Welcome

Dear fellow OCD sufferer,

I want you to know that I understand what you’re going through. I really do.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder was my tormentor for 20 years. I know the shame and torment caused by intrusive thoughts, the enslavement to rituals and compulsions, the intense, crippling need for certainty.  I remember all too well the wild evenings of obsession and devastating fear when the agony was full-throttle torture and relief seemed impossible. OCD is slavery, and I know what it’s like to be in bondage.

I have good news for you: OCD is treatable.

Today, I am free!  I still have OCD, but I am in charge of it and not the other way around.  I rarely have obsessions, and when I do, I am able to combat them without using compulsions.  It is a completely different life.  I have stepped from darkness into light, from terror into peace. In the past five years, I have had maybe 4-5 minor OCD incidents, and each of them has lasted only for a couple hours. When I compare this to the continual torture I experienced before, this is more than manageable.

And all this came about after just twelve weeks of intense cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), a specific kind called exposure and response prevention therapy (ERP).  It is recognized as the #1 treatment for OCD in the world.  It is difficult– in ERP, you face your obsessions head-on and refuse to alleviate the anxiety by performing compulsions– but, believe me, ERP is not more difficult than living daily life with OCD. ERP is the correct answer to how to treat OCD.  Medication can also help, and in rare cases, a miraculous healing occurs, but for the majority of cases, ERP is absolutely the way to treat OCD.

Please explore the links below to learn about OCD and ERP.  Educate yourself and ask lots of questions!

Consider downloading the free app nOCD, which can help you create an organized ERP plan. This app can collect data to send to your therapist or can help you if you are doing ERP on your own.

About OCD
Do I have OCD?
Obsessions
Theme Hopping
I am obsessing RIGHT NOW
OCD torture
OCD & suicidal thoughts
Obsessive-compulsives are NOT alone
There is hope!
The long journey to diagnosis

About CBT/ERP
Gaining Certainty through Embracing Uncertainty
Resisting treatment?

What life was like before & after CBT
Obsessing vs. Brainstorming: before & after
A Detailed Post about ERP
ERP is the RIGHT Answer
Better than a Band-Aid
Embracing Uncertainty
What CBT was like for me
Will treatment change me?
Why You Need CBT/ERP
Have Reservations about ERP?
Preparing for CBT/ERP
ERP & Imaginal Exposures
Uncertainty is the Key
The Problem with Seeking Reassurance
Finding a cognitive-behavioral therapist
Medication vs. Exposure Therapy
Can’t afford CBT/ERP?  Try this app or do self-directed ERP!

For Family & Friends
How to Care for the Obsessive-Compulsive in Your Life

HOCD (Homosexual OCD)
HOCD
A Closer Look at HOCD
Interview with a Former HOCD Sufferer
A Big Ol’ HOCD Post
Another Interview with a Former HOCD Sufferer
A Third Interview with a Former HOCD Sufferer
A Fourth Interview with a Former HOCD Sufferer
Q&A with Former HOCD Sufferer
HOCD Story: Meet Mae, Part One
HOCD Story: Meet Mae, Part Two

Medication
Missing one dose throws me off
They’re NOT Happy Pills

OCD & Christianity
(or other religious scrupulosity)
OCD, ERP, and Christianity
I’m a Christian and Take Meds!
Unashamed of my OCD
Is the thought from OCD … or God?
God’s Sovereignty, OCD, the Cross, & His Purposes
Is Mental Illness a Spiritual Issue?
Is ERP Sinful?
OCD & Faith (or Lack Thereof): a Double Interview

About OCD & Children
Discussing OCD with Children
Obsessive-compulsive since age seven

Remission
Healed Not Cured: Remission & Relapse
OCD in Remission
Life after Treatment
When to expect a relapse
Am I Bitter?
Lies I Sometimes Still Believe
Managing OCD-in-Remission

OCD Q&A
Follow question and dancer tag

Other Related Posts
OCD Stockholm Syndrome
Unashamed
End Stigma
Addressing Stigma: I Don’t Choose This
Obsessive-compulsives are Brave
ERP & Profanity
OCD & Nutrition
How I Fall Asleep
My Personal ERP Script (warning: triggers, especially for religious obsessions)

frustration

33 thoughts on “Welcome

  1. Have you ever felt a huge attraction with hocd? Iy happened that I felt attracted to a girl and It was so distressing for me. I’ve heard about fake attraction. Have you ever experienced that? It was like if I wanted to hugg her or kiss her. It made me feel so anxious and depressed.

    Thanks

    • Instead of paying attention to the attraction, think about your response: anxiety and depression. If you want to be treated for HOCD, ERP (exposure and response prevention) therapy is the frontline treatment!

  2. Hi Jackie! I recently found your website and I need some sort of advice. I’m desperate!! Last November, one of my friends told me that she could see me being lesbian, probably more bisexual, and it freaked me out like never before. This has already been a very stressful year for me- I’m a senior in high school and the whole prospect about the future and moving out has me stressed as it is, and add in HOCD… basically I can’t deal with this anxiety anymore. I think I have had mild cases of OCD, like when I was younger, I would triple check that the doors were locked at night, or I would think that I would wake up and my parents would be dead (I know kinda morbid). Today, I am a virgin, but I have had many crushes in the past. I’m also a super romantic, like I was the girl that would dress up as a princess every year and pray upon a star that one day I would find a prince (super cheesy). Before November, I even really liked this guy in my class. Now, it’s like all feelings for men have left and I’m terrified. I’m also scared because going into college, I want to be confident enough in myself to find a great boyfriend. I think I experienced mild HOCD when I was younger because I thought that I might be lesbian because I thought certain girls were pretty. Like there were no sexual or romantic feelings, I just thought they were really pretty. Is that an early sign for being homosexual? And now my intense anxiety is taking that childhood memory and using it against me by saying I have liked girls all along and liking boys was a cover-up. I’m also scared because I think one of my friends is super pretty. She looks like a European model. When I’m not around her it’s like my brain says to me “YOU LOVE WOMEN” but then I’m around her and it’s like talking to a friend. And I think that’s all I have every felt towards women, a sisterly kind of love. But my brain keeps confusing my memories that I don’t even know what to think. I have talked to my parents about this and they told me that they have never seen any early signs in me that I might be lesbian, but they told me they would love me no matter who I was. As reassuring as this is because my parents are amazing, that doesn’t make me feel better and I just want to be rid of this burden. This has just been an extremely terrible last four months. I have also had cases of depression and steady low self confidence in the past. Does this sound like HOCD to you, or should I do some more soul searching? I’m seeing a psychologist next week. What should I talk to her about? Thanks for reading this long post:)

  3. Hi Jackie, it’s Madi again (from above). Today I’m a really bad day, and my mind has be almost convinced I’m lesbian. And I hate it. For reassurance today, I looked up of lesbians want to be gay, and most answers were no, everyone started out wanting a husband, and this freaks me out to the point where I can’t breathe properly. I have been trying exposure therapy on my own, by watching TV shows about LGBT people, and I’m fine when watching it, but after uncertainty sets in and I can’t take it. I’m not homophobic, and I feel like I have been straight my whole life. I can remember that every crush I have ever had has been a boy. It’s just that my thoughts get progressively worse, to the point where I’m in hysteria and my heart is beating so fast that I feel like I’m going to vomit. All I want is a boyfriend who will love me because I have so much love to give. Should I be worried at all, or is this just HOCD at its worst?

  4. Hello Jackie! I’m Sydney and I feel like I might have HOCD. I have had the anxiety feelings for about 6 months now, and sometimes they don’t feel as intense as they once did. Before, I would read coming out stories and get a terrible feeling. People would also say HOCD is just a way of covering up being in the closet. It would cause me the biggest spike. But now when I read them, I sometimes don’t feel anything. Does that mean I’m accepting being a homosexual? I’m a freshman in college, and have had a false attraction to my friend. My brain is telling me that I find her pretty, but when I think about it, I would never want to kiss her. I want to be in a mans arms more than anything in the world. It’s really unfortunate because I had a big crush on this guy Hunter, and now I don’t get the same butterfly feeling and my head is mixing up my emotions. I love reading my romance novels and picture myself as the heroine getting the perfect guy. I just don’t know what to do anymore. -Sydney

  5. Hello Jackie. I’m a female and I’m about to have a painc attack. I have been looking online for answers when I came across HOCD. I then read that most people don’t believe in HOCD and that it’s just a cover for people in the closet who haven’t realized it. That thought makes me want to throw up. All I want to do is cry. Is HOCD a real disagnosis or am I just having a sexual orientation crisis? Best- Laura

  6. Hello Jackie, I’m having some trouble right now. I’ve had HOCD for about a year now, and I have never experienced this. About a month ago, my mind is telling myself that I have a crush on a girl friend of mine. She is so nice, and I don’t want to lose her as a friend, but I get so nervous thinking about her. Not a good kind of nervous, but a nauseous feeling. It’s like when I think about dating a boy, her face replaces my crush. It’s gotten to the point that I don’t even feel attraction for the boy I like anymore. This makes me really upset because all I want him to do is ask me to formal, and I can’t even think about him properly. Is this what people refer to as “false attraction?”

  7. Hi Jackie! I have been diagnosed with HOCD by my therapist, which is very reassuring, but I would love if you could give me some advice. I have told my parents about my condition, and they understand it’s my illness, but would love me just the same. Recently I have been scared to either get drunk or get my wisdom teeth taken out. I’m a college student, so it’s hard to avoid one night of alcohol, and personally, I would like to be able to let loose some. However, I’m terrified that I’m going to shout out “MY MIND SECRETLY THINKS IM A LESBIAN” to those around me. I really don’t want people to think I am, because sometimes I can’t even convince myself that it’s a disorder and not just myself being in “denial.” I want nothing more than to be swept off my feet by the perfect guy, but this illness seems like that desire is getting farther and farther away. Is this just a sick way of HOCD messing with my mind, or am I really suppressing some realization of some sort? Best! Shelly

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