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Ashley

The purpose of the OCD-UK forums

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The purpose of the OCD-UK forums

I thought it be useful and helpful for both new and existing members to reiterate the purpose of the OCD-UK Forums.   Across the internet you will find many OCD websites and discussion forums, many of which do a fabulous job. But sometimes, how other websites are run may confuse people about what to expect when using the OCD-UK forums.

The primary objective of the OCD-UK forum is to encourage and promote recovery from Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and promote good therapeutic practices (i.e. highlighting the problem with seeking reassurance for example)

Also with a lot of overseas users on the forum these days who struggle to access therapy in their country, it is perhaps prudent to point out to them and UK based users that the forum should not be used in replacement for a professional diagnosis and treatment by clinically trained health professionals.

We are also here to be a place of comfort and support for those struggling and unable to fight OCD at this time. We will offer empathy but also by encouraging those unable to fight to remain focussed on a recovery goal, be that a destination or ongoing journey of constant improvement.  To do that, we will encourage each other to think positively about potential changes that we can make to improve our individual situations, that might be a different approach to how we handle our OCD or simply seeking out more therapeutic treatment, there is so much that we can all do on a daily basis to at least try improving our situation. We will make no apology for making regular posts about the fact that recovery is possible.

It’s important that the forum does not become a place where people simply come to seek the answers they want or seek comfort or reassurance constantly day-after-day, because that will not help a user move forward long-term. The forum must always ask questions, sometimes tough questions and talk about ‘what next?’, what can we all do next to help ourselves. Hopefully most days we will get the balance right between empathy and offering comfort against making suggestions designed to help you move forward and challenge your OCD.

Of course, the danger is that sometimes you will hear advice that you don’t want to hear, but that doesn’t not mean it shouldn’t have been offered, in fact usually the advice we don’t want to hear is the probably the advice we NEED to be listening to. But we will endeavour to deliver such advice empathically.

The forum is not about individual one-one-one advice because nobody here is qualified for that, so we discourage the use of the private messaging facility to request OCD support and offering of help to other forum members.  Over the years we have seen this approach lead to some catastrophic problems for both adviser and recipient, so our advice on this matter is actually based on practical experience (for everybody's welfare).  One of the problems this can create is that a well-meaning user may be trying to help, but ultimately their knowledge of dealing and tackling OCD is fundamentally flawed.  When this happens on the open forum, other users can and do correctly question the flawed advice and between our wonderful userbase we usually get to the right place. But in the private messaging the flawed advice goes unchecked, and could ultimately impact or damage the persons recovery journey, and we are absolutely sure that nobody wants that for anyone.   

We have a wonderful group of forum users that are kind, caring and wanting to help. So let’s use the OCD-UK forum for good and help each other start and perhaps in time even complete our recovery journeys.

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Thank you Polarbear, you're a shining example of course of the spirit of our forums :)

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Thanks Ashley for the timely reminder. 

As I know from spending a lot of time in the main forums last week, wonderful, valuable advice comes from within the collective experience of the forum membership. It can and does produce lightbulb moments, epiphanies when scales fall from eyes and real understanding arises. 

And real help from others, but in particular the charity, when sufferers are being fobbed off with inadequate service, or experiencing poor therapy. 

But yes advice and suggestions need to go through the channel of the support forum, and be open and correctable if need be by doing that. 

 

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Ashley, I personally think the forum is such an encouraging, caring place to come to for advice and yes, sometimes comfort too. 

The experienced members here did indeed dole out a fair bit of tough love to myself also, and for that I will be forever grateful because it was that measure of tough love that finally taught me that I would have to dig deep within to find the guts to help myself.

I think Marian Keyes said it perfectly in one of her books I read years ago:."Don't put a wishbone where your backbone ought to be."

I thank all the special people here who reached out to help me.

 

 

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Only just read this, been away for a while, few years in fact. Personally, I found when I used this forum back in the day it was solely for reassurance seeking which didn't get me anywhere, and I did better when I finally broke away from the forum and dealt with things on my own i.e. resisting the compulsion to check / ask for reassurance. Good that it has been recognised that it's not the best road to venture down, because when someones' in that cycle it's hard to see the wood for the trees.

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Thank you for saying Atlantis, and good to read you're making good progress now. 

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Ashley could you clarify the permissible tone people need to take talking to others because sometimes I think people interpret the free rein to use tough love as being given permission to be sarcastic and belittling. Also people may interpret being empathetic is the same as being mollycoddling or patronising.  Could you give examples of the proper way to talk to people on here to prevent misinterpretation of the forum rules? Thanks 

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5 hours ago, Orwell1984 said:

Ashley could you clarify the permissible tone people need to take talking to others because sometimes I think people interpret the free rein to use tough love as being given permission to be sarcastic and belittling. Also people may interpret being empathetic is the same as being mollycoddling or patronising.  Could you give examples of the proper way to talk to people on here to prevent misinterpretation of the forum rules? Thanks 

Is this really a problem or is your interpretation of some people's posts skewed for some reason?

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12 hours ago, Orwell1984 said:

Ashley could you clarify the permissible tone people need to take talking to others because sometimes I think people interpret the free rein to use tough love as being given permission to be sarcastic and belittling. Also people may interpret being empathetic is the same as being mollycoddling or patronising.  Could you give examples of the proper way to talk to people on here to prevent misinterpretation of the forum rules? Thanks 

You are right, there does need to be some toning down.   All individuals are different, and every forum user will need a different approach to be helped to move forward (some users will need a combination of approaches). So like a good football manager who will know how to get the best out of each player, some will respond with compassion and love, others will respond with a kick up the backside sometimes.  But, when adapting a tough approach, we all need to remember (myself included) to apply the principle of compassion with each message.

There's a world of difference between providing a tough approach (with kindness) and plain rudeness.  I think on occasions there's sometimes been some blurred lines there, so it doesn't hurt to remind ourselves of our HUCK principle.

  • Hope
  • Understanding
  • Compassion 
  • Kindness

 

 

 

 

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I think it is a very fine line to tread and I think the approach needed can vary for lots of reasons... for example how new the person is to OCD, how much reassurance/guidance they have already received, whether they have responded in the past to a more "tough love" approach, or whether they have responded better to a gentler approach... etc.  I think as with real social dynamics it is a matter of making a judgment and sometimes that judgment can be wrong.  I think, however, intent is important here - the intent should always be to help.  Personally I generally respond better to a "tough love" approach than I do to a softly-softly approach - generally speaking - and this then sometimes colours how I speak to others, which may not always be right.  I always try to be helpful though rather than harsh for the sake of it, and I am sure most others on this forum do the same, I don't think anyone intends to be cruel, ever.  But although it can be instinctive to offer reassurance to someone in distress, it isn't always the most helpful option and can actually be more unkind than kind in the long run.

That said, there is never an excuse to belittle or make fun of someone, ever. 

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