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  1. Ok I’m so so done with having such detailed thoughts. I miss freedom of my mind. I really need somewhere to turn so I’m writing here because I feel I don’t know how much more I can take. my fear of toilets is so extreme now I can’t go more than a couple hours at night after showering where I can sit and relax and try eat. The rest of the time I’m on my feet, yes doing compulsions and trying to get through a day. I assess my behaviour every night and vow the next day will be different but it never is. And because the toilet has real germs, I can’t ignore it. today something black flew up in the air out the toilet when I flushed it. Don’t know if it was a fly/spider/that gunk build up you get in the flush holes. Whatever it was freaked me out and long story short I finally got showered and got into bed. Only to discover a spider crawling across me in bed. Which now leads to thoughts that it was from the toilet (my room is next to the bathroom and my door was open all day). Now all I can think of is it’s crawled everywhere in my room and bed and may have been what was in the toilet. I know flies etc go everywhere and nowhere thinks of where they’ve been but this is the 50th incident today and I’m shattered and want to give up. Please don’t tell me toilets don’t harm either, I havent cleaned mine in a while because I’m too unstable. I just don’t know how to stop this. It’s a vicious cycle- not cleaning toilet makes anxiety worse. anyway, I know what I should be doing, no compulsions etc. But I’m at a place where I Won’t sit down/eat/sleep unless I’m not contaminated by a flush splash etc. So it’s very unhealthy and worrying. I’m worried for myself
  2. I’ve heard they do that as an ERP task, although it’s one I’ve always dreaded and don’t think I could actually ever go through with. But that’s interesting to know about household exposure- makes sense! I used to go to festivals all the time and the toilets there are worse than anyone could imagine and I never got sick there and there’s no running water just sanitiser! I should use that knowledge to make me strong but it seems like an entirely different person. I don’t know how I did any of that ha
  3. Huh. That’s so strange. I suppose it’s all these cleaner adverts and information that we need to be bleaching etc that makes me think of the toilet as some hazardous thing!
  4. @BelAnnaI kind of went off track but I meant it as an example that household bacteria is way less than outside and everyone is still always fine! Even if you haven’t cleaned your kitchen floor in a while it’s still ok. Babies always crawl on floors and touch things and they have poor immune systems!
  5. Yeah the walking barefoot was pre-ocd! How I miss the freedom of those days!! I can’t believe I even did that it’s gross, but obviously I didn’t really think much of it at the time! ah I see. Well I know you find those things really triggering but maybe you could use one of those small hoover attachments in the crevices to suck it up? And then maybe there’s something you could spray on the floor to dissolve the caked on stuff and leave it for a while to do it’s job, then maybe mopping would be a quicker and less anxious job? Remember as well that you will be looking for perfection and checking every part of the floor. It doesn’t have to be spotless. We don’t even mop our kitchen often, mostly just gets hoovered. Try and think of how you used to feel about the floors pre-OCD when you’re doing that task or feeling particularly anxious about it. if it helps at all- today I finally actually went out to the shop and thankfully I looked down as I was walking because someone had left dog poo that was all walked in inside the shopping centre floor!! I just missed it by a few centimetres. It was outside a shop I’d just been in and when I was there I dropped an item and an employee picked it up for me and put it back in my arms. After I’d seen the poo (which I didn’t notice in the way in) I started thinking about the item that had been on the floor and then on me and in a bag with everything else!! But I’m still here, unharmed. Nothing happened to me even though I imagined the germs were spread and worried someone had stepped in it and then been in that shop. Also think about the fact that people store their shoes in their room or people with dressing rooms that keep all their shoes on shelves and they don’t worry about the soles of them. I can guarantee they aren’t cleaning them all the time or worrying. hope this helps!
  6. I understand that but we are all taught how toilets are full of germs, etc, so I don’t know how to see it as not a risk. If you did eat after that I thought you would get sick? That’s what’s confusing. I know you wouldn’t die but it is still harmful germs. currently waiting on therapy unfortunately.
  7. Hi @BelAnna I have experienced exactly the same as you. My family (and me!) used to always cook raw meat and we had cats in the house and I never gave it a second thought. In terms of cognitive restructuring, I would look at the fact that none of those things used to bother you because your brain was wired to know that it wasn’t a threat, and you would deal with actual bacteria like raw meat in a normal, not fearful way because you trusted what was right and wrong in those situations. With ocd, our brain sees everything as a threat and we forget that we have so many memories embedded in us from early age of how to respond to situations. It’s all still there, it’s just trying to access it and learn to trust ourselves. I don’t know if this is making any sense. And it’s easier said than done I know! with the washing again I am the same. However someone without ocd wouldn’t even notice the hair and definitely wouldn’t associate it with a dirty kitchen floor. My mum has literally picked dropped washing off the floor and stuck it in the dryer. The dryer also kills off anything in the heat. I would try to focus on remembering how you used to walk around barefoot all the time, as do most people at home and you were absolutely fine. People do these things daily, we just pay so much attention to every detail. With mopping the floor, have you ever thought about getting one of those flash mops? They’re only about a tenner and you just attach a floor wipe to the end and dispose after. It’s the easiest thing to do because it would eliminate the need for gloves, bleach etc. If you struggled with what to do with the wipe afterwards, you could ask someone in your house to remove it first and then build up to doing it? Not sure if any of this helps but you’re not alone! But also not under any kind of threat whatsoever, no matter how long the kitchen floor hasn’t been cleaned. To give an example (can’t believe I once did this!!!) but I walked barefoot from hove to Brighton and came home and didn’t even think about it, just got a shower and went back out. Nothing happened to me! Didn’t clean the shower, I went in my room and didn’t think about the carpet- nothing. It was freedom! We can all get back to having that freedom
  8. Think it’s also so hard to deal with toilet issues because we grow up learning to always wash hands and know that toilets are full of germs so I’ve exaggerated this and made it seem so vital that I can’t be exposed to it. I’m not even sure if it’s mostly worrying about getting sick from germs or more the uncomfortableness of associating my personal space and me with anything to do with the toilet.
  9. Thank you this helps a lot, I do understand your explanation and it makes sense. It’s good to know it can occur for contamination ocd too. Just such a weird thing to experience and I guess you think about it so much you believe it. Just never had that with just looking at something! Didn’t know it could be so strong ? Tried my hardest to move on and forced myself not to change my bed sheets etc. I want to be able to get to the point where I can actually move on without constant anxiety, letting go is so hard!
  10. This makes sense. Thank you. Doubt can be so powerful!
  11. Can someone help me please, I’m not sure if false memory is a thing for contamination ocd? I know I’ve experienced false thoughts when I’m near something I’m triggered by but only usually if I am carrying out a task etc with that actual object/thing I fear. Late last night I went into the bathroom and when I came out I experienced something really strange. Our toilet is right by the door so you have to walk past it in a small space to get out. I always tend to walk slowly and watch where my legs are as I’m paranoid. I stopped just by the toilet for some reason and looked at it, then went to keep walking and as soon as I got out the door I had this strong thought that my hands were contaminated. I felt a sensation on my hand and had a thought that I had touched the inside rim of the toilet. I carried on to my room and got into bed and ever since I’ve been an absolute wreck. I’m avoiding doing the things I need to do today because I feel like my bed, my door handle and me and anything I touched since is contaminated. On one hand I think that as I fear the toilet so much if I had randomly done that then I surely would’ve carried out many compulsions etc after, not carry on as normal. But then why is the memory so strong? I can see it happening but I don’t know if I’m imagining that because I am thinking about it. I’m so confused, this kind of false memory (if it is that?) has never happened before and I worry because I was tired and sometimes I think maybe I would do something crazy because I’m so fed up with ocd? Does anyone have any advice. I feel stuck and tortured and I don’t understand if it’s even possible for ocd to make something up like that completely? Because if it didn’t happen, then my hands would’ve been nowhere near the toilet so I don’t get where the image is coming from.
  12. Me too it’s great isn’t it! Similar to ‘feel the fear and do it anyway!’ ?
  13. Hi, I can relate so much to this post. Sounds like I’ve written it! So you aren’t alone, I have been given clonazepam and could barely function, every minute was an issue. Are you still taking the diazepam? If things are continually bad and you don’t even have a break in the day to be calm, make sure you take the medication to try and give you some relief so you can calm and start to see things differently. Is there anything you like doing that helps you switch off? Like a favourite tv show or reading etc? If you can try immerse yourself in something else and keep the anxiety down for over an hour you’ll start to see a change. Also as annoying as it sounds, you have to keep telling yourself you are capable! When you tell yourself the opposite and have the attitude that everything you do will go wrong or trigger you it sets you up for disappointment. Remember you are stronger than this and you can get through the day!
  14. @BelAnna awesome, thank you! Sounds great I’ll think about joining the evening one
  15. Hi I'm not sure if this is the right answer but from what you wrote I assume that it is quite a normal anxiety response. With OCD you would be hyper-aware of everything and the anxiety can cause you to latch onto random things and overthink them. It is also true of normal behaviour - human nature is to be curious. Try to remember its just curiosity and thoughts - every single person has a heart and doesn't think about it working daily. It is what it is, strange how our bodies work but all normal. Remember as well that anxiety will make your heart race (which is normal) so try not to attach that to worries of heart attacks.
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