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rachel23

Major relapse pocd

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Hi, I’ve suffered from ocd for about 18 years now on and off and the current pocd theme for 15 years on and off. It breaks my heart to write that. I know that I don’t want to abuse a child and that I never will but my  fear is that I have pedophilia and that if I was to see children sexual abuse happen that I would enjoy it.  After all the research I’ve done over the years, I know that there are people that have pedophilia that would never touch a child or watch child sexual abuse and they feel lots of distress. My fear is that I am one of those people. I’ve spent so many years putting scenarios in my head of images of children doing sexual things to see and test myself if I would enjoy it if I saw it.  I never feel disgust which worries me loads but then I think it may be because I’ve thought these scenarios for 15 years now. Sometimes I feel nothing Or think yep, that’s just sick but sometimes I will feel something like arousal, sometimes physical which I know is normal but sometimes emotional arousal or a feeling of excitement or something and when that happens my anxiety goes through the roof. I don’t know if it’s ocd making me feel like that or I’m creating those feelings because I don’t want them or it’s true and I’m just not admitting to myself that I like the thoughts and I’m using ocd as a disguise. It’s so stressful and exhausting and I just want to be a good person. I’ve gone through many periods of my life where I’ve been so so devastated, suicidal etc because of this.
I’ve been doing so well for exactly a year, I had the odd blip of a day or a week but anytime I thought of a previous thought or had a thought like if I was to see that child naked would I enjoy it etc, I said to myself no it’s was all ocd and anything you did feel  Was just because it was a sexual thought and sexual things can make anyone feel aroused in some way and I would move on with my life. Or sometimes I would put a scenario in my head and be able to think nope that’s sick, doesn’t make me feel anything. Then a few weeks ago, I got incredibly anxious about something going on in my life and Within a few days this was back, overtaken my life. It’s all I think of, I’m spending hours trying to work out if I’m just not admitting to myself that I like the thoughts, researching on the internet. I was absolutely loving life and now it’s so hard to get through the day. I don’t want to do anything, nothing is giving me enjoyment, I can barely sleep. All I want to do is know that I don’t have pedophilia. I’m so devastated that I feel this way and I’m scared about my life in front of me. I work with children and I want a baby so much but how can I when I’m this unstable. I feel confident that I would never abuse a child because I don’t have the desire to but what if I’ve felt enjoyment from thoughts in the past. I think about their innocence in the thoughts sometimes and see if that arouses me and sometimes it feels like it does which is horrific but I don’t know if ocd is making me feel like that or it’s the true me. I’ve had therapy for 10 years. I’ve seen 3 leading ocd experts. I get to the point where I’m fine and strong and then within 6 to 12 months it comes back suddenly and I can never imagine feeling normal again. I know I shouldn’t be analysing these thoughts, I know I shouldn’t be researching ocd and pedophili on the internet but I just can’t seem to resist at the moment. I want to know that I don’t have pedophila but how can I know. Am I just not admitting the truth to myself. It’s just all so horrific. Sorry for the long post. Thank you .

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Hi there,

Sorry you are struggling, but you are right, you shouldn't be analysing the thoughts. I think after 15 years of this theme, you know how the OCD works to trick you into having these thoughts. You need to stand up to these thoughts, by not performing compulsions such as looking up info on the internet. 

Clearly it's attacking what you hold dear: the idea of being a loving mother. I get it, I know I'd be a great dad someday, but OCD latches on to that to make me a monster that I know I'm not. 

Challenge the OCD. It feeds off your fear and insecurities. You are not obligated to converse or interact with the OCD in any way whatsoever. You can deal with it however you like: being flippant, ambivalence, humour, sarcasm, etc. By reacting to the thoughts with fear and doubt, that's exactly what the OCD wants to keep going. It doesn't say anything about you if you react to an awful thought with a lack of disgust: again that's the OCD putting guilt in to ensure compulsions are done.

Think about how a non-OCD person reacts to a sickening thought, which everybody has the capability of having. They would probably go "Eww, what? Sheesh my brain comes up with weird stuff sometimes" and then move on with their day onto other things. They don't feel need for that extra level of certainty of who they are as a person, and why the thought popped into their head. 

When I started doing ERP, admittedly the thoughts became more weird and crazy. Why? Because I'd found OCDs weakness. However, if you persist, gradually the anxiety comes down, the very awful thoughts don't bother you anymore, and (the best bit) your dearly held values remain intact! 

The hardest part is being brave and standing up to the OCD bully. It is very possible to do this, and when you do, you realise that it's all hollow noise. I think after 15 years you deserve to be rid of this once and for all. 

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You have to give up your search to know if you are a pedophile. That's what is keeping you stuck. I guarantee you this: no matter how hard you work at it, doing compulsions will NEVER lead to the answer you seek. Searching for the answer is the OCD trap. 

 

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Thank you for taking the time to respond. I think the problem is is that over the years, I  put so many images and scenarios in my head to test myself that they are rarely intrusive , I mostly put them in my head but to test myself. When I get the thought ‘would I enjoy xyz if I saw it happen’ I guess that’s intrusive but I want to make the answer no. I think because I’ve felt arousal or excitement or something like that in the past, I want to tell myself no no no. But I don’t know if they’re my true feelings or ocd have caused these feelings. I feel I couldn’t live with myself if I had become aroused or excited by one of those thoughts in the past and they were my true feelings. I feel this is all very very hard. The frustrating thing is is that it has disappeared before and I’ve thought what a load of rubbish that all was, what a waste of money that I spent so much in therapy all over such a silly problem! I think things like of course anything I felt was just because it must’ve been a sexual thing or ocd causing those feelings and my life is just lovely! Then it just hits and I’m back to square one and it’s so scary. I just want a normal life again free of all this ****. 

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When you test yourself, you are doing a compulsion. Guaranteed not to work, but it will cause you more grief.

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If you are a no-contact minor-attracted person, and you went to therapy, they would try to help you accept your thoughts and feelings. Similar to OCD therapy.

I'm not saying you are, or aren't. What I am saying is that, either way, the help would be the same.

So, why does it matter?

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Because that is my biggest fear so that’s why it matter, It can’t be true, please don’t let it be true. I’ve just read that and burst into tears and felt a rush or dread just go through my body. I can’t be that, I just can’t. But I don’t know anymore. I’m so confused, I really am, I just don’t want to go through this anymore. 

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Please, this has just totally thrown me. I was feeling a bit better yesterday but now I’m so so freaked out. That’s my biggest fear that I really am one of those people and I’m just not admitting it to myself. I’m so scared 

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How will I ever know if my feelings have been caused by ocd or if they’re the true me and I’ve really felt them? If I’ve really felt them And they’re the true me then I can’t live with myself. I’m so confused.  Am I just not admiting the truth to myself. I’m really in a spiral now. 

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Guest dimmerswitch

They are just thoughts which you are attaching importance to. Allow the thoughts to be there, they’ll soon drift away... 

Everytime you engage you will press the rest button and end up at square one.

To break the cycle, stop giving these, or any other distressing thoughts or images the time of day. 
They are thoughts. Nothing more. Thoughts which mean nothing. OCD sufferers who engage with them get distressed and keep going round in circles.... 

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Hey @rachel23, I believe I may have recently responded on a more recent testimony of yours but this one sparks some more ideas, since in the other post I wasn't sure what your OCD was centered on.
 

10 hours ago, rachel23 said:

How will I ever know if my feelings have been caused by ocd or if they’re the true me and I’ve really felt them? If I’ve really felt them And they’re the true me then I can’t live with myself. I’m so confused.  Am I just not admiting the truth to myself. I’m really in a spiral now. 

Challenge this.
First of all, while even I like to use the word "certainly," there really isn't any certainties in life. OCD sufferers struggle big time with this, as is represented in the quote I pulled from your post. You can't have the certainty that you crave. We can't physically look at and dissect all of our thoughts. It is vital to point out however, that thoughts are thoughts. They are "OCD" because of the meaning and fear you've attached to them. Everyone gets strange, ego-dystonic thoughts. It's unbelievably common, but believe it! :) Challenge your desire for certainty. Who cares how the thoughts got there? You know you would never hurt a child, the fact that you are so concerned just shows how fiercely against hurting kids you are.
Which leads me into my second of all; challenge it by saying so what even if I was a pedophile? I'm not saying that in reality that wouldn't be challenging, but as you yourself said, there are pedophiles who never hurt so much as a fly and are good people. They obviously by and large have a horrific name because of the crimes that some pedophiles commit. But if you never were to hurt anyone or engage in any behavior that indirectly hurts someone, how does that make you a bad person? 
I know that this has been a lengthy struggle for you and I really hope that you find peace.

Best wishes.

Edited by hazydaze

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You're never going to know for sure. That's the torture of OCD.

What you can do is work on letting go of the need to know.

Maybe you are, maybe you aren't.

Either way, rambling on here won't do anything. Trust me, I tried that, for almost two years. It never worked.

What has worked, is medication.

I will tell you this, though. Only about 1/3 of molestation cases are committed by people with minor-attraction.

Edited by ashipinharbor

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Was just re-reading my post and I see that I deleted part of it and didn't delete the whole thing or accidentally deleted some. Sorry about that!

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