Has anyone else experienced this?!

This post has been thanked 1 time. 16 July 2014 - 3:17

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Have you found that your ocd "tricks" you into thinking or believing you have done something wrong?  Would this be considered a false memory or thought action fusion? I have only experienced this a few times, but I feel as though an intrusive thought will precede an action and then I feel as if I have done something wrong! In that moment, I try to tell myself that it is not me and that it's my ocd, but this only helps for a little while before I begin the compulsions. 

I am always second guessing myself. Has anyone else ever experienced this? It's a horrible feeling, I'm hoping someone can relate. 

Thank you!

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17 July 2014 - 14:49

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What I meant to say was, "I like to think of it as background noise."

Remember Charlie Brown and the "whaaa whaaa whaa?" A great example of that annoying little "voice" that rears it's ugly head during & after these episodes. Hope this helps a little, I'm still learning myself! 

This post has been thanked 1 time. 17 July 2014 - 15:06

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My mind is just not functioning this morning! I was not correct when I said the fear tricks our OCD into believing that the thoughts are a threat. The OCD causes the irrational thoughts, causing the irrational fear, which tricks our minds into believing the thoughts are a threat!  Ugh! I'm on another planet today!    :/

This post has been thanked 1 time. 17 July 2014 - 16:25

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Thanks Surrender for explaining about sitting with anxiety rather than trying to push it away. And thanks Truddles for making the same point through the article you linked to. I think I could let anxiety sit there until it goes away of its own accord if I was confident my fear was only a bluff and that nothing bad had happened. But sometimes people's hands/clothes really do accidentally touch something potentially harmful, and it is important to be able to recognise the difference between genuine contact and a near miss so that we can take appropriate action if necessary. It's at that stage I struggle. I feel confused about what really happened. How can you let anxiety just sit there when you suspect you may have a dangerous chemical on your hand and you are just about to make a sandwich?

This post has been thanked 2 times. 17 July 2014 - 17:23

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Yes, thank you Truddles! Bless your heart, goofy! I'm so sorry you are struggling with this. The answer to your question is, you don't need to distinguish between the two (this is what my doctor tells me), you have to sit with the uncertainty that it may or may not be contaminated as non ocd folks do. Chances are great, that you will not be contaminated, and the more you practice, the more you're mind will begin to notice that this is not a threat. I know firsthand how it feels, thinking that you have to take full responsibility for everything around you, your thoughts, your "actions". Knowing that you could potentially cause unintentional harm to yourself or others, but the fact is, we all have to live with this. We are human, and we cannot always be in control. We, as folks living with this disorder, believe we are responsible for anything that may or may not happen. Fortunately, we can control our actions, (even if we think that we have intentionally or unintentionally done something to contaminate or whatever the theme) and would never intentionally cause any undue harm to ourselves or anyone else, but we cannot control things that are out of our control, such as a person brushing past you on the subway. These indirect "actions" are not something we should have to think about, or feel responsible for. Even if you have just shaken someone's hand that could possibly be contaminated,(which is hard for me too at times) we have to live with this uncertainty and move on. We should not have to carry this burden. I think when you begin therapy and possibly medication, things will get better for you. I hope all of this makes sense. 

This post has been thanked 2 times. 18 July 2014 - 3:28

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Oh, and I completely understand the ruminating. It's awful I know, it's like your imagination takes over, or maybe it's just the ocd, and creates more and more of these "phantom beliefs" or "memories", in turn causing us to not know what the heck to think or believe! This is all a part of sitting with the anxiety and the uncertainty. I wish I knew an easier way, but as I said, I am still struggling myself with it all. I believe it is close to morning where you are, so I pray that you will have a positive day!

18 July 2014 - 14:25

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Thank you Surrender for your very sympathetic and kind words. Gulp! It wasn't the answer I was hoping for but deep down I know you are right.

I wish you a pleasant day too.

18 July 2014 - 14:41

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You are more than welcome, and believe me, I know it isn't what you wanted to hear! I am so sorry! I wish there was a pill out there that would cure this stupid disorder, if I knew of one I would definitely spread the love!  

Baby steps!  

~S

23 July 2014 - 13:10

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 So, when you sit with the anxiety and the uncertainty, what is it advisable to think about? Should you force yourself to avoid thinking about the worst possible scenario, or is that a method of suppression that will backfire in the long run? Should you distract yourself by doing mental arithmetic for example? Or should you try to convince yourself that the worst possible scenario doesn't matter, or is that a method of reassurance? Should you try to make yourself as anxious as possible to create more exposure?

Thanks for any advice.

This post has been thanked 1 time. 25 July 2014 - 3:45

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Hi Goofy! I just realized that you have asked me this. From what I have learned in therapy, you definitely want to let yourself believe that it does not matter and sit with the anxiety. Do not count and do not suppress the thoughts or try to avoid them, it will only make your thoughts become worse. Think about it like this, if your burn your hand on a hot stove, your brain automatically processes that dangerous thought/feeling. Because your brain has processed this, you now know that there is a danger, therefore you don't touch it. My toddler has figured this out as well! It's human nature. This is somewhat like what we are going through. Every time we have these thoughts/feelings, our brain automatically processes this as a threat, therefore causing the thoughts to come back again and again when confronted with a trigger. Our brain thinks that these thoughts are a threat and so then screams at us to fight it off, one way or another. If we just learn to sit with the anxiety, a little more each time, eventually our brain will understand that these thoughts are not a real threat and will slowly start to diminish. The thoughts will never go away competely, but by doing this you will feel more and more disconnected to these irrational thoughts. Exposure is essential, start small, with your lesser fears, and work your way up. Don't dive in head first or you will set your self up to fail. I began first with my cleaning rituals, and then slowly worked my way up to the intrusive thoughts. The cleaning is something I can "deal" with, the thoughts on the other hand are a whole different ball game for me. I'm still working through it. Thinking of you and praying! I hope this answers your question!

~S

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