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About Hal

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    OCD-UK Member and

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    S.E England

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  1. Really own what you've achieved by resisting the urge to change your clothes again. Taking a firm stance like that really will pay-off for you. I'm glad you're UK based tho'👍Here are the charity's contact details: https://www.ocduk.org/contact-us/ Ashley's helped so many people over the years navigate their way through the system....I'm sure he'll be able to guide and help you.
  2. I've been there too. It's getting on for fifteen years ago now...but I seriously considered walking away from my house and throwing everything away because the contamination fears were so strong. I didn't but I was darned close to going down that road. The thing is tho, even if I had and performed what's essentially a massive compulsion, knowing OCD it would only have been a matter of time before something was again 'contaminated.' It took me a long time to realise and really accept I couldn't out run the anxiety...the only effective long term way for you to feel comfortable again will mean taking the brave step of being prepared to feel uncomfortable. I know that's not easy by any stretch of the imagination, but ironically, with time... once you allow room for those feelings and refuse to use compulsions to cope with them, you'll feel safe and comfortable again. I guess OCD's a bit like a dodgy insurance salesman...just do this compulsion it says and you'll feel fine again...for a moment, until the next 'what if' strikes, but we pay a very very heavy price we don't actually have to pay to be free of the anxiety in the short term. If you feel the urge to change your clothes again, could you try and sit with the anxiety for a short while? Could you set a target of 10 minutes and then gauge how you feel, you might then feel able to add another 10 and so on. You're going through a lot, I think you do need more professional help, are you based in the UK? If you are, it might be worth having a chat with Ashley, the charity's Chief Exec for help with accessing more intensive treatment. Meds obviously have their place, but you deserve good CBT too.
  3. Hi again, Unfortunately our 'Jolly & Grump' booklet I mentioned isn't currently available online, but I've double-checked and the charity would be happy to send a copy out to you. It's written specifically with younger children in mind and I think would help your child to understand anxiety and OCD in an accessible way. Please don't hesitate to get in touch if this might be of interest...our email's: office@ocduk.org Or Tel 03332 120 703 and the postal address is: OCD-UK Harvest Barn Chevin Green Farm Chevin Road Belper Derbyshire DE56 2UN I hope that may be of help
  4. Hi Never-ending, You're among friends here who know how hard it is living with OCD, so please don't feel embarrassed. The important thing is you've reached out and we're all here to help you. I don't want to bombard you with loads of questions about what sort of help you've had in the past, we can chat about that and other stuff in the days to come.... for now I think the most important thing to remember is you can get through this. I know you're feeling scared and lost tonight, but slowly you will feel okay again. I promise you. For tonight though, do you feel you'll be okay or do you think you do need a bit more support from the hospital. It's important to be honest with yourself, alI I want is for you to be safe. Whatever you decide to do, we're here for you...we can talk more about how to deal with the thoughts whenever you'd like, but maybe it would be better for now to try to help you get the anxiety down. When I'm feeling anxious I struggle to eat anything too, but I try to make myself eat a biscuit or a packet of crisps...if you could, it really will help take some of the edge off the anxiety. But the main cause for the increased anxiety sounds like the antidepressant withdrawal...I really think you need to have a word with your GP or the therapist who prescribed them to you for their thoughts on whether to possibly go back on them again and then taper them off at a later date. Can you or maybe your mum give them a call later today? I need to log-off for tonight, but the community here is second to none, and always on the ball with their advice. Take care.
  5. Hi Gale, You've hit on such an important part of recovery..focusing on other activities plays a pivotal role in helping to break the cycle. The more any of us can find something that really absorbs our attention the easier it is to brush the thoughts aside as the nonsense they are, just as everyone w/o the disorder does. Things aren't too bad at the moment, but when I have struggled I've personally found it nigh on impossible engaging in things that are mainly mental in nature like learning a language or reading a novel...that may just be me tho. I find a good balance between something requiring a bit of thought and something physical helps the most. For me, that's gardening and like CFR growing fruit and veg...running as part of a group has been great too. I guess go with trying as much stuff as you like...something you give a try might not turn out to be a good fit, but you can move on to something else. How about a local film or book club, or maybe a walking/running group? There are also adult education classes...I've always liked the idea of taking up pottery, or an art class. The RSPCA always need dog walkers, or perhaps your local hospital needs volunteers? Whatever you go with, I think this is a fantastic idea and will really help.
  6. Hi Rach, From memory, the charity has a very helpful booklet called 'Jolly & Grump' written with young children in mind that might be just the ticket...the only problem is, at the moment I can't find it on the site. I'll try to track it down for you tho', it may be a case of possibly putting a paper copy in the post to you if you'd like us to...but bear with me and I'll get back to you
  7. I hope once you say you're willing to pay with your PIP's that will be enough for them to recognise how serious you are about needing more help and spur them on with an NHS referral for your physical symptoms and the CBT...you really shouldn't be having to spend your money on seeing someone privately. As dksea's said, be prepared to be pushy....they may get a bit huffy and resistant about a referral, but don't be fobbed off. At the very least as you haven't already been able to see a dietician they should follow through with that. You've probably guessed I've been around this particular gastro block too, if it would help I'm happyto chat about the weird world of FODMAPS via DM's
  8. To me, some of what you're experiencing could very well be. It can be tricky identifying if anxiety's causing physical symptoms (especially when it comes to the bowel) and then getting as you say caught into a cycle of being hyper aware, monitoring motions and sensations (the OCD bit) and how much might be caused by a stand alone pre-existing physical condition like IBS the anxiety's worsening...the lines can blur and create a cycle. If the doctor's have ruled out things like Celiac Disease or Crohn's and diagnosed IBS, did they refer you to a registered dietician to help you tweak your diet by cutting out things like FODMAPS...one of which is coffee and caffeine? That in itself is a pretty big trigger in IBS, it might be worth a trial and cutting that out to see if it helps. I'm worried you're not eating tho' that'll also affect how you feel and the anxiety if your blood sugar levels aren't maintained, feeding into the cycle again. I think I would be tempted to tackle this on two fronts...as Roy's (Taurean) suggested by looking into CBT and also going back to your GP for more help with the IBS. Small changes here and there with diet, CBT, exercise and relaxation techniques will all hopefully help you break the cycle.
  9. I'm relieved he's seeing someone through the BABCP. I've lost track of the people who haven't accessed the best private support and treatment because they haven't taken your steps. I'm also pleased he's being proactive in his own recovery, unfortunately that doesn't always happen either. I hope at some stage you can lay that guilt aside, I really think it's completely unwarranted. The jury's still firmly out in terms of cause (s) and whether genetics are involved, but if they are (and it's a huge if) other factors must come into play too and probably play much more of a role. In some respects you could argue if you didn't have your own experience with the disorder you might not have been able to spot the signs in your son and know how best to help him. You're also doing all you can to help and support him through this, not all get that...to me that's the definition of a good parent. I'm glad you're looking after yourself too..if you ever feel you need more support and would like to chat..the OCD-UK community is amazing and always here at any time.
  10. Hi ConcernedMum, Welcome to the forum. I'm very sorry as a family you're having to deal with the disorder at the moment, but it's a huge positive your son's able to be so open and honest with you and allow you to help him through this...that really does make such a difference. I absolutely agree with you, athough it's more than possible to engage in CBT and tackle the exposure exercises without medication, if someone's able to tolerate any side effects, they can go a long way towards making the course of treatment not necessarily easy, but that bit easier than it might otherwise be. I think you're absolutely right too tho' in wanting to prioritise the role of the CBT over the medication.. the thing to bear in mind with meds is they won't and unfortunately can't remove the intrusive thoughts your son's experiencing. In essence SSRI's are obviously given to help mood with the added hopeful bonus of reducing anxiety, but the intrusive thoughts will still occur, as they do for everyone with or without OCD. The goal of treatment's to get to a place where the thoughts will still pop up, but your son will able to dismiss them quickly as nonsense and of no importance...the CBT will help him reach that point. I can completely understand he might be tempted to think well there's no need to continue with the therapy if the medication's helping so much. But it really is as you say important he develops and attains an armoury of cognitive tools to help him if the meds either begin to lose some of their effectiveness over time, or if he decides to come off them at some stage in the future. I really would urge your son to keep going with the CBT while on the meds (while keeping an eye on the side effects) the two combined will mean he stands a very good chance of overcoming the disorder. How are you tho,' are you okay?
  11. Hi Paintbrush, 👍Absolutely that's the thing to do. When it comes to any fear, the only way to effectively extinguish it is to turn and face it head on. It might seem safer and easier not to, to avoid what makes us anxious and use other compulsions to be rid of it...but in the long run by running from it we cause ourselves so much more anguish. When the what ifs and doubts pop up try to remember the past is the past, this is a new beginning and venture you're embarking on. You're in the driving seat now, you're the one making the decisions and using your personal insight and experience to help other people. But be prepared for those doubts...you have the measure of them, don't engage with them. Let them be there and try to stay focused on what you want to achieve and they'll fade away. You can do this🙂
  12. Just a quick reminder...if anyone has an issue with someone/something on the forum please always remember you can get in touch with the moderating team and we’ll be happy to take a look at it for you. Hopefully we’ll be able to resolve it and avoid any thread’s going off course...which is what’s happened here and why I’ve just set a couple of replies as invisible. Many thanks🙂
  13. From what I can gather paracetamol in combination with paroxetine is less of a risk factor with bruising than an NSAID, but I really would exercise some caution there too, at least for the time being until you can run this by your psychiatrist or GP.
  14. You might find the bruising resolves itself, but you’re absolutely doing the right thing wanting a professional opinion about it. From what I gather it can have that side effect by itself, but for the time being it might also be worth steering away from taking any NSAID’s...apparently taking the two together can also cause bruising🙄 It’s so tricky isn’t it, weighing it all up...if you’re feeling better mood-wise tho’ I would take that as a massive positive and something that will go a long way to helping you during the therapy. The thing to bear in mind with meds is they can only do so much...I wish they alone could stop the thoughts/rituals but that’s just not possible, unfortunately. People tend to think of them as water wings to help their mood and lessen the anxiety while tackling the OCD with the CBT....that’s where the shifts and progress are really going to happen for you👍 (btw your reply isn’t long, believe me....I’ve been known to give War and Peace a good run for its money😀)
  15. Hi VNDO, They don’t strike me as silly at all, I think you’re wise keeping an eye on any side effects and absolutely right to want to run them by your doctor, I would too. Over the years on the forum I’ve learnt one thing when it comes to medication...everyone responds differently to taking them. Some notice a significant improvement, while others (like me) find the cons outweigh the pros and choose to knock them on the head. There may be another medication you’re more suited to, but at best it will only hopefully help ease some of the anxiety, it’s going to be the CBT your psychiatrist is providing where you’ll notice the most changes to how you’re feeling.
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