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Thread: I need help..

  1. #1

    I need help..

    i’m ray. 26 years old. i just happened to know that i have an OCD recently when i finally visited a psychiatrist for after more than 10 years of suffering from the disease. it started when i was in high school, when i’m 14 or 15 years old. as far as i remember, i used to stare at my armchair for about 5 minutes after classes before i go home just to see and check that i leave nothing behind. lately, i began to tip off my chair just to make sure all “objects” i leave behind even to the smallest particle will fall, even though i’m very sure i left nothing behind.

    when i was in college, i used to collect ATM cards. once i receive my card from a specific bank, i withdraw the money afterwards and add them up to my collection. then a year came, i worry that all or some of them has still accounts on them, so i have to check each one on them to make sure. afterwards, i feel relieved. but still, it’s only temporary. after a few months, my worries came back. so what i did was destroy each ATM card once i checked it again at a machine making sure the account is closed. so, my anxiety is relieved. BUT, again, after a while, i got the worry of opening an account again with any of the banks i’ve just applied on to in the fear of they will confiscate my money once they get to know that i have a previous closed account with them. thinking my previous account is closed and it’s another account. but the worry is still there and i can’t help myself thinking about it.

    these situations are only few of the many abnormal worries i’ve experienced during my childhood. i don’t even know that it is a disease, i just insist to myself that it’s only on my mind. i don’t know someone else who experiences the same thing. i can’t understand myself. i keep it to myself until i graduated and started working. i never attempted to tell it to anyone for fear that nobody would understand me.

    some of the common behaviors i have are the following:

    - once i get up on a chair, i see to it that i leave nothing behind by staring, touching every surface up to tipping off the chair.
    - i count my money repeatedly and just stop when i’m already satisfied.
    - repeatedly checking the doors to see if it’s locked. same applies on cars, containers, cabinets, etc.
    - i arrange my collections such as magazines almost perfectly, but after closing the cabinet, i open and arrange them up again because i think i’ve done something inappropriately.
    - if a coin or my wallet falls, and after picking it up, my mind keeps telling me that i still leave it behind even though it’s already at my possession.

    these activities are only few of the so many abnormal behaviors i have, that i can’t count or remember them all. it bugged me for years until recently, i decided to see a psychiatrist. and just told me i have an anxiety disorder. and had prescribed me anti-depressants.

    the situation that forced me to already see a psychiatrist? i decided to purchase a gun from a nearby mall. after completing the requirements and submitted some 2x2 and 1x1 pictures, the shop told me that i still lack ONE 2x2 picture. so i bring TWO to make sure i will not go back anymore. the other person at the shop told me that it was more appropriate because it has a white background. so what i did was left the TWO ID pics behind and told the two people there to take care of it. after i leave the shop, my OCD strikes again. i fear that the EXTRA ID picture i left behind will be used illegally. that sometime in the future, a person in the shop will use it illegally and lead to my arrest and imprisonment in the future. and that is still bugging me now even though i’ve already seen a psychiatrist. i’m planning to go back anytime there and get the extra picture no matter what. sound crazy eh? but i can’t help it. it occupies my mind all day long, for two weeks now. what do i have to do?

    please help me. thanks.

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  3. #2

    I need help..

    First, be assured that there is hope: OCD is treatable.

    Your obsessive-compulsive tendencies are part of you and your personality, so they will perhaps never be totally absent (you are what your friends might describe as a "worry wart") and it's also true that they tend to increase under stress. However, you can learn to manage them so they do not interfere with your life the way they do currently.

    Ask your psychiatrist about medications - especially Luvox (Fluvoxamine), which seems to be the best for managing symptoms of OCD. But you also need to learn some cognitive-behavioral skills for managing the thoughts and urges: Try to find a psychologist who specializes in treatment of OCD and is knowledgeable in the use of cognitive-behavior therapy techniques.

  4. #3

    I need help..

    thank you.

    one more thing. i think i have a sex performance anxiety. does it have anything to do with my OCD? any advice on how to get rid of it?

  5. #4

    I need help..

    "Performance anxiety" is actually quite common, especially among young men but it also affects women, and once it begins it generally sets up a "vicious cycle" - worrying about performance -> performance problems -> more worrying about performance. However, the precise characteristics of the performance anxiety may vary from one individual to another.

    Is it related to OCD? Yes. OCD is basically an anxiety disorder. People without OCD worry about sexual performance; people with OCD worry about it to extremes and are more liely to worry about this issue. So if you suffer from OCD, performance anxiety is related to but possibly separate from the OCD itself.

    Again, this is a condition which is very treatable - it's based on various procedures to reduce anxiety about sex, thereby increasing the likelihood of a "successful" experience and thereby reducing the probability or intensity of performance anxiety in the future: the best cure for low confidence is success.

    But again, this is probably difficult to do on your own and combined with OCD may be best treated with a combination of medication (at least initially) and cognitive behavior therapy.

  6. #5

    I need help..

    ok. so does it mean that people without OCD can possibly have performance anxiety?

  7. #6

    I need help..

    Oh absolutely - many of the people who suffer from performance anxiety do not have OCD.

  8. #7

    I need help..

    ok. thank you very much, mr. baxter. you helped me a lot to understand my condition and myself better.

    do you have books or websites that you can recommend to help me, especially with the "cognitive behavior therapy" thing?

  9. #8

    I need help..

    Yes:

    For OCD: http://www.psychlinks.ca/pages/ocd.htm

    For performance anxiety: http://www.psychlinks.ca/pages/sex.htm

    For cognitive behavior therapy (self-help): David Burns, The Feeling Good Handbook. Penguin, 1999

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