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  1. Make sure you're not using empty words with the four steps. Don't make the mistake of robotically repeating 'that's ocd' over and over. It's more important to just become aware of the situation. Try to actually slow down, take some deep breaths. 'Okay, okay. Wait a minute. Stop. This is just OCD. That's the real reason I'm so worked up. Okay, cool, good that I've spotted it. Now I'm just going to put you aside. Feel free to stay around in my head but I'm going to be doing this other thing as these thoughts are worthless junk'. Sometimes you just have to ground yourself. Give yourself permission to not pay attention to the things that are troubling you. Easier said than done but that's the way it is. Make a cup of tea, have a few sips, take a few deep breaths and then pick a few things to do. Maybe your hob needs a wipe, perhaps there's an email you need to respond to. Maybe cook a decent meal. Anything that requires a little bit of focus.
  2. Yeah all very common in people with OCD. 3 or 4 per day you say? It's pretty common for people to get much more than that. I'd say people experience OCD in different ways, be it a common theme vs many themes, a single thought vs multiple thoughts. Even asking yourself the question 'is this normal?' (I have a post with this exact question) is asking for trouble. 'Is this normal?' is simply another doubt which is better left alone if it's something you're asking yourself often. But in answer to you question, yes, completely normal.
  3. Whilst Freud was a significant figure in the world of psychology and many of his theories still relevant today it's important to remember that huge chunks of his work has since been debunked. This is just the nature of research. In Freud's case many of his theories are considered laughable today and it will be the same for many of today's theories 100 years from now. Hopefully you can take comfort in this. No matter what kind of dream you have it is possible to draw any number of conclusions from it. I suppose in the case of someone with OCD it is even easier to draw negative conclusions as opposed to neutral ones.
  4. I am really sorry to hear that you are struggling and about your Mum. She's lucky to have you to care for her though and I hope that you can take comfort in that. Although she may be changing at least she has someone who cares about her. Sending you warm wishes
  5. @dksea @hazydaze@ Thank you both for your responses. The urge to confess is definitely the hardest thing I'm dealing with right now. I am undergoing therapy at the moment but it is still in the early stages of exploration of thoughts. So currently I am still remembering things and being troubled and feeling the need to confess as I don't know how to deal with it. I know the answer is to let it be but I don't know how best to do that. Usually work or some activity will numb it temporarily but as soon as I'm not doing anything it's back and I'm beating myself up all over again. Hopefully therapy will help with time.
  6. I have gone through this exact thing, fairly recently actually. I have questioned whether I am a psychopath often. In fact I question everything about myself. Do I really like this person? Why am I not troubled by the thought of a close relative dying? Does that mean I have no empathy etc etc. Yes, I've had all those thoughts and they aren't nice and I have my doubts over them. I just see it as a result of yet more digging into my thoughts and searching for answers. Eventually you'll go deep enough that you end up with questions like this. I try to leave them alone. I don't like to but it's what needs to be done. It's OCD.
  7. Hey Cora, I haven't read your whole message as it is just more of the same. That's not a criticism. I don't blame you as OCD is incredibly difficult to deal with. We all feel like what we are going through is somehow different, somehow we're one of the few people who doesn't have OCD and are actually twisted individuals. Trust me, I've been there and I am often in that state of mind today. I am still dealing with my own problems so I can't (and no one can for that matter) offer you all the answers but from much research, therapy and reading I can tell you that you will doubt whatever reassurance we give you. I doubt my therapist all the time and they foresee this because they know about OCD. What I have learnt is that no matter what people tell me, whether it be my family, my friends or even my therapist I will never be satisfied with their answers. There is a very good reason my therapist doesn't offer reassurance often and it's because it only makes the problem worse. It's like trying to quench your thirst with salt water. It simply will not work. It will do the opposite. One thing that helps me with obsessive thoughts is just doing stuff. You don't have to feel comfortable. You don't have to want to do whatever it is. You don't have to enjoy every bit of it. But just do things. Every now and then you'll notice that things were okay for a few seconds. Once you notice you'll start to feel terrible again and the misery will return. Continue. Let the misery be there. Don't try and get rid of it. By trying to get rid of it it will remain a problem. It will feel horrible the whole time but just let it be and with time those period of calm will get slightly longer. Maybe after a while you'll notice that you went an hour without dwelling on your thoughts. Reading, hiking, cleaning whatever. Just try it.
  8. Is the question I keep asking myself and obsessing over. Unfortunately I gave into a compulsion to check something today in order to answer this question, and I got the answer I was hoping for, but lo and behold I wasn't completely satisfied. The theme of my OCD has changed recently from 'pocd' to 'hocd'. In a way I'm kind of glad because I find the former the absolute worst but this isn't much easier to deal with. I find myself obsessed by and questioning my sexual fantasies often and whilst I know that fantasies are extremely varied and that I shouldn't need to check I find it hard to let the 'but what if that's not normal?' question sit there. I question whether other people have such thoughts and if so then how often. 'How much is too often?', 'Should I be worried?' or 'what does this mean about me?'. I then feel like the only way to find out is if I confess to someone. I can't trust my own judgment or opinion and this prevents me from accepting the thoughts. I think I have done a good job at resisting compulsions recently but it feels like the 'I'm fixed' moment is not in sight. I wonder how I'm ever going to be in a relationship again if I find it hard to not confess my thoughts. I'd feel guilty or irresponsible for not confessing as I'm constantly battling with 'ohhh this might mean you're a risk'. Sometimes I catch myself in moments of calm and then I'm thrown straight back into an abyss. So I guess, to summarise, resisting the urge to argue with my thoughts and check things has helped but the thoughts still trouble me. Is it something that improves further with time? Am I eventually going to reach a point where I would be comfortable getting into a relationship again or is that now another fear which has to be faced as a result of overcoming OCD? Any advice or tips would be greatly appreciated.
  9. Wow this really hit home. I had times where I was certain there was no helping me, until I finally told my therapist. I thought he would call the police and have me put behind bars. I was confused as to why he wasn't bothered/concerned by the stuff I told him I was worried about. Good that OP is taking steps. It's super scary but it's better than the alternative, which is continuing to live the way you have been living.
  10. I agree with PolarBear. By avoiding your brother you are attaching significance/importance/truth to your thoughts, which will keep the cycle going. This happens every time we carry out/perform a compulsion. It's incredibly difficult to resist and often it can feel rational but this is not the case.
  11. Nice work :). There was another user today who had a success story and they also experienced a setback, which is probably inevitable. So take it slow and continue to progress. I always find listening to talk shows on the radio is good when alone, as they're live. Maybe you could use that as a progression towards conquering your fears.
  12. Yeah I think coming to terms with this is going to be the ultimate solution. Would you say that the thoughts will never fully go away and that certain situations will always lead to reminders or would you say that you're no longer bothered by the things you used to be (noticed you're an Ex-Sufferer)?
  13. Thank you for your response @PolarBear. Can I ask what you do when you find yourself debating with yourself (or what you used to do)? I've found myself talking to myself in my head about this a lot, even when the day is going well. This is usually me debating with my thoughts. However, I read something that was posted on here today about becoming numb to some of the thoughts, which I could relate to. Now the debate is along the lines of 'You should feel this way about this thought! You should be bothered! This is a problem!' when I think of something that would have previously caused a lot of anxiety. How do you let go of the need to reach a solution to the problem? I do meditation but I find it is only a temporary measure. I am undergoing therapy for this issue which is still in the early stages, but hopefully it will start to help. My head is actually aching today because I've spent so long thinking. Doing an activity sometimes helps for brief periods but it is quite intermittent and I know the thoughts will come back as soon as I stop.
  14. I have been dealing with OCD (diagnosed recently) during lockdown. I believe that lockdown somehow triggered it but when I look back at my life I can recall periods that could definitely be described as OCD but they were just never identified at the time. The theme I am experiencing seems to be mostly intrusive sexual thoughts. The obsession is mainly the fear of me somehow being a pedophile. I think the trigger was remember a moment as a young teenager where I watched some videos on a dodgy website which I can't be certain were legal. I'm not sure if this is just the doubt that comes with OCD. I honestly don't know. I spend a lot of time trying to remember but it's just unclear. It didn't occur to me until much later that it may have been wrong. When I remembered it I just went into a state of intense anxiety and haven't been able to recover from it. I've spent hours of my days debating with myself about whether I am a p or not. I know I'm probably not and I know this is completely irrational but I can't fully shake it. It's ALWAYS there, making me feel guilty and ashamed. It goes completely against my principles, and from research I know this is one of the mean features of anxiety. The problem I'm having is that even when I'm having a good day if I'm outside and someone catches my gaze I feel I need to look away. However, I realise that is probably the compulsion. At the same time I feel like a creep if I do look. I don't know whether the compulsion is to look (in order to check) or to not look (in order to avoid anxiety) or somehow both. Yesterday I was watching a film and found one of the actresses very attractive. However I became anxious when I thought she looked a bit young but when I checked it turns out she was 24. I couldn't resist the urge to check. It's not really a worry about being attracted to young children anymore but more young people. This is what makes it so hard and I don't know the best way to approach this. I'm in my early twenties and am now afraid of checking out anyone and feel guilty if ever I feel like my libido has come back a bit when I'm feeling a bit better, only for it to quickly disappear again. I know this must sound completely crazy and it really stresses me out and I feel so much guilt and shame when I'm not sure I should. I don't know what to do though. I get guilty whenever I find someone remotely attractive because there is always the voice of 'you sicko you don't know how old she is. She could be a teenager'. When it's not this causing me distress it's constantly searching through my memories of my past to find evidence that I'm somehow a p or a phsycopath. Sometimes I have my okay periods and other times I have my really hopeless periods but I feel that even during my okay periods this is always hanging over me. I feel really weird typing this but any advice would be really appreciated.
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