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Intrusive or not??


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#1 Marts

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 11:45 PM

I usually have to perform compulsions to suppress anxiety and obscure thoughts that seem intrusive, but I also find myself deliberately imagining things that I don't want to positively, in order to evoke a response from myself as reassurance that my reaction is the expected reaction for a normal person. So does that contradict the thought as being intrusive in the first place if I'm then consciously repeating the thought to myself just to give myself the reaction? Why would I repeat the thought if it disturbs me and why do I need to keep reminding myself it disturbs me? I'm still waiting for my first therapy session btw

Edited by Marts, 07 September 2012 - 11:47 PM.


#2 Hebrides

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 08:53 AM

I usually have to perform compulsions to suppress anxiety and obscure thoughts that seem intrusive, but I also find myself deliberately imagining things that I don't want to positively, in order to evoke a response from myself as reassurance that my reaction is the expected reaction for a normal person. So does that contradict the thought as being intrusive in the first place if I'm then consciously repeating the thought to myself just to give myself the reaction? Why would I repeat the thought if it disturbs me and why do I need to keep reminding myself it disturbs me? I'm still waiting for my first therapy session btw


That sounds to me like a compulsion rather than an obsession. You're consciously bringing the thought to mind as a means of reasurring yourself about what sort of person you are. Such strategies are compulsions.

I have a rule never to counteract my instrusive thoughts by telling myself that I have such-and-such values. We don't need to tell ourselves what our values are, or what our characters are like. We just have them.

#3 Hebrides

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 09:18 AM

That sounds to me like a compulsion rather than an obsession. You're consciously bringing the thought to mind as a means of reasurring yourself about what sort of person you are. Such strategies are compulsions.

I have a rule never to counteract my instrusive thoughts by telling myself that I have such-and-such values. We don't need to tell ourselves what our values are, or what our characters are like. We just have them.


Actually, let me just clarify. When the thought comes unbidden into your head, it is an obsession or intrusive thought. But deliberately repeating that thought to check your reaction to it is a compulsion.

#4 sarah1984

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 01:15 PM

Hi Marts and welcome to the forum,
I agree with Hebrides - deliberately bringing these thoughts to mind to check your reaction is a compulsion and a form of reassurance seeking. Reassurance seeking is a very common behaviour amongst OCD sufferers. Unfortunately, it's counter-productive because it only reinforces your obsessive thoughts. It may provide you with a temporary sense of relief from your anxiety but this relief never lasts and you'll need to test yourself over and over again. The OCD brain is very good at finding a flaw in the reassuring argument hence the continuous stream of "What if?" thoughts. For every reassuring argument you can come up with, you'll always be able to find an accompanying "What if?" thought. To learn more about the vicious cycle of reassurance seeking take a look at the following blog post: http://www.ocdla.com...ty-597#more-597.

I'm glad to hear you're on the waiting list for CBT. If you want to find out more about CBT and how it is used to treat OCD take a look at the following page: http://www.ocduk.org...vioural-therapy. While you're waiting to start therapy, I would recommend taking a look at some of the excellent OCD self-help books available. Here's a list of books and articles that I found particularly useful when developing strategies to deal with my intrusive thoughts:

1. OCD and Thought Suppression: http://www.ocdla.com...-1249#more-1249

2. 'Thinking the Unthinkable' http://www.ocdonline...phillipson1.php and 'Rethinking the Unthinkable' http://www.ocdonline...unthinkable.php. I'd also recommend having a look at some of Steve Phillipson's other articles: http://www.ocdonline...sphillipson.php

3. 'Treating Morbid Obsessions' http://www.wsps.info...l-phd&Itemid=64

4. Break Free from OCD: Overcoming Obsessive Compulsive Disorder with CBT by Dr Fiona Challacombe, Dr Victoria Bream Oldfield and Prof Paul Salkovskis: http://www.ocdshop.c...products_id=163

5. Overcoming Obsessive Thoughts: How to Gain Control of Your OCD by David Clark and Christine Purdon: http://www.ocdshop.c...21271fdeb80e408

6. The Imp of the Mind: Exploring the Silent Epidemic of Bad Thoughts by Lee Baer: http://www.ocdshop.c...products_id=100

Hope you find this helpful

Sarah

#5 Nikki79

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 01:16 PM

GOod post Sarah x

#6 Marts

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 04:04 PM

Thanks very much for your replies. I feel somewhat reassured I just felt unusually self aware of the deliberacy of my thought repeating. At times it feels like I can control the thoughts but still bring them up consciously. But then when they become obsessions and feel more intrusive I wonder why . I'm my own worst enemy!



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