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OCD-UK
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Hi! I am new here, any help greatly appriecited

Hi there, I have been diagnosed with OCD which presents itself in the form of memory hoarding. I recently lost some messages and photos of people I wont speak to again (from holidays etc) and knowing I wont ever know their names and see their messages again has sent me into overdrive with my OCD, I am currently waiting for therapy and ruminating about this every moment of every day. I spend my days on the phone to the company trying to get these messages back. I am so ill, doc has prescribed sertraline which I am about to take.

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Welcome! You have friends here

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I've just answered your other post, so this is just an update.

Our minds are always forming memories, and the people you met on holiday, even if you don't meet up with them again, are part of your memories. They are part of the experience of your holiday, which will stay in your mind as a happy memory.

Sertraline is a good medication and I take it myself. As may have already been explained to you, it does take a few weeks to kick in, so don't expect instant results, and remember it may make you feel a bit grotty initially. But once it's started working you should feel better.

There is only so much room in our lives for other people. Nobody can be close friends with everyone they meet, but a few pleasant words with a stranger can make a big difference to our lives. I don't know how many friends you've got or how close they are, but perhaps it's best to have a few close friends and a wider circle of people you just hang out with.

Try to go cold turkey with the phone company and just leave the texts etc in the past. It sounds like you have a good social life and lots of friends, so concentrate on the moment and remind yourself that you will have many more such moments with them.

I don't feel that I've been much help, but there are lots of people on this site, me included, who are happy to listen to you.

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Your reply has meant so, so much to me and helped a tough morning, thank you for taking the time out to write that. I have a great life with a good family and friends and I’m stuck on a memory of something that isn’t irrelevant, my brain is stuck on a loop and I can’t get these messages and pictures out my head that I lost, it gets to me to the point of hysteria and panic attacks that I won’t know who this person is ever again etc, not that it even matters! I feel so silly I just wish my brain would accept this. I will stop trying to look for answers and get on with my life, just wish it was easier. Hopefully the setraline will calm my anxiety down and I can forget about these silly things. I usually record everything and I will have written these numbers down somewhere but can’t find them. It feels almost as bad as a death, just awful x thank you for replying it means the world.

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It's just typical of OCD, isn't it? It really is like having your brain on a loop. And however silly you know it is, your brain continues going round in the same loop.

The feelings of loss will subside, and you will wonder why you put such a high value on something so inconsequential. I do hope that you start to feel better soon.

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I hope you’re right sally I really do, it seems so prevelant. And won’t leave my brain, but like you say I have to realise this is my illness, there is no significance in these loss of messages and also the photos I’m seeing in my brain 24/7. I’m just hoping with time and medication this will leave my head as I can’t at the moment imagine being without it. So scary, I’m so glad and relived someone understands as it’s so hard to talk about x

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It can be really upsetting but it will lose its power. I have a problem throwing things out, thinking, 'That might be useful!' but on the whole once I've got rid I don't think about it any more. That should be the case for you as you improve.

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Sally yes I hope I can get to that, as I’m a hoarder I find it so difficult to let things go. Even rubbish in the kitchen I’ve had problems with throwing away xx

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I know exactly what that is like! Part of my problem is lack of storage space in my kitchen, as my cupboards are running with damp and mould and I can't keep things in them. So things pile up, but I try to keep on top of it.

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Good morning from Canada, Charly. Sally has alluded to your "feelings of loss" over these photos and texts; could it be that your OCD has attached itself to a theme of 'loss' due to some unresolved issues related to personal losses or grief in your past -- conscious or unconscious? Unresolved grief can be triggered quite spontaneously by seemingly unrelated events. Perhaps a good counselor or therapist could help you explore the possibility of lingering trauma due to earlier losses in your childhood or recent past. I experienced a dreadful loss 47 years ago and, to this day, I can be triggered and burst into tears. Loss and grief really do need to talked about with caring, supportive people. Best of luck. Sheila

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Hi Sheila thank you for your reply, you could be absolutely right, I have had a lot of loss in my life, family deaths, abusive relationships which have come to an end, all when ocd behaviours started. My ocd has switched. now seems to be all thought controlled and also compulsively taking pictures so I don’t forget what things say, I have to record all messages I receive on my phone etc, I sound crazy I realise that and how silly it really is, just wish my brain would let go and stop thinking these things over and over it’s truly exhausting xx

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I just want to say Hi, and your not alone. I don't have the same symptoms, but I understand the level of stress. I don't know if this would help, but it was my starting point to breaking the constant! I sat and did some relaxation to my muscles and in my mind I would walk down 20 steps, with each step becoming more and more relaxed, then I would open this door to what I called my happy place, and I would stay there as long as I want, and when I was finished I would open the door and climb up the 20 stairs back, feeling more uplifted. I would do this once a week, and it really helped, because I felt that just for that time I was getting a break. Maybe something like this could help.

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