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dksea

OCD-UK Member
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About dksea

  • Birthday 11/08/1980

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  • OCD Status
    Sufferer

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Tokyo, Japan

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  1. As long as you keep doing that behavior you will keep suffering, its that simple. New yes? Clean no. The "clean" you think is there (or not there) is something you have made up, its not real. It doesn't matter which bin it came from, its not "contaminated" either way, thats all in your head.
  2. This is a perfectly normal, reasonable behavior. Lots of people do this. No problem. This is also totally normal, the materials we use to color things don't always adhere 100%, trace amounts can remain that can be washed/wiped off. If you use older/cheaper printers you'll see this same phenomenon, streaking/smudging of ink etc. Again, this isn't a big deal. Here is the core problem, you have gotten in to a situation where you have come to believe a grossly exaggerated sense of how the world works and fallen into both exaggerated responsibility and black and white thinking. The reality is its simply impossible to live in a completely safe world. The world is full of risks, we can't avoid that. Trying to live without risk, to yourself or to others will leave you trapped. You express the concern that you'll transfer toxic paint particles to your friends babies. Ok, thats technically possible, but is it a reasonable worry? Lets say you are completely free of toxic paint particles. Further, lets say you never hold the baby. Lets say instead, you sit down at the table. While you are sitting down at the table, you put your purse on the ground. Ok, now your purse is on the ground. Because its on the ground an ant that was walking on the ground changes its path. That ant was carrying a bread crumb. That bread crumb now catches the eye of a bird. That bird flies over the table where you are sitting. While flying, it poops. That poop lands on the babies head. Now, instead of a few stray paint particles the babies head is covered with bird poop. All because you put your purse down. Does that sound like a ridiculous series of events? Does that sound extremely unlikely? Absolutely. But it COULD happen. Just about anything COULD happen. But that doesn't mean the odds are high, that the risk is high. And so, because the risk is incredibly low, you don't worry about it. And you SHOULD respond the same way to these worries about toxic paint. The odds of something remotely bad happening because of it simply from putting a shirt in the draw, wearing the shirt, and then holding the baby are so low that its not even worth considering in the minds of most people. The difference between you and them is OCD, and OCD triggers false alarms. For you those false alarms are related to toxic substances, but they are still false alarms. The anxiety you feel is genuine, the distress it causes you is real, but the source of that anxiety is not. I used this analogy in another thread, and I think it applies here too. When a fire alarm goes off, whether its for a real fire or a false alarm or a test, it sounds EXACTLY the same. The cause of the alarm doesn't change the behavior of the alarm. Same with OCD. The anxiety you feel from an OCD intrusive thought is the same as you would feel for a genuine threat. Which means you can't judge risk based on anxiety alone, you have to consider other factors, and you have to consider that you KNOW that you are prone to false alarms. Overcoming OCD requires teaching yourself not to panic over false alarms. In this situation your false alarm is about spreading dangerous substances to others. The possibility exists, but the chances are extremely low. It wouldn't make sense to avoid putting your purse down for fear of starting a chain reaction that leads to a bird pooped baby, it doesn't make sense to march to the beat of a drummer that you know is misleading you. Given time (and work) your brain will learn to treat these thoughts as unimportant, but you have to challenge OCD when it makes these kinds of demands on you, thats the only path out of the forrest of OCD.
  3. What you are doing is not being "extra clean" since you, yourself, admit its only an issue if you witness the supposed "contamination". This is just another excuse to avoid doing the hard and unpleasant work to get better. You might never be able to let go of these worries? Sure, maybe, who knows. But you definitely will remain stuck this way if you don't change what we have told you you need to change. There is a difference between can't and won't, and you are firmly in the won't camp. You would rather keep suffering the anxiety you know rather than face the different (but temporary) anxiety you don't. Thats your choice, of course, but things won't change if you continue to make that choice.
  4. Tell them they are being utter ******* (to borrow one of my favorite UK slang words :D). No one is born able to do everything they will ever be able to do. David Beckham didn't just wake up one day as a star athlete, it was a process of hard work to get there. Paul McCartney didn't just wake up one day able to play the guitar and write amazing music, it was a process of hard work to get there. Unless they could all walk, talk, sing, dance, etc. from the second they were born, then they have no business making the claim that what you can do now was something you always could have done, life doesn't work that way. Keep up the good work, keep making progress, and anyone who doesn't support you should, as the saying goes, take a long walk off a short pier.
  5. Nothing wrong with wiping down new furniture. Its been in the factory, probably a warehouse, etc. Its perfectly reasonable and something non-OCD people do to wipe down something like that when the get it home. You are allowing your OCD to run away with things here, catastrophic thinking for sure. There is no need to return the furniture, its perfectly fine. Yes you are feeling anxiety, again, thats real, but that doesn't mean there is a real problem. To beat the OCD do the "normal" thing despite the anxiety. Teach your brain not to listen to the false alarms. Use the furniture and ride out the anxiety. That will help you overcome OCD. Yes, it will be unpleasant, but it is better than continuously giving in to OCD, which will only make things worse. Take a stand here, choose the recovery option here. Use the dresser, wear your clothes, and live your life.
  6. The reason is not important, you are simply using it as an excuse to justify your behavior to yourself. If you want to get better you can take a step now. Put the old handle back, cancel/return the order for the new one, and keep using it. Its good that you are seeking the right kind of help, but it won't matter if you aren't willing to do the work. If you continue to engage in compulsions you will continue to remain stuck, and the CBT will be a waste of time and money. You MUST start doing the work. You MUST stop replacing things. You MUST start using "contaminated" things.
  7. No, do not do this, it would be feeding a compulsion. The best thing you can do is simply continue to use the drawers anyway. There are many simple and non-problematic explanations for a little bit of discoloration to occur while wiping down the new furniture, others have mentioned some above. Hang in there, try to ride out the anxiety as best you can, and continue to act against the demands of OCD. You can do this!
  8. Hi Petal, first, congratulations on the new car, I hope it serves you well for a long time. I know you are struggling with some self doubt now, but hopefully we can help you resolve that too. Lets get to the main problem. Right now you are feeling a lot of anxiety and doubt, and those feelings are very unpleasant. Also, those feelings are real, since you are feeling them. BUT are they reasonable? Thats the problem with OCD, we feel real anxiety but the anxiety is not reasonable in comparison to the thoughts and situations. A person with OCD operates something like this: "I am having feelings of doubt and anxiety THEREFORE what I'm worried about MUST be important." A key part of recovery from OCD is learning to break the "THEREFORE" link in thinking like above, teaching your brain that just because you feel anxiety doesn't mean a thought is important. Just because you hear a fire alarm, doesn't mean there is a fire. Unfortunately part of recovery is having to experience unwanted doubt and anxiety and still make decisions. Your inclination right now is to put off a decision until you can feel "right" about it. Thats what OCD wants, thats how OCD gains strength. In order to overcome OCD you need to do the opposite, you need to make a decision and stick with it even though you will feel anxiety and doubt. That anxiety and doubt will go away. And each time you make a decision and stick with it despite the anxiety and doubt of OCD, you weaken the hold of OCD. Your actual reaction is understandable, even non-OCD people have doubts especially over large purchases, buyers regret is a real thing and people change their mind. Unfortunately for OCD sufferers this can be amplified and feed in to the disease. The ideal way to handle this situation would be to make a decision, recognize that you are feeling doubt over a matter that is not of significant importance, and stick with the decision anyway. Going forward that is what you should strive to do, to make your decisions and do your best to stick with them in the face of OCD related doubt. You won't always get it right, none of us do, and thats ok, but the more often you can do it, the better. As for now, the best thing you can do is to choose a car and stick with it despite the doubt and anxiety you might feel. It will fade over time if you don't continue to feed it with further compulsions like rumination. Do your best to avoid getting in to the trap of thinking "but did I really make the right decision? what if I picked the wrong colour? etc." that is a bottomless pit which you can follow forever. There are various CBT techniques and approaches you can use to manage compulsions like rumination, I encourage you to discuss with your therapist or to pick up a book on CBT if you do not currently work with a therapist. I hope that has been helpful and I hope you can enjoy your new car soon!
  9. Yes, it means you have a disorder called OCD. You continue to insist there is only one explanation for your problem, ignoring all other possibilities. A person can have a headache, that doesn't mean they have a brain tumor. A person can have a pain in their leg, it doesn't mean its broken. A person can be hungry, it doesn't mean they are starving to death. A person can forget a word, it doesn't mean they have dementia. A person can feel sad, it doesn't mean they are clinically depressed. You 100% have obsessions, you have detailed them on this site. You post about them constantly. Your thoughts/fears/concerns about incest are obsessions by definition. Obsessions cause distress, ONE type of which is acute anxiety. Anxiety manifests in more ways than just feeling "very scared" in a particular moment, and distress encompasses more than anxiety. Just because you don't feel acute anxiety 100% of the time doesn't mean you don't have OCD. You continue to make up fake rules about OCD, you need to stop if you want to recover. No. No they would not. Again, you are applying fake, made up rules to OCD.
  10. Because unlike you, their sense of risk is not broken. To you, because of OCD, you experience anxiety at these thoughts that other people just don’t. As a result, your life is made significantly worse in ways that there’s is not. If you want to change that, if you want to change how your brain evaluates and responds to that risk, you can, using CBT. Or you can continue to spend your time dwelling on it, avoiding recovery, continuing compulsions, digging a deeper hole. Your choice.
  11. @californiadreaming - Sounds like you are looking for some reassurance Understandable, but lets see if we can tackle this in a different way. Ask yourself the following question: Do you think a person without OCD (or without cheating anxieties) would check photos online to see if they are cheating on their SO?
  12. Your recovery will go nowhere if you don't do something to recover. Worrying about how far it will go doesn't really solve any problem, because you don't know how far you can recover until you try. If you put in the work, if you dedicate yourself to recovery I see no reason to believe you can not get to the point where you can lead a normal life. It doesn't matter why, you don't have to figure out why. You just have to stop doing the behaviors that reinforce the fear for when you do get that "forever ruined" feeling. Yes, and its the same as every other treatment for OCD, CBT. I understand its difficult for you to hear, but its not going to change. To get better you have to do the opposite of what OCD tells you to do. You have to touch the things you fear are contaminated forever and then do nothing in response. No rumination, no replacing, no other compulsions. Obviously at first you won't be able to do that for very long. But the goal is to improve over time. Touch a contaminated item and then wait 10 minutes before you do some kind of compulsion (washing, ruminating, etc.). Then see if you can wait another 10 minutes, etc. Next time see if you can wait longer. Or see if you can touch it more times. Again, improvment over time. You have dug yourself in a deep hole, you aren't going to magically appear at the top. You need to climb back out. CBT tells you which direction to climb and offers some tools to help you climb, but you have to climb. Thats the only way out of the hole. There's no other way. Medication can help, make the climb a little easier perhaps, but you still need to do the CBT. You still need to do the work. Its not easy, but it is simple.
  13. Sure you can, you accept uncertainty all the time, you just don't realize it. Consider the following: Can you recall in perfect detail every time you have ever driven a car? Doubtful. That means you could have hit someone in the past. But surely I would remember if I had done that at the time. Possibly, but maybe not. What if you were distracted at the time? What if while you were distracted you clipped them? What if the impacts effect on the car was minimal? You were distracted, you felt something but it felt just like a bump in the road, you didn't see anyone get hit so your brain just wrote it off as normal road feel. This is a possible event, you can't prove it didn't happen right? You are therefore uncertain about an event in the past. Yet you don't spend your entire life worrying about every time you have driven somewhere where this might have happened, or if, perhaps that is your intrusive worry, YOU do worry about it, but the rest of us don't. Replace this scenario with one involving, say driving a boat, or cooking dinner that gives someone food poisoning, or any number of scenarios where you can't be sure of the outcome of your actions. Every second of every minute of every day you are accepting uncertainty, because you are a limited human being who does not control the universe and therefore can not control all possible outcomes from your actions or inactions. In a non-OCD person or a person with OCD who doesn't have a worry about a particular topic, the brain analyzes the roughly probability of a situation and decides how to act from there. You don't worry about hitting someone with a car NOT because you are 100% certain it never happened (its impossible to be 100% certain about anything) but because the odds are high that the worst case scenario you can imagine didn't actually happen. Every action can have a multitude of consequences, from the almost certain, to the almost impossible. Some you can guess at, some you have no hope of predicting. You can absolutely sweep things under the table, its the only way to function. Yes if something is genuinely serious you should take action, but not everything is serious and learning how to correctly gauge that level, something that is more smooth and automatic for non-OCD sufferers is part of recovering from OCD. You learn to ignore the unlikely situations not because you like the idea of them coming true, but because you don't have time in life to waste on doing that for everything.
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