Fear of hurting others is a very common obsession with OCD. I’ve been seeing people coming out and talking about this more, so I figured I should tell my story of how this fear manifested in my OCD.
It feels like the more you try to be a good person, OCD tries to fight against that and send you unwanted worst case scenarios.
I talked about having setbacks in an earlier post. I had one of these in my mid-twenties. I was social, working, happy, and just living life day by day. It had been about three years since my diagnosis and I was recovering successfully. My OCD was manageable, and I was using the tools I had to squash most of it.
And then I watched Dexter.
I never finished the show because the OCD part of my brain resurfaced, dramatically, and decided to throw intrusive thoughts rapid fire right at me.
“You’re going to become him one day.”
Over and over and over and over.
This is stemming from my childhood.
I had a nasty few years of conduct disorder existing with my OCD. (I will write more about this as this blog continues.)
Dexter brought it all back to the front of my thoughts, thanks to some of his flashback scenes as a kid. My OCD latched onto it, like a magnet, and I didn’t even realize that this new obsession was my mind playing a mean trick on me. It completely blindsided me, and I didn’t know enough about OCD back then to catch it.
Weeks later, I eventually broke down crying and in full panic mode. I was freaking out, thinking I was going to kill someone. The thoughts wouldn’t stop and they were deafening. So I called the VA crisis line. They said there’s some hidden room I can go to in the hospital; check in at the desk and they’ll talk to me in that tiny room. I went in the same day.
I used to view this appointment as embarrassing. But there I was, OCD completely at the wheel. I told the lady about my thoughts and then blurted out the stuff about my conduct disorder as a kid. Everything my OCD was telling me was pouring out of my mouth, as I’m crying and shaking. She was quickly taking notes, paused, and looked me in the eyes and said, “if you are what you say you are, you wouldn’t be here right now.” It was like she hit the brakes.
Naturally, recommended to talk to a therapist. To sum it up, these sessions were focused on my OCD. It didn’t take many appointments to have me back on track again. We talked a bit about my childhood, and I was given an additional diagnosis of mild PTSD. It was like a giant weight was lifted off my shoulders. I had more insight into my mind.
My friends and I did a fun Dexter themed photo shoot after that, and those thoughts disappeared for a long time.
Those intrusive thoughts pop up once in awhile. But now I catch them in their tracks, and smack them down to the ground.