would look down at that type of behaviour. 4) The more I hang out with these kinds of people (bet they all have skeletons really!), the worse I judge my own previous behaviour to have been. Then the more it feels I have to lose if I am ‘found out’. 5) Anyway, back to the plot - a house over the road came up for rent, and I had a classic sudden intrusive thought ‘what if someone from my past life moves in’. Cue spiral of catastrophising from my cover as respectable being blown right up until being murdered (I won’t fill in the crazy OCD fuelled blanks because they are all completely ridiculous). So really what had caused the episode was me trying to protect an image to prevent me from being judged harshly by others. I think the wider the gap between ‘my past behaviour’ and ‘others past behaviour’ was what fuelled everything, and felt like I had so much to lose. Of course there are loads of problems with my thinking - others past behaviour is purely my perception rather than realist, my past behaviour probably wasn’t even that bad in the scheme of things etc. But I guess the crux was a fear a judgment, allowing others to dictate how I should be judged, a fear a shame. Weirdly I always hate when I run into anyone from my past and try to avoid it (yes a compulsion I know), as I feel it would cause me to freak out. But, someone did contact me out the blue a little while ago and actually it was really great to be all relaxed again - around someone who hadn’t judged me harshly back in the day and just like me for who I was. That was very long if it was completely irrelevant! I guess a cautionary tale in there about how quickly our underlying cognitive issues can turn really bad if we’re not careful! I would say keep working at being more comfortable being judged, and more confident in being able to say ‘this is how I was, so be it’ without relying on others to decide whether you deserve ‘judgment’ or not.
  13. I think that distraction can be confused with avoidance. If your compulsion is ruminating, when you are at the beginning of recovery and your mind is an absolute blizzard of scary thoughts, applying the cognitive principles is much easier said than done. I think one of the reasons people take medication is so that they can get their minds into a calm enough state to really start thinking about what they are doing/thinking. It’s the same for distraction I think. For those reasons I don’t really think that it counts as a cognitive tool - that would be all about addressing why you are so scared and how you can respond differently. I also think there is a distinction between avoidance and distraction from rumination. For avoidance the key aim is to not think about the fear, which I agree is simply pushing it under the carpet and hoping it will go away. However it is ridiculously difficult to stop a full blown 24/7 whirl of rumination. The rumination is what you want to stop because that’s your compulsion. The aim here then is to keep the fear full on by accepting the fear may be true, but then distracting your brain from debating with itself about whether it’s true or not. Basically thinking yes it’s true and I’m not going to argue with that. Further down the line it’s not necessary to distract because you don’t have the same intensity of thoughts and you can more easily go straight to the cognitive methods. So I half and half agree - I say there is a useful place for distraction but that it isn’t a cognitive approach and is more of an adjunct to be used at the start of therapy when you need to get your head into a decent place to learn actual cognitive principles.
  14. I would say this is a bit too much like a written rumination. You have given both sides of the argument. You want it to be powerful and fully anxiety provoking - no explanations. Also being as you seem to have a huge issue with taking responsibility for decisions, I would suggest you could add a sentence or 2 about how you have made the wrong decision. I have chosen to have therapy and it was the wrong decision. I chose the wrong way. I have wasted money. I have wasted my time. I chose the wrong way. That makes me a fool. Something like that? Obviously I’m not calling you a fool personally. But say whatever you would say to yourself if you did something wrong.
  15. Mine was reversible up until today. Today is the point of no return. Hence the migraine. For me, an outsider, the consequence of your decision is not a huge deal. You may waste some time, lose some money. For you I suspect the consequences of a bad decision are bigger than that. For me, the consequences of me making my wrong decision are huge, but I suspect to someone else they may say otherwise, and that I need to man up and face the fact that that it could be wrong and deal with any fall out later.