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Old 12-10-2007, 01:17 PM   #1
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Anxiety circle?

Circles have no beginning and now end, and I'm beginning to think my anxiety is like this too.
Over the past day or so I've been developing contamination anxiety, but there's a problem, I get anxious every time I wash my hands because I believe that there's soap under my nails and I'll get it in my eyes or mouth when I eat or rub my eyes, but now I'm getting anxious when I don't wash my hands because I'm afraid to get my cats sick or spread my germs.
It's kind of like a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation and it's starting to get to me.
Does anyone see a solution to this?

I'm just really stressed out now about a hundred and one things that are just caving in on me all at once, I mean, I just spent an hour inspecting all the glass in my house to make sure none of it was broken, and then realized I just contaminated everything in the house and now nothings safe to touch without washing.

 
Old 12-11-2007, 07:09 PM   #2
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Re: Anxiety circle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LaFin View Post
Circles have no beginning and now end, and I'm beginning to think my anxiety is like this too.
That's a very good word-picture of what it's like.

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Originally Posted by LaFin View Post
I'm just really stressed out now about a hundred and one things that are just caving in on me all at once, I mean, I just spent an hour inspecting all the glass in my house to make sure none of it was broken, and then realized I just contaminated everything in the house and now nothings safe to touch without washing.
Are the things that are 'caving in on' you the OCD things, or are the OCD things an escape from the real life stressors?

 
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Old 12-11-2007, 10:08 PM   #3
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Re: Anxiety circle?

Mostly OCD things, although I'm having a lot of trouble with my life right now aside from that as well.

 
Old 12-11-2007, 11:40 PM   #4
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Re: Anxiety circle?

I always feel a little strange offering others advice because I'm far from having my stuff together, but I can certainly relate in this case.

I would suggest trying to distinguish between what's normal behavior and what's ocd thinking. Then, try to refrain (as hard as it is) from acting on the ocd thoughts. The anxiety should diminish.

Also, try to accept that there's going to be a certain amount of risk involved in living a normal life. Consider that most people live their lives seldom thinking about some of the things that send ocders into full panic mode and they get along just fine.

I hope this helps. Good Luck.

 
Old 12-12-2007, 11:22 PM   #5
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Re: Anxiety circle?

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Originally Posted by lbreeze View Post
...try to refrain (as hard as it is) from acting on the ocd thoughts. The anxiety should diminish...
Yes, but be prepared for it to get worse for awhile before it diminishes.

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...Are the things that are 'caving in on' you the OCD things, or are the OCD things an escape from the real life stressors?
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaFin View Post
Mostly OCD things, although I'm having a lot of trouble with my life right now aside from that as well.
Quite possibly the OCD things are worse because they serve as quasi-stressor relief. I mean that if we OCDers are stressed about something, we will engage in the rituals, I think because they give us a sense of power over the situation, and also because they give us the feeling of decreased anxiety after we perform them.

 
Old 12-13-2007, 12:04 AM   #6
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Re: Anxiety circle? - possible triggers!!!

Hi Lafin!

Well, it just never ends does it? I am so sorry that you are having a hard time right now. I agree that stress can make OCD worse.
And, it is all so simple..... I have to wash my pepsi can before I can drink the pepsi (NOT from the can). So, go to kitchen, wash my hands, get out pepsi can, rinse it with hot water, wash my hands because I have touched the pepsi can, wash the pepsi can, then wash my hands, just in case there are cooties still on my hands from the pepsi can. BUT THEN..... going around in my OCD brain..... well, if there may have still been cooties on my hands from the can, then, I must need to wash the can again. AAAARRRRGGGGHHHHHH. BUT, I DO NOT. I will not let myself go there. Isn't it just nutz?

I was actually thrilled though, to see that in your post, you were worried about making your cats sick. I have the same thing. Do you wash your hands before you fix their food? I sure do. BUT, I bet you don't wash after you have handled your cats, do you? Aren't we silly people? I hope that this does not upset you. I am definitely not laughing at you, but with you, I hope. I mean, I hope you are laughing.

Okie ***ie........... I'm gonna give you a possible solution to your hand/soap situation. IF, you cannot step away from this "new - is there soap under my nails" problem, then, you can get a fingernail brush. I hope you know what I mean by fingernail brush. People keep them at their sinks to wash under their nails..... they usually have a little handle that fits around your knuckles. Anyway, instead of using that for washing, use it for rinsing under your nails. See if that helps. But, as many people have said on here, try very hard NOT to give in to "new" OCD things. Like Barney Fife says, "Nip it. Nip it in the bud".

I sure hope that things get better for you soon, and that the stress that is ongoing in your life, goes away!

sobs

 
Old 12-13-2007, 12:43 AM   #7
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Re: Anxiety circle?

I recently started doing CBT therapy (a new style called Acceptance Commitment) and they used a great analogy of the good and bad ways to react to OCD anxiety as a spiral. if we do things like avoidance or give in to our compulsions, it leads to short term relief but long term suffering and the spiral continues downward, taking us away from leading a fulfilling life. Or we can learn to handle our OCD in better ways and the spiral will lead upwards towards a more fulfilling and engaged life.

We can't ever live a life without fear or anxiety coming into it, no one can, and that is even tougher for OCDers because of how we are affected by our anxieties, but it can get better. I would highly highly recommend starting CBT and medication or atleast one of the two. It can make such a profound difference.

 
Old 12-13-2007, 10:06 AM   #8
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Re: Anxiety circle?

Thank you all for your comments and help, it's all helping me get along with my life
Also I'm less stressed about the other thing that was getting to me and by the 19th when I go see my doctor the stress should be gone almost completely I hope.
And sobs, that's funny, I thought I was the only one that washed their hands before touching or feeding their cats but not after because you're only scared of getting them sick.

 
Old 12-13-2007, 04:28 PM   #9
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Re: Anxiety circle?

If it helps you feel any better there are very very very few diseases that are communicable between humans and most other animals, like cats.

 
Old 12-13-2007, 06:52 PM   #10
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Re: Anxiety circle?

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Originally Posted by dksea View Post
If it helps you feel any better there are very very very few diseases that are communicable between humans and most other animals, like cats.
Yeah......... that didn't help a bit dk!!!!!

But, thanks for the info. How have you been dk? It's good to see you around here again. I hope you are doing good!

sobs

 
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