Okay, not quite.
But this past week I did have the blessing of having lunch with two other OCs. And we met SPECIFICALLY to talk about OCD.
“Harry” suffered most from 8th-11th grade, checking and rechecking the locked door so much that he broke the doorknob at his parents’ home. His sophomore year of high school, he was terrified that his family would die. “Hermione” has never struggled with obsessions until last August … when it was like a switch was flipped in her. First, she worried that she would die young … felt certain it would happen. Then, last month, her worries for herself transferred to her mom, and now she spends the entire day worrying that her mom will die.
Because of the similarities of their stories, I decided to put them together so they could talk about it.
Needless to say, our lunch was interesting.
Harry told us how one time his sister didn’t come home at the right time, so he naturally assumed she was in an accident … he had so convinced himself that this was the truth that he actually almost told that to his friends, figuring that maybe they could help him grieve. OCD’s voice is very loud and convincing, friends.
Hermione has been obsessing for five months, and she asked Harry and me (I guess I can be Ron! Ha!) how to tell when OCD crosses the line into the unbearable territory. Gosh, what a question! “It’s terrible right now,” she said. “I think about my mom dying all day every day. I really don’t want to take meds or do CBT. How will I know?”
“You’ll know,” I said. “You’re not there yet. There will be a time when you realize that the hell of daily obsessions is so bad that you’re willing to take on the hell of CBT or the hell of side effects just to escape it.”
I hate that it has to get that bad.