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  1. Hi Maria. It is the same old OCD. The problem is not the initial intrusive thought or the subsequent ones. It's that you reacted badly to them, freaking out and doing compulsions. Sending the email again was a compulsion. Confessing was a compulsion. Your friend was right that helping you would only make things worse. I'm sure you ruminate like crazy over this and that's a compulsion. As much as your mind is telling you otherwise, thoughts have no bearing on the world or people in it. Whether you have what you consider a good thought or bad thought when doing something will not affect someone else. Don't try to cancel out bad thoughts. Let them be. They're just thoughts. Reacting to them just reinforces them, ensuring they'll come back again.
  2. Time to go back to the definition of an obsession: An obsession is an intrusive thought, image, urge, impulse, feeling or physical sensation or combination thereof thst causes distress. The distress can be anxiety, guilt, shame, anger, etc. Now can you see that what you have described is nothing more than an obsession?
  3. If I only had $1 for every time someone said it can't be OCD because the thoughts are too real. Of course they're real. If they felt fake you wouldn't have a disorder. None of us would. Your intrusive thoughts come from the same place as all your other thoughts, your mind. They will seem real and will seem even more so if you constantly ruminate and do other compulsions around them.
  4. Exaggerated being the key word. To the nth degree. A non-OCD person would have stopped after asking once or twice if he is alright. That you continue to ask is a clear sign that your real problem now is not what happened but OCD.
  5. You don't 'handle' the thoughts. You don't do anything at all about them. Disgusting they may be, but they're just ordinary, every day intrusive thoughts. Let them go. They don't say anything about you as a person.
  6. Do nothing with it. It's just intrusive thoughts. Everyday intrusive thoughts.
  7. Yet clearly what you did was incredibly minor. You need to take a step back and realize nothing real happened. It's all in your mind. It's all because of intrusive thoughts. And you make it so, so much worse by doing compulsions. The compulsions you do, including ruminating, only bring on more intrusive thoughts, more anxiety and more doubt. The way out of this is to leave it alone. Refuse to get into mind debates about this. Refuse to check. Refuse to bring the matter up with anyone. Let it die.
  8. Stop, stop, STOP looking at his body and asking if he is okay. Just stop it. It is a compulsion that will only make things worse.
  9. This is where the misconception of OCD sufferers as neat freaks comes from. There is a type of OCD where obsessions have to do with order and symmetry. Not a lot of sufferers havebrhese types of obsessions, but most of the world thinks we all have them.
  10. Obsessions are typically fleeting. A few seconds at most. All the mind work that comes after is a compulsion. In your case, thinking what the police would do is a compulsion.
  11. Chris, OCD can throw any obsession imaginable at you and quite a few you can't imagine. If you have obsessions that cause distress and you do compulsions to alleviate the distress, you have OCD.
  12. Compulsions don't work. They can give temporary relief, but soon enough more obsessions, doubt and anxiety arise. You keep asking if you are normal. That's reassurance seeking and is a compulsion and why I'm not going to answer it.
  13. Might I suggest looking into mindfulness? It's all about teaching your mind to be in the moment.
  14. Overcoming OCD is fairly simple but it is not easy! I think your therapist is pushing you too far, too fast. You do five things around plugs: 1. Make sure nothing is plugged in. 2. Stare at them. 3. Count to three. 4. Nod your head. 5. Click your fingers. A less stressful way to get to where your therapist wants you to be is to break things down and attack each component one at a time. It's deconstructing a complex compulsion. So, next time you leave the house, do everything but click your fingers. And you really have to force yourself not to do it. Your anxiety will rise. That's okay. It's normal. It will go down on its own. Keep doing that until you are no longer anxious skipping the clicking. Might take two days or a week. Then, stop the next part, nodding your head. You do the same thing again, only skipping clicking your fingers and nodding your head. Once that is okay, drop counting to three, then drop staring at plugs, then finally stop checking to see that nothing is plugged in. This takes longer but can be more successful because you are taking on smaller challenges. And each accomplishment will make it easier to move to the next challenge. And don't forget the Cognitive part of CBT. You have to start realizing that staring, clicking, counting and nodding do absolutely no good and there is no need to unplug everything before you go out. Remember, OCD always lies.
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