OCD is something that many of us have heard of, but quite often, don’t really understand. The phrase: “Oh you’re so OCD” gets thrown around a fair bit, especially if somebody is cleaning and tidying a lot. Before I knew what was going on with my own mind, I thought that OCD was just about people being annoyed when objects were out of place.
My Experience with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder…
Something that you may not know about me is that I suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder and have done for most of my life. And whilst I don’t have it to the point where it fully takes over my life, it does make situations quite difficult for me from time to time.
OCD is an anxiety disorder that is influenced by thoughts that cause uneasiness, fear and apprehension. In turn, the sufferer feels that they have to eradicate these feelings by completing repetitive behaviour. I have suffered many waves of OCD throughout my life, however, I predominantly carry out certain ‘rituals’ because if I don’t, something bad will happen.
When I was seven years old I went through a phase of having to make a clicking noise with my tongue three times in a row – If I didn’t, something bad would happen. This carried on for a while until my ‘thing’ turned to multiplying everything by five, touching everything I saw and missing one step on the stairs.
As a young child, I had no idea why I was doing it and obviously felt very self-conscious of it. I felt too scared to talk to my Mum and Dad about it. In the grand scheme of things, I wish I had of done because it turned out that they too have their own rituals that they have to do! After a while, I never had anything strange happen again for years. Of course, I had my little quirks but nothing that got annoying.
It was only very recently that my OCD has started to become quite intrusive again. I think it has been sparked by the anxiety surrounding the death of grandparents. I have started thinking that if I don’t do certain things, something bad will happen to more of my family members.
Ofcourse, I know that it is all in my head but I do worry sometimes that my OCD is getting a little out of control. Plug sockets are becoming a bit of an issue, I am constantly checking that plugs are turned off in case the plug starts a fire. I always make sure I say I love you to my nearest and dearest to the point where it is becoming obsessive, I can’t not say it or yes, you guessed it, something bad will happen.
Anxiety is such a deliberating issue and it really can eat away at you. I just try to tell myself that if something bad is going to happen then it’s out of my control any way and by doing crazy rituals the outcome won’t change.
OCD isn’t just about being tidy, it’s a horror of a mind game that can make you feel ashamed and lonely. If you feel like you might have some traits of suffering from OCD, I definitely recommend checking out this MIND article on how you can help yourself.