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About dksea

  • Birthday 11/08/1980

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    Tokyo, Japan

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  1. If you really want to change things you should go touch the door. You should do exactly the opposite of what OCD is telling you. Touch the door, your life will go on. You may suffer anxiety (probably) but you'll have taken a step towards beating OCD. Or you can keep living by these irrational rules, still feel the anxiety AND have your life way more limited because of it.
  2. Absolutely! I learned about it through my work, its a pretty popular methodology in business, we use it for our goal setting. I haven't read any particular material on it, I just know what they've gone over briefly in training, but I am sure you can find literature out there on it, Wikipedia's probably a good place to start. But yeah you can probably apply it to just about any goal! Its good that you have the insight to notice how its affecting you and the attitude to be able to put it aside, even though it can be enjoyable at times. Yes, absolutely, when something has been a major part of your life and how you identify yourself it can be very tough to pull away from it, you feel like you are losing part of yourself. But keep in mind that people change over time, you are not the same person at 39 (which I'll be next month too!) that you were at 14 or 24 or even 34. Its ok to change, its healthy to change. Chess may have been good for you once upon a time, and thats great, but if its not longer good for you then thats ok too, you can move on and still be you.
  3. Sorry if my meaning wasn't quite clear. By this I mean, that OCD could be a reason or part of a reason you are struggling.. When we are anxious and worried, its harder to enjoy life in other ways. Say, for example, you are waiting for the results of a medical test. While you are waiting you have some dessert, say an ice cream cone, your favorite flavor. It probably won't taste that great to you. You're focused on the test results, worried about the test results, so you are less able to enjoy the dessert. Thats pretty normal. But once you add in OCD it ramps up the worry, you aren't just worried over serious things, you can be worried about ANYTHING, and its much harder to pull out of that worry. If you are worried about attraction for example, the fact that you are worried can make it harder to feel enjoyment, which means things won't seem as attractive to you, which causes you to worry, which keeps you from enjoying, its a feedback loop essentially, fueled by the doubt engine of OCD. So OCD could very much be a part of this by fueling your anxiety. But its not the only possible source of problems, there are other mental health issues that could be at play. As this is an OCD support forum, we tend to look at problems through the lens of OCD, and thats fine, but its always worth keeping that ni mind. Also we are not your doctor or therapist, few (if any) of us are professionally trained, and we aren't seeing you or your full medical history in the same light. The best option is almost always to see a qualified mental health professional when you are having significant problems in your life like this. That doesn't mean its NOT OCD, just that your best bet at recovery is with the help of an expert.
  4. Well first, you don't have full control over your brain, you never did. If you did, you'd have to think about each breath, each heartbeat, each individual muscle movement. Since your brain first formed, however long ago, in your mothers womb, you have NEVER had full control. Thats not the way the brain works, large portions of it are automatic, always have been. Second, setting aside the automatic portions of the brain, even focusing purely on your conscious mind, you will never be able to prove you have control over that either. There is ALWAYS the possibility of things you don't know going on. Unless you are an omnipotent, omniscient being, there is literally no way to know anything with 100% certainty. But you don't NEED to be 100% certain to enjoy life, you don't NEED to be 100% certain to have a "genuine" experience. Almost everyone around you (unless they are also suffering from mental disorders like OCD) doesn't have these hang ups and they are able to enjoy life, so why are the rules for you different? These are rules you are creating and putting in place for yourself, they are completely artificial and you don't have to follow them.
  5. Or that have been thinking about this topic a lot... You can remember the taste of something you are about to eat? Thats completely normal, and if you are about to eat it you can probably already smell it anyway, which is where the majority of "taste" comes in. So people at work know your name? Again, thats not abnormal. You are looking for signs, so you are seeing "signs". In the words of Freud, "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar". So long as you keep engaging in these kind of compulsions you will remain stuck.
  6. Maybe switching to evening would help as far as sleep goes then? I still do the restless leg/leg twitch thing from time to time, less so on Escitalopram than when I was on Fluoxetine. The other muscle twitching was only an issue for a short time about a year ago, after years of never having that particular side effect, so not sure what to make of that one, but yeah that one went away.
  7. Well if it was easy, none of us would be on this forum right ;-) I like the saying that OCD recovery is a marathon, not a sprint. Unfortunately we don't get better over night. Instead its incremental progress over time. Its ok that you aren't where you want to be right now in your recovery (I mean it would be great if you were). Part of therapy and recovery is learning to set small goals and work towards those as part of a larger overall goal (true in life not just OCD!). You don't have to be 100% in on changing your mindset right now, maybe you can go 1% in today, and in a few days go another 1% in on believing it. Eventually you'll have changed your mindset enough for the new one to be dominant. The pyramids weren't built in a day, simply dropped in place, complete. They were built slowly, over time, stone by stone. It would be awesome if OCD recovery were *BAM* and its done, but until someone invents that miracle cure (if ever) its ok to take the long way, and none of us expect you to be perfect doing it, because none of us were. I can definitely understand how that would make you feel uncomfortable! But you can also take some lessons from it. First, you can make mistakes. Slapping people is not usually the best course of action, but you did it and the world didn't end. So thats lesson #1: You don't have to be perfect. Second, you will experience triggers in your life. Situations that remind you of your anxieties. Situations directly related to your anxieties. Trying to shut yourself away from all possible triggers is both impossible and debilitating. So thats lesson #2: You can't avoid triggers completely Third, you confessed to someone, a compulsion, seeking relief from your anxiety about this particular worry. Now in this case it went spectacularly wrong for you, he reacted in the way you feared, but even if your coworker had told you, "oh yeah, I'd have slapped him too", you'd almost certainly start worrying about it again even if you felt momentary relief. So thats lesson #3: Compulsions don't work We live in an imperfect world, no matter what you do you will make mistakes, you will feel anxiety, and bad things will happen sometimes. OCD's game is to try and fight against this, to demand 100% perfection, and impossible goal. Alone that would seem easy to resist, but OCD plays dirty. It offers you quick fix relief in the form of compulsions, temporary happiness at a high cost, pulling you deeper in to the hole. It's like a Las Vegas casino, offering you cheap food and drinks in exchange for slowly draining you of your money. Except unlike a casino where there is at least some small chance you will win, when you play OCD's game, you always lose in the end. The alternative is hard and unattractive, its embracing the anxiety, pushing through the fear, doing hard work. Its not flashy like OCD, but its the way out. Its harder to take that path, but its the only way to be free of OCD.
  8. Its understandable to want to be over this kind of thing, to wish you were better, we all have those kind of feelings, who wouldn't want it all to just go away? But wishing and hoping isn't going to make it happen, doing will make change happen. You can keep wishing and hoping that things will change, and if that happens occasionally, ok, thats normal. But rather than wishing and hoping, why not start DOING things that will lead to change? The sooner you start, the sooner you can make progress. One way you could start is to stop posting your specific anxieties here on a daily basis, we've mentioned this to you before, its a compulsion and its not helping you get to that point where you want to be. See if you can go for one week without doing that. Make it your goal to go as many days as possible, but at least one week. Start making these small goals and build from there.
  9. At the risk of giving you a little reassurance, yes I've definitely experienced those side effects on both Fluoxetine and Escitalopram, mostly the restless leg thing and if I take the medicine before bed I sometimes have trouble sleeping. I've had occasional muscle twitches too, it spooked me a little at first, but my doctor explained that its fairly normal as far as side effects go for SSRIs because of how they work. For the sleeping thing I started taking my meds in the morning instead and my sleep improved, I haven't noticed any extra drowsiness during the day but your mileage may vary. I think you are making the right choice to just ride it out for now, good luck!
  10. This is brilliant advice which I think all of us can benefit from remembering. Don't set your goal to be "I will never be anxious again!", thats impossible, everyone feels anxiety. Instead, set your goal to be something like "I'll try to deal with anxiety more appropriately" or "I won't let anxiety control my life", etc. As Hal says, there will be good days and bad days, remember OCD recovery is a marathon, not a sprint!
  11. The fact that you still worry about this, that you think about it every day still strongly points to OCD, you have an obsession around physical attraction. Obsessions are unwanted thoughts that cause distress. Yes anxiety can be one sign of distress, but it doesn't have to be strictly anxiety, further anxiety doesn't have to be intense and crippling in order to be present. Very often my OCD presents as just not feeling "right", and this causes me to feel distress. My stomach is not in knots all the time when I am struggling with OCD, its a spectrum, not an on or off switch. Given that this is still bothering you, that you think about this every day, that means that anxiety is still almost certainly present. If you weren't anxious you wouldn't care, you'd just get on with your life as is. That is not to say your problem is specifically or exclusively OCD, but your descriptions of the situation lead me to believe that OCD is definitely involved. Additionally the fact that you are so focused on an outcome, so fixated on your attraction coming "back" is likely a part of why you still struggle with it. You continue to focus on this idea of physical attraction, it continues to be a central idea that you worry about, thus potentially affecting your ability to simply experience a moment, to see a girl as attractive or not on instinct. its very likely after worrying about it all this time, you have trained your brain to react by immediately wondering "do I find her attractive, am I noticing imperfections about her?" which of course leads you to directly evaluating the girl and looking for flaws and pulling you out of the moment of just seeing their physical attractiveness. You are overthinking it, your brain has been habituated to do so. All of that said, if you are struggling the best thing you could dod is see a qualified mental health professional. Maybe there is something going on beyond OCD, maybe there are techniques you can apply that are more targeted towards the situation you find yourself in. Unfortunately none of us are experts on all mental health issues, we are, almost exclusively laymen who have a deeper knowledge of OCD than usual so we can talk to you about OCD better than the average person might, but if its another problem too? Much less likely you'll just stumble across the answers talking to us compared to another random person.
  12. This is true, if you play OCD's game you can't win. But you CAN stop playing OCD's game. For example: Ok, so you are checking (playing OCD's game) and its not helping? So stop checking. Easy to say, harder to do I know, but you have to take that harder path if you want to get better. Also, you need to start reframing your thinking. Maybe you did type something "bad" automatically, without thinking. So what? Its not the end of the world to type something "bad". What if someone finds out and you get in trouble? So what? It happens, people get in trouble. Still not the end of the world. You could go down an endless spiral of "what if's" about your worry, you probably are. It won't change anything, it won't undo whatever it is you are afraid you did but probably didn't. Ruminating solves nothing. If you want to get better you need to accept that you will have these worrisome thoughts pop in to your head, that they will be uncomfortable, that you will want to make them go away, but ultimately you don't have to do ANYTHING about them. A thought is just a thought. You choose how you act. Right now you have to choose to act inspite of what the OCD says. You have to act differently inspite of the fact you feel anxiety and worry. One hour at a time, one day at a time, you have to choose to not play OCD's game. Because if you do play, if you give in to compulsions like rumination and checking, it will only get worse. You might feel brief temporary relief, but its at the cost of long term relief. Its like trading one minute of happiness now for one day of misery later. Its not worth it. But you have to choose differently.
  13. It would be very difficult for us to advise you on how long to continue therapy, it depends largely on the work you are doing, and whether you are willing to continue that work. Going to a therapist for OCD isn't something you do for 8 weeks, or 12, or 24 and then you are "cured". You can't just go, get your CBT diploma and never think about it again. Therapy is there to help you learn the techniques, begin to apply them, and focus on changing how you approach OCD and your life in general. If you are willing to do the work, and if you have taken in what you have been taught, then you may not need to do any therapy beyond this. If you are struggling to do the work, but you are making progress, you might need some more to help you become more confident in handling it on your own. If you aren't willing to do the work, aren't willing to challenge the OCD outside the therapy (or inside) then its a waste of time and money to go at all. Ideally when you finish your current therapy course you should have a concrete plan of action with goals moving forward that you can put in to place to continue your recovery on your own. You should be ready to continue the steps you are learning outside of therapy, as part of your everyday life as much as necessary to continue your recovery. Therapy is just a starting point, not the end.
  14. Hah, yes, I can definitely understand that hope, and I think its fair to think about our OCD thoughts that way. But when you do, be careful it doesn't itself become an obsession itself, a different way of seeking certainty. Part of my reason for stating that desire is not action is to recognize that desire is also not something we can always directly control, and it doesn't have to be scary. You can desire something and it doesn't make you a bad person, a monster, etc. even if it would be wrong to act on a desire. For example, if I see a beautiful woman walking own the street, I may desire to sleep with her. But that doesn't mean I would force myself on her. The desire is just a response, just a thought, it doesn't force me to act if I don't want to. What if the woman I see is actually 17? Does that make me a. monster for finding her attractive and desirable? I'm not acting on anything, I know that doing so would be the wrong choice so I don't. The desire is just a thought, my actions define who I am. Or maybe I'm an alcoholic, I desire a drink, I desire it a LOT. That doesn't make me a bad person, I can still choose not to drink because I know its the wrong choice to make. In the above cases there are circumstances where the desire would be fine, if the woman wanted to sleep with me for example, or if I was also 17, or if I wasn't an alcoholic. So what about a situation where the desire would probably be wrong under most circumstances? Lets take a work situation. You have a coworker, this coworker is obnoxious as can be, they just annoy you and EVERYONE in the office. They are inconsiderate, rude, etc. You might have a desire, a strong desire, to punch them in the face. To just beat them up. In general however, physically assaulting someone is not ok, unless they actually present a danger to you or others you shouldn't do it. It would be wrong to act on this desire to assault your coworker, and so you choose not to, you choose to set aside that desire and not act on it. The desire is real, its probably not ideal, but you have the capability to determine your actions beyond these kind of desires. Desires are just thoughts, and thoughts are just things that happen in our mind. Some thoughts are "good" some thoughts are "bad" and most are somewhere in between. Most we have little direct control over. What separates us is the thoughts we intentionally control and even more the actions we choose to take based on those thoughts. You will never find a person who doesn't have a "bad" thought, its impossible. So try not to put too much emphasis on the thoughts/desires part anyway. Whats important is how you choose to act, and understanding that a thought is just a thought.
  15. I bet! People who don't have mental illness don't realize how hard it is just to function some days, and societally there is a lot less structural support in most places for getting extra help, compared to say wheel chair ramps for people who can't walk (though to be honest, they also face a lot of burdens society doesn't recognize). I'm glad you feel like the forums are a good place to feel safe with your anxieties! Something that I found helpful too was journaling. I didn't do it every day, but if I was having a particular bad period I'd set aside a fixed time (its important its fixed, so it doesn't become a compulsion) and write out my anxieties and thoughts. For me, putting it down on paper was a way of unloading it a bit, it seems like it wouldn't matter but it helps you process it in a different way than just going over it in your head. Its not a miracle cure, but it helped me when I needed a little bit of extra relief. This is a great observation and I agree completely. To most people OCD is a quirky condition, they just don't understand what its really like. And in general we keep up our best appearance in front of others because thats what society has taught us to do. It would be hard for almost anyone to "out" themselves so to speak as suffering from OCD to a large group of people, but hopefully you'll reach a point where you feel comfortable sharing it with a close friend or two. It might take them some time to fully understand, but if they are a good friend they will want to be there for you. It took me a long time to get to that point, so don't worry about doing it right away or anything, but don't write it off completely either would be my advice. I am a naturally outgoing and optimistic person too, I genuinely enjoy socializing, but I also have come to greatly value my down time, alone time because sometimes you just need it to recharge and let down your boundaries. While its important not to retreat completely (that would be avoidance, a classic OCD compulsion) its perfectly fine to take time to yourself to recharge, even if you don't have something like OCD. I'm sure its part of your perfectionism, but remember that you don't have to perform for your friends 100% of the time, you don't owe them your perfect self This is not an uncommon feeling among sufferers, but remember suffering is not a competition. If you bruise your arm, it hurts. It hurts even if someone else breaks their arm. Another persons suffering doesn't negate your own, no matter how big or small either is. You deserve to get better for no other reason than its unfair that any of us have to suffer from things like OCD, something we never asked for, it was just thrust upon us. While its true there are circumstances in life where choices have to be made, say at a triage during a major tragedy, of who gets treated first, most of the time your getting help isn't depriving other people of also getting help. In fact, you getting better means the burden for helping others is lightened, the world is a better place with one less person needing help right now! One more person who maybe can help others in various ways, even if its something as simple as understanding what they are going through. I would also say that people who are generally attention seeking don't typically worry about whether or not they are attention seeking ;) Not only is it ok to be human, its currently your only option! Now maybe in the future there will be a way to turn you in to a robot, or you'll get bitten by a radio active spider and turn into a mutant, or you'll be reincarnated as a dolphin, but for now, you're human whether you like it or not ;-)
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