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  1. I think it’s amazing all the things you’ve done today considering you haven’t left the house for so long! I’m in awe of you.
  2. I guess it’s pretty ironic that my immediate response to that was ‘but that will never happen, there’s always more emails!’ Behind the OCD is a logical person trying to get out!
  3. Thanks everyone. I agree I am still doing small compulsions around this, although I’m much better than I was. My fear is that even if I stop doing all compulsions, I’ll still continue to feel anxious at work at the thought I might run out? My manager has said I might be able to get more involved with management and extra responsibilities myself. Sometimes, usually when I’m away from my computer, I think about having the time to do that, and feel good about it. But as soon as I get back to my desk I feel anxious when I look at my emails. My job is so focused on emails that my brain has decided the number of them is a measure of how secure my job is.
  4. Thanks everyone for the advice! I suspected this might be the case. While I’m much better than I used to be, I can’t seem to get over those last steps. It’s frustrating. With work specifically, I don’t feel like I am doing compulsions. I want to slow down, to not answer some emails so I never run out, to not give work away. But I am resisting because I’ve been so stressed lately that it would be ridiculous to keep all the work. I know I’m good at my job and I’m not showing that by either not having enough time to do all my work or refusing to do it in case I run out. So why am I still anxious every time the stress starts to lessen? Will it be the case that every time I make good progress with my work, I’ll feel anxious about it because my mind is telling me I might run out and lose my job? Ok, so there is one compulsion I’m doing. I work on journals and we have an email address for each journal. Currently I have 35, and several times a day I’m adding up the total number of emails to reassure myself I have enough. But lately if I get below 100 emails I feel anxious, which logically is quite ridiculous. But I don’t feel like that one compulsion is enough to cause this anxiety. If I stopped counting my emails I’m sure I would still feel anxious?
  5. So I’m much better with my OCD after I had CBT last year and it doesn’t rule my life as much as I used to. But I’ve never been able to completely get over it. For example, I don’t time all the walking I do anymore with a stopwatch, but I do find lately I am roughly adding up all the walking I’ve done that week in my head to make sure it’s enough. And I have a problem with work. The problem is my job is very focused on emails and this has messed with my head. I’ve got very ill in the past with worrying I’m going to run out of work and then thinking that will mean me losing my job. Then people leave and we all get extra work and the job gets stressful. For the past few months I’ve been stressed out of my brain with hundreds of emails a day and things aren’t getting done as I don’t have time. Finally my manager has agreed to take work off me... and predictably my brain is now telling me that I’m in danger of running out. I’m tempted to tell my manager not to take work off me after all, but that would be giving into the OCD. I know logically I need this extra breathing space, I need to be able to get through my work and be efficient at my job rather than getting constantly chased as I don’t have time to do everything. But it feels scary. Am I just destined forever at work to be constantly going between being really stressed on the one hand, and anxious on the other? As soon as I start to catch up, the panic starts.
  6. Thanks both. Yes you’re probably right, Lost. I’ve just had my story rejected by yet another publication so I’m not feeling very confident with my writing right now anyway. It made through to the final stage, apparently. Which I know is positive but I’m sick of almost making it and it makes me think maybe I’m just not good enough to ever have anything published. dksea, yes that sounds familiar! I read a guideline and I can’t take it as a guideline it becomes a fixed rule and if I don’t meet it then something bad will happen or it means something bad.
  7. Thanks to both of you! Getting over my rules is the biggest thing I struggle with. I just don’t get how people live without timing and measuring things, and I feel like certain things need to apply to ‘count’. So if I’m not actually writing, it feels like it doesn’t count. If we have sex and one of us doesn’t have an orgasm, it doesn’t count. Stuff like that. I’ll try and push past it. I’m better with my OCD in many ways but these rules are affecting my marriage, my work and my hobbies, so I need to try and get over them, I know.
  8. I’d be flattered if you were copying me! Seriously though, lots of mental disorders have elements in common and really only someone qualified can diagnose them. I know you’re not in a position to see a professional at the moment, so probably the best advice is to let it go for now. Hard, I know. I’ve been there! Plenty of people on BPD forums diagnose themselves and that’s enough. For people like us, I think the professional diagnosis is important.
  9. I get fixated on rules and feel anxious and guilty if I don’t meet them. Like needing to exercise a certain amount of time. When I was at uni I made myself do at least 3 hours’s reading a day and timed it obsessively. Lately I’m doing more writing. Where I think the OCD is coming in as if I can’t think of an idea I start writing anyway and it ends up rubbish, or I write something else. I’ve recently bought a smart notebook with the idea of brainstorming and plotting stories but I feel anxious and guilty when I’m doing that and not actually writing because I feel I need to do a certain amount of actual writing or I won’t get anywhere. I’m trying to brainstorm now but it feels like wasted time as I keep stopping to think and if feels like it doesn’t count as writing and so I feel guilty. How can I get over this?
  10. Hello, as you know this happened to me. I was led to believe it was just my OCD making me think I had BPD. 2 years later I was diagnosed with BPD... so it can happen. But yes, you need someone to confirm it. Not usually a doctor, you’d have to be referred to someone, but you’d start with a doctor. It’s odd that on BPD forums we’re told not to self-diagnose and that no one there can diagnose with us. Yet with OCD, people post here wondering if they have OCD and people tell them they do (while of course still pointing out that they should see a doctor for a diagnosis). I guess it’s because, whilst both serious and debilitating disorders, OCD is simpler in terms of symptoms whereas BPD traits are more in number and more difficult to interpret.
  11. You’ve been told twice that it might not be OCD- but how many times have you been told it IS OCD? A lot more than twice, surely. I know how you feel as I used to be like you. I read a book on OCD and spent the whole time panicking it didn’t sound like me and I must be a fraud. Looking back now I can see that that was a symptom of my OCD, but it didn’t seem so at the time.
  12. Thanks for the comment I’m glad it helped.
  13. Maybe my article published last month might help you http://www.youandmemagazine.com/articles/the-irony-obsessing-over-obsessive-compulsive-disorder
  14. I am a writer and I find mental illness has actually helped me. I’ve had success with articles being published about my mental health, the last of which I got paid for. I write stories about mental illness too and am hoping I will have something published at some point. I don’t know what I’d write about if I didn’t have them! There is an added benefit that places nowadays are often specifically looking for underrepresented voices, which includes people with disabilities, physical or mental. However this doesn’t mean I resist getting better. If I got worse I’d been too ill to write so I am putting effort into my recovery because I know where I want to be. Of course not everyone wants to be a writer! But the point I’m trying to make is that mental illness needn’t hold you back. It can sometimes even be helpful- recovering from mental illness takes a lot of strength, so at the very least you know you are a strong person, but you need to put the effort into getting better because otherwise nothing will happen and you will feel like a failure. I have OCD and BPD and have had some very hard times in my life. I could have just laid back and cried about it, wishing things were different- and I’ve certainly done that in the past! But I’ve taken the route of trying to get myself better and knowing that the knowledge I’ve gained from having mental illnesses gives me a lot to write about.
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