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Guest Phil10

False ocd thoughts urge to throw clothes away

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This will simply keep happening because you keep doing compulsions. Every time you replace something, you cement in your mind that the problem is real, when it's not.

No you shouldn't be upset with yourself. That won't do any good. But you do need to realize that your actions will prolong your agony.

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4 hours ago, PolarBear said:

This will simply keep happening because you keep doing compulsions. Every time you replace something, you cement in your mind that the problem is real, when it's not.

No you shouldn't be upset with yourself. That won't do any good. But you do need to realize that your actions will prolong your agony.

Yes I mean replacing doesn’t totally help because at the moment I’ve not been able to replace my phone so I still have to touch the ipad and iPod and other stuff after touching the mobile

To remind myself what happened it was headphones from the rucksack which she touched after touching her suitcase. Because I touched the headphones and slotted them into the mobile i believed the phone was dirty. 

Perhaps the only way was to dispose of everything from that bag. I have a new bag and iPad but only feel it’s half as clean as I still have the mobile phone. Yes I believe it’s cleaner it’s a new bag and iPad. I can touch headphones then touch my wallet so the problem is here this ocd she caused was pretty bad because it meant that everything becomes dirty in my head. I would be forever replacing the coffee table the sofa everywhere that iPad touched. This is despite neither the phone or iPad having direct contact with the dirty washing germs.

The only FACT I have here is her hands touched the rucksack (which I no longer have) I have no proof the items were touched and it was unlikely as I spotted it quick so perhaps the iPad was clean who knows. 

This is where it gets difficult with the shoe germs and the washing and rucksack I can’t replace supermarket floors and the ground outside but if I could I would. 

Logically i can say now I have a new iPad and I have a new rucksack so these is no “direct” germs. Nobody has touched dirty washing and directly touched these items. Hopefully I can continue my day as normal..

However my ocd is so wide ranging I believe areas and stuff is forever contaminated and I some how have to clean stuff to feel better sadly any time I tried in the past I failed. 

Somewhere somebody is using the old iPad and rucksack and they are fine. I have another ocd with second hand shops if they have been in a shop and it gets replaced by a normal store I believe that store is contaminated forever too.

I think the issue I need help with here is a belief that everything is “forever” contaminated you say it’s fine, it’s not I understand that but in my head I can’t accept that and the Cbt has failed only in the past 3 years have I believed stuff has forever been contaminated. It’s not as easy as just you saying it’s not forever contaminated because my head won’t believe that?

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Your entire post above is you ruminating, you trying to rationalize your irrational thoughts and actions.

I'm telling you that the reason you don't believe us is because you constantly do compulsions. If you're not actively throwing things out and replacing them, you're ruminating, trying to figure out what could be contaminated and contemplating throwing things out. All that keeps you trapped.

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42 minutes ago, PolarBear said:

Your entire post above is you ruminating, you trying to rationalize your irrational thoughts and actions.

I'm telling you that the reason you don't believe us is because you constantly do compulsions. If you're not actively throwing things out and replacing them, you're ruminating, trying to figure out what could be contaminated and contemplating throwing things out. All that keeps you trapped.

Sometimes I do compulsions and other times like the front door I don't though. I don't see any easy way to completely stop the compulsions also I don't always do them the problem is the times I do? 

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I could go back for more therapy but how many more sessions do I need? I can’t keep throwing money away but I feel I need to see some progress 

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7 minutes ago, PolarBear said:

Only you can make that progress. You have to change your thinking and behavior.

I feel stuck right now for years I’ve felt I have to do these safety behaviours which involves replacing. All the theripst said was delay I did this delayed a month and replaced my iPad. So it’s difficult to know how to cope with this 

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The replacing also causes lots of anxiety and I feel stressed and worn out as I know it’s bad I replace stuff 

Edited by Phil10

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7 hours ago, Phil10 said:

Anybody else any take on what to do next? I admit it has beat me sometimes but right now I can’t get over these dirty washing germs I know that to some here these germs don’t even exist but to me the only way I feel a relaxed comfort is to replace

If that were true you wouldn't keep feeling the need to replace things again and again and again and again.

 

2 hours ago, Phil10 said:

To remind myself what happened it was headphones from the rucksack which she touched after touching her suitcase. Because I touched the headphones and slotted them into the mobile i believed the phone was dirty. 

It does not matter what touched what.  You keep repeatedly posting about item A touching item B touching item C and what that means.  It doesn't matter at all.  Its a compulsion.  You keep repeating this to try to justify throwing things away and replacing them, but no matter how many times you "explain it" it still won't change that none of these things need to be replaced.  The problem is not that we just don't understand and if you explain it better we will agree with you, the problem is what you are doing is not rational, and not helpful for recovering from OCD.

 

2 hours ago, Phil10 said:

Logically i can say now I have a new iPad and I have a new rucksack so these is no “direct” germs. Nobody has touched dirty washing and directly touched these items. Hopefully I can continue my day as normal..

No, you can't "logically" say that.  You need to recognize that your behavior is not at all logical.  Until you accept that you will keep doing the same things over and over and over.

 

2 hours ago, Phil10 said:

I think the issue I need help with here is a belief that everything is “forever” contaminated you say it’s fine, it’s not I understand that but in my head I can’t accept that and the Cbt has failed only in the past 3 years have I believed stuff has forever been contaminated. It’s not as easy as just you saying it’s not forever contaminated because my head won’t believe that?

You CAN accept it, you are CHOOSING not to.  This is a belief that you can challenge and change, its 100% possible.  CBT isn't working because you aren't doing what is necessary for it to work.  The C stands for Cognitive.  You can't just change your behavior (B) you have to change the way you think (C).  Continuing to accept and agree with the false idea that things are "contaminated" is whats keeping you stuck.  Until you decide to challenge that  belief there is nothing anyone here can do that will help you.  It will all just be the same over and over.

 

16 minutes ago, Phil10 said:

I feel stuck right now for years I’ve felt I have to do these safety behaviours which involves replacing.

 

15 minutes ago, Phil10 said:

The replacing also causes lots of anxiety and I feel stressed and worn out as I know it’s bad I replace stuff 

So doing the replacing behaviors doesn't stop the anxiety from coming back and replacing causes more anxiety, yet you keep letting yourself go down that path.  
What PB is telling you, what I am telling you, is that you can choose to go down a different path.  But until you make that choice and ACTUALLY challenge these false beliefs about contamination, then nothing will change.  As much as you want one, as much as we wish there all was one, there is no magic explanation or phrase or step that will make it all go away instantly or overnight.  This is not like some movie where the character has a sudden realization about their childhood memory while talking to their therapist and suddenly everything is fixed.  We know what OCD is, and we know how to fix it based on decades of scientific research and practical application, you can accept that and start doing the things that are necessary to fix it OR you can keep going in circles.  Its 100% up to you.

And yes I realize the above comments are blunt, but thats because there is not much else to say.  We want you to get better, we want to help you, but there is really not much more anyone else can do, it has to start with you.

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Sadly I binned the shoes due to the ocd so have to replace those soon I still worry even replacing them won’t stop thoughts 

I replace my iPad. My camera I either sell and not have one or just replace. I made the choice due to the financial drop on my phone I won’t sell until such time as I upgrade next year. 

Sadly this means I worry I may have to wash my hands when I touch my mobile. Because I am keeping the phone I fear the germs will spead and nothing will be safe until I replace everything. I bought an iPod last week and worry that needs replaced since I never washed my hands before going between the “contamimated“ mobile phone and iPod. 

So right now the new IPad is in quarantine away from anything else to avoid me instantly wanting to replace that. 

The issue is the situations become more difficult because the germs can spead and areas can quickly become “forever contaminated”. The risk with the shoes and me walking outside and the germs from her touching her dirty washing cases is it will never go away now. Everything will need replaced.

Now people say delay the theripst said that I did and I still reboughr stuff. I know for a FACT if I never replaced I would believe these items are contaminated forever that being years because this is how bad my ocd is. I simply can’t take an anti bacterial wipe and think that’s it clean.

My ocd is replacing I need to replace stuff. Sadly I’m at a difficult stage where keeping stuff and delaying replacing an item means I actually want to replace a greater number of items these germs spread to. I get it you say don’t replace an item but what happens is my ocd actually gets worse by not replacing. I admit the front door issue has calmed a little so there has been the odd time when I forget these germs.

The issue here is no matter how long I delay the response which therapy is teaching I still st some point want a new door and a new phone.

To be honest I’ve never known anybody or read of anyone who has ocd and replaces expensive items like iPads like I do. Be interesting to hear if anybody else has but I believe I am a unique case.

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So yeah maybe some one can talk me through how delaying and not replacing is making my ocd worse and actually increases the “pool” so to speak of items I want to replace. The treatment in my case is increasing the ocd

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2 hours ago, Phil10 said:

The issue is the situations become more difficult because the germs can spead and areas can quickly become “forever contaminated”. The risk with the shoes and me walking outside and the germs from her touching her dirty washing cases is it will never go away now. Everything will need replaced.

No, the issue is you won't stop believing the lie that things become "forever contaminated"  and need to be replaced.  Thats the issue.  Nothing needs to be replaced because of this, not a thing.
 

2 hours ago, Phil10 said:

I know for a FACT if I never replaced I would believe these items are contaminated forever that being years because this is how bad my ocd is. I simply can’t take an anti bacterial wipe and think that’s it clean.

No, you do not now that for a fact.  You believe it, and that the problem, but its not a fact.  We are specifically telling you that IF you do the treatment, IF you practice CBT this will change.  We know it will change because millions of people have done exactly that, they have followed CBT and gotten better.  They have reached a point where the OCD is no longer controlling their lives.  
 

2 hours ago, Phil10 said:

I get it you say don’t replace an item but what happens is my ocd actually gets worse by not replacing. I admit the front door issue has calmed a little so there has been the odd time when I forget these germs.

See? Even you admit that it is not permanent and you can reach the point where you don't worry about replacing things.

 

2 hours ago, Phil10 said:

The issue here is no matter how long I delay the response which therapy is teaching I still st some point want a new door and a new phone.

 

2 hours ago, Phil10 said:

So yeah maybe some one can talk me through how delaying and not replacing is making my ocd worse and actually increases the “pool” so to speak of items I want to replace. The treatment in my case is increasing the ocd

Again, no, thats not the issue.  The issue is that you either don't understand yet, or are unwilling to accept how this kind of treatment works.

Delaying/Stopping compulsions doesn't mean your OCD anxiety will go away permanently right away.  The idea you seem to have is the following:

"If i don't give in to the compulsive desire I am feeling today to replace my iPad, then tomorrow i won't feel that my iPad is dirty and the OCD will stop."

The reality is this:

"If I keep resisting compulsive desires to replace things, over time the anxiety will decrease and I won't worry so much about replacing things anymore, I might forget to worry altogether"

Yes, in the immediate term your anxiety will likely increase, because you are no longer temporarily neutralizing it with compulsive responses.  This is similar to someone who decides to quit smoking.  At first they become MORE irritable and feel a stronger desire to smoke than before.  They are challenging a bad habit that has become ingrained in them.  If it were as easy as simply stopping then no one would have a problem like OCD.  You have been giving in to these anxiety driven compulsions for a long time, its going to take some time to undo that.

Again, you need to challenge your belief that these contamination anxieties matter!  You have to do the C part of CBT too.  You can't simply sit there not replacing items for awhile, you have to start telling yourself that the underlying belief, the idea that they are "contaminated" is also not real.  Unless you choose to do that, you will remain stuck.  

 

3 hours ago, Phil10 said:

To be honest I’ve never known anybody or read of anyone who has ocd and replaces expensive items like iPads like I do. Be interesting to hear if anybody else has but I believe I am a unique case.

OCD can feel isolating and a problem unique to you, but you are definitely not the first person with contamination anxiety, nor the first who throws away "contaminated" items.  The specific details of your case may be unique to you as all our lives are unique to us, but the situation you are in with OCD is not unique.  


 

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Yes I mean I may have to admit defeat and say I’m not able to beat this right now and I can’t stop replacing 

Perhaps it has to be a longer term goal to stop replacing? 

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All you've done, by throwing out and replacing this current batch of things, is make your OCD worse, not better. 

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Guest Phil10

Yes I’ve said many a time before I don’t think the germs will harm me it’s a perfectionism ocd. If I have these thoughts that something has been spoiled or tainted I need to replace. It’s very difficult I moved house because of this. 

I wish somebody could help me in my quest to not replace or move house or drastic stuff like this but so far I have been quite a few years unable to accept something can be cleaned. I think cleaning just isn’t good enough I get thoughts about the thing that happened over and over and feel only something new can stop the anxiety over it. 

I really believe only a new camera will help but given how bad my ocd is right now my anxiety says if I touch my phone then the new item e.g the iPad I just bought it will become dirty and the cycle starts over again. So basically this iPad is in quarantine right now brand new and I fear it has to stay this way until I get a new mobile phone next September. Only washing my hands may help 

So basically if I buy a new camera I may end up feeling the exact same as before. Ok I may dispose of all items she touched but the reason I believe my phone is dirty as I used headphones which were in the bag she touched after touching her suitcase. 

So I have many options:

1. Keep the camera and deal with the anxiety knowing if I put it near new iPad I may believe that’s dirty too.

2. Sell the camera and don’t buy another one until such time as I replace the phone.

3. Sell the camera and buy another one touch the mobile phone and accept it’s not as dirty as it wasn’t actually in the bag only the headphones from the bag touched it. 

I may never be able to find peace here with this germ ocd she created I feel quite annoyed with my partner that she caused me such anxiety. 

I have these thoughts in my head all day in a loop not knowing which option to take.

 

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Hi Phil 

You've been given a huge amount of really great advice here about treating your ocd. Are you really reading the posts and really taking in what's being said?

Your partner hasn't done anything wrong, the last thing she should be doing is helping you carry out compulsions. 

Edited by gingerbreadgirl

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12 hours ago, Phil10 said:

Yes I mean I may have to admit defeat and say I’m not able to beat this right now and I can’t stop replacing 

That is a choice you can make, true, but I'm sad to see you make it.   I truly believe if you made the decision to take this on that you could find a way to get it done.  Perhaps it would be easier with professional help of some kind, and I am a proponent of the benefits of medication as another component in recovery.  Have you looked in to any of that?  

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1 hour ago, dksea said:

That is a choice you can make, true, but I'm sad to see you make it.   I truly believe if you made the decision to take this on that you could find a way to get it done.  Perhaps it would be easier with professional help of some kind, and I am a proponent of the benefits of medication as another component in recovery.  Have you looked in to any of that?  

I had a bipolar episode a few years ago so can’t take anti depressants so this may affect the meds I can go on.

I had 7 sessions of therapy and it was up and down the exposure therapy bit was the hard part and I was able to be better and next month I could be ten times worse it was very up and down. 

I am here for help and know what I’m doing is irrational so I feel I guess I’m not wanting to be stuck. But I’ve tried a lot and failed so clearly I need to keep trying 

Right now I’m fighting with myself as to whether I sell my camera and replace it tomorrow. I’m not sure what one I will do I delayed it a month and replaced the iPad the other day. You may wonder why I did this it’s because I can’t live with the anxiety that something won’t feel right again. I have a thougt that the item is tainted and it goes on a loop until I give in. It’s very difficult 

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I remember that months ago you mentioned a meeting with a psychiatrist. Do you have another meeting with a psychiatrist scheduled? If so you could discuss which medicines are appropriate for you. I have experienced mental loops where you go round and round in circles. And, yes, it is difficult. If you don’t have a meeting scheduled why not make an appointment?

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1 hour ago, Angst said:

I remember that months ago you mentioned a meeting with a psychiatrist. Do you have another meeting with a psychiatrist scheduled? If so you could discuss which medicines are appropriate for you. I have experienced mental loops where you go round and round in circles. And, yes, it is difficult. If you don’t have a meeting scheduled why not make an appointment?

I have one scheduled in 10 days I have had a year to wait for one.

im asking for some more anxiety meds first off and I’m going to mention if he can offer any CBT since the private one I had never worked plus it cost a lot of money. 

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Guest Phil10

At the moment I find the thoughts a bit over whelming so I’ve had it take propranolol I need to see if the doctor will put me back on these permanently 

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Please don't blame your partner. She did nothing wrong. She acted normal. It's your brain that is at fault... something that can be fixed.

Phil, you spend a lot of time on here telling us how you think things are contaminated and what your options (compulsions) are. That's not helpful. We get that you are distressed. But repeating these things is not going to help you.

We have repeatedly told you what you need to do. Your situation will not improve until you change your thinking and behavior. The ball is in your court.

Edited by PolarBear

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35 minutes ago, PolarBear said:

Please don't blame your partner. She did nothing wrong. She acted normal. It's your brain that is at fault... something that can be fixed.

Phil, you spend a lot of time on here telling us how you think things are contaminated and what your options (compulsions) are. That's not helpful. We get that you are distressed. But repeating these things is not going to help you.

We have repeatedly told you what you need to do. Your situation will not improve until you change your thinking and behavior. The ball is in your court.

I’m thinking of resisting selling and rebuying the headphones as I have been using them for weeks and the anxiety has decreased.

I already sold the camera and iPad as the anxiety wasn’t bearable. 

If I manage to not replace the headphones is that some hope that the ocd wont always win? I have a lesser anxiety about touching my phone now and then an item as I have been doing this other than my new iPad to avoid further anxiety, the rucksack camera and iPad are all replaced so I hope I will have lesser anxiety I mean I still won’t be 100%. Reason is I can’t afford to replace the phone after spending 1k on it and it’s halved in value.

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