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  1. jamie2011

    Need some inspiration

    I apologise for coming back again. I am really struggling right now. I made it to the induction training and managed to engage with the activities without getting too anxious. I have been feeling stressed since. I just don't know what to do anymore. I just don't see how I can fulfil the role as needed in both volunteer positions. Just to give an idea of one fear. In one of the roles I will be taking a vulnerable adult via public transport to a location, spend a number of hours supporting them there, then going back via public transport. I cannot leave them unattended due to their vulnerability. So I have struggled for 22 years with always needing to know where the toilet is, always using one right before leaving to travel anywhere. If say I use the toilet and then something holds me up from travelling straight away my anxiety gets bad and I cannot think straight, if around say family I lose my temper and so on. I am unsure how I can manage this whilst volunteering. When I have to get a bus or train I check times so don't miss it and get held up. I am always in a rush to get to places in the quickest time. I mean it isn't just that, whilst I am at the location I will need to use the toilet, but how can I do that without leaving the person unattended. In the induction I have hear examples of the young people running off or out of a building. Again this is worrying me. I struggle to leave my bag anywhere accept near to me. I keep thinking that when at the location I will have to put it somewhere out of sight. Then when out of sight I may have a situation where I have to leave the situation with the other person should they need some quiet time. I know this all sounds pathetic. That this shouldn't be anything to worry about. I just get so stressed over it. I also drink a set amount of drinks each day. If I do this volunteer position it will mean I cannot drink anything to near leaving to volunteer (in case of needing toilet), whilst at location and when travelling back. Which could mean 6 + hours without drinking. I was talking to a friend about the other volunteer role with children and they said that if I cannot hold the children's hand then maybe this role isn't for me. I am trying so hard to move forward, even starting thinking about things I would like to do (eg future goals). That with volunteer work I can possibly do some part-time work and then maybe visit friends/family. I am due to have support from a charity that supports people in to work, but I just feel it is impossible. I am fed up of living by so many rules and avoiding so many things. I am bored of doing the same day after day. I tell myself do the opposite of what my mind is telling me to do, but when it comes to it I just can't. I am scared of my mood getting really low and spending my days in bed, purely because I cannot do anything else anymore. Why can't I just change what I am doing. I understand that the problem is the importance I am putting on the thoughts and avoidance behaviours, but just can't work with it. Sorry if I am repeating myself, just starting to lose hope after having a few weeks of feeling more hopeful.
  2. jamie2011

    Need some inspiration

    Thanks for your response and giving me some support. I am able to recognise that anxiety will come with doing these roles and that it is normal. I am just so worried I am going to lose it. I am scared that in the situation I won't be able to do what I need to. I also realise I need to face the anxiety and go along with what I need to do, but it just feels too much. I feel so torn, I want to move forward in life, but I am just so scared of certain things.
  3. I'm in need of some support, perhaps just even some help to motivate me to stick with things. So at the moment I am waiting for my DBS to come through for my volunteer position. On top of that I also had an informal interview for another volunteer position. That went well and I recently had my first induction session, the second being this evening. These past few days I have had a lot of anxiety. My usual response is to pull out. When I had my first induction training I found out a little more about the role and I am panicking. I am worried that I am going to be too anxious for the role and to be honest I need to be the calm one when mentoring the young person. I need to be able to focus and support them. To help them become more independent. What I know so far I feel that I will constantly be anxious during my role. I am concerned that I am not suitable for this role. I am really worried. If I pull out of both I know it will cause a lot of tension with family. They are pleased that I am planning to these roles and get upset when I never see anything through. I get told I say the same year after year. I cannot deal with having to face that. It isn't through lack of trying. The anxiety just gets too much and I pull away. I just don't know what to do. If I pull out I know my mood will go down and I will start to feel hopeless. Which scares me majorly. Any thoughts or ideas how to stick with this and deal with the anxiety.
  4. jamie2011

    Losing hope of moving on

    Thank you for taking the time to respond and giving your input on the situation. What you say makes perfect sense. It is like I am searching for 100% in knowing whether what I feel is genuine. I know deep down that this is not possible, we can never know anything for certain. I think this situation will work itself out. In the sense that I won't go over it over and over. I will take small steps and see what plays out.
  5. jamie2011

    Losing hope of moving on

    Sorry to post again....I am struggling to understand whether my thoughts are normal and it is natural to feel this way. I don't really know who to discuss this with who would understand where I am coming from. It is related to my last post and the person I am close with. I don't know how much the everyday person will question their feelings towards another person. Like I mentioned before, I feel attracted to this person and enjoy spending my time with them, but when in their company I am questioning my feelings and are they genuine. I also find myself analysing them. It is like I am finding any reason that will show we wouldn't suit being in a relationship. This is where I am confused, because there are parts of this person's personality that are not attractive, yet I feel pulled towards them. I just can't seem to let it go. I saw my support worker not that long ago and mentioned about this said person staying over and my anxiety, but wasn't able to talk about obsessing over my feelings and are they genuine. What they did say though was that even though I get anxious I should repeat the scenario. That I need to face the anxieties more and this will make the anxiety drop. The more I avoid situation the worse my anxiety will be and I will become more restricted. It makes sense and I know deep down that I need to put myself in these situations. How does one just go with their gut instinct instead of questioning everything? Sorry to be a pain. It just feels easier to stay as friends.
  6. jamie2011

    Losing hope of moving on

    Thank you for all the responses to my post and for giving my feedback on what I am doing. I guess I am failing to see that I am trying to face the anxiety and my fears. I know that I need to keep exposing myself to different situations that I would normally avoid. I can now see I am making small steps and it doesn't have to happen all at once. I guess I am struggling from all different angles. I get really confused. With the person I am close to, I am going back and fourth between trying to work out what I feel. So I am questioning if I really do like them. I wouldn't be surprised if this is just another way I am obsessing. So when I am not around them I want to spend time with them, but then when I am in their company I am questioning our interactions, asking myself if I really do find them attractive, questioning parts of their personality that is challenging and whether they are the right person. Then when we are apart I feel that I am attracted to them, want to spend time with them, want to share experiences together etc. I know that the physical closeness is a big issue. Sometimes I wonder if that wasn't there then things would be more easy to cope with. I am meant to be seeing them again soon and possibly they may stay over like before. Part of me feels I shouldn't give up, there is something that is pushing me towards them. Oh I don't know. With regards to this person understanding the situation. They also struggle with OCD in different ways. So we do both appreciate that there is anxiety for both of us. I am very open with them and can usually talk about anything. Again the issue is physical closeness. This person feels that if we were in a relationship that should include kissing and everything else otherwise it wouldn't be a relationship. See I can imagine holding their hand and would like to do that or being close whilst laying it bed. but when it comes to it I just cannot do it and have so much anxiety. It is so difficult to work out.
  7. Apologies for posting again. On the back of doing my volunteer induction I felt that I should challenge myself and my fears. So I thought that maybe I should test out situations in which I will have anxiety around contamination. At the same time I wanted to try and spend more time with someone I feel close too. I don't know if I have done the right thing or I have made a mistake. So I decided to invite the person I am close to stay at mine for the night. We had spent the afternoon together and then came back to mine where I cooked us both dinner and then watched tv. They stayed the night before leaving the next morning. I constantly felt like I was on high alert, constantly worrying that they will be ill or they have a bug and I will catch it. When we went to sleep I couldn't help, but notice every move and noise they made. If they went to use the toilet I was always worried that they were ill. I definitely felt very anxious. I tried to just go along with it and tell myself that I need to face my fears. When I woke in the morning I felt a little less anxious. So now I am all over the place not knowing what to do next. This is both for volunteer work and spending more time with this person. With regards to the volunteer work I am worried that if I am struggling to cope in my own environment with someone I trust, how will I manage the volunteer role with the children. Then with regards to this person. I actually would like to spend more time together just like the other night. I want to explore us actual possibly being in a relationship. However I feel repulsed by any physical contact eg kissing/holding hands. I feel uneasy with anything relating to bodily functions. I just don't know how I am going get past this. It has just made me feel a little down about the whole situation. I mean it was actually really nice spending time together like we did, but there is just no physical contact at all. I feel so bad about myself and cannot understand why I feel so repulsed by all these things. I just don't know what to do on both fronts. I feel like I will just mess things up. I have been trying so much. Little small things like stroking a friends dog (I would usually avoid), going to bed out of my usual set times, eating dinner out of set times etc. But now I just feel like I cannot move past these difficulties. I know somewhere in me that I need to just keep challenging myself, but I can't help but feel I am going to be stuck like this. How will I ever find paid employment when I cannot touch certain things or be around others without constant anxiety. How will I ever have a relationship if I cannot have physical closeness. It isn't that I don't want physical closeness or intimacy. It is just I feel repulsed by it. I had been feeling a little more positive, but these past few days have thrown me. Has anyone experienced this major disgust at others with regards to touch, kissing, even looking at them physically (like hands/legs etc)? I am scared that when I volunteer a situation may arise where I feel repulsed and feel fearful to physical contact. On top of that I am aware of safeguarding practice when working with children and I am start to feel that I won't be able to have physical contact at all. (Years ago I had this problem with my nieces). From the induction I know we can have some contact. But that feels too much. I just don't know how to move on from this anymore.
  8. The issue with contamination is with anyone not just children or children with special needs and is the fear is of getting ill. Last year I managed to volunteer for 8 weeks and this ironically also involved high fiving children. At the time I had lots of anxiety around doing this and handling things they had also touched. With that I attended each session, did what I needed to do and washed my hands after using the toilet at the end. So I wasn't going to any extremes, it was more the anxiety. I have been thinking more about this and realise I need to start challenging myself more. I know some of compulsions I do feel more hard to change. Like using tissue to lock doors and flush toilets when out or in someone else's home. I really don't want to pass up this opportunity. It isn't just the volunteer work. There is someone I am close to and a number of years ago they stayed over at mine. But my anxiety was so bad it only lasted two visits. They have been visiting more recently even though I find it very difficult. I want to spend more time with them and perhaps challenge my fears. They know all about my difficulties and are understanding. Again it is my fear of contamination that is holding me back from getting closer and spending more time together. I need to start testing things out.
  9. Just after some help with anyone has some ideas. Since my last post I have made a few small changes. So for the past two days I have been able to eat my dinner later than I normally would. It hasn't felt that bad. I found that if I was occupied with something I was able to push the times a bit further. So now what I need help with. This is harder to work with. I mentioned that I was due to do some volunteer work. I attended the training and found out that the work will involve handshakes and high fives with the children. The person taking the training mentioned that handshakes and high fives with the children is very common during the sessions each week. Then in the induction we had to practice the technique used in doing this with the children. The children have extra needs, so this way of interacting is about safe physical contact. I managed to do the practice in the induction even though inside my anxiety was going crazy. Afterwards I had to sit with it knowing my hands had been touching another persons'. Sadly I didn't last long before washing my hands afterwards during the break. I know to really challenge myself I should have just sat with the anxiety and not washed my hands. I am really keen to do this volunteer role and have registered my interest to continue with the process. I have a few weeks before the sessions start. I need to work on my anxiety around contamination. Because I know when it comes to meeting the children my anxiety is going to go through the roof. Any ideas of what to do over the next few weeks?
  10. jamie2011

    Getting right help

    Thanks, that is a good point. I guess I struggle with that one. I feel like I really need to change a lot. I spend a lot of time trying to keep myself sane. I fear the severe low moods. So always wish to be occupied. I go to bed really early every night, not because I am tired. But it is purely to get the day over with. I don't want too much thinking time or the opportunity to dwell on things. A goal I would love to try is to wake up without an alarm. I always set an alarm for a set time, which kicks off the routine for the rest of the day. I am just petrified that if I don't follow this routine I will go mad. I fear the anxiety will get too much and I will not function. The same goes for eating when I am hungry rather than eating at set times. I eat my lunch at 8:50am, which is just crazy. I wish I could just wake up when I am ready, eat breakfast, engage in activity and then eat lunch when I feel the need hunger wise. The few times I stretched the time I was able to eat lunch around 10:30am. But then fell back in to it. I very rarely feel hunger, probably because of eating to time. Writing this down I can see how restrictive it is. It is also embarrassing. Wow I need to try and figure out what changes I need to make and how to go about it.
  11. jamie2011

    Getting right help

    Thank you for your response. I know what you are saying is the best way forward. Not that long ago I tried to step out of some of the rules. One was having to eat at certain times. For about a week I was able to change it up. Even though it was anxiety provoking, it was a big difference not having to watch the clock and have to get home to eat. However for some reason I went straight back to what I was doing before. I also managed to travel a bit further out of my area to meet family. I did it about four times, but then the anxiety overwhelmed me again. I am aware that I need to challenge myself more. I just don't know where to start. It is hard to imagine that I could get to a place where I don't have to follow certain rules. I have tried telling myself that if the worst happens, that this is ok and I will just have to deal with it. It is just the anxiety of it all I cannot deal with. I have printed out some CBT worksheets so will try and go through them to see if that helps.
  12. Hi, I am looking for some advice. I have posted a while back, but I have come to a point where I need some advice on how to move forward. I know no one can diagnose, but I am now in a position where I feel I need the right treatment, but feel I may not get the right one. Everything is a mess. In my previous post a while ago I mentioned that I was diagnosed with OCD late teens/early 20's. So moving forward to now. I was referred for an assessment for to see what help I needed. During this assessment I was able to talk about some of my struggles. Eating at certain times of the day, following a strict routine, using tissue to flush toilets, tissue on door handles, sleeves on door handles, washing my hands after touching certain things. I wasn't able to go too far in to it. I didn't really get the chance to talk about questioning my motives when I engaged with others, fear of travelling places (only stick to local areas). So the person I saw said they were wondering why I had built up these obsessions to protect myself. In the end I have had short-term therapy for what they believe is Complex PTSD. The work we have done has helped in how I am with others, but is now coming to an end. I have moved no further with my need to follow routines, worry about getting sick, worry about getting stuck somewhere, losing items. I so want to get my life back on track. I want to work, but I have so many restrictions. Like it would have to be walking distance, I cannot even think about being in an environment where I have to touch things that others have. I am supposed to be training for some volunteer work, but I am worrying about having to have close physical contact with others. I have been told that my options are limited due to funding. I wish I could sit down with someone and tell them everything, but it doesn't seem possible. After this therapy ending I am still in the same position. My life is so restricted and I am anxious all the time. I find it hard doing things with others, even family. If I am in a situation where I am anxious I literally can explode with anger because I am so scared. I then feel awful about treating people close to me like that. It has got to a point that with family I will only see them in certain situations. Usually in their home or somewhere local where there is no travelling. My other issue is that I have been given so many different diagnosis over the years I think it isn't clear what the real issue is and what I need help to do. There is a part of me that feels CBT is needed. Talking therapy doesn't make much difference to how I carry out my daily life. I fear ill health/accidents/injury/dying/getting trapped somewhere that sometimes I just feel like I cannot take anymore. Any suggestions on what to do. I am scared that within a short space of time I will have no support and I will continue to struggle to survive. I know this isn't a way to live. I don't know who to talk to.
  13. jamie2011

    Everything is spiralling

    Hi, Thank you for taking the time to reply. I would agree I am struggling with depression too. The state of my day to day functioning is so restricted it just feeds in to a low mood and feeling of hopelessness. I have read a number of books on OCD and how to try and work through my obsessions. I can understand the logic completely. I can see the problem whereby it is how I am creating meaning to my thoughts and not the actual thoughts themselves. I've been told that change needs to happen because the more restrictive I become the worse it is getting. It is so weird because a lot of what I do is to keep myself safe and out of danger. I should say a fear of something happening. However by me restricting my daily functioning I am putting myself in a position where my moods are so low it is hard to stay safe. So basically I am functioning in a way to protect myself, but in doing this I am suffering more. I just cannot work out why I can't make the change. I just don't know what to do anymore. I have no motivation for anything. Literally my day is going to the café for a tea and doing some food shopping. That is it. I am finding it difficult to be around people, my eating hasn't been great either. I think like you say I just have to keep up with appointments and I will have to just try and make small changes.
  14. Hi there, I am in need of some support. Not sure exactly what I am looking for, but I just had to reach out. Bit of background. I have been struggling with my mental health since my late teens and was diagnosed with OCD around that time. I have previously had CBT around 11 years ago, which did help a little. Since then I was given other diagnosis and spent time having various therapy to help with that. During that time there has been no focus on my OCD and now I am in a very difficult situation. My life is severely restricted and isolated, I do not work/study, 6 out of 7 days a week are spent by myself and I very much repeat the same thing everyday. My mood has been very low and I have coped through unhealthy means. Towards the end of last year I started seeing a new person for support and they were the first in all these years to talk about the OCD and how my life is closing in so much. They made a decision to refer me for CBT. Which I am very grateful for. However I am struggling really badly with my thoughts and I literally hate myself so much. My moods are very low and I am struggling to get through each day. Let me try and explain. So I constantly go through scenes in my mind. So weeks leading up to appointments with this said person, I go through conversations that I may have with them. If I have an appointment with them I do the same for days afterwards. I question everything I do. So I question whether I am making everything up to get sympathy. That I say certain things to get attention. That I only say certain things to get concern. I analyse how I react in person eg how I sit, where I look. It is driving me insane. I just hate myself. I question everything I do. Like how do I know I am not just lazy and don't want to work. If I see people in cars I question whether if I could drive would I help family out with lifts. Would I be selfish and not want to do it. If I see parents with kids I question if I am too selfish to have children. Would I care about being their carer. Am I just making out that I care. If family talk to me, do I care about what they have to say or do I pretend to care. Things have been so bad that we have had more frequent appointments and something has happened. For the first time I was able to open myself up and show the distress I am holding on to. The wall had come down. Since then it has awakened thoughts about my childhood, losses and the inner pain I feel/felt growing up. However it is now becoming a problem where I question my motives. Again am I making this all up etc. I saw a friend recently and opened up a bit about my thoughts, then when I got home I was questioning whether I was making things out to be worse than they are, that I don't want to get better so on. I have had to see the nurse at my GP practice, a GP and an appointment with the above said person all within a few days and I am struggling not to question my motives. Sorry if this makes no sense. I struggle to express the exact thoughts I have. I so need to speak to someone about it and have opened up a little. The above thoughts and making scenes/conversations has happened from around 10 years old. I have held this self-hate for so long. I have punished myself in so many ways. Just wish I had someone I could sit down with and let it all out. My concern is that now the wall has come down a little I have made myself vulnerable. I literally struggle to get through each day and don't see the point to anything. I get no pleasure. How is it possible to move forward. Because I am beating myself up for finally showing some of the distress. It is becoming more visible to certain people that there is a lot I am holding on to. I struggle with other obsessions that severely restrict me, but it is the above that destroys any sense of self-worth. My GP offered to book another appointment, but I turned it down, because if I see them I am just going to question if I am doing it for attention. I just get so distressed by all this and wouldn't wish it on anyone. I just want to see a point to life, because I am struggling to see what is out there whilst in this position. It is hard to reach out when it makes me question more. Just wondered if anyone can relate. I just don't know what to do.