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I'm just adding my story because I believe I have had OCD all my life.... I can remember as a kid, my mom would often scold me for doing my 'habits'. This, however, wasn't as bad an idea as one might think.... I came to believe that doing my 'habits' (flicking light switches on and off a specific number of times before leaving it on or off, obsessions with numbers [they had to be even or they were 'good' if they ended in 2 or 4], saying repetitions of words relating to things I pass in the car every day, many more things like that.....) was a bad thing, and needed to be corrected because it would make me seem strange to people who didn't know me. So for years I kept this problem as secret as possible, until it just got worse and worse, at least in my mind. No one else saw me flicking the switches 8 times, then 8 more times because I did the last one the wrong way, or repeating in whispers the same things several times over before I went to sleep. I would get so frustrated I'd strain my body to complete the repetitive tasks, and I'd start to cry to myself because I was sure everyone didn't suffer the brain strain that I did. So I resolved to try to act as normal as possible.... to give up the ridiculous 'habits' cold turkey, and if I really had to, only do the ones no one would notice.

That's where I'm at now. I still do stupid habits (I can call them stupid because that's how I see them still), but if needed, I can control them.....and that's what eases my mind. I mean, hey, if acting out a habit of this sort will relieve your tensions and ease your mind, and it doesn't hurt anyone (including yourself), I say go ahead and do it. Just as long as you can control what you're doing (and it IS controllable, you just have to WANT to control it), it will keep your mind focussed and attentive to details, not to mention constantly working.....which is a good thing, right?? I mean, I'm still embarrassed sometimes if someone catches me acting out a 'habit', but they're just desires to make things 'feel right'.....which everyone can relate to.....
Oh, and I'd just like to add, I did this completely BY MYSELF. So, in fact, NO medication is NECESSARY..... just determination to gain self-control.....something I think most OCD patients lack...... want to change, and you will change. believe it.

Author Anonymous.

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To walk through life in the incarceration of freedom!

To walk through life in the incarceration of freedom!

Sitting as a 26 year old at my computer pondering my life, the questions run plenty, all based on what if and why me?

I think back to my childhood, I was always late as I had to check that power switch, that door, that toaster and boy so much more. If this is not done than my body would shut down, a change of schools allowed for these thoughts to disappear, the secret has been kept through many lies, much deceit and temper tantrums to avoid getting caught. Fear, anger, disappointment and suicide, all very difficult concepts for a pre to early teenager.

The years rolled by, these thoughts and actions would go as quickly as they came, nothing I could not handle as a young man, 13 to 18 years old. I had become a master of avoidance techniques, my self hatred grew, my self esteem dropped, what was seen on the outside as a young fit and healthy teenager, was the ultimate avoidance technique I ever put in place. For what was on the outside, had nothing to compare to what was going on inside, people would of known if they looked in my eyes and read my face.
With the end of my schooling, came my freedom, not just from education but also from these thoughts and actions. My simple life of work and partying had never been so good; I thought I was a kindred spirit. My adventure took me over seas, 3 continents and a multitude of countries later; I learnt what freedom truly was.

After ten months of traveling the world, my life took a dramatic turn. Those thoughts and actions had come back; I would not change what I was doing. Something was different this time, those thoughts were getting stronger all the time, I had no choice but to do those actions, I felt as if I was about to die. It got so bad I had to go home.
After being away for more than a year, what should have been a time of reunion and rejoice, turned into the crumpling of my life. Over the next few weeks, the burden of my thoughts and necessary actions saw my day-to-day life go to ruins. To drive laps around the same block for four hours, to spend hours repeating words and numbers in certain patterns, every step taken is checked and rechecked, the list goes on. After spending three months unable to leave the house, I had to speak out, the lies, deceit and avoidance techniques were no longer working, although no one to stage had broached the subject with me.

The day came, the secret of my life was out, after the initial shock had been removed, to the doctors I went. He told me I have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), the intrusive thoughts I had were known as obsessions, the rituals I carried out were known as compulsions. The next few years consisted of changing and experiencing different medication, a myriad of therapists who promised they would help and did nothing.

Four years, six therapists, four different medications, the brink of suicide numerous times had passed.

One day I was introduced to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), this is based on exposing yourself to your triggers, not carrying out your rituals, putting up with the anxiety and continuing to move on (very simple version). After three months of excruciating therapy, my life had almost returned. The next thing my therapist is gone, I thought I was right to come off the medication and began to wean down. Within three months I had lost all the work I had done.

Two years, 2 therapists and the same medication has left me sitting here today writing this.

I now have a new therapist and we are working on getting back to normal, things are good at the moment, but what tomorrow holds who knows. The one thing that has truly changed for me, is now I believe there is light at the end of the tunnel; it is just how far the tunnel is that is the question.

Author Anonymous.

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eh? I got the OCD. I'm always thinking about stupid stuff that I shouldn't be worrying about. When I was five, I used to step on the crunchy leaves on the ground, during the fall time. I had to step on the same amount of leaves, with each foot, or it wouldn't feel right. It went away for a while, but then, when I was six, I was always checking the bottoms of my shoes for dog crap. Why? I don't know. I realized I looked like a goofball, so I cut it out for a while. Every time I went to sit on the swings, I would check the seat for dirt, because I didn't want it to look like I shit in my pants. I pissed my pants once in kindergarten. I was so embarrassed. They gave me a set of loner pants to take home.

I stopped with the swing set dilemma, and then moved on to touching stuff constantly. I was touching stuff all the time, anything in sight, basically. Sometimes, late at night, like right now, I'm afraid a ghost is going to come get me. It's never happened before, but what if tonight's the night the monsters come out? I'm crazy.

Anyways, everything was going great for a while, but then I got acne a little after I turned fifteen. It wasn't too bad, but it sucked. I got all afraid, and my confidence went downhill. Everyone was always making fun of my ugly mug. Later on, My acne totally went out of control. It looked like I got pounded in my face with a sock full of hot nickels. Then I started lifting weights, just before I turned seventeen. I was liftin' and liftin' away. Then I became all body oriented. I was always watching what I ate. Man, it was horrible. I became obsessed!

When I was eighteen, I was doing like 800 sit ups a day. Then I started crash-dieting and everything. I just didn't want to end up like one of those fat bastards. "How do they get fat?" That's what I'm always asking myself. I want to know, so it doesn't happen to me. I started working all the time. I wanted to buy a BMW in cash. I became obsessed. All I did was work, and go to school. I never bought food when I was out, because I ! wanted to save the money for my car. I wanted see what I could accomplish, if I put my mind to it. And I got the car. It's a 325i, and it's pretty sweet. Now I ask you. Was this obsessive, or do I have will power? One thing's for sure, there's no way in hell I'd do it again. People weren't meant to work so hard, and to hoard so much blood money. I moved to this new school just two months before graduation. I don't know why, but I was so damn nervous all the time. I got over that.

I'm 19 now, and I'm taking one college course, that's all I can afford. You want to know what I really think? I think anxiety is actually good for you if you know what you're doing. I mean come on, think about it, you really do care about yourself, but you are just a little misguided. Once you understand that it' foolish to perform silly rituals to tip the scales of fate in your favor, and once you understand how things work, what are you left with? An extremely focused and determined individual... With a hereditary sickness of the mind.

Author Anonymous.

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A 41- year old stops hiding her OCD.

I believe that I have had OCD since I was in the 8th grade. I am now 41 years old. I have hidden this from everyone I know until now. No one believes me. Most think that I am over exaggerating or looking for attention. I guess that I have hidden it very well!

I never knew what was wrong with me. I figured that I was a terrible worrier and very superstitious. My symptoms are not what most people think of as OCD. I do not wash repeatedly or check repeatedly. Although, I probably do these things more than people without OCD because I have a germ phobia. I am a counter. I count everything. I count my steps, how many times i turn a knob, my breaths when I see something that bothers me, but worst of all, I count everything that has to do with food. Each bite means something and everything has to be just so. Why it is the worst is because it causes indigestion quite often. Everything has a number and a meaning and that is ridiculous I know but I can't stop. For example, if the third bite I took or the third step I took was not good, then I get anxiety about the third person in my family. Doesn't that sound absolutely stupid. I know it does, but like I said before, I can't stop. It rules everything in my life.

I feel even more alone because no one cares to really hear me. They don't have any idea how much this rules me. I have never been to a doctor for this because I really didn't think I had OCD until recently. It is amazing that I haven't been there for it because I land in the hypochondriac category. Myself and my kids have been to the doctor for many imagined things. In fact, my doctor gave my son a blood test that he felt was unnecessary only because I was so panicky and pregnant(my symptoms were worse during pregnancy). He was correct in his diagnosis before the blood test but knew that I would not let it go. I wish he would have recognized my problem then instead of pregnancy hormones. I have a huge library of medical and vitamin books and have done some looking around. I have decided to try 5-htp. I have only been on it for a week, so I am keeping my hopes up. I have heard good things about it.

Author Anonymous.

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Teenager With Trichotillomania.

My story will be rather short, since my experience hasn't been too long. I'm 16 years old, and when I was 13 years old I developed Trichotillomania. At first, I thought it was just a stupid habit that I'd be able to break with no problem, so I just let myself pull my hair out as much as I wanted. Once I realized it was uncontrollable, I began to get help. I was seeing a psychiatrist once a week and taking medication. After about a year and a half, I was able to stop for six months. I thought I was finally free from this disorder, until I pulled a hair one night, and I was back to the same old thing. Now, about a year or so later, I haven't pulled in months, and I thank goodness for that.

Normally, I wouldn't be thinking much about OCDs, but lately I fear that I have yet another one. For the past 5 months I've been struggling with an eating disorder, as well as OCD behaviors. The only reason I feel that I may have an OCD is simply because I must organize or do certain things in a certain way every single day or else I fear I will have bad luck (as strange as it may sound, I can't think of any other way to put it).

A few examples of what I do is I absolutely must wash myself with the same soap everyday. I must keep my clothes in order in my closet. I sleep with only certain pillows, and with certain pillows beside my bed in a certain order.

I must sound crazy...that is just my experiences with OCD that I'd like to share. I don't even know if I really have one, and if I do, I don't know what I'm going to do about it. Thanks for listening and thanks for sharing your experiences.

Author Anonymous.

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High Standards.

I have had Obsessive Compulsive Disorder for many, many years now. To be exact, 20 years. When I was young, I never played football with the guys or "hung out" with anyone. I was too worried about getting hurt. At school, I would sit alone, all by myself. My friends would always isolate me from them, because they thought that I was weird and that I had "problems." There was ONE time ( and only ONE time ) I spent a night at my friend's house. He invited me over, so we could play basketball. Once I touched the ball, I could not stop washing my hands afterwards. The ball was too dirty for me. My friend thought that I was being a girl. And at night, we would eat snacks, but I just HAD to brush my teeth afterwards. He thought that I was very annoying. During the night, I had to have the door open (in case of an emergency) and keep with me, pepper spray, in case a burglar broke in. After that, my friend told everyone how I was a freak of nature.

At school, I would ALWAYS sit there and take notes, even though I didn't have to. I had to write down EVERY SINGLE WORD the teacher said, so I wouldn't miss anything for a test. My grades at school were 99's and above. If I got a 99, I would cry and be angry for a long time, until I got over it. If the teacher made us read in front of the class, I would read, but if I made just ONE mistake, I would run out the door. I thought that everyone expected me to be perfect. The biggest problem was, during tests. I would study weeks before a test came. I always wanted to be prepared. When the test arrived, I would say a prayer right before and hold my lucky rabbit's foot.

Now, I am 26 years old and have taken Behavior Therapy. It really does help. If you have OCD, you should take care of the problem IMMEDIATELY. Don't wait........It will just get worse! These days, I still have high standards for myself, but I don't over obsess with anything. Just talking to someone you trust, will make you feel MUCH better.

Author Anonymous.

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Coping With OCD, Recovering From OCD.
OCD Started at Age 25.

It started when I got pregnant at age 25. I saw a man with one of his hand cut off. This horrible thought hit me that my child was going to born with a half hand. I tried pushing the thought from my mind and it went away. Odds thoughts would come but I just did not worry too much. However about seven year after having the baby I got baptized. The very day I got baptized my mind becomes a torture to me. I had the worst thoughts about God I never dream I could think about God in such a way. (Yet I am a God fearing person) I wondered why this was happening to me. I would not even like to mentioned the thoughts that came to me about the Holy Spirit. When these thoughts came said to myself that I am not apart of Gods' children because the Lord spoke about blaspheming. I could not live with myself I was almost insane my mother could not understand in this Island (Jamaica) many persons and health officials did not (I would say have a good knowledge of OCD) I suffered for years. I became very thin and though of killing myself many time as the thoughts came. (But I remembered someone told me that If I kill myself there would be no forgiveness) These are some of the thoughts;

That I must worship satan (I thought this was very odd as I hated even the name satan.

That my child is my God

That there is no God (I fight within myself nights days hours weeks years with this) I fight very hard with my mind and told myself that I usually believe in God before so I MUST believe in him no matter what it took.

That there is no evil.

That when people kill one another it is just normal

Fear to Sleep

Fear that someone is going to kill me

I have been to my church but it was not much help and some mention that it was a demon that even got me more scared. One person even asked me what I did to God I almost believe him as I thought that God had told him something. Up to this day I could not understand how I did not go crazy

The thoughts had me like a zombie. I can remember going home one afternoon from work and felt as if a hammer struck me in my head and from there I got very dizzy and had to sit for a while. (You can imagine I thought it was coming straight from the devil because it was trying to fight off the thoughts.

Life meant nothing to me any I went into a very deep depression and thought I would never got better. I told myself that I would become a vegetable. Friend and family told me to have faith in God - This was what I did not have so you can imagine. However I fight very hard in my mind to gain the faith and remembered that the Lord said if you "have faith as a mustard seed you can move mountain" ( This has proven to be true) Another thing that came to me when the bad thoughts came to me and I could not let go of the thoughts was "he that loveth his live shall lose it" (Not realizing that God was telling me to let go of the thoughts and stop worrying about what God was thinking of my thoughts) and also thinking that if I let the thought flows without letting it bother me then I am sinning against God and I would lose my life if I was not bothered about the thoughts

This went on for years. I even got married and would share some of the thought (not all) with my husband he was very supportive and told me that it was the devil but I still could not let go. I suffered with these thoughts tremendously. I went to the Psychiatrist and doctors got Zoloft, stress tabs+iron and movane these help to a point but upon reading other personal stories and an article from a Dr Phillipson in NY on the net Entitle Speak of the DEvil a power of POSITIVE THINKING HIT ME I am feeling like myself again after suffering for six and a half years which ended this year in January 2003. I am singing and laughing again thanks to Dr. Phillipson and Personal stories. I realize that the thought were not a fault of my own. These thoughts are really getting lesser and lesser and guess what I don't let it bother me again. I JUST IGNORE THEM.

Author Anonymous.

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Stacy in Texas.

I am a 26 year old female, diagnosed with OCD, some related spectrum disorders, and ADHD about 2 years ago, though I know I've been living with these for a very long time.

I have 2 very vivid memories of OCD incidences from my childhood. The first was when I was 4 years old. My grandmother made me a patchwork quilt for my bed. My mom thought I would be so excited. I had told grandma my favorite colors, and she even used some satin squares in the quilt (rubbing satin between my fingers is a life-long compulsion). Anyway, I remember that the first thing I thought about that quilt was that it wasn't "even". The color patterns were erratic (most quilts probably are)...but I HATED that quilt. The second memory is from when I was in 1st grade. We had just moved to a new state, and both of my parents worked out of our home. Mom had helped me map out my walking route to my new school (of course, this was about 20 years ago, when it was SAFE to walk to school)...I remember that first walk. I was scared to death that someone was gonna snatch me, so to get that thought out of my head, I counted the steps I took to school. I continued counting throughout the day some days, and other days, I would try to "beat my record"...make it to school in less steps.

Another early compulsion I battled was kleptomania. Even getting caught and in trouble at school didn't stop me. That is one I'm glad that I grew out was a plague. I didn't trust myself to spend the night at a friends house. Sometimes I'd get home with something I didn't even remember stealing...and I had no idea why I would have stolen it in the first place. My Kleptomania led to compulsive lying (to cover up the stealing, and the subsequent lies)...

In the 5th grade, I got my first pimple. I remember being so disgusted seeing boys with whitehead pimples on their faces and necks...and I knew that I would never be see with one un-popped. Thus started my CSD (compulsive skin picking). I went from popping adolescent zits to scanning my skin - head to toe, for even the slightest blemish. I have a scab on my scalp that I have had since I had the chicken pox...that was 22 years ago. It recently got so infected that I had a huge knot on the back of my head where the amount of infection had overpowered the nearest gland and collected within the lymphatic system. My arms, legs, back, scalp...just about everywhere, are plagued with scars. I've found that my tattooing extravaganzas have always occurred in the summer, when my skin is tight and dry, causing a lull in blemishes...I have 10 tattoos. I love the way they scab up...

Current day...aside from the picking compulsion, I am also a hand cleaner. Luckily, we now have the antibacterial hand my hands suffer less than they use to due to the washing. I go through about 3-5 12 oz bottles of hand cleaner per week. I have suffered from trich (hair pulling) for years, and finally just cut my hair very short.

As far as obsessions, mine vary...but I have a few strong ones that are ever-present. The worst is my fear of dirt/germs. I cannot clean ANYTHING without rubber gloves, if then. (I worry about a puncture in the glove.) I do not touch public trash cans, restroom door handles, toilet handles, etc. I also have an aversion to anything that may have someone else's saliva on it. I cannot clean dishes, because they have half eaten food or used silverware on them.

Another obsession is other people's hair. I can't stand it. I shave my husband's and son's heads, as to avoid finding stray hairs in the tub or anywhere. (I shave them often enough that the hair falls to the floor in clumps, and my husband always cleans up the mess). GROSS...toilets in general.

Recurring intrusive thoughts include veering into oncoming traffic, tripping and falling when I am holding my 6 month old baby, and that I have some terminal disease. (This has gotten worse since I had 3 areas of malignant melanoma removed 2 years ago.) I also obsess about things as they happen...for instance, my 5 year old son loves to walk on the "edge" of everything, and in my mind, as he is doing it, I play out the "what if he fell" scenarios...what would I do? How would I deal with his bleeding, his screaming?

I have VERY recently starting taking Luvox, at my doctor's request. After the head scab infection incident, he requested I tell him all of these things I've just told you. I was diagnosed a couple of years ago, but I wasn't comfortable with the idea of taking could a pill help me stop picking that scab?? I didn't realize the extent of my problems.

I am working to find my triggers...and have found that scary movies are a big one. (I LOVE scary movies...have since I was a kid.) I am hoping that the Luvox will help with the intrusive thoughts and picking, but I'm not putting any money on it.

That's about it...I've tried to be as open as possible with my "symptoms"...sorry if any of them have grossed anyone out.
God Bless,

Stacy in TX

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Bev's Story.

My name is Bev and I'm 15 I have only just realized that I have ocd and like it says above that I'm shocked to find that my case is not unique ,I seem to be obsessed with my skin on my face due to spots, I've had them for about 3 years now and they have affected my life and the way i act tremendously, just recently I'm overcoming depression which i think is partially related to hiding away and having low self esteem and confidence. I was prescribed on medication from the doctor -minocycline which worked wonders until they all came back in a mater of months this was life wrecking and i became obsessed with picking , washing and covering them, that's al I thought about. The slightest social or outdoor activities especially school made me panicky and very paranoid causing mood swings. I was then transferred onto diannette which worked well and i regained some confidence, then depression hit. I'm currently on minocycline again as it has worked before, but even though my skin has cleared i find it really hard to stop the constant routine, picking what's not there and spending hours in the mirror , any one reading this will realize that your not the only one and I'm thinking of getting help if I can't overcome this myself.


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Having To Tell.

I want to share my story for two reasons. First, because this is the best OCD website I have come across, and second, because that is my biggest obsession - the need to tell people things. I have suspected something wrong for a while, but it was my fiance who said I had some obsessive-compulsive tendencies. They were mostly harmless, little things that I did. That was just over a year ago.

Since then, things have gotten worse. I used to have to explain things in my head, ranging from my last boyfriend to my entire life story, and I couldn't concentrate on anything else until I finished the story. Now, it's all I ever think about. I have thoughts running through my head all day, usually short, but always repetitive. I would imagine myself saying the same thing to the same person. And it would always be about me. I wanted to tell them that I was different somehow. That I still have a baby tooth even though I'm 24. What my IQ is. That I'm stuck in a crummy job that a high-schooler could do even though I have a Master's degree. Or just why I drew a picture a certain way.

I also have scattered images of violence pop into my head. I have thought about slitting my wrists, driving into oncoming traffic, breaking the neck of my cat, stabbing my fiance. That, coupled with minor compulsions, led me to investigate OCD.

I spent hours online reading about OCD, even if I had read a particular website already. I had to convince myself that I was odd for a reason. It got pretty bad last month, so I finally decided I needed to know for sure, from a professional.

I was officially diagnosed yesterday (May 2003). It is both a relief and a burden. I find myself thinking more and more about my symptoms. I had made a list of all my obsessions and compulsions, no matter how small, to present to the psychiatrist. I didn't get halfway through them before he was convinced.

My two biggest obsessions I have already mentioned - the need to tell and the violent thoughts. I also have a fear of acting out those violent actions or simply hurting people's feelings. I am a hypochondriac of mental disorders - I have convinced myself that I have had everything from minor personality disorders to the verge of schizophrenia. I read incessantly on the internet about said diseases. Whenever I find something to research online, I do so for hours on end. I know now that I do it not for information, but because it momentarily halts my mind from turning out unwanted thoughts.

My compulsions are relatively minor. I do spend too much time on the computer, either reading things online or playing mindless computer games. I make way too many lists, and I often have several copies of each. I have every rose I have ever been given - dried out in boxes in the closet. I use pencils until there is no wood left, and save them. I cannot leave drawers and cabinet doors open. Everything needs to be symmetric, if it is possible. I have two colors of hangers: blue and white. Any item of clothing which has white in it cannot go on a white hanger. The same for blue. If something has both blue and white, it goes on the color hanger which corresponds to the color with the least amount. Whenever I wash my hands I have to spit in the sink. The list goes on.

The compulsions I can live with. But hopefully, with the help of my therapist, I'll be able to overcome the obsessions.

There is uncertainty as to how long I have really had OCD. I am sure I had some symptoms as a kid, but only recently (since I started grad school, actually) has it gotten really bad. One hypothesis is I developed it in grad school because I felt I was losing control. I was in school because it was the logical next step, not because I had a clear career goal in mind. Classes got harder, but I wasn't motivated to study. I needed to control something, since I obviously wasn't in control of my own life.

I would like to thank Sarah for providing such a thorough and inspirational website, and for letting me exercise my biggest obsession hopefully for the last time.

Author Anonymous.

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Lori's Story.


My name's Lori and I'm 26. I've had OCD most of my life although, I was only diagnosed about a year ago. My first memory of OCD behavior was at about age 4. I was lying in my bed and when I closed my eyes I had this image of a school friend standing in something like an alley and me stabbing her in the eye. Needless to say, it scared the crap out of me! I remember trying to think of Wonder Woman instead,lol. While I didn't like these thoughts, being so young I didn't put much stock into the images I had. By the time I was 12 things had gotten relatively worse. I went to a Catholic school and had developed a real problem with scrupulosity. I dreaded going to Mass, whenever I had to sit there I was bombarded by images of a grossly sexual nature with the priest or Christ. Being in a Catholic environment I naturally thought it was Satan trying to corrupt my faith and prayed fiercely to overcome the evil that had befallen me.

Into my teens I began hiding anything that could be construed as a weapon, knives, scissors, hammers, screwdrivers, you name it for fear that I would snap and start killing people, the images of me harming people had almost become a constant in my day to day life. By this point I thoroughly believed I was loosing my grip on my sanity. Most nights I cried myself to sleep and contemplated suicide because of the thoughts in my head.

At 17, the checking began. One of my most predominant ones was checking the car. The backseat, under the seats, I would have to pull over even though I'd already checked at least a dozen times. A 5 minute drive could take me an hour on a bad day. Checking the closet, under the bed, windows, doors, cupboards, to save myself the hassle I just began leaving the shower curtain pulled all the way to one side. The checking slowly leaked into every aspect of my life. Fear I would kill someone, or molest a child became overwhelming by the time I reached my 20's. I had many rituals by this time to help combat all the things that went on in my head, I also began to memorize useless information constantly and became ridiculously superstitous, all the while convinced that I was the only person in the world who was going through anything like this.

At 24 I had unknowingly succumbed to OCD, convinced I was insane I became antisocial, never left the house, gave up many hobbies and interests, I began missing alot of work, I was tired of fighting, tired of worrying, I just didn't care. I spent close to a year in that state, rotting away in my own mental prison.

In a last ditch attempt to fight one more battle with my brain I went to my doctor and told him how I didn't care anymore about anything. He recommended I see a psychiatrist for depression. Two weeks later I trotted off to see him doubtful about this being of much help. After a couple of sessions he told me it sounded like I had an anxiety disorder and told me the web contained lots of useful information, my 'assignment' was to check the web and do a little research on them. A couple of days later while on my lunch at work, I hit a search engine and typed anxiety disorders in. I quickly sifted through a few sites but didn't have much time so I printed off everything listed on to read later. Ironically, I printed off Obsessive Compulsive Disorder by accident but flipping through the papers I thought 'Why not?' and began to read it anyway. The first little story didn't really pertain to me but after that the page started to talk about unwelcome thoughts/images using words like 'disturbing' and 'intrusive', I dropped the papers and began to cry. I didn't need anyone to elaborate, I thought OCD meant washing your hands to much or trying to kill your ex. Like most of the general public I was completely misinformed about what OCD was. Armed with my new info I hit the web with a vengeance and brought it to my psych. He asked me questions and did the YBOCS test.

After 25 years I wasn't insane, I wasn't alone, there was help and support for people like me. Although I wouldn't wish OCD on my worst enemy, I was so happy that this wasn't just me, and all because I clicked print one too many times.

I have continued my therapy since then and am on Zoloft, both my psych & my GP are pleasantly surprised of the reduction rate of my symptoms. My friends and family have been amazing with there support and willingness to educate themselves on OCD, I am blessed to have such a happy ending and I know it.

While I realize I will never be cured, I am happy to be in a state where I can function well again and I am very open about my OCD, because I too was once ignorant of what OCD was and maybe by spreading my knowledge with the people I encounter one day someone else who thinks they are insane or alone will find out they're not. Or maybe, it's because my compulsions are checking and repeating so I just like saying my story over and over!
Thank you for letting me share my story.

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