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Alimeep

Shopping struggles

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Hello,

I was wondering if anyone has any tips for shopping in supermarkets at the moment.

I have OCD and at the moment contamination is my biggest obsession. I am really struggling with shopping in the current environment. I disinfect the trolley handle and wear gloves as soon as I enter the supermarket before I touch anything, and when I get my shopping to the car, I disinfect everything before putting it in, quarantine my shopping when it gets home, and immediately wash myself/my clothes.

All that in itself is quite time consuming and stressful to get right, but the bit which is causing me the most anxiety is actually going around the supermarket when there are other people there. Last time I went to the supermarket (3 weeks ago), no one had any concept of social distancing so I spent my entire time trying to dodge people, and despite this, someone came way too close. I ended up running to the furthest corner of the supermarket and crying for about 10 minutes until my bf came and rescued me.

It’s really put me off going again, but obviously there’s a limit to how long I can go without buying more food.

I’m not listed as extremely vulnerable so I can’t get any online slots (fortunately I’d already got fresh veg/dairy being delivered because who knows what I’d do with getting veg from the supermarket as I can’t disinfect it, whereas I can just not touch the box for 72 hrs after it arrives).

Also, me and my bf recently moved to a different part of the country immediately before lockdown so there’s no one that I know locally who can shop for me. And getting my bf to do the shopping without me doesn’t work either as that would create even more anxiety as I wouldn’t be there to see what had or hadn’t happened, i.e. what contamination/sickness he might bring back - even if he reassures me, it doesn’t help my anxiety. (If we are out of something and he suggests he goes to the local corner shop to get it, I am at the point now of having a full blown panic attack.)

I already chose the least busy time for the supermarket according to Google Maps.

Does anyone have any tips on how I can my shopping without it being so traumatic? It’s not just the anxiety on the day of shopping; it impacts me for days afterwards. I’m still working from home so it’s impacting that too.

I’m actively receiving ERP therapy but at a very early stage (mostly around more minor obsession/compulsions when at home) so I know I’m a very long way off from anything around shopping trips getting better.

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This is a very difficult time for contamination OCD sufferers. Some of the very compulsions you need to stop doing in order to get better are being touted as recommended by officials.

Try to cut down on some of your rituals atound shopping. That's about all you can do. Most of what you do is really unnecessary.

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A number of British supermarkets require that one person per household shop. So I would let you boyfriend shop. If you had supermarket deliveries then you would not be able to see what happens. We can minimise risk but there will be some risk. It is a difficult time for us. 

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There is a big Coronavirus topic written by staff.  I get a lot of food in mail from Amazon.

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