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Going back to CBT this Monday - Intense anxiety (Merged Thread)


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3 minutes ago, Phil19 said:

The issue is the worry has come back? Why did it return?

It will be repetitive because it is an OCD worry. They will come back until they have been reduced then overcome by working for the necessary period through CBT and ERP on this trigger. 

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The necessary period is as long as it takes per trigger. This will be subjective to the consistent endeavour of the sufferer, and acceptance there will be blips to overcome along the way. 

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Guest OCDhavenobrain
1 hour ago, Phil19 said:

The issue is the worry has come back? Why did it return?

There is no need to repeat the information 110 times. You need to get some focus and sit down with this problem you have.

Edited by OCDhavenobrain
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On 28/05/2019 at 12:53, Phil19 said:

Yes I mean I still buy from my local Argos but I only buy certain things. My therapist can’t quite figure out what’s keeping me in the cycle. I get the buzz but as said above it’s money down a drain. I have little money as I don’t get paid lots in my job. I replace lower value stuff the front door would have been too much money to replace so I said before if it’s more expensive I can resist the urge more. Cheaper just encourages me to splurge and replace ? 

I think in previous threads you have mentioned moving houses and replacing expensive electronic equipment. So it seems your self imposed immiseration is affecting your replacement decisions. Or strengthening your resolve. When do you see your therapist again?

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11 minutes ago, Angst said:

I think in previous threads you have mentioned moving houses and replacing expensive electronic equipment. So it seems your self imposed immiseration is affecting your replacement decisions. Or strengthening your resolve. When do you see your therapist again?

I see her middle of June.

Yes I admit I have issues with replacing but as I say I can’t get my head round the bin. I said before I feared everything coming from the letter box and I used my bank card and managed to take some stuff other than phone cases but I am struggling. She claims it never came from the wheelie bin but let’s imagine it did that’s bin germs + blocked toilet germs. I could replace the letter box but it’s been a year now so if the germs spread they are all over my house. 

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38 minutes ago, Phil19 said:

I could replace the letter box but it’s been a year now so if the germs spread they are all over my house. 

So stare that fear out. Its irrational, only you are seeing this - all our houses flats etc are going along nicely without any of this being thought about. 

Sit with it, whilst reminding yourself that to us it's all just nonsense. And remember, we aren't likely risk takers. 

Refocus, but periodically come back to that thought in exposure for a few minutes. 

This is how to see these thoughts off, gradually, so that anxiety diminishes. 

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I was able to neutralise and reduce the letter box fear but tonight it feels as it did last year. Problem is I can’t remember how I got over it? I think I begged and begged for answers to be told she never took it from the bin and I eventually listened. I can’t see these potential germs but I still worry everything is ruined. My increase in anxiety is due to some ubs and a new wi-fi router coming via letter box I have mostly accepted letters and dvds though the letter box.

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You should mention all this to your therapist in June. This thread like your others is repetitious. If I understand you correctly you say that you bought your new door handle from Argos. Argos does not sell door handles. 

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7 hours ago, taurean said:

It will be repetitive because it is an OCD worry. They will come back until they have been reduced then overcome by working for the necessary period through CBT and ERP on this trigger. 

Phil you need to take this above on board! We’ve told you many times that this is why the thought comes back!

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8 hours ago, Phil19 said:

I could replace the letter box but it’s been a year now so if the germs spread they are all over my house. 

1. The "germs" you are imagining don't exist.  Actual germs/dirt/etc. don't work the way you think it does.
2. Even if they did, as you said, its too late, everything is already contaminated anyway.

 

11 hours ago, Phil19 said:

The issue is the worry has come back? Why did it return?

The issue is not that the worry came back, the issue is that you aren't changing how you respond to it.  These worries will continue to come back because you have OCD and you aren't fully committed to the steps to recovery yet.  You have started, thats good, but you need to do more.  For example, you refuse to touch certain things, that is avoidance, and it will continue to strengthen your OCD.  If you want to recover you need to start challenging these "off limits" areas.

OCD recovery is NOT:  I never have intrusive thoughts.

OCD recovery is: Its not a big deal if I have an intrusive thought.

If you strive to never have an intrusive thought/worry again, you will fail.  This is simply not possible.  But its also not necessary, thats not how normal people operate, they too have intrusive type thoughts, they just don't care when it happens.  You can get to that point too but you have to do the work to get there.

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1 hour ago, dksea said:

If you strive to never have an intrusive thought/worry again, you will fail.  This is simply not possible.  But its also not necessary, thats not how normal people operate, they too have intrusive type thoughts, they just don't care when it happens.  You can get to that point too but you have to do the work to get there.

They  see them for what they are, and ease them away. 

Think of thoughts like slipping in and out of vision. 

They pop in from out of sight, drift into peripheral vision then are noticed. 

In OCD, a sort of scanner inside our mind is looking for triggers to support an OCD underlying core belief. If the thought fits, or can be connected with to make it fit, the scanner highlights it and moves it into sharp focus; where it sticks and causes an anxiety reaction. 

The same thought coming to a non-sufferer will meet no scanner and no connection to an OCD core belief. 

When it is noticed, it will be evaluated as worthless and eased  out of peripheral vision and away. This process happens in milliseconds and the thought will barely register and is quickly gone. 

What happens in CBT is we learn how to switch off the scanner, disarm the meaning being given to the thought by OCD then, as with a non-sufferer, the thought will barely register and is quickly gone. 

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7 hours ago, dksea said:

1. The "germs" you are imagining don't exist.  Actual germs/dirt/etc. don't work the way you think it does.
2. Even if they did, as you said, its too late, everything is already contaminated anyway.

 

The issue is not that the worry came back, the issue is that you aren't changing how you respond to it.  These worries will continue to come back because you have OCD and you aren't fully committed to the steps to recovery yet.  You have started, thats good, but you need to do more.  For example, you refuse to touch certain things, that is avoidance, and it will continue to strengthen your OCD.  If you want to recover you need to start challenging these "off limits" areas.

OCD recovery is NOT:  I never have intrusive thoughts.

OCD recovery is: Its not a big deal if I have an intrusive thought.

If you strive to never have an intrusive thought/worry again, you will fail.  This is simply not possible.  But its also not necessary, thats not how normal people operate, they too have intrusive type thoughts, they just don't care when it happens.  You can get to that point too but you have to do the work to get there.

Yes you say it’s too late I get that but my ocd is saying I need to replace the letter box to stop any future germs. I mean it’s not an easy job replacing the letter box is it? I thought by resisting it a year I would be able to beat it but I am struggling by replacing the door handle it makes me want to replace the letter box more. 

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I feel a strong urge to replace the letter box like I say I managed to resist this last summer it was a whole new door the ocd says by changing the letter box that’s enough as the relief came from removing the handle. 

The alternative is I replace the usbs and don’t use the modem coming via letter box in fear of germs spreading.

I know this behaviour isn’t how to deal with my ocd but I can’t seem to help it right now. 

Edited by Phil19
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Yes you can Phil, you are stronger than you think! 

Replacing gives belief to the - false - fear. 

As a child I had a compulsive urge to pull the alarm cord on a train 🚉 

I really "wanted" to do this - even though there was no emergency, and to do so would have delayed everyone and got me into severe trouble. 

But the urge to pull the alarm cord was so strong 💪 And yet I knew it was totally irrational. 

What did I do? Applied distraction, focused out of the window, chatted to people, read a book. 

Gradually I found I could go on trains and that urge began to lessen. 

Eventually the urge was no longer there. 

I didn't know it at the time, nor did I know I was suffering from OCD, but what I did was the correct way to deal with that obsession and resultant compulsive urge. 

If I - as a young child - could do that, then so can you. I had no especial mental strength then - or now - but I could see it and carry it out. 

Take on board what we have told you about how your OCD is working and creating this compulsive urge. 

Then get distracted, but face the urge in structured sessions of sitting with it a while, but not accepting it. Then stop the exposure and refocus. 

You can do this. 

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Yes but potential bin germs and blocked toilet germs are my worst nightmare. I spent a lot of time with this worry in 2018 as everybody knows. I mean unlike the door handle I don’t know for a fact the envelope came from the bin. I had lengthy discussions on that aswell uncertainty in 2018.

So yes I won’t go into how it makes me feel. The reality is right now my ocd is back in a replacing theme again I worry if I don’t replace it the house becomes contaminated. I know by removing the letter box I will get relief. Often stuff I replace the worry never comes back up again?

So yes I said how I gave it a lot of thought in 2018 and I managed to with therapy not replace the front door the worry went down and the thoughts came occasionally. So I am unsure what I will do manage another year without replacing of give in and replace it. 

 

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I was ready to buy a new usb today but managed to resist and use the ones which came via the letter box. I mean not much is going to persuade me potential bin germs or blocked toilet germs are clean but my list of replacing stuff would go on and on and the money would run to zero as it does sometimes. Is it a result I never purchased another usb? I mean i fear my tv is ruined now..so what’s the solution? 

 

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Just now, Phil19 said:

I was ready to buy a new usb today but managed to resist and use the ones which came via the letter box. I mean not much is going to persuade me potential bin germs or blocked toilet germs are clean but my list of replacing stuff would go on and on and the money would run to zero as it does sometimes. Is it a result I never purchased another usb? I mean i fear my tv is ruined now..so what’s the solution? 

 

Learn to stop believing fears that in reality are "worthless nonsense", ridiculous exaggerations. 

By your interpretations, my whole house is severely contaminated. 

I just emptied the kitchen bin and took it to the wheelie bin outside. Although I washed my hands afterwards the front door key, and the front door are, under your OCD's rules, contaminated and should be replaced. 

What about the bin mens' lorry? Boy must the cab inside that be contaminated. Must need at least a high pressure steam clean every day. 

Now those statements are in line with your rules. Can you see how ridiculous they are. 

As for things arriving through your - contaminated - letter box. Suppose they themselves are contaminated, so have contaminated the letterbox? 

I consider the inside of my house dirty, dusty - but NOT contaminated. 

If I can see it that way, you can work towards doing the same :thumbup:

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44 minutes ago, taurean said:

Learn to stop believing fears that in reality are "worthless nonsense", ridiculous exaggerations. 

By your interpretations, my whole house is severely contaminated. 

I just emptied the kitchen bin and took it to the wheelie bin outside. Although I washed my hands afterwards the front door key, and the front door are, under your OCD's rules, contaminated and should be replaced. 

What about the bin mens' lorry? Boy must the cab inside that be contaminated. Must need at least a high pressure steam clean every day. 

Now those statements are in line with your rules. Can you see how ridiculous they are. 

As for things arriving through your - contaminated - letter box. Suppose they themselves are contaminated, so have contaminated the letterbox? 

I consider the inside of my house dirty, dusty - but NOT contaminated. 

If I can see it that way, you can work towards doing the same :thumbup:

Yes I get what you are saying but I fear the blocked toilet germs from my mums bin are worse than your average person down the street. That’s what I can’t get my head round. I put my own bin in that bracket as I put a toilet plunger and old toilet seat in there too. All blocked toilet germs like not everybody blocks toilets? How can I feel more relaxed about these germs?

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The "degree" of proposed contamination is irrational. Bins either are contaminating (so says OCD) or they aren't. 

By that rule my neighbour's bin could contaminate, but mine not so likely. 

Which is nonsense. 

 

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12 minutes ago, taurean said:

The "degree" of proposed contamination is irrational. Bins either are contaminating (so says OCD) or they aren't. 

By that rule my neighbour's bin could contaminate, but mine not so likely. 

Which is nonsense. 

 

Yes I know but like very few people have blocked toilet germs floating around there bin. Perhaps I am wrong and it’s more common to have toilet germs in a bin than I think e.g a cloth or old toilet brush but right now I just feel I’m the only one. 

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Believe you me people have all sorts in their bins. 

27 minutes ago, Phil19 said:

but right now I just feel I’m the only one. 

Well you would feel that, as the OCD is in the ascendancy. 

The number of people on here who feel that their OCD is special, more restrictive, more resilient to CBT. 

But it isn't - it's still the same old OCD tyrant :taz:

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15 hours ago, Phil19 said:

Yes you say it’s too late I get that but my ocd is saying I need to replace the letter box to stop any future germs. I mean it’s not an easy job replacing the letter box is it? I thought by resisting it a year I would be able to beat it but I am struggling by replacing the door handle it makes me want to replace the letter box more. 

Your OCD is LYING.  The problem is you continue to believe lies.  Yes, resisting the urge to replace is part of recovery, but if you aren't doing the other parts you are going to continue to struggle (as you have seen).

 

14 hours ago, Phil19 said:

The alternative is I replace the usbs

No, the alternative is you replace nothing.
 

15 hours ago, Phil19 said:

Yes you say it’s too late I get that but my ocd is saying I need to replace the letter box to stop any future germs.

10 hours ago, Phil19 said:

Yes but potential bin germs and blocked toilet germs are my worst nightmare.

4 hours ago, Phil19 said:

Yes I get what you are saying but I fear the blocked toilet germs from my mums bin are worse than your average person down the street.

3 hours ago, Phil19 said:

Yes I know but like very few people have blocked toilet germs floating around there bin.

And here is your number one problem "yes...but...".  No matter what we say, no matter how much you suffer, there's always an excuse you give to try and justify continuing your behavior.  If you want to get better, seriously want to get better, then no more buts!  I'm not kidding.  

 

4 hours ago, Phil19 said:

I fear the blocked toilet germs from my mums bin are worse than your average person down the street. That’s what I can’t get my head round.

And your fear is wrong.  There is nothing to "get your head around", you just need to accept that OCD is lying to you.  Thats it.  You keep trying to understand your way out of this situation, and that doesn't work.  Trust me (and millions of other sufferers), we've tried.

Here's what you are doing now:
OCD: What if the toilet germs are really bad! 
Phil: Oh no! I have to do something about that!

What you need to do:
OCD: What if the toilet germs are really bad!
Phil: What if they aren't?  What if you are lying?  Thanks but I'm going to get on with my day.
OCD: Fine, but I'll make you feel anxiety about it!
Phil: You were going to do that anyway.  And anxiety will go away.
 

3 hours ago, Phil19 said:

Yes I know but like very few people have blocked toilet germs floating around there bin. Perhaps I am wrong and it’s more common to have toilet germs in a bin than I think e.g a cloth or old toilet brush but right now I just feel I’m the only one. 

You're not.  You aren't the only person who fears contamination on this forum, let alone the world.  I can guarantee you that there are people living happier lives in less sanitary conditions than you are right now.  Also these "blocked toilet germs"?  They are pretty much figments of your imagination.  Of course germs and what not are real, but they don't behave like you believe they do.  The "contamination" you fear is all in your head.  You're behavior to prevent the spread of germs isn't rational, it doesn't actually do anything except make you feel better (temporarily).  It's all mental theater.  You need to stop playing that game if you want to get better.  Or you can keep saying "yes..but..." and nothing will change.

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