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Ashley

Support my own therapy behavioural work and support the charity at the same time

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5 minutes ago, Gemma7 said:

Oh and well done, forgot to say the most important bit :D

huh?

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10 minutes ago, Gemma7 said:

Love the photo, have you lost weight, you're looking really good. Might just be the kicking OCD's butt rubbing off on you :)

No, I forced Sue to take another photo, the first one showed my true weight lol. 

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I decided to uncontaminate my entire office. There was an area under workbench I'd not touched all year. This was more of a challenge, if the other part of floor was 2/3 out of 10 anxiety yesterday, this area was 3/4. 

But somehow I did it, I moved the boxes and touched, Sue encouraged me to climb under the desk.  I look ridiculous but I'm ridiculously happy to be able to so this. Two days ago and the preceding 6-9 months I could not so this.

My worry is how I will feel Monday, but tomorrow I'll go again and pop over to move a  box in and out... and every day next week do same.

No way could I have done this a few days ago! I will celebrate tonight with coke and chocolate, but I'm also aware I have more work to do here next week to kill off the fear, but in coming weeks to address the fear that led to the office 'feeling' contaminated... but for now, well done me! IMG-20191011-WA0010.jpgIMG-20191011-WA0006.jpg

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Having read the journey you have been on since OCD effectively took over, it is a shame that this last area of contamination connections is proving so difficult - and I hope so much that you will find the cognitive and behavioural professional help to work through and render the thinking powering the problem benign. 

But what is happening here with your behavioural work on exposure Ashley is a real reminder to everyone that when we may be managing things well, if we let avoidance creep in then we are giving belief to what the OCD would say - and that will let it in again. 

We all need to keep exposure work maintained as part of our ongoing "homework" 

Keep going Ashley, you are so much an inspiration and, with the right help, you will overcome these remaining obstacles. 

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2 minutes ago, Ashley said:

if the other part of floor was 2/3 out of 10 anxiety yesterday

Meant to say this was less today, maybe 1 or 2 earlier today and after doing the other exposure this bit dropped to 1 on anxiety scale. Hopefully with a bit more work next week will be down to 0.

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Well done Ashley! You've done amazing, you should be really proud of yourself. And hooray for Sue for getting that shot under the desk :)

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Hi Ashley :)

Amazing Job Ashley! A huge WELL DONE! :clap::clap::clap::clap: 

You deserve tons of coke and chocolate to celebrate all your hard work :clapping:

keep going and feel very proud of yourself. Congrats!

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So back in the office today.   I did pop in briefly for a hour Saturday, partially to touch those two 'contaminated' areas and that went ok.  I didn't come across yesterday (mainly because it was ******* it down and I was being lazy  :lol:) so today the anxiety had not increased really from the 1 or 2 out of 10 that it had been Saturday, but it did feel slightly more leaning towards 2/3 on my self-marked anxiety scale... but thankfully not enough to stop me. 

So after half hour being in here I went and touched the floor and the area under my desk. I placed my brand new phone on the workbench stand as I dispatched orders, dropped it on the contaminated floor. Rubbed my hands under the bench, even popped my head under to brush my hair against it. Rubbed my hands all over my face and hair.  Anxiety back to the 1 maybe 2 on the scale already.  

My plan is to repeat, repeat, repeat each day this week and with luck, the anxiety will be barely registering by the end of the week.

Then..... I have to start thinking about the contaminated areas across at home... gulp.

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Well Done Ashley :clapping:

Some brilliant photo's.  I particularly like the one's under the desk, you look like a naughty boy hiding!! :D Now we need some video's.......we could have you floor-surfing :lol:You could have your own YouTube channel & earn millions as people log in to watch your daily challenge

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p.s........I think the board really suits you too......makes you look mature, I could "almost" take you seriously! :wink:

 

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The beard looks good too 😁

I imagine there is a problem with a chain of contamination linked in here, and maybe between locations. 

Keep up the good work on exposures. 

Edited by taurean

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9 hours ago, Caramoole said:

p.s........I think the board really suits you too......makes you look mature, I could "almost" take you seriously! :wink:

Until I open my mouth? 😂

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You are doing a great job Ashley :clap::clap: All your progress is amazing!

Keep going Ashley! :57439eb60db27_thumbup: 

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Thank you Andrea and everyone for your kind words.

Today kind of sucked. I was triggered at home first thing and I ended up with 2.5 hours of rituals this morning before I could leave the house. I made such progress last week, but today the main fear was triggered and I just struggle to move, when it strikes I am totally lost and unable to challenge and end up in 2.5 hours of rituals. Just feel so frustrated, I know I have work to day which is what today's shown me, I have to confront but I believe I need to understand why this matters so much, in order to confront and move forward.

But on a positive once I let the house and got into the office I placed my phone on the once contaminated piece of floor and touched it, so a big failure today and a little repeat success. 

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That's such a shame Ashley, I hate that you have to struggle :hug:

Despite this seeming like a failure it really isn't. OCD is so hard to deal with and emotions are incredibly powerful. You got out and continued your success, well done x

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Sorry you've had a rough day ashley. As gemma says this really isn't a failure - you got up and you carried on and that's all that really matters. 

Sending you good vibes x 

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2 hours ago, Ashley said:

Thank you Andrea and everyone for your kind words.

Today kind of sucked. I was triggered at home first thing and I ended up with 2.5 hours of rituals this morning before I could leave the house. I made such progress last week, but today the main fear was triggered and I just struggle to move, when it strikes I am totally lost and unable to challenge and end up in 2.5 hours of rituals. Just feel so frustrated, I know I have work to day which is what today's shown me, I have to confront but I believe I need to understand why this matters so much, in order to confront and move forward.

But on a positive once I let the house and got into the office I placed my phone on the once contaminated piece of floor and touched it, so a big failure today and a little repeat success. 

Hi Ashley,

I'm sorry you're having a cacky day. 

 Don't downplay your successes though! Our biggest OCD-related fears are always going to be more challenging to face and I'm completely with you with the being paralysed by the worst ones however a few weeks ago it would have felt epic to place your phone on the contaminated floor so it's still a huge achievement.

Hope you're ok now xx

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I just wanted to thank you for this thread Ashley. I find it to be so inspiring. I have long admired your hand-in-the-toilet exposure but somehow this one i find almost more inspiring. The photos really help too. I am sorry to read that you encountered a rough patch this morning, but yes all part of the journey. I know i can relate well to the frustration of a setback! Good for you for moving forward with the day and continuing your exposure at work.

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Thank you guys, you are right, a week ago I could not have done some of those things in the office I had lost perspective there. It feels great actually being able to put boxes on the floor and take boxes from under the workbench. We have a new team member starting on Monday, Nicola and for weeks I had been dreading having to get a desk in for her. But tomorrow morning I am nipping to Ikea to get the work desk and instead of looking to the weekend with dread when I build it up, I am actually ok about it.

But today did suck, I actually posted about it in a series of tweets earlier...

This week is OCD awareness week, and today, following a few good days of progress, I got slapped down by the OCD which made me realise the importance of honesty with myself, and the people I work with with about the failures, as much as my achievements. 1/13

So I want to explain how OCD impacted on me today. This is not comfortable for me, it's embarrassing, and leaves me open to ridicule, but I know I am not alone, so I hope somebody reading will take comfort in knowing they're not alone either. 2/13

Using CBT techniques I've overcome the majority of my OCD problems, but the one area I still have problems with is fear of sexual body fluids. This obsessive fear remains because I was STUPID, allowed embarrassment prevent me talking about this, I buried my head in the sand 3/13

So because of this obsessive fear, I've avoided any kind of sexual interaction (even on own), that in itself allowed fear to grow I suspect. But sometimes my body takes over when asleep , that's what happened this morning. So I want to explain what that means in real terms.4/13

The only way I can rid anxiety (that word not doing do the anguish justice) in that moment is to 'feel' clean. That involves four step set of rituals, added together take three hours. I will go through that to help casual readers understand that OCD is not just hand washing.5/13

Step 1. Get out of bed, careful not to let body touch walks/door. Use loo, run bath to clean contaminated body, shower off. I am now clean. The problem here is, the loo and bath taps are now contaminated. 6/13

Step 2. Bedclothes also contaminated so need to go in wash. First, open washing machine door, turn it on, powder in and press start. Strip bed, careful not to let bedclothes touch walls, into machine. But hands and body now re-contaminted so use foot to close WM door. 7/13

Back into bathroom. Before showering to feel clean again I use dosmestos bleach spray to first clean bath, especially taps wiping with cleaning cloth. Then spray and wipe every aspect of the toilet, trying not to retch at strong chemical. Finally into shower (shower 5-10 min)8/13

Step 3. Using dettol kitchen spray and cleaning clothes I now have to clean the bed frame, phone (as next to bed) and walls and door handles all way to kitchen. Finally, back into bathroom for final shower. At this point, I am now clean and can get on with my day... sort of! 9/13

Step 4. When I return home after work, I have one final step... cleaning the now contaminated washing machine. So firstly I need bin liner, then using dettol spray and kitchen towel I spray the outside of washing machine, then inside (bed clothes still inside). 10/13

Then I spray floor around WM and wipe clean. All days used cleaning clothes and empty dettol/bleach bottles into bin liner and then out to rubbish bin. Back in to shower and almost job done, almost! Once out shower, WM gets two wash cycles to get bedclothes clean. 11/13

At this point the entire set of rituals is complete... until next time. I use 2 bleach bottles, 3 dettol bottles all taking three hours. I do use latex gloves for bleach part. One time I forgot to take them in, and bleach destroyed hands, red sore for few days. :( 12/13

If you found my story exhausting reading, trust me, it's 1000 times more exhausting living through that! That's #OCD, that was my day today. Despite this, I believe in recovery, I will 100% recover. 13/13

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1 hour ago, Ashley said:

Thank you guys, you are right, a week ago I could not have done some of those things in the office I had lost perspective there. It feels great actually being able to put boxes on the floor and take boxes from under the workbench. We have a new team member starting on Monday, Nicola and for weeks I had been dreading having to get a desk in for her. But tomorrow morning I am nipping to Ikea to get the work desk and instead of looking to the weekend with dread when I build it up, I am actually ok about it.

This is great Ashley :) Hope you're good at flat pack furniture!

Really great posts and really brave of you to put something so personal out there for Awareness Week, you're an inspiration :) I empathise with the effort it takes to do all that washing. Not only is it mentally exhausting tracking it all as well as the distress, there's also the physical exhaustion of doing it. I do truly believe you will get there with this issue :hug:

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