There is so little awareness about Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). The term OCD has been misused so frequently by so many people. I thought OCD was a disorder where people wanted their house to be completely spotless and everything in its place. Although, there is contamination OCD (the stereotypical one people think of) people who struggle with this do not want to clean their house, they feel like they have to or they will get themselves or someone else sick.
One of the main components of OCD is intrusive thoughts. I started struggling with intrusive thoughts around 19. Maybe younger, they were very distressing and I tried to block them out. I didn’t learn what intrusive thoughts were until I was 29. I only learned this because I was seriously considering suicide. I seriously thought Dan and M.J. would be better off without me but I knew they would be sad so I googled how to get these horrible thoughts out of my head. Then, I learned about intrusive thoughts. But on the video I watched the woman said she had OCD. I was like, I don’t have OCD. But what she was describing didn’t sound like OCD to me. She’s not talking about cleaning or organizing or handwashing. When I was diagnosed with OCD I still thought, are you sure?
Compulsions are another component of OCD but there is also Purely Obsessive Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (Pure OCD) which means you don’t have compulsions or you have mental compulsions. Since I don’t have compulsions and I had never even heard of intrusive thoughts I had no idea I had OCD. I am thankful I was diagnosed and I want to help others get help if they need it. If you are struggling with intrusive thoughts you are not a bad person. You deserve to live. Get help if you are suicidal. Get help before you become suicidal.
Here are some examples of intrusive thoughts (but intrusive thoughts can be about anything):
Sexual intrusive thoughts
-Fear of being sexually attracted to children
-Fear of being attracted to family members
-Fears regarding their sexual orientation
Relationship intrusive thoughts
-Fears of cheating on your partner
-Fears your partner is cheating
-Fears you don’t really love your partner
-Fears your partner is going to leave you
-Fears you are going to hell
-Fears you are a bad person
-Having blasphemous thoughts in church
Violent intrusive thoughts
-harming loved ones or children
If you are struggling with any of these thoughts or any other intrusive thoughts this may have been difficult for you to read. But remember they are intrusive thoughts. Intrusive thoughts are thoughts that you DON’T want and you DON’T choose. And they often play off of your worst fear which can be completely debilitating. Intrusive thoughts also change sometimes which can be confusing. If you are struggling with intrusive thoughts don’t be afraid to tell someone. If you don’t feel comfortable telling anyone yet, I found the book Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts by Sally M. Winston and Martin N. Seif very helpful. You are not a bad person. You are not crazy. You are not alone.
OCD is a debilitating disorder
It’s not just about keeping your house in order
It’s having thoughts get stuck in your head
And having your light turn bright red
Will I hurt someone?
Will I cheat on the one I love?
Am I a bad person?
Will I contaminate someone if I don’t wear a glove?
I better end my life before I hurt someone
It’s the only way to keep them safe from what’s to come
There is help for all your strife
Please don’t end your life
There is medication and therapy
To help you be the best you can be
You are a not a bad person, you have OCD
*disclaimer: this post is not meant to diagnose anyone, if you think you may be struggling talk to a professional