"Oh, it's just my OCD."
So, you know, there's a general layperson's understand of what obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is.
But it's more complicated than that.
...If you have intrusive thoughts (obsessions) that seem fearful, or dangerous to you,
or if you're worried that something bad is about to happen
or has happened, that you may have inadvertently caused,
AND THEN you do something to make it stop. or go away. or to erase the danger: "Compulsions" are something that make you feel better or safer in the moment, even if they don't seem to make sense, and they might include:
- mental rituals such as reviewing, praying,
- physical rituals, such as checking, counting, cleansing, repeatedly asking others for reassurance, or "confessing" your thoughts, asking others to confirm that you're okay,
- getting to a "just right" feeling regarding symmetry, or some other need for a "just right" feeling
- worries that you have or will harm someone inadvertently
- thoughts that are so concerning, you worry what they might mean about you...and so you engage in behaviors to get rid of them, and push them away...only to have them come back.
- avoiding people, places, and events due to thoughts about contamination
If this is your experience, it's possible OCD might be a problem for you. And we can let you know for sure.
ExRT, Exposure/response/prevention therapy is the gold standard for treating OCD.
OCD Foundation, explaining ExRP.