Introduce yourself - Your OCD Story

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  • Hiya,

    My name is Ashley, and like most people reading this webpage I have OCD. I am now 39, and looking back I have had OCD since childhood, although I always thought it mainly became a problem when I was 16/17.

    My main problem as always been the stereo-typical contamination form of OCD, although I have had some problems with checking OCD, intrusive thought OCD, but thankfully the other OCD aspects of only ever been minimal for a short period of time, but the contamination as stuck for the last 23 years or so.

    I am on top of the OCD now, it is still there but most of the time I can resist its urges, and when I cant it is only minor hand washing for a couple of minutes, but at its worse I would have to bath/shower for a good 60-120 minutes when I used the loo to 'feel' clean... and as you all know when you try and feel something, the less certain we become.

    My main fear was contamination from bodily fluids, so I would avoid using public toilets, but even my own toilet I still felt contaminated so would have to go straight from the toilet into the bath.

    Thankfully I am now in control and I can use public toilets, the anxiety is still there, but if I need to I can.

    I am still only 75% on top of my OCD, but I assure you I believe getting 100% on top of OCD is possible, call it cure or call it recovery, I intend to get that final 25% and be able to one day tell you all that I am recovered from OCD, it is possible!

    So that's me... what's your OCD story?

    Ashley

    OCD sufferer and Chief Executive of OCD-UK

  • Hey there,

    I am 48 and refuse to use public toilets; I don't go to pubs/clubs any more because I just see 'unclean'! I use the staff toilet at work and use the towel I use to dry my hands to open the door, wash my hands again and wash my hands yet again when I get back to the kitchen. OCD or basic hygiene?

    I still cannot use the loo at home to this day without having a long bath afterwards. If it happens that I bath first and then need to go I feel like a minger all day and worry that everyone can smell me!

    I hate my OCD, it has defined me in such a way that people love me for being me but I hate myself for being a twat. I am tired and anxious all the time, worried and despite having a good job, a man who worships me, true friends, I feel like a failure!

    Drugs? Fluoxidine? Been on them, they scared me. And I've just realised I need help!

  • Hiya my name is Stacey I'm 24 and my OCD is based around my fear of becoming unwell and having to get to a toilet and being unable to do so. I have IBS which unfortunately means I have to use the bathroom more than others. I can't go anywhere that doesn't have toilets or that I don't feel have enough toilets as one isn't enough because chances are there will be. Queue or even worse it may break! I won't eat anywhere other than very near my house or somewhere that I feel very very comfortable (somewhere with lots and lots of toilets without queues. I find it exhausting thinking about where toilets are and how many etc and I want to be able to go and do whatever I want without the stress it brings. I work with children and we have to go out on trips this at times reduces me to tears unfortunately just last week was the first time I wasn't able to calm my self down in time to get to work and do what I had to do. I managed to get there eventually and go on the trip I had to but it left me absolutely exhausted and ill by the end of the day ( the journey was 10 mins long)

    I tried cbt but at the time I wasn't ready I don't think. I am now and I'm looking forward to exploring my illness and working out a way to manage it.

  • Hi Ashley, my name is Sarah....Im 30 and was diagnosed with Pure O OCD just over two years ago after a suicide attempt and breakdown....

    Im preetty much on top of it as well now and i control it with medication, but the intrusive thoughts still prevent me from doing certain things and being with certain people.

    I have a very understanding 8 year old daughter and a wonderful husband who both look after me (as well as other family members)

  • hi guys, im also sarah and am mum to a 14 year old with ocd. Its started 3 years ago after his grandad (my dad) died and has pretty much taken over his (and our ) life. He is a hand washer (up to an hour at a time) and has certain issues over touching things and contamination fears. Will do anything to help him but have no idea how. he sees a psychologist and has medication but with very limited success.

  • Hi Sarah and Sarah, pleased to meet you both and anything the charity can do to help you please do get in touch.

    Are you getting any psychological support for your OCD (Pure O) Synergy Sarah?

    What medication is your son on Sjev Sarah? One problem we know with CAMHS units is that many really do lack a general understanding of OCD, so although they may be offering CBT if the therapist does not understand OCD then the CBT may be harder to implement.

  • Hi Ashley, He is on 150 mg of sertraline (pretty much the ceiling of what we have been told he can have) and the psychiatrist is really keen for him to have weekly therapy but the therapist (also at camhs) despite being really nice is incosnsitent and in fact we went 4 months between seeing him which makes it all really difficult as we then have to start again from scratch. I would really love to know where we could get proper specialist therapy for him.x

  • Hi everyone!

    Just introducing myself here. I'm Kirstie, 28 and have had OCD since early childhood. I was not diagnosed until 18 when I seemed to have bit of a breakdown and received a short term course of CBT after the initial diagnosis and prescribed Effexor 225mg which I took for about 9 years and was slowly taken off them last year to see how i would cope. I've not had to be put back on them and seem to be about 70% in control of the OCD. It still is present in my life and certainly i do still suffer with anxiety which triggers it off more so in times of stress but it's managable and no longer rules my life.

    I suffer with contamination fears, compulsive checking which then ties in with. hyperesponsibility. I am currently studying full time for a degree and live with my wonderful boyfriend.

    I look forward to sharing experiences and supporting one another through this. :).

    Kirstie

    OCD-UK Volunteer.

  • Hi Sarah (sjev),

    4 months between therapy sessions is, well to be honest pointless. Even once a month at the start of a course of CBT is at best likely to be difficult. Ideally a patient (child or adult) should be seen once a week for a hour, or once every other week, but at the start of therapy longer gaps than that is likely to impact on the CBT being effective.

    I would write to them ask why the gaps between therapy is so long and explain you have been advised weekly or bi-weekly therapy is what you feel would benefit him the most.

    Regards,

    Ashley

  • im going to try and speak to him about the whole situation as i really feel like they need to crack on and do something. The psychiatrist was not at all happy when she found out about the 4 month gap as she had increased the sertraline dose and wanted the sessions weekly immediately after to get the best results.

  • Hi, I am 49 and I have been fighting to even get it recognised that I have OCD of the Hoarding type. I've just started some CBT, after over 15 months waiting on the NHS. I'm on anti-depressants and right now am dealing with a forced move of home due to financial difficulties.

  • Hi Katisha,

    Did you watch the hoarding programme on ch4 this week, there is another on this coming week too on BBC1.

    Hoarding as long been associated with OCD, but I think we are no longer sure if it is the same as traditional OCD, although depends on the reason the person hoards we believe.

  • My dad is a compulsive hoarder, mum an obsessive diary writer, Grandad had GAD... I think have OCD too where I have to write words and hoard the paper in boxes in spare room. Is OCD genetic or a behaviour I have been brought up with that has manifested itself into OCD? Not sure if definatly have OCD but all anxiety symptoms there, but not the 'usual' obsessive category of behaviours that is written on diagnostic criteria.

  • Hello, my name is Alina and I've suffered from OCD since I was around 7 years old.

    It started with things like knocking on doors. I found I had to knock on a door an even number of times to feel comfortable, and if I didn't, I felt bad things would happen.

    Over time my fear of odd numbers increased and worked it's way into almost everything I had to do. The number which I felt was the safest was 8, and I would have to make sure EVERYTHING I did, was done 8 times. It was awfully time consuming and stressful.

    Next came a severe obsession for handwashing and cleanliness, which completely took over my life for over a year. It was far worse at night, whilst everyone else was asleep. I would have to get up and wash my hands for absolutely no reason at all. It may have been just a thought that I had to. Or, if I found my hands coming into contact with a piece of fluff, or my hair, or a teddy, or even resting my hand on my pyjamas, I had flashing visions of myself dying and how distraught my family would be, and how everything would be ruined. If I tried to resist, it got worse and the visions would depict my family dying, my friends dying, and just general terror. When it came to the actual hand washing, I'd be at the sink for hours on end, scrubbing brutally at my hands until I felt I had done enough. I would end up using whole bottles of soap in just one night, which made my mum angry and she was convinced I was doing it on purpose.

    Pretty much every time I'd finish washing my hands, I'd clench my hands into fists and did not allow myself to touch ANYTHING, even my other hand! And if I did, this meant having to go through the whole process, all over again. I started using my feet for various things such as turning the light off and opening/closing the door, because I didn't want to touch anything, including the hand towel. My hands became horribly dry and cracked and would bleed all the time.

    I have also suffered severe anxieties about locking windows and doors, and around the same time as the handwashing I would have to open and close my window 8 times, over and over and over again to make sure it was locked and no kidnappers could make their way into my room.

    Nowadays my OCD is at a similar severity although many of my symptoms are inside my head rather than physically noticeable. I am still overly concerned about germs and cleanliness and I find myself becoming stressed if I feel unclean. I have two strange fears; rust and foxglove flowers. If I so much as see something rusty I start to feel uneasy and there's absolutely no way I'd touch it. I have no idea why I'm so afraid of foxgloves but I feel if I'm near them, bad things will happen.

    I like everything around me to be neat and tidy and clean, and if it's not, I feel I must organise and clean. When staying over at friends' houses I often tidy their rooms. Being in an untidy cluttered environment makes me frustrated and tearful.

    I struggle with various social situations because I constantly have a thought in the back of head telling me that people think I'm strange and don't actually want to talk to me. I'm a very sociable person and I enjoy talking to people but it's becoming a struggle and I avoid most social occasions now.

    Sorry for the essay haha :-) but I'm pleased there's websites like this here to help. I feel I need to share my experiences and get advice. Thank-you :-)

  • Hi Alina.

    Glad we can help you by being here for you, also check out our main website and forums, loads more support on there.

    Like you, myself, and all of my team have been through it with OCD ourselves, so I know how you have felt at times.

    Are you getting any support right now for your OCD Alina, or have you in the past?

    Ashley :)

  • Hi Ashley,

    no, I'm not getting support and I never have, I'm considering talking to a doctor about it, but I'm unsure.

  • This strruck a cord! I avoid all situations now other than work, where I feel comfortable, but still worry/get scared/stress because i'm useless/fat/stupid! I also use numbers to calm myself and make sense of what I'm doing; I count cutlery to make sure there are 15 pieces in each basket before they go through the dishwasher! I hate numbers and yet I have to use them for stocktaking and they terrify me if they are not divisible by themselves. I hate numbers and yet I have them going through my head all the time, 24/7 counting blue cars, counting new number plates, counting men with shaved heads, counting, counting, counting.

    Sorry, just found this site and rambling.

  • Hi guys, Im jody im 22

    I have had OCD for 12 years or so now. It started when i started secondary school with silly things like not being able to touch the colour red for 2 years, having bed time routines where i would have to say a sort of (very long) preyer to protect my house/family. From then on its became alot worse. Now i have a routine for each room of my house, i cant let go of a door handle for the count of 10 or 30 (if the 10 didnt feel right) i have to kiss or hold or stare at objects again for up to the count of 30 3 times. My right hand has to be the last hand to touch any item in my house/shops/work etc its getting ridiculous.

    I never used to use odd numbers as my ocd was all about using even number but it has all changed.

    Im late for work sometimes due to the routines i have to do (so many i wont bother typing them all) it's mostely with remotes, handles, tiles, toilet rolls?, doors, photos, my phone, cups, spoons, buttons/swtiches, marks in woodwork, rugs, perfume and makeup.

    And also i dread putting makeup on as i have a routine for each make-up item i have and again it takes so long i actually feel drained after.

    Also when i just want to sleep i cant unless i finish my night routine properly and it takes such a long time. Someitmes i have to repeat my routine if im not feeling 100% happy with it.

    its really getting me down and i know its stupid but as we all know we just Have to do it. I have never been to the doctors about it as im sure they might just say 'try cutting it down or think something bad will happen if you DO your routines' so i dont know what to do.

    Thanks for listening :)

  • I don't know what to do this thing has taken over my life recently... the link to the blog ' alittlebitdiffrent.blogspot... ' written my someone else kind of explains what is going on when I am obsessive-compulsive. Although I have not got tourette's syndrome, the mental tic is kind of similar to what I think is my OCD. It's difficult to explain it in my own words, but here is an attempt at my story…

    My dad is a compulsive hoarder, mum an obsessive diary writer, Grandad had GAD all though his life and died of alzheimer's disease. Have a rather dysfunctional family and growing up with tension as family arguing around me all the time, I reacted by developing a nervous twitch/tic. I used to tic really badly as a child from the age of 4 it started and gradually got worse - physical tics like eye twitches and arm jerking and would not stop until I felt I got it 'right'. I saw a child behavioural psychologist and at 15 years of age needed stress counselling as had a psychogenic seizure, up to the age of 19 I saw 2 counsellors and 1 social family therapist. I gradually learned to supress the physical tics over time because in general people that saw me ticking stared and thought I was a freak and I think the physical tics manifested into mental ones when I was in high school and now think I it has developed into full blown OCD.

    Here is what happens now, and has been for around intermittently the last 10 years:

    My obsession is to think of words over again in my head, and my compulsion is to write the word down on paper and feel relief once this is done and if I forget the word in my head before writing it I experience extreme anxiety. Because it is in my mind it is hidden from society and writing on a notepad when in public is more socially acceptable than to physically tic. I think this stemmed from not being able to feel like I can express myself and not it feels like I gone crazy! Sometimes when out with friends I have a list of up to 30 words in my head, on the plus side this thing has improved my memory! I fear forgetting, and sometimes have to excuse myself to go to the toilet, where I don't need to go to the toilet but write these words on my mobile or on paper in private.

    For example... if I was verbally explaining this, I would remember and think over again of the 'trigger' words. Trigger words being the ones that I feel the need to remember and write down. Such as 'relief, extreme'. Wondering where did I get these words from? The paragraph before this one. This is mentally exhausting for me and I know it is irrational but can't stop without emotional upset. Here, 'upset' is another trigger word I have to remember. It don't feel the need to write the special word down when I express myself in writing, like what I am doing now, but do it when speaking when I have no visible recording of the word, so therefore need to remember and have to write it down. I have words on paper and kept and 'hoarded' these scraps of paper in boxes in the spare room. I have had this writing compulsion for at least 10 years or so and have had enough of it. Learned to live with it for some extent but it getting worse and, as you can imagine, word hoarding on my own bits of paper has filled the spare room... and the attic...

    I am about to bring a child into this world in 4 months time and feel so bad about this I don't want to bring my child up with it seeing me writing down random words all over the place. I used to feel so ashamed of doing this behaviour but finally learned to accept it and my fiance is very supportive but I feel it is really now time to get help.

    Have I got OCD, how do I get a proper diagnosis, who do I see for help?

  • I have had OCD from about the age of 8,and im now 52. Yes you need to see your doctor and get reffered for cognitive behaviour therapy,and possibly medication. I used to write down thinks i uses to call them.I dont write down now,and havent done for years.Mine is intrusive thoughts,but when i was younger I had to remember certain words. I am on medication work full time and have 3 children 18 22 and 26, and i thought I couldnt possible have children. I am having therapy at the moment, I keep having it every few year to keep me on top of things,but the waiting list is long.OCD has taken a lot of my life but im in control.If you need any help or advice let me know.your first port of call is go to the doctors then they refer you to the correct department do it tommorow it will be the best thing you can do

  • see a doctor and get referred to a CBT therpaist who specialises in OCD...good luck with this and best wishes to the little new comer!XX

  • Hello,

    I've recently been diagnosed with OCD by my doctor. I have suffered from it almost in silence for 7 years since i was 10/11 years old. I looked on this site about a couple months ago after finally having the courage to look up OCD (I was scared I didn't have it and i was actually crazy). The site explained the symptoms of OCD and I went to my Doctor who put me on medication. I'm still waiting for my initial assessment from counsellers, but the medication has helped calm me down, even though the obsessions still occur.

    The problem is that my OCD still didn't seem to fit with some of the stuff explained on the site as I am able to control compulsions sometimes, but my obsessional thoughts take up almost half of my day still. Also, when it is really bad, my compulsions can take the form of anything, like moving objects away from eachother, not sitting down, not touching anything, counting in numbers. But they aren't always the same, and if I stop one compulsion it takes the form of something else or the compulsions start in my mind.

    So I thought I didn't have OCD, but then I saw an OCD-UK video that explained at the end a form of OCD called Pure-O. Everything said on the video matched my symptoms, which was a relief because i thought i was crazy! Anyway, I just wondered, is this the OCD i have? should i tell my Doctor that i think i have this form of OCD? and what is the best way to get help? It is affecting my life hugely at the moment and it would really help if I could get some guidance from people who understand what this is.

    Thankyou :)

  • Hi, I'm Julie. I'm 54 and have had OCD since about the age of 11. I had a years psychotheray on the NHS a couple of years ago which was no help at all. My routines completely rule my life-counting, lists, diaries etc etc. The obsessional thoughts are less than they were, and at least the fears I had killed someone and would be found out one day seem to have disappeared. My systems probably take up 50% of my time. Time I would like to spend with my fiance, elderly mother with dementia, friends and children. Many close friends have no idea what a mess i am. My fiance is very supportive, but two broken marriages show what a toll the condition has taken on my life up to now. If I tried to explain my systems/routines, the complexity would be overwhelming, but somehow in my head I do them.

  • Hello everyone, thought I'd add my story too.

    My name is Grace and I'm 21, I was officially diagnosed with OCD at about age 13 but had been battling the illness for some time at that point but always had difficulty getting the doctors to take it seriously or give me a proper diagnosis. In the end, it was my wonderful Mum who did the research herself and discovered it was OCD that I appeared to be suffering from. It still took for her to break down in tears in the doctors surgery for them to take us seriously and action some help.

    After that, I went onto seeing CAMHS and had moderate success with a combination of CBT and medication as an outpatient, however after a few months the decision was made for me to be admitted to the local inpatient unit. At this point, my treatment and my OCD deteriorated rapidly. I was thrown in at the deep end and I didn't swim, I sunk. I don't want to say much more about that time in my life because I still find it traumatic to think about.

    A blessing in disguise came about when my family found out that Reading University were carrying out a research project and were offering some radical treatment for OCD. When we informed the inpatient unit that I'd like to participate in the research they replied bluntly that if I did so they wouldn't have anymore to do with me. We went for the research project, and it was one of the best things I ever did. The treatment was VERY radical, but it enabled me to become about 80% cured for a period of a few years and I led a relatively normal life. The obsessions were still swirly around my mind at 100mph, but the compulsions were under control to a point that I was able to study, and work 2 jobs at the same time!

    Unfortunately, that time came to an end a couple of years ago. Basically, my OCD was starting to take more of a chokehold on my life, but I didn't request help for over a year because I was so frightened of being admitted against my will again. In the end, my family helped me realise how ill I had become, and I realised it was long over due for me to ask for professional help. Once again, actually getting that help was a battle in itself. My GP didn't willingly suggest where I could get help, but when pushed he told me to use online resources to help myself! By this point, I was spending most of my day in bed because the OCD was just so hard and exhausting to live with.

    Anyway, eventually I managed to get a referral to the adult mental health services. Once again, my referral was delayed because my paperwork was lost (!) and the first therapist I was referred to was an absolute disgrace. She told me I 'couldn't keep coming back' for help when my condition relapsed, stamped all over aspirations I had and voiced her opinions on my personal life that were totally irrelevant to my condition. Fortunately, my second therapist is great at her job, and I feel hopeful that eventually I will make some real progress with her. At the moment, my CBT is not actually happening as she felt I needed medication to help me along, but I hope to be back at it soon.

    So, that's my story so far, sorry it's so long! My OCD is very disabling at the moment, and manifests itself mainly in the contamination and checking types of OCD. That said, I try really hard to maintain a positive attitude about my recovery from OCD - reminding myself of what I managed in the past helps - but it's hard to see a way out from the place I am right now. I'm very, very fortunate in the sense that I have an amazingly supportive family with my Mum and sister Faye being my main carers. Without them, I know I wouldn't be here today, and it really worries me that there are other OCD sufferers without the support system I'm so lucky to have.

  • Hi Grace,

    Wow, it sounds like the system really let you down badly. I am so pleased the research in Reading made a difference for you, was it Prof Shafran you were seeing in Reading?

    It is fantastic you have the support of your family, and of course I know that Faye ran the Great Manchester Run for you last weekend, which is such a lovely thing to do.

    I am pleased you have some CBT at the moment that you feel is helping, hopefully it will soon make a bigger difference for you too.

    Do email me if you ever need anything we might be able to help you with.

    Ashley :)

  • Hi Ashley,

    I'm not sure who was head of the research project, it was about 6 years ago now but I do remember my therapist was called Polly and all of our sessions were video recorded.

    Yes, I'm very lucky to have my family, I was so, so proud of Faye in Manchester! It was a great personal achievement for her and I hope the money she has raised can be put to good use in the charity. She is also studying psychology at uni, which is one of the rare good things to have come from my OCD - I think looking after me piqued her interest.

    Thank you for that, I certainly will get in touch if needed. And thank you for starting this group, I've never felt able to meet up with fellow sufferers because of my OCD contamination fears (sorry that sounds awful!) but talking to other people with OCD over the net is good compromise and definitely helps to avoid the feeling of being so alone with my OCD =)

    Grace

  • Hi Grace,

    Well perhaps you should set yourself a little challenge to meet others with OCD. You are most welcome to our conference in Cardiff in November if you're able to travel. I will happily offer yourself and Faye a ticket each if it gives you an OCD challenge to work towards :)

    But if not then it is great you can chat to others with OCD on here, and on our forums too.

    I was like you at one point, my contamination OCD meant I could not shake hands, but now I dont mind, does not even create anxiety really... unless I know the person had just been to the toliet, ha!

    Take care,

    Ashley

  • Hi, My name is Maya, I have been diagnosed with OCD for 5 years, but feel I have definately had it since I was a child.....It began to appear when I was in uni, and I found myself always throwing any item of clothing I had away if something 'negative' happened when I was wearing it, even if I had only worn it once. Checking if I had cash cards was also quite a big thing at that time.

    However, my OCD didn't kick into it main nasty phase until I began working once I had finished uni. I worked in a dentist and I found myself triple cleaning things in the time it took one person to clean once, also my major obsession with catch HIV, AIDS etc was a major factor and I found myself checking peoples medical history all the time, and if it was missing i would even phone them up pretending that we needed it for our files. As you can imaging it drove me crazy so i then moved into pharmacy as i thought it would be a clean job, and the answer to all my problems. How wrong I was!!! checking got worse and the intrusive thoughts began. completed my training only just then went out to work in community...got 2 years course of cognative therapy....massive improved, and came to terms with the fact that I did have ocd...which took a while for myself and my family to come to terms with (family were in denile).

    So, this all sound like a happy ending...wrong...treatment could nolonger be funded for me anylonger as i had show improvement.....and my OCD got steadly worse...tried to get treatment but work werent happy with me taking time out, plus would have to see someone new, and didnt feel i wanted to open my heart about all my insecurities with another person (especially a man as this was another ocd issue i have). So as it stands im 60% on top of it but my amazing supportive husband who has been the only one there for me throughout has informed me that my OCD is getting out of hand again..it must be mega hard for those people living with us with OCD as i just about deal with it myself. So contamination, repetative things (must do everything 3 or 4 times), worried about upsetting people or doing something wrong against people, worried about something bad happening all are constantly on my mind, plus demotted myself in work lately as i couldnt cope with the extra pressure of being the last one seeing the prescription.

    Sorry about my rant...but thats me ;-).

  • Hi Maya,

    And again like Grace above, her sister Faye ran the Manchester 10k for us, so thank you to you too.

    I have a member of my support group who was a pharmacist like you, and her OCD checking became a real problem too, sounds like a similar story.

    It is great you have a supportive husband. It is hard for those without OCD to understand it, but when they do they can make a real significant difference to helping us move forward with our OCD... although of course too much reassurance from them can be counter productive too!

    Anyway, glad you are on the up with the OCD.... my advice from my own experience of OCD is never settle for being 60, or even 80, 90% better, as OCD is a little bugger it will come back at you. I am 85% on top of mine but it keeps coming back at me, so I now know I must push on until I am 100% better and it is gone forever.. it is possible, hard, but possible!

    Stay strong.

    Ashley :)

  • Hi everybody,

    I'm 28 years old and have been suffering from OCD and anxiety for the majority of my life. It's hard to explain when I realised something was wrong, and was diagnosed 18 months ago with OCD, depression and anxiety.

    I have been on anti depressants since then but unfortunately have not seeked any help for my OCD - mainly as I am embarrassed and am scared that by asking for help I will be laughed out of the doctors.

    Mainly I suffer from shyness and find it very difficult to talk to people. I always think they are judging me, are going to think I'm odd or just a bad person. Because of this I come across quite arrogant (even though I'm really not!) and don't have many friends. I even find it difficult to order a McDonalds without having a mini panic attack first.

    I am CONSTANTLY worrying about things - like "if I go out, will there be a toilet?", "When I get home will I get a parking space (even though it's my allocated space I am always afraid someone will park there and I won't be able too which has left me quite often leaving places earlier than I should". I keep a diary and have to live my life by what is written in there. I have a routine at home which if I don't keep to I feel uncomfortable and panicky all through the day at work. My house has to be constantly clean - no dishes in the sink, no dirt or dust on the floor. I hate ironing piling up and it has to be done straight away. When I get home from work I have to wash, iron, cook tea, wash up, make lunches for the next day, wipe all surfaces before I sit down to try and relax, and even then I am thinking of things I could be doing like cleaning the shower or hovering the bedroom. If I ask my husband to wash up and if he doesn't do it straight away I do it and that ends up in an argument because I can't leave it.

    We recently got a kitten and at the moment I really do feel like my world has been turned upside down. This has really got to me and I find myself all day worrying about what damage she has done, whether she has pooed on the floor etc. Even though my husband says she is very well behaved for a kitten and always messed in the litter tray.

    It is getting to a point now when I am so tried all of the time as I am not relaxing - I just can't. I get in the bath to relax and managed 5 minutes if I am lucky. I know I should go back to the doctors but I am worried he will tell me I'm okay and I am just strange.

    Any advice would be appreciated or if anybody has a similar problem, please let me know how you have coped.

  • Im Hardik Joshi from India (25 years, M). Pursuing Ph.D in Chemistry. I had OCD since I was 17. I was also facing the same situation.

    Recently I have started CBT sessions. Before this I only took medicines. I can suggest you some websites

    [http://moodgym.anu.edu.au]

    beacon.anu.edu.au/

    depression.org.nz<ww...

    Please mail me on hardikjsh96@yahoo.com if u have any questions.

    Please give me your Email Id

  • Hi, Im Hannah, Ive had OCD since i was about 7, (18 now) it started when i moved house, started with the need to check everything was locked before i could go to sleep, then i had to check everything was turned off before i could leave the house, then i had 2 eat food in a certain pattern, this gave me really bad anxiety tho no one seemed to pick up on this, when i went to secondary it got worse, i had to organised everything alphabetically (dvds, games, ect) i had to have everything laid out on my desk in a certain way and i cudnt concentrate untill, everything was 'right' i also started compulsively cleaning, my room, my hands, i have a huge fear of public toilets due to 'contamination' i often avoid situations where i'd come in contact with something that isnt 'clean' one of the main things that annoys me is socket switches being turned on when there not in use, i had to walk around college turning them all off before i could go into lessons otherwise i became really anxious which would lead to me compulsively counting, there are other various little rituals i do but im used to doing them so i dont notice them anymore.

    I was only diagnosed with OCD officially when i was 16, when i went to therapy for insomnia, tho the OCD issue wasnt really addressed and i was discharged from therapy. I can go a few weeks where OCD hardly inter fears with my daily routine but other times it constantly inter-fears. My friends have gotten used to it but when i told my family i had OCD they just dismissed it. Im starting uni in september and i know this is bound to kick my OCD off big time, is there anything i can do to help keep it under control?

  • Hey Hannah, Im Hardik Joshi from India (25 years, M). Pursuing Ph.D in Chemistry. I had OCD since I was 17. I was also facing the same situation.

    Recently I have started CBT sessions. Before this I only took medicines. I can suggest you some websites

    [http://moodgym.anu.edu.au]

    beacon.anu.edu.au/

    depression.org.nz<http://www.depression.org.nz>

    Please mail me on hardikjsh96@yahoo.com if u have any questions.

    Please give me your Email Id

  • Hey Hannah, Im Hardik Joshi from India (25 years, M). Pursuing Ph.D in Chemistry. I had OCD since I was 17. I was also facing the same situation.

    Recently I have started CBT sessions. Before this I only took medicines. I can suggest you some websites

    [http://moodgym.anu.edu.au]

    beacon.anu.edu.au/

    depression.org.nz<ww...

    Please mail me on hardikjsh96@yahoo.com if u have any questions.

    Please give me your Email Id

  • Hi Hardik, I saw your post above and the links the moodgym is quite good, thanks for recommending it. How is the PH D going? best regards

  • Hello my name is rachel and I've just been diagnosed as ocd even though I have had it for a few years.

    Everything in my life is routined I have to do the same thing everyday I also get violent and sexual thoughts I'm also a checker and I only like even numbers.

    The doctor prescribed me antidepressants but I can't take them because I already take 4 tablets and that would make it 5 . I also think that I have illnesses that I don't have. I really drive myself mad i just wish that I can be spontaneous but I can't it panics me I'm also a toucher I have to touch people which can be awkward. My friend brought me some lovely perfume and I love it but I can't wear it as I will have a really bad day which is a shame

  • Hi all , my name is rich , 40 yrs old and yes I to have ocd . To actually write that on a forum is something I never thought I would be doing about five years ago , yet there it is . I suppose when I look back to childhood I've always had traits of ocd ,rituals of checking plugs , I had to peer out the curtains 10 times before going to sleep , but after a while those stopped or changed to where now as a mechanic it's checking bolts are tight. I've always been anxious , always thought I've got something wrong with me physically ( cancer of the throat , brain tumour , stomach cancer ) but nothing was or ever has been physically wrong .

    4 yrs ago , I had a very bad dream . The content of which is not relavent I don't think , but just to say it was very disturbing . The next day at work I found myself thinking about these images that I had dreamt about . At this point I feel I should tell you that I am a born again Christian . These images went totally against who I am , what I am. I fought these thoughts , I prayed. I tried to think of anything but all I could think of we these images.

    The more I fought , the worse it got , plus new thoughts came in .as a Christian this was an attack of the devil, I had a demon or I was going mad .

    The thoughts made me anxious , I went into my shell became very withdrawn , panicked in situation , avoided certain situations .what is going on !!!

    I sought help via the church at first . They did give some good advice but it was still there . Morning and night. My wife suggested on a few occasions I seek professional help, which I realised I needed when I started to feel "what's the point in carrying on"

    Went for a screening at the docs and they mentioned ocd !!! Immediately I thought what are you on about , I don't like cleaning !!! Suggested I have 20 session of cbt.

    Wow , unless you've got it you don't realise how many sides there are to it . Obviously to me now I suffer with the intrusive thoughts and slightly the checking . ( my wife is slightly upset that I still don't have the obsession to clean lol)

    I have just finished cbt and are 4 months away from my follow up. I now feel I can look in the mirror and I recognise myself again. Intrusions come still , some days it's worse than others but the tools cbt has given me has made how I deal with these different

    The final words of my therapist was take a look at this site on the Internet , a place where you can get support through others who are dealing with similar ...so here I am , and here you are . Thanks rich x

  • Hi Im new here, my partner has ocd and I do not know a lot about it apart the medical side of looking on the internet.. its the practical experience I need to help him out..not sure if my helping is helping or hindering.. he seems to have had it since he was 8 years old and it seems to be unacceptable in the society and country he is from.. I have read somethings about natural medicine and Inositol acting as a replacement for seratonin,, but honestly do not know where to start.. to support him.

  • Sorry i forgot to say Im Caroline ; -)

  • hi ive recently joined this site . im unsure if I have cleaning ocd or not . cleaning has became the highest priority in my life from the second I open my eyes im cleaning till I go to sleep to at nite .I cant leave the house without cleaning every room in the house its even got to the point were if I haven't finished cleaning b the time my kids have to leave for school they have to have the day off cos I cant physically go out without knowing everythings done but even when every room is clean I still cant sit down im constantly wiping the kitchen sides or bleaching the toilet Ive even got to the point were I wont eat a thing as I don't sit down long enuf to do so and don't like the mess that makin something to eat causes I also cant allow anyone round to visit in case they make a mess or pass on any germs and I wont visit anyones houses either is this ocd

  • Hiya,

    Im Shannon.

    I have been worried about my health to the point where I am afraid to go to sleep in fear of having a medical emergency through the night and I catastrophize and get the images in my head of it and my brain starts to put in place what would happen in the world to get it there. Sometimes it is so bad I convince myself i am going insane and I wait to start to hear voices in my head.

    Up until last week I didnt know what was wrong with me and I thought OCD was about cleaning everything over and over.

    Very scary experiences daily and feeling alone since I was a child and being hospitalized and put on antipsychotics needlessly when I was 18 has been very difficult. I have minimal trust in healthcare because to me it is still medieval.

    As of yesterday I am told that I will be getting help and the more I look into OCD the more I realise I am not alone.

  • Hi everyone my name is gemma and Im 28 years old. Dont know if I have ocd or not. my fella says I do and I need to see a doctor but I'm finding it hard to get help. I have to make sure all the windows and doors are locked even if anyone else has checked them. I'm constantly cleaning. I have a whole cupboard full of bottles of bleach. everything in my house has to be straight I go mad if anyone has moved ananything. Ive got hand sanitizer in every room of my house. I also carry it in my handbag n Coat pockets. I only like even numbers and I have to step over the cracks in the pavement. I used to go out everyday to see friends but now I can't leave the house by myself. I can't sleep in the bedroom by myself coz I just think someone's going to break In and get me (I have a samurai sword next to my bed). I feel so sorry for my fella I can go from happy to angry so easily it's affecting out relationship. on a daily basis I say to myself I'm fat n horrible. I've gone from a size 20 to a size 8 I currently weigh 7st 12lns I've had thoughts about cutting my fat off. when I have alsorts going thru my head I have to pick my scalp till it bleeds. I'm so bad I can't even leave a dirty spoon in the sink when I go to bed. please someone tell me what's going on

  • I've had ocd for years, about 25, and it's been exacerbated by receiving a head injury. From which, I was in a coma for 2.5 months, hospital 1 year suffering hallucinations, pneumonia, mrsa, right side paralysis, had to learn to walk, talk, write, read, toilet, feed myself, everything we take for granted, again. Tough times! But now, whenever anything good happens, I ALWAYS find a way of looking at it to raise doubt, or invent a concern. If there's possible ambiguity, I'm sure to crumble. I just want to get busy living.

  • Hi, I am new to this site and would love to know if anyone has the same intrusive thoughts as me?

    I have feared for 50 years that I might harm people who I love dearly and it is awful. I have had therapy, medication, cbt and nothing has really helped.

  • Hello all,

    I am totally new to this. I don't have face book ,twitter etc I am kinda old school. I don't want to describe to anyone on here my story because I don't want to feed anyone else's obsessions etc. I have been diagnosed . It is torturous some days are low some days are the bottom of low. I'm at the stage of being so worn out physically that I cannot complete the compulsions to please the obsessions. I have stopped reading self help books because the case studies only fuel my fire.

    Can anyone out there give me a very good drug to make it stop!! It's time ,it is my cross to carry in life but it's not fair on my husband. He has put up with it for far too long. Sometimes I think any other illness would be better because u could get cured or not but there is an answer.!!

    Keep strong everyone and remember that even on the worst of our days better ones will lie ahead.

  • Hi new to site but not new to OCD really struggling to fight this. Any support and tips would be welcome. Seen gp on Sertaline just started. My OCD is checking and thoughts that I struggle with. Hope there is support and friendship here as it is very isolating when you suffer with this illness. Trying to get therapy is such a long wait

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