What We Miss When We Talk About OCD
I think we miss something when we talk about OCD. All we seem to talk about is the counting side or cleanliness side, but there are other sides.
I struggle with OCD, but I am not a very neat person, and sometimes I forget to wash my hands, but I still have OCD.
My struggle with OCD is more internal. I see images in my head all the time that I can’t make go away and that I obsess over, then do something odd in an effort to make it go away.
I see myself hurting people. I see myself doing inappropriate things. I see myself going off on someone. I see a scratch and worry I have a staph infection. My head feels funny, so I must have a brain tumor. And I can’t make it stop, so I cut, or I scratch, or I bounce, or I crack all three joints in my fingers, or I count my steps between cracks trying to keep them the same, or so on to make it go away. Sometimes I avoid the person involved so I don’t accidentally do that, and when you have OCD, that can turn into a lot of people, so you can’t be around anyone. I am even obsessing right now that someone is going to read this and tell me I am wrong, I don’t have OCD, I am just dramatic or pathetic. But I have been diagnosed by two different doctors, so I know I have OCD, but I still obsess.
When someone says they have OCD, don’t contradict them by saying they have a messy room or dirty hands — their experience may be different. Not everyone who has OCD is Monk. Try to remember that next time you want to say, “I’m so OCD.”
We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.
If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.
If you struggle with self-harm and you need support right now, call the crisis hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “START” to 741-741. For a list of ways to cope with self-harm urges, click here.
Thinkstock photo via Victor_Tongdee