Have you ever had a thought and instead of just forgetting about it, you make a big deal out of it?
Anxiety has become one of the most discussed topics, whether it was on talk shows, magazines or social media. Let me introduce you to OCD, one of its many forms.
NF, an American rapper, said “I obsessively obsess on things I think about”. Obviously, he is not doing it by choice. A person without OCD might think about the same thing and get over it in a minute. An OCD person will keep thinking about it and repeating scenes until he is tired and has a mental breakdown, but he will never be satisfied.
I decided to write this to make OCD understandable and easier for people to explain, because it gets harder to the point where you ask yourself is it me or OCD? Am I just a bad person hiding in the shadows of OCD?
OCD is defined as uncontrollable thoughts that become obsessions and lead to compulsions that supposedly calm the thoughts down. But the truth is: compulsions are a dead end.
Compulsions, it is when the director is never satisfied by the actors’ performance so he makes them do it all over again. The director is OCD, and people are the actors.
As an OCD sufferer, you keep repeating the same behaviors and feel the urge to repeat the same words, to think about the exact same thing over and over again, to wash hands a million time in a row, to confess to your partner or friends something you have never thought you would say or to check if the door is closed.
Even though you are all in the same boat, each actor was given his own scenes. Sometimes staying home feels better than going to work or school, seeing friends or visiting family because of the fear of being overwhelmed by the thoughts.
The mind, an essential element of our body, the one that supposed to guide our lives. It is our thinking, our imagination, our consciousness and our perception that turned out to be a game changer for OCD sufferers.
OCD plays with your mind to the point where you do not even recognize yourself. Is it me? Is it OCD? Am I a bad person? Can I hurt my own kids? Did I cheat on my partner? Did I wash my hands? Should I do it again? Should I tell my partner that thing that happened 2 years ago?
And all kinds of questions that seem normal to others, but not to you. Questions that push you to the edge. You start crying while people are sleeping, you cancel plans out of the blue. Therefore you might even push your closest people away, who can blame you for something you cannot control.
Doubt, it is like the key that opens hell, also known as OCD. What if I get sick? What if I cheated? What if I am hurting that person? What if I am responsible for this or that? WHAT IF. You cannot control it. As easy as it might be for another person, it is not. Because if you try to ignore it, you get overwhelmed, tired, and end up having a panic attack.
Reassurance, the key to relief. All roads lead to Rome, right? Well, all the pain caused by ocd leads to reassurance. It is the only way to not going crazy. It is like a hunger.
A hunger for repetitive thoughts and scenes, or simply for obsessive compulsions. Sometimes feeling guilty about something that you did not necessarily do forces you to do compulsions, as a way of reassurance.
Triggers, it is like the bullet that hits our body and makes it bleed, but we bleed obsessive thoughts instead.
One can stay away from his kids because he does not want to trigger his POCD “Pedophilia OCD”, or stay the whole time without doing any activity to avoid getting his hands dirty. And so the cycle grows as the triggers diversify.
Unfortunately, so many people cannot reveal how they truly feel, and refuse to get help because they feel ashamed and threatened. OCD stands in their way of having a nice life or even a good career. It shatters their dreams.
I am trying really hard not to say anything that would trigger OCD for people reading this. If so, I am deeply sorry.
I have read enough about OCD to know that nobody can help you besides you. You can do it despite the stereotypes and what society makes you think about yourself. Do not let it define you nor tell you that you are not normal.
Normal, a simple word that makes people point at each other’s insecurities. If you are an introvert, then you are not normal. If your hair, eyes, mouth, body, language or accent are not what people are used to, then you are abnormal. Is that it?
Normal is overrated. We all have insecurities and if we start pointing them out, then nobody is normal. I was avoiding the use of this word in the past paragraphs because I know it is not fair for OCD sufferers or any person who suffers from a mental or physical disorder to be marginalized, to be treated as if they were from another planet.
Yes, they might be different, but different means special too.
The real battle is the one you have with yourself. When nobody knows what you are going through and you have to keep it all to yourself. You look happy and fine, but your thoughts are eating you inside while you are doing your best to stay calm.
I hope I can make a difference in your way of understanding OCD, or at least give you one or two tricks that might help you get through it.