The real OCD

OCD is a condition where overwhelming irrational and compulsive thoughts cloud all other thoughts. Heightened anxieties can be a consequence of having OCD. Under the correct individual medication, therapy and reflections OCD is a condition where people, including myself, can live a normal life.  It affects about 2% of the population- of which there is no specific gender difference however I think this statistic may be higher if more people understood the real OCD, past all the cleaning and checking light switches- although these are valid thoughts for some.

When I was first diagnosed as having OCD I was told that there were five types: checking, contamination or mental contamination, symmetry and ordering, intrusive thoughts and hoarding. Some, like myself, may find themselves having more than one type of OCD and everyone is different in treating them. My OCD comes under checking, ordering and intrusive thoughts. I find some easier to live with than others, now that I know I have OCD that is. I can’t paint a picture for the other types but I hope to now give a more realistic outline of what my OCD is like living with and to be honest, it’s really not that bad.

The element of checking in my OCD is the most prevalent of them all for me. It’s the part that I’ve just indulged somewhat and potentially has become worse over the years. I struggle to feel safe, comfortable if I’m not sure something is done, such as locking the door. There is no reason for why I feel the need to check all the time and feel terrified of the consequences or visions of which pass my mind. I have never forgot anything before but these thoughts that I have devour my mind. I will check and check and check but I will still question it. To help reassure myself on this I take a picture and clap (or memorable action).

Ordering was my earliest memory of OCD. Now I know I have it and I take my medication every day, this really doesn’t have too much effects day to day, well in comparison to a child. I may now, for example feel I have to get into work at 7am, there are different levels to this:

  • Getting in before 7am- I feel uncomfortable and worried. 
  • Getting in and parked at 7am exactly
  • I feel safe, it’ll be a good day
  • Getting in after 7am- I feel anger and stressed that my day won’t go well.
  • Compared to my earlier memories of this element OCD though this is manageable. As a child I remember feeling terrified, completely and utterly terrified, that horribly bad things would happen if I so much as didn’t eat in 4s (it’s possible…). For me there is a difference to the ordering which I do when I have medication or when I don’t. I highly recommend the medicated type though! While I may feel worried and stressed sometimes I’m no longer terrified that because I don’t achieve an irrationally goal that a bad thing will happen. I have become very open with my intrusive thoughts over the last couple of years and to be honest I’ve been surprised how many people have the same weird thoughts. This is more of just a feeling of a fictional narrative which goes on in my head now, rather than somethings I’m paranoid will definitely now happen. 
  • Yes I do feel germs and there are things I do to help this but tp be honest it is not the most prevalent part of having OCD for me. Everyone is different but OCD is not just a condition which means I’ll be sat with my bleach spray and hand sanitizer, it has a far broader definition than people think. 
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