OCD and Me

I have OCD.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Intrusive thoughts that can take over my whole life at times.

I thought I was going crazy.

I spent months lying there night after night, wondering what the fuck was wrong with me.

Why did I feel like this?

Why did noises and movements and textures make me want to curl into a ball and scream and pull my head out?

Why was I waking up every half an hour to check my baby was still breathing?

Why was I convinced that if I didn’t reply to Graham’s text message he would be involved in a horrendous accident?

Why did I no longer want to go to the playgroups I used to love so much or meet my friends for a coffee?

Was I going crazy?

I didn’t tell a soul. Not even Graham.

You see, I’ve always been pretty good at putting a bit of a brave face on and pretending everything is fine, that I’m ok.

I wasn’t ok.

My OCD is subtle. It was subtle enough that even I didn’t recognize it. But it was also so big in my head It was taking over my life.

One day, it broke me. I couldn’t keep it in anymore.

I told Graham and my best friends first, who thankfully encouraged me to go to the doctors.

Did I have anxiety? Depression? What was wrong with me?

OCD

Obsessive-compulsive disorder.

But – isn’t that wanting to wash your hands all the time, or turn the light on and off seven times before you leave a room, or have all of your tins facing the right way?

No.

I become so focussed on something, with that crumb on your cheek, or that slightly furry sticker on the floor, or that sound in the background, that nothing else matters.

I become so obsessed with my baby stopping breathing that I don’t sleep so I can check.

I become fixated on the fact that something will happen to someone if I don’t do something that I panic.

For weeks, I didn’t sleep because my neighbour bought a windchime. It was all I can hear or think about until they got rid of it.

For weeks, every time I made a coffee, I cleaned my cooker top, even though it hasn’t been used in the two hours since I last did it.

I’m now on medication to keep these intrusive thoughts under control. They have made such a big difference to my life. Things aren’t perfect. When I’m tired, I feel those thoughts creeping back, and some things are still triggering, but generally, I’m calmer, happier and more excited about life than I have been in many years,

Do you know what has helped the most though?

Talking.

Telling the people that I love how I felt, that I needed help, and talking to them when I feel like I’m going to have a meltdown. It doesn’t stop the meltdown, but it reminds me that I’m not crazy and that I’m not alone.

That’s what’s made the biggest difference. Talking. Opening up.

3 thoughts on “OCD and Me

  1. Brilliant post, my love. So glad you’re sharing this and talking about it now, keep talking to us. I think it’s also great so that people know that OCD isn’t just checking the cooker’s off ten times. Love you xxx

  2. so glad to hear you have a diagnosis, you must have thought you were going mad. Hope the medication works for you and so happy that talking is helping and you have such supportive family and friends around you

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