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  • Type of OCD
    Contamination OCD

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  1. Thanks again for your insight @dksea I think that speaking to people like you who 'get it' is very important 🙂 HandWasher
  2. Hi Gale Try to sit with the uncertainty. If you can master sitting with the uncertainty, you can master your OCD. I know from personal experience how frightening these thoughts can be as I'm guessing most others on these forums do, however 'feeding' it can make it worse. If you're anything like me, things can spiral quickly. Let your thoughts come and go, eventually the waves of anxiety should be less and less. Remember that you're not alone. Ask yourself 'Is it benefitting me to obsess over this scenario?' etc. You can do this HandWasher
  3. It makes total sense to me that you wouldn't want to go from them not knowing that you have OCD and not even knowing about OCD to sharing your intrusive thoughts with them. I think that it's good that you are aware that not everyone is aware of intrusive thoughts, what they are and how they affect people. Maybe you could gradually let them know that you have OCD, share your intrusive thoughts with those who you know will understand and then, in time, share them with your loved ones, that is if you want to 🙂 I hope that you are well- sending positive vibes to you! HandWasher
  4. Hi Nikki I hope that your appointment with your therapist tomorrow gives you the space that you need to process what is happening for you at the moment and what you can do to get better. Remember that all of this is temporary, count your blessings (I know it's easier said than done when you're struggling) and remember that you're not alone. You're one of millions of people fighting intrusive thoughts every day who chooses not to give up and you should be proud of that. Take it one day at a time and things will get better. HandWasher
  5. Hi Vicky Sorry to hear that your daughter is struggling. How is your daughter doing now? How are you? Speaking as somebody whose mother tried everything to support me growing up, I would just like to say that knowing that you support her alone will be massively reassuring for her. While you are waiting for her to get the professional support that she needs, one of the best things that you can do is arm yourself with information. Your GP may be able to recommend books and resources about OCD. In England, GPs offer books 'on prescription' about various mental health conditions. Knowledge is power 🙂 If you use reputable sites, including this one, there is a wealth of invaluable insight into OCD, what it means to live with OCD and how families and friends can support their loved ones--especially when they are struggling. Part of this forum is dedicated to giving young people the space to share their thoughts and feelings, would she consider talking to other young people with OCD? HandWasher
  6. Hi Nikki Sorry to see that you are still struggling. I have noticed that the unwritten rule on these forums is not to try to reassure other users about their specific fears so I won't try to reassure you either. All I will say is that I wouldn't think too much about where your thoughts have come from, in fact I would try not to think about your thoughts at all. Let them come and go. Try not to attach too much meaning to them because it is the meaning that you attach to them that makes them so distressing. Take care HandWasher
  7. Hi Gale1101 I attended CBT sessions a couple of years ago now and my therapist would often ask me these two questions; 'What if [insert fear here] did happen?' Generally speaking, my life wouldn't come crashing down 🙂 And 'What's the worst that could happen?' In your case you believe that your friend may not have understood your intrusive thoughts, that they might believe that you are an awful person, that they might have told others about your intrusive thoughts etc. For each of these fears, it might be helpful to ask yourself whether there is any evidence that they have happened. - Do you know that they didn't understand your intrusive thoughts? - Do you know that they thought that you were an awful person? - Do you know that they told others about your intrusive thoughts? You mention that your friend may have misunderstood you or that you may be misunderstood by others, if your friend has told others about your intrusive thoughts. It seems to me that what you are really afraid of is being misunderstood. If you can, try to focus on the fact that you know that your husband at least understands you. I would also consider sitting down with your children and having an open conversation about your OCD and how it affects you. Of course this depends on their ages but if they are aware that you have a condition that affects your thinking, they are far more likely to understand why you might sometimes behave the way you do. I hope that you find it within yourself to let this fear go now. If you are well at the moment, it seems like a shame to let this single obsession drag you down. HandWasher
  8. Hi Cora This sounds like OCD to me too. It sounds like you are subconsciously looking for evidence that the thought of you having 'bad intentions' is true. Could you try making a list of all of the evidence that you did not have bad intentions? At the top of that list, you could write down the fact that this thought is clearly causing you distress. The fact that it is causing you distress indicates that these thoughts aren't really you. Once you have made this list, you could try reading through it and ask yourself what it tells you about your thoughts. OCD is very clever, it thrives off the fear that something bad will happen to the things that mean the most to you. In your case, you fear that you have abused your brother. Fearing that you have/will harm one of your loved ones or is a common symptom of OCD. You have been diagnosed with OCD and based on this obsession alone and your compulsion to 'confess' these thoughts, it sounds like OCD is something that you are struggling with. I know that it's easier said than done and I know it better than most people, believe me but I think that the saying 'Rule your mind or it will rule you' applies here. You can choose to feed these thoughts and feed the waves of anxiety that accompany them or you can choose to feed the part of you that knows deep down that this is OCD. Only when you have accepted your diagnosis can you do something about it. Take care and show your OCD who is boss. HandWasher
  9. Hi TerribleThoughts You mentioned that you are responsible for your own mental health-- whilst it's true that you are responsible for looking after your own mental health, living with mental health conditions like OCD can be a lot more challenging without support, including the support of your loved ones. You also mentioned that you are 19, implying that you believe that by 19 years old, you should be able to manage your own mental health. Many people never learn how to look after themselves and that is without the added pressure of living with a mental health condition. It sounds like you are somebody who cares very deeply about those around you, including your parents. I am interested to know what you would want your parents to do or your family to do, if they had a mental health condition and they were wondering whether to open up to you. I know that personally, I would want to know if somebody I loved was struggling. It is great that you are somebody who wants to put others first but remember that you is are just as worthy of your own love. You have the right to open up to others, you are not a burden for doing so and you are not responsible for the way that others may or not react. I'm guessing that you wouldn't expect those around you to suffer in silence and neither should you 🙂 HandWasher
  10. Hi dksea Thank you so much for taking the time to reply 🙂 It means a lot to me 🙂 I think that you're right about the CBT. I suppose it's the same as people who are recovering from alcoholism or overeating in a way. We would never advise somebody who was struggling with those kinds of issues to attend one AA meeting or one Slimming World meeting and somehow expect them to be recovered! Why would we, as people living with OCD, be any different? 😂 I have been trying very consciously to not give in to my compulsions over the past few days. I started off by trying to go 'cold turkey' for the first couple of days but I haven't been able to sustain those changes. I have managed to make some small changes though and I am hoping to continue making them. I have been washing my hands significantly less which I suppose I should celebrate! Thank you for the advice about the medication--I have been taking medication for several years now and I think that the one that I am currently taking has been the most effective, although I recognise the fact that the medication alone doesn't work. I think I'm going to write down some goals so that I have them there in front of me and try to stick to them rather than aiming for perfection, that makes sense. I hope that you are well 👍 HandWasher
  11. Thanks Caramoole, I'm taking full advantage of the fact that I no longer have the mental energy that it takes to sit through the same cycle of thoughts, day in day out 😂 I have been thinking about my motivations and I am keeping those in mind. I am also keeping the advice given to me on this forum in mind. I like the idea that the temporary discomfort is another step towards my goals and I appreciate the insight given to me by you and Polar Bear. I suppose it makes it easier to see that my issues are not unique, although I do know that there are millions of people living with OCD, it isn't talked about as openly as it is on this forum. It gets swept under the carpet by people who don't 'get' it and make no attempt to get it. Thank you all.
  12. I don't think that it's about you doing 'better', I think that it's about you recognising that you have the strength to sit with the thoughts that seem to be causing you so much of an inner struggle. You can do it. You're clearly not alone in struggling with these issues and you will be so proud of yourself for not feeding your OCD when you achieve one of your small goals. I do think that it's worth setting yourself one- you have nothing to lose and it could be a really positive step in the right direction for you 🙂
  13. Thanks Caramoole The urge is more of a nagging feeling but I'm not bowing to it because I'm aware of how quickly my compulsions can escalate and I don't want that anymore. I've realised that I am in charge, even if I don't always feel like it. I hope that you are having a good day, not just OCD wise but in general 🙂
  14. Hi Nikki I'm new to this forum but I noticed your thread and I thought that I would share with you a few of the things that I picked up during some CBT sessions that I attended. One of the main things that the therapist stressed was that we have a choice. We can choose to act on our compulsions or not act on our compulsions, if you do have any compulsions. Do you think that posting on these forums may be a compulsion? Maybe you feel compelled to share your intrusive thoughts? The only person who can truly reassure you is you. Others can only provide you with temporary relief and that, as you probably know yourself, is a vicious cycle. It is important to note that they are just thoughts, as distressing and upsetting as they are. If you were not distressed or upset by the thoughts that you are having, then you would have something to worry about. The fact that these thoughts do cause you distress and upset means that these thoughts aren't you. OCD thrives off making you feel like the things that you truly value are under threat. It is clear that you love your daughter and although I'm guessing that you doubt your own abilities, you are probably a very loving and protective mum. In fact your protectiveness is a good thing in some ways. Have you considered setting yourself some small, achievable goals relating to your fears? One might be to wait an hour before sharing your intrusive thoughts and then to wait a couple of hours before sharing your intrusive thoughts etc. You could try recording how you feel during these challenges. Hopefully you will notice that the level of upset that you experience is less and less. Sending positive vibes to you and wishing you well with achieving the OCD free life that you deserve. HandWasher
  15. Still not bowing to my compulsions. How are you today Hdigtts and paradoxer?
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