Tuesday, 24 April 2012
OCD is getting the best of me today. It really is. I can’t concentrate. I can’tthink straight. I am sitting at my desk
in tears. My fiancé didn’t answer hisphone over lunch today…I reminded him this morning that I was going to call him. Whenever he doesn’t answer, I assume that something horrible has happened. I don’t assume that he is cheating on me or anything of that nature…no, my mind goes as far as to assume that he is injured or dead. He was going to drive out to my parents’ today to do yard work for my mom, and so when he doesn’t answer, my brain immediately assumes this means he got in a terrible car accident. I even checked the local news website when I got back in from lunch, just to make sure.
I hate that I do this. I HATE IT.
I know it’s irrational, but I can’t stop. Ever since I was a kid, my mind has been subjecting me to regular torture in this fashion, and it is only in the last 5 years or so that I have actually come to understand what the problem is and how it all works. But that doesn’t necessarily make it easier to fix. It doesn’t even help to tell myself “Ok Melinda, your fiancé isn’t dead, this is your OCD talking again. It was wrong last time and it will be wrong this time too.” But it’s SO FUCKING DIFFICULT to drown out that other side that says maybe this time, THIS is the one time when the OCD will be right and my worst fears will come true. This could be that one time that defies all odds, my brain tells me. It’s happened before. It could happen to you. And car accidents have always been one of my fixations.
I have been doing more research online into my disorder…I have “pure O” OCD, which is actually a misnomer. All OCD sufferers have both obsessions and compulsions, but “pure O” sufferers have compulsions that are mental, internalized, or not outwardly observable. I have horrid, intrusive, unwanted obsessive thoughts, but the compulsions I perform are mental and are not really observable. I don’t check lights or check the stove or appliances, drive around the block, wash my hands, or count things (at least, I don’t count things in relation to my obsessions, but I do count things in general, but that’s a story for another day). My compulsions are mental: I deny and deny and deny, I fact-check and do online research, I replay scenarios and situations over and over in my head, and sometimes I obsessively pray even though I’m not even convinced anymore that prayers go anywhere except around in my brain. Praying is one of those compulsions I’ve been practicing since I was a child. It used to work on combating some of the obsessions. It used to bring me comfort, but the thoughts would always return. Like clockwork.
It can be like living in hell, and it’s hard to understand if you haven’t been there. People ask me why can’t you just think good thoughts instead? Why don’t you distract yourself until it passes? Just do something else for awhile until you forget about it? And I just sigh. If only it were that simple, and if only I were capable of fully performing other tasks while I am having an “OCD attack.”
I TRY. DESPARATELY. But the problem is that sometimes I literally do not have control, and the “trying” is often just the meaningless compulsions. It is not a matter of willpower or simply thinking the right thoughts. People who don’t suffer from any sort of psychological disorder assume that those who do just need to learn to control their minds better. That is bullshit, and it’s ignorant.
What really sucks is that even with insurance, it costs me $50 every time I go to see my therapist. Of late, I have only really been able to afford seeing her once every 4-6 weeks. I’m wondering if I need to try some sort of cognitive-behavioral therapy. What I’m doing now is more talk therapy than anything else.
The key is to keep writing, and especially writing while it’s happening, like right now. My episodes are FAR less frequent than they used to be, but I don’t want them to be happening at all. Right now I am wasting time wading through mental quagmire (giggity goo) when I should be processing orders and answering emails and doing website testing. I can’t afford to let this shit interfere with my life the way it does. I hate it so much. It consumes me, and it makes me into someone that I don’t want to be.
Sorry for the debbie downer post. But this is currently what I am thinking about.