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intrusive thoughts

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Old 07-12-2004, 01:19 PM   #1
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intrusive thoughts

i have this ocd problem for a long time already, thoughts contamination.

bad thoughts means i must wash myself, if i move my hands while im having a bad thought then my hands are dirty, i repeat my actions all the time because i keep having bad thoughts, i need to repeat my action with a good thought to stay uncontaminated.

i have intrusive bad thoughts all the time, i cant think of anything clearly, its getting really bad, the worse thing is most of my bad thoughts are related to sex, so i am always afraid that i would get excited from the thought, and i have to wash my.. to get uncontaminated

been to a therapist before, helped a bit but recently i didnt go as i had some financial problems, now my condition got worse.. my OCD mind seems to have almost total control on me, can somebody tell me what to do??

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Old 07-13-2004, 01:04 AM   #2
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Re: intrusive thoughts

First of all, have you exhausted all resources at your disposal to get back into seeing a therapist? Government or charity funded programs for instance? Or even low to no cost help (maybe at a university---especially a research program into OCD).
Try to get help through these means------Your case sounds pretty severe and therapy did help you while you were getting it.

Are you able to more or less function through work and daily routines?

I'm not a therapist and have no qualifications. I just know from my own experiences and from psychologists I've seen, or books I've read......but you have to acknowledge that any amount of "giving in" to the compulsions (washing your hands etc) is only going to increase the severity and the power of the OCD.
Have you resisted the thoughts lately? Have you attempted to put off the compulsion for say, a minute or ten minutes before you give in to it and wash(or before you think about something positive to make it better)?
You probably have....and the reason you give in to it is because you feel an awful amount of anxiety(fear) that drives you to perform the compulsion (thinking about a positive thought, or washing).
The good news is that the anxiety WILL wane on its own. It could take minutes, hours or days (depending on the severity of your OCD), but the anxiety will peak and then gradually fall. It is hell to go through, but if you continue to attempt to alleviate the anxiety by performing the compulsion, the worse things will be in the long run.
It was put to me in this way: "short term, intense anxiety (from exposure to OCD WITHOUT giving in to the compulsion) will, in the long run benefit you greatly because down the road the episodes will lose their intensity and power. On the other hand, short term "relief seeking" from anxiety (giving in to the compulsion to reduce anxiety) will dramatically increase FUTURE episodes of OCD and the overwhelming anxiety that goes with it."

So it's a rough road indeed. And I certainly wouldn't recommend trying to abstain from ALL your compulsions all at once, but doing a little bit here and there (putting off the compulsion for a minute or 5 minutes, etc) will probably help you.
But you also have to remember to "expect" some pretty intense anxiety and/or guilt as a result of not giving in to the compulsion.

Have you ever been on any medication before? Can you possibly talk to a family doctor about starting some (if you can't go see a psychiatrist)?
It can help take the edge off a bit while you use strategies to combat the OCD.

I could write a ton about this subject, but I think it's VERY important that you seek some face to face help as soon as you can.

Oh yeah, and when you try to resist the compulsion, remind yourself that its OCD that is trying to convince you that you HAVE to think or move a certain way in order to feel 'good.' It's not the truth, and it's not's OCD.
And the more you live by OCD's rules, the worse the long term will be.
So it's necessary for your health and peace of mind to fight the OCD.
Again, I'm not really sure exactly HOW severe your OCD is. Does it consume most of your day? A few hours? Ten hours? what sort of percentage of your day is all consumed by this?

Old 07-13-2004, 02:47 PM   #3
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Re: intrusive thoughts

my compulsions take up a lot of my time, especially when i am washing, because i cant wash with a bad thought in my mind, so i have to repeat washing many times. when i have a bad sexual thought, i usually have to wash my.. because i was afraid that i was getting excited by the thoughts, this is the worse of my symptoms

i want to try not to give in to compulsions, but when i am contaminated by bad thoughts, i always wash because i was afraid that it would really contaminate me if i didnt wash

i understand that thoughts does not contaminate me, but there are certain circumstances that i really think having a bad thought can contaminate me, especially intrusive sexual thoughts, i am really afraid that i would be excited by the sexual thoughts, what do you think i should do about this? if i never wash my.. then my.. would be contaminated, this is very hard to explain, but i hope you know what i mean. i was on lexapro but that didnt help, so i tried anafranil that was better, but because of the many side effects, i stopped. i am not on any medication now.

i really wish to fight the OCD, but i am always convinced that i am contaminated.

actually there are many other OCD symptoms that i have, but those are not causing me as much problem, my worse problem is contamination, when i am contaminated i cant touch anything that isnt contaminated, i live in two worlds, i have a clean world of my own that isnt contaminated, so when i am contaminated i cant go in, unless i wash and uncontaminate myself. i appreciate your advices, thanks.

Last edited by shiningstars; 07-13-2004 at 02:51 PM.

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