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COVID fear struck once again

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Yesterday I recevied a notice by my housing agent that an engineer was to be sent to my flat today to inspect all electrical appliances for their safety (the PAT testing). They said this is a legal requirement and cannot be avoided. I specially asked the housing agent to let the engineer inspect my flat first, because I wanted to supervise the process while I would still be in. Today the engineer came at around noon. She was wearing a mask by herself when she dropped by, and I gave her some hand sanitiser upon entry. I was also wearing a surgical mask myself the entire time and kept the windows open. However, I still failed to conquer my fear for this virus, especially after I noticed that the engineer was sniffing a little bit. So after she left, I put away 3 electrical appliances that I felt hard to cope with onto the top of the fridge freezer, and spent the whole afternoon disinfecting all the other relevant surfaces in my flat. I even mopped the floor with bleach too, as I was worried that there might still be a minor residue of droplets on the ground. I feel really bad because I spent too much time on this and do not have time to study and practise, which causes a vicious cycle.

Edited by agreatsummer
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There is absolutely zero reason you feel bad about yourself, as @Angst just pointed out. I also remembered being very anxious once COVID-19 came. I was hiding in my flat for like six months. Therefore, I think this has to be one of the toughest fear. I mean, is it really something bad to be cautious? Remembering governments back then, we were basically encouraged every single day, that we need to stay at home as much as possible.

I lost several people around my social environment due to COVID-19 and I just wish they would have done the same as you, instead of taking it easy. In fact I wish, that most people would be like more you and taking this more serious, instead of going out and partying or whatever and further spreading this damn virus. But that's a very subjective opinion on this matter, as I really lost people because of that.

I don't want to encourage your OCD right now, as I know that this makes you really suffer, but I also don't think that doing some form of ERP would be the best way to handle this. At least not by yourself and without any professional supervision. Like there are some cases of ERP, where you're basically encouraged to lick something you think that could be contaminated — don't do that with COVID-19 around and with strangers having touched them. So it's a very tough topic to handle it by your own. This may be one of the worst themes I could imagine having in this day and age.

The worst problem here is, basically, that we SHOULD fear COVID-19 and that we should be very cautious. Obviously this make it very hard for people with OCD and this theme. Like when is it too much? Is it really too much to potentially clean stuff, that could be technically contaminated? But isn't it also an overkill to clean up everything? We all know that COVID-19 very easily stays for a while at some objects, so, is it really an overkill?  With you having OCD, it's basically impossible to find the middle ground. Not being extreme, but also not being basically careless. Really tough one.

And also reading your previous posts I have to say, that I have a very deep respect for you, that you cared so much generally not spreading this virus. I think you are genuinely a really good person, who just cares for others very deeply and who fears the consequences of ruthless behavior and potentially damaging others by that. That's something more people should do. But on the meta level, as you also previously said, that you have this fear of losing control, I think this makes it way more complex and very interesting. Might it be, that you also fear flying with a plane? I think this may be the core issue in all of this, but that's just a guess, obviously.

I wish I could help you with real advice like other, but I think the best way would be really to seek out a professional and not reading some internet stranger's opinion on this, as this may lead to bad consequences when done badly. I highly encourage you to seek out for professional help.

I just wish you the best of luck.

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