Wednesday, July 29, 2009

OCD & Did the Contaminated Lady Kill My Cat?

People with OCD are victims of automatic thoughts which have been ingrained on the mind. Years ago I fell in love with a fluffy little kitten, who I named Lambchop. I took her home immediately. She made me incredibly happy, and if you have a pet that you love deeply, you will know how I felt.

One day, a neighbor of mine was passing by, and she walked up to my stoop and we started talking and the topic tuned to animals. I told her about my new kitten and she asked to see her. I really didn't want to show Lambchop to her, but she insisted. I felt uneasy as she was petting her, but didn't say anything.

Several days later, Lambchop became very ill and eventually passed away. It was very horrible for me, and I blamed my neighbor, and she has been "contaminated" ever since. For years, if I saw her, I would become terrified that something would happen to one of my pets. I would do a ritual to protect them.

This is the nature of OCD - We have experienced anxiety in the past, and are anticipating it again. In order to avoid the disturbing emotion of anxiety, we have inadvertently created a false belief system which tells us that our rituals will protect us.

I hope that people with OCD will be able to recognize this pattern in their minds and interrupt the OCD thought and challenge it.

I'd like to know your thoughts about this - sometimes I still wonder.

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