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    Old 04-07-2005, 01:06 PM   #1
    Lectus
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    Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    (I posted this on the healthy lifestyles forum. I just wanted to see the differences in the kind of advice I got from different forums... I have a feeling that a mental health forum would probably lean more toward this being all in my head than the other. This isn't a silly experiment, it's a real problem. I just wanted the replies to cover a broader spectrum of solutions.)

    I can't smell it myself (It may be possible that I've become accustomed to it.), but I can kind of tell by the hints people try to drop, their body language coupled with violent fits coughing, sneezing, sniffling, and irregular breathing (carefully-regulated mouth-breathing). The intensity of these signs increases if I remain wherever I am (in a theatre, restaurant, reception area, etc...). These aren't isolated incidents that I'm zeroing in on and blowing out of proportion... These are just clues gathered over time. People act like this wherever I go, and it just seems unlikely that we're having some kind of wide-spread cold epidemic.

    The sickest thing is that I'm not even sure what kind of smell it is... I wash up twice a day, wear fresh, clean clothes when I go out, and brush my teeth. Nobody has confronted me directly... The closest they've gotten was to give me cryptic, read-between-the-lines messages ('I'm might get into landscaping. You know, all that fresh air... *sniff* ahh....'). A former boss once gave me some mentos as well... which is confusing, because I was always under the impression that this was a body odor... Maybe I have bad breath on top of the bo? I don't know. It's hard to say, because no one will be honest with me.

    As you might imagine, this has caused much mental distress, and eventually landed me in the psyche ward. My hospitalization led to a whole other hell, as the mental health pros refused to acknowledge any sort of odor (although I noticed them, as well as other patients, giving me strong physical signs of disgust.) Even, on the morning after I came, while I was wearing dirty clothes I'd taken a sort of hike in the day before (They were covered with sweat, and even I could smell them...), one male nurse smelled me up close and said that he didn't smell anything. I've been in outpatient treatment since then, and in counseling, and that's been the general stance of the mental health pros ever since. I suppose that they figure that, since they can't do anything about the odor directly (given that I wash up regularly and clean my clothes, and they can't do anything medically for me), they'll try to make me disbelieve it, since my belief that I have a body odor is technically irrational.. One doctor said that I don't have any proof that I smell, and all of my evidence is circumstantial. As if the human mind was a court of law. Of course all of the evidence is circumstantial... If a thousand people had told me that I smell and I couldn't smell it, and even if I could, it might be considered circumstantial. Idiocy.

    So I'm forever stuck one step behind fixing this problem, and trying to get someone to admit that it exists, so the medical doctors will take me seriously... It's really rediculous the lengths people will go to to avoid talking about body odor. Is our culture so anal that we can't address a problem if only to fix it? Obviously I wouldn't be so upset to hear someone say that I smell since I so strongly believe it.

    At this point I'm not even going to ask how to fix the problem... You are all free to make suggestions but, in all likelihood, I've probably heard them before. Right now I'm focused on getting an honest answer... I'm leaning toward doing a survey of monks... What reason would they have for lying, either way? I just have to assure them that I won't be upset if they admit that I have an odor. Maybe write up a little speech about how not being sure has turned me into a paranoid recluse.

    If they don't admit it, then either I'm insane or the rest of the world is, and simply disappearing will be the best solution (not a suicide reference, btw... I just mean that I'll take to living far from any kind of civilization.).
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    Old 04-07-2005, 11:24 PM   #2
    rosec87kat
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    Not all people are going to lie about you about something as offensive as a body odor. It's just not possible. If I was around someone everyday who stunk, I would be more than inclined to tell them. People are not going to let something like that pass. It just doesn't work that way. Especially in a work enviroment. Most places I have worked have been really closed enviroments. I am not so polite that I would just not say anything to someone who had a problem like that. I also cannot imagine that everyone at that hospital just lied to you to, what, be nice?


    Just curious, did you actually come right out and ask that nurse if you smelled bad? That is a question that would throw alot of people.

    Here's another question, At one time in your life did you actually smell yourself? I know that this question may seem stupid, but you said that you may have become accustomed to it.

    And, Does your family ever say anything to you? Or your partner or spouse?

    Finally, are you taking any medications or do you smoke? Some meds do have that side effect.

     
    Old 04-08-2005, 04:38 PM   #3
    Lectus
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    From time to time, I get this funky, sausagy kind of smell in my nose that's really nasty (have it right now as a matter of fact), but when I ask, nobody else seems to notice it. So it could be some sort of nasal infection. Anyway, that's off the topic. No, I never noticed the smell myself, and only realised that it might be a problem when I started hearing other people whisper about me and got the signals (rubbing their noses, sniffing sharply though they had no cold, etc... These are neccesarily triggers in and of themselves. I took all of these clues together to come to that conclusion. And it's hard to do the signals justice verbally, so I won't try.).

    The thing about the people in the medical and mental health profession lying about my odor isn't so much that they're being kind, as the fact that they think I'm being irrational, and that if they simply tell me that I smell, I'll believe it full throttle, even when it happens not to be true (I don't think it's been untrue for quite some time, actually.).

    The nurse asked me why I was there, and eventually it came around to me admitting that the whole catalyst was the belief that I had an offensive odor which was making other people uncomfortable and angry. He told me that (as I explained it at the time) it was an unrealistic belief. I doubt they're going to tell someone who they think might be suicidal that they stink...

    My brother once said 'If you run away again, I'll find you. I have a nose.' and then laughed. But he's pretty inconsiderate, so it might've just been him poking fun at my paranoia, or a malicious attempt to perpetuate it. I could get lost in conjecture at everything I see and hear, but at some point the sheer volume of all these "coincidences" starts to get rediculous, and I have to come to a conclusion. Nobody else in my family ever brought up the odor, although I've gotten the same signals from them as anyone else (I've only begun to notice this in the past half year.).

    Medications are lisinopril for high blood pressure, prozac for whatever, and synthroid for an underactive thyroid. I don't think any of them have body odor listed as a side effect, and I didn't start taking them before this problem developed.
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    Old 04-08-2005, 10:20 PM   #4
    bbybyrd
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    Wow, I really don't know what to say. It seems strange that if you did have bo that your family wouldn't tell you. I know my family would..lol. Do you have a family doctor and have you gone to him and asked him how you smell? Maybe it's a medical problem but then you have no proof that you smell so that could be a problem. Maybe it's your cologne and people are just allergic to it? Do you smoke?

     
    Old 04-11-2005, 04:53 AM   #5
    princess72
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    Can it be the food you eat? Some people of a different culture can have a different type of body odor related to the foods they eat! Otherwise i really dont know. As far as therapy that you have had, have they ever told you that you were OCD or any other dissorder? The reason i ask that is OCD is horrible as far as abssesing over many or just 1 thing about yourself or something else. I hope you get some answer's soon! Our minds can be very complex..................

     
    Old 04-11-2005, 07:49 AM   #6
    cotterpin
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    I know of one doctor in particular that has studied this as a form of O.C.D. He has written about many varieties of purely obsessional manifestations of the disease... situations where someone can't get a particular thought out of their head, and people "reassuring" them actually makes the condition much worse.

    Search online for an article entitled "A Rose By Any Other Name" by Steve Phillipson (Phillipsen? I forget).

     
    Old 04-11-2005, 09:42 AM   #7
    pangea250
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    sometimes I worry that I smell, and this is something I do sometimes.

    Smell your clothes right after having a shower. If you really do smell but are just accumstomed to it, you'll be able to pick up on it after a shower cuz you'll have the smell of clean in ur nose...

    It works for me, n e way.

     
    Old 04-12-2005, 01:15 PM   #8
    Wes1212
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    people are not going to not say something to you about an offensive odor.

    when you are thinking something inordinary when you look at someone, you will most likely get an inordinary look back from them. most people have an amount of self-consciousness of their own and will return a "look" with a stranger look... and the tension builds

    getting that "look" back can be evidence to you that people aren't afraid to let you know something is uncomfortable. some people are more than willing to point out other peoples annoyances, some even delight in it. if they are responding to a "look" that makes them feel something is wrong, they probably don't have enough information to make an intelligent verbal response and therefore remain quiet about it (besides returning the look and making other gestures) Most people aren't brave enough to speak their minds.

    Last edited by Wes1212; 04-14-2005 at 10:42 AM.

     
    Old 04-14-2005, 09:07 PM   #9
    Ellecram
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    Ever try getting evaluated by an endocrinologist? There are certain metabolic disorders which can produce body odors - sometimes they can be partially ameliorated with medications. I have a foster girl with methomylonic acidurea - her body odor is very strong at times and does not seem to respond totally to thorough washing. - Elle

     
    Old 04-18-2005, 03:46 AM   #10
    dreamwver2112
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    Lightbulb Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    There are treatments that people use to get rid of body odor. They come in pill form. The first one, the main ingredient is Chlorophyll. The second's main ingredient is parsley. Also there is one made from a certain mushroom. They all are supposed to work extremely well. If you put in a search for them, I'm sure you would find out where to get them. I know you can get at least one of them over the counter (not sure if you can mention brand names here). Good luck.

     
    Old 05-15-2005, 09:46 AM   #11
    rosey29
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Lectus
    (I posted this on the healthy lifestyles forum. I just wanted to see the differences in the kind of advice I got from different forums... I have a feeling that a mental health forum would probably lean more toward this being all in my head than the other. This isn't a silly experiment, it's a real problem. I just wanted the replies to cover a broader spectrum of solutions.)

    I can't smell it myself (It may be possible that I've become accustomed to it.), but I can kind of tell by the hints people try to drop, their body language coupled with violent fits coughing, sneezing, sniffling, and irregular breathing (carefully-regulated mouth-breathing). The intensity of these signs increases if I remain wherever I am (in a theatre, restaurant, reception area, etc...). These aren't isolated incidents that I'm zeroing in on and blowing out of proportion... These are just clues gathered over time. People act like this wherever I go, and it just seems unlikely that we're having some kind of wide-spread cold epidemic.

    The sickest thing is that I'm not even sure what kind of smell it is... I wash up twice a day, wear fresh, clean clothes when I go out, and brush my teeth. Nobody has confronted me directly... The closest they've gotten was to give me cryptic, read-between-the-lines messages ('I'm might get into landscaping. You know, all that fresh air... *sniff* ahh....'). A former boss once gave me some mentos as well... which is confusing, because I was always under the impression that this was a body odor... Maybe I have bad breath on top of the bo? I don't know. It's hard to say, because no one will be honest with me.

    As you might imagine, this has caused much mental distress, and eventually landed me in the psyche ward. My hospitalization led to a whole other hell, as the mental health pros refused to acknowledge any sort of odor (although I noticed them, as well as other patients, giving me strong physical signs of disgust.) Even, on the morning after I came, while I was wearing dirty clothes I'd taken a sort of hike in the day before (They were covered with sweat, and even I could smell them...), one male nurse smelled me up close and said that he didn't smell anything. I've been in outpatient treatment since then, and in counseling, and that's been the general stance of the mental health pros ever since. I suppose that they figure that, since they can't do anything about the odor directly (given that I wash up regularly and clean my clothes, and they can't do anything medically for me), they'll try to make me disbelieve it, since my belief that I have a body odor is technically irrational.. One doctor said that I don't have any proof that I smell, and all of my evidence is circumstantial. As if the human mind was a court of law. Of course all of the evidence is circumstantial... If a thousand people had told me that I smell and I couldn't smell it, and even if I could, it might be considered circumstantial. Idiocy.

    So I'm forever stuck one step behind fixing this problem, and trying to get someone to admit that it exists, so the medical doctors will take me seriously... It's really rediculous the lengths people will go to to avoid talking about body odor. Is our culture so anal that we can't address a problem if only to fix it? Obviously I wouldn't be so upset to hear someone say that I smell since I so strongly believe it.

    At this point I'm not even going to ask how to fix the problem... You are all free to make suggestions but, in all likelihood, I've probably heard them before. Right now I'm focused on getting an honest answer... I'm leaning toward doing a survey of monks... What reason would they have for lying, either way? I just have to assure them that I won't be upset if they admit that I have an odor. Maybe write up a little speech about how not being sure has turned me into a paranoid recluse.

    If they don't admit it, then either I'm insane or the rest of the world is, and simply disappearing will be the best solution (not a suicide reference, btw... I just mean that I'll take to living far from any kind of civilization.).
    my heart goes out to you because you just don't know what to do i to have the same problem and i'm married my husband acts like i'm crazy he doesn't smell any thing but when his sister comes around he makes little jokes. I"m confused does he really love me to make so insercure that i don't even be around others. its a whole lot with me and i sure with you also just wanted to write to tell you your not the only one out there its hard especially when you wash more then normal people and want peace of mind in your own skin. I to have tryed and paid for everything on the market.

     
    Old 05-16-2005, 05:20 PM   #12
    JustDave4now
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    If you ask me, You need to step outside of yourself, and see the truth, not the feeling.

    You have a feeling people are reacting, you have a feeling you smell or something, you have a feeling the doctors and nurses are lying to you because it may be something you can't change. Seems like allot of hints and guesses.

    You might have heard this too, but put it to the test.

    The fact is you will never believe anyone who tells you to your face, so its time to be a sneak.

    Get a really small video camera or tape recorder, borrow one if you have to, hide it in place you will be around people at a certain time, but others can't see, but a place it in a place where it can easily record what people are saying when you leave the room. (under a desk or table sounds good)

    Then come in the room, make sure you stand close to people and linger, give yourself a good five minutes with them, and then wander off.

    Later go retrieve your camera or recorder and listen or watch.

    If you by chance happen to hear the stinky comments, walk it in to your doctor and tell him to explain. Then again, if you don't hear anything or see anything unusual, well then take it as the truth.

    I think you may find the latter, are you brave enough to find out?

    Remember don't confront anyone what they said, remember what your doing is sneaky, but your doing for a piece of mind.

    Its better than becoming a hermit.

    If you still don't believe, even after no one says anything diffinetive (remember not to just take a cough or sniff as proof) then you may have an issue, and it has nothing to do with your smell..

    Thats what I would do.. Good luck, I hope it works out.

     
    Old 05-20-2005, 09:06 AM   #13
    Ellecram
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    Re: Seemingly perpetual body odor and therapist deception

    You might want to check with an endocrinologist - I have a young girl on my caseload in foster care who has really bad body odor because of a metabolic disorder - even rigourous cleaning doesn't clear up the odor. I can't recall her exact diagnosis - its worth a shot!

     
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