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Topic: Harm OCD - Intrusive Thoughts 

15 posts, 0 answered
  1. Oxymyth
    Oxymyth avatar
    5 posts
    1 January 2018

    Hi everyone

    I'd like to firstly say I'm a 19 yr old male and im new to this site but not new to anxiety. I've suffered social anxiety most my life and altho it slows me down in some areas and creates panic for me in others it hasn't debilitated me that bad. But now something completely new has risen.

    On Boxing Day 2017 I started getting intrusive thoughts about hurting my family. This being new obviously scared me to death, and before this I was suffering severe panic attacks due to my anxiety becoming to over worked.

    I went to the Dr after explaining this to my mum and my Dr prescribed me antidepressants and additional medication to help relax me and suppress my withdrawal from marijuana as I was an everyday smoker until this started happening. I immediately quit.

    Now because its the holidays I haven't seen a psychiatrist or therapist yet but I am tomoz, hopefully they can give me a proper diagnosis to this but I'm sure this is Harm OCD I'm dealing with, and he/she could help me manage this illness and help me control it.

    Its been rough, but I have got a good hold on things atm, I know I'm not dangerous and I'm positive I won't hurt anyone... That's just not who I am and I know that I have control not the bad thoughts, but my real concern is the quality of life I'm now looking at.

    I can accept that these thoughts might poke around in my head for a long time and I understand there's no magic cure or anything but I just don't want to live everyday having to fight in an endless struggle with my own mind. I can be positive and happy knowing I'm not gonna do what these thoughts suggest but...

    My real question is does it get better? Can I be the same guy I was just 2 weeks ago or will I always be haunted by these debilitating thoughts. Can this if it is OCD get better?

    Any comments, advice, or shared experiences would be so appreciated, and thankyou for taking the time to read this. I know I sound insane but I'm not, I'm just afraid my life won't ever be the same again.

     

  2. RadDad75
    RadDad75 avatar
    2 posts
    4 January 2018 in reply to Oxymyth
    Your not alone mate, i've been there. You can learn to live with it believe me i do but it does take some discipline. Don't overly worry about those thoughts your are the opposite and that's why those thoughts hurt so much. I read the book "brain lock" which has really helped me. Look it up. Happy to share other tips with you to just let me know if you need any help. Good luck mate.
    2 people found this helpful
  3. Ben1993
    Ben1993 avatar
    3 posts
    4 January 2018 in reply to Oxymyth

    Dude! It's as if I wrote your post - I have had an incredibly similar experience that started about a month ago.

    I can 110% guarantee that it gets better, please don't forget that. I was in a thought circle the same of yours regarding my girlfriend who I live with and now the thoughts are few and far between. It took a bit of time and work but it's slowly but surely residing.

    You've done the perfect thing by going to see a GP and booking to see further people - they will help you with tools to use.

    I went days battling my thoughts and thinking that it would never get better, but it has and I'm pretty much back to fully functioning as normal with the usual anxiety here and there. I'm back to seeing friends, reading, exercising, working and back to my hobbies. I feel like this is important to say as when I went through this is seemed like it may be impossible to get back to normal.

    I think the main things that stuffed me around was that I stopped eating and sleeping well. Make sure you're eating three meals a day even if you're not hungry and get your sleep right. I have started meditating daily which seems to have helped a bunch, I use the 'Headspace' app as it seemed to be good for noobs.

    You'll get better man, just stick at it and I completely understand how hard it is - try to stay positive.

    I found not trying to label it all as 'OCD' or 'Anxiety' or some other crap that just knowing that I have a history of anxiety that's all it is, just a different flavour as to what I was used to so it get me a massive shock and that's why it knocked me around a whole lot.

    I can now peacefully hang out with my loved ones without an issue/panic attack.

    Keep on keeping on, completely appreciate how full on this is so you're already doing a great job talking about it. If you're Mum is pretty caring etc with this kind of stuff, I found being about to talk to my Partner about it all helped a fair bit.

    Oh yeah, and I'm sure you've googled it already, but you're not your thoughts - this stuff freaks us out so much because it's so far removed from who we are and the opposite of our morals.

    Lemme know if you have any specific questions anyway dude as it's all been super recent for me.

    Hope you've been better the last couple days.

    3 people found this helpful
  4. Briony333
    Briony333 avatar
    1 posts
    6 January 2018 in reply to Ben1993

    This was a very helpful post. My son has been going through this and it made me very worried and was one of the triggers for my heightened state of anxiety.

  5. geoff
    Life Member
    • Awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    849 posts
    6 January 2018 in reply to Oxymyth
    hi Ben, and as I've replied to Briony and everyone else on this post is that I've had OCD for 58 years which has taken me through so many stages in life, and yes I had intrusive thoughts and it was about hurting my dear Mum, I wouldn't even think about it, and that's why my thought not only puzzled me but worried and certainly annoyed me.

    It happened for a number of years, never knowing why I would even think about this, because I loved my Mum, but it stopped all of a sudden.

    When Mum was put into a nursing home I knew that she was going to change, be helpless by herself and stuck in a wheelchair.

    How could I possibly think about these thoughts now, she needed to be looked after 24/7, so I couldn't even think about hurting her any longer, but I know that each thought that you have has to be taken on it's on merit. Geoff.
  6. Sonno
    blueVoices member
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Sonno avatar
    2 posts
    6 January 2018 in reply to Oxymyth

    Hi Oxymyth,

    You've got a great start in :

    (a) being able to identify your " problem " and articulate it. That's INSIGHT.

    (b) knowing that thoughts are just that THOUGHTS. You can control them and not let

    them control you.

    Quality of life is your real concern at the moment. How can you improve it ??

    THINK : What do you love. Break it down to say - People; Things; Activities.

    Then make a plan. Set some goals for each category.

    e.g. I will ring " X " today arrange to catch up soon.

    I will get that T-shirt I want.

    I will ride my bike / bush-walk / go to the beach.

    With O.C.D, depression and many " mental" conditions the answer often lies in controlling your thoughts and not letting them dominate you. Having dealt with depression most of my life and having had different medications and psychotherapies, the answer for me is MEDITATION. It takes a while to understand it and years of practice to get the right " head-space " but once you master it, you have the solution to your problem. Also important is social connection, diet and fitness.

    But get one thing straight, only you can find the answer. You do the work and the results will follow.

    2 people found this helpful
  7. Oxymyth
    Oxymyth avatar
    5 posts
    7 January 2018

    Hi guys

    Thanks so much for all the advice and insight, I'm sorry to see u all have gone thro similar problems but I'm glad not to be alone and even gladder to see u can make positive changes towards them.

    For me the worse seems to be over, couple days ago the thoughts stopped being so reoccurring and menacing. That's cause I stopped giving them power, I realised it was like a bad/ annoying song stuck in my head. The more I gave it that special attention and worry the more they came. Makes a lot of sense to think of it as a flower in your mind. Pay attention to it, u water it, it grows bigger. Stop caring and treat it as a weed, another stupid thought, you stop watering it so it dies.... Slowly, but surely.

    I've actually go to headspace for my psychology, and they gave me the run down of it all with a few good tips of managing my anxiety. That's my focus now, bringing down my anxieties and reducing it. All the intrusive thoughts mean is I'm too worked up from all my anxiety and I jump to these crazy conclusions.... I'm abit of a hyperchondriac so I get scared of my health easily. Every simple pain in my body could mean the end, so I'm really glad I gave smoking the kick.

    I'm gonna return to my roots now, art and writing was always my passion, I also really want to practice this meditating too it does something I don't think anyone can understand till they really try it. Very spiritual and mind opening also it teaches u to be more mindful and calm.

    Im going to hang with my fam and kick it with my mates more too, but that's gonna be tricky since their potheads aha but I'm not going back to that. Huge changes are starting in my life now and for once I'm really keen to face them head on.

    I'll talk some more with u guys on this thread if u want and I think I'll stick to this site and help out others in my sitch who need it, its a great way to stay positive about it all so thanks again fellas I really do appreciate the time you all put in.

  8. Oxymyth
    Oxymyth avatar
    5 posts
    7 January 2018 in reply to Ben1993

    Hey Ben

    Man, am I glad u posted that haha. I'm happy with all replies but this one is gold dude, but its a shame you've gone through this all too. Its not fun aha, but yea I can see it does get better.

    Dude my appetite went out the window when this started, I had to force myself to eat and even then it was barely anything. Its good now but yeah.

    It seems important to to deal with it alone, no one can I now believe. It stopped when I really started connected with my fam again and just joked around and talked with them. Everyone knew I wasnt gonna hurt anyone, actually they were all afraid I'd hurt myself instead... But none of these things will ever occur I just keep pushing myself through the fence. If I get the thoughts I dont worry or pounder on them I just as u put it keep on keeping on. Move on, do something else think of something else... Everything and anything else really.

    I do have a question I'm unsure of... I missed out on my usual new years party. Got to see all the great pics on insta and Facebook of my friends having a good time while I was at home drinking Pepsi and watching cartoons tho... Yay aha

    Um, so how'd I go do u think with a few beers after I'm off my antidepressants, I'm not gonna risk drinking while on them but yeah I'd like to have a few drinks with the boys again but wasn't sure how it'd go. Idk if ur a drinker but wat u think anyway?

  9. Ben1993
    Ben1993 avatar
    3 posts
    9 January 2018 in reply to Oxymyth

    Hey dude,

    Super happy to hear that you've improved already - this shit can really puts you in to a massive pit. Now you know that you can get yourself out of even the worst 'episodes' or whatever you wanna call em.

    I get what you mean - having the family and mates there makes an incredible difference. Being able to joke around with how ridiculous the thoughts and stuff were made it heaps easier for me as well, I imagine you're a pretty caring a friendly dude so it's probably jokingly unrealistic.

    Yeah man, I'll have a few beers here and there. I just have to really pay attention to how I'm feeling and pacing myself accordingly. I wouldn't recommend sucking down a slab though, my anxiety goes apeshit if I get too pissy and 'hangxiety' is pretty bad for me, can last a few days after getting on the sauce a bit hard. I did also ease myself in to it again - having a beer or two wth dinner and that was it etc. Like with everything I suppose, just teaching yourself that doing something is okay without going balls deep helps me get used to it all - gotta learn to walk before you can run if you know what I mean.

    Again man, sick to hear you're feeling a bit better - keep on keeping on!


  10. Oxymyth
    Oxymyth avatar
    5 posts
    9 January 2018 in reply to Ben1993

    Too true man, its a deep hole and a bad place to be in but the key is to just remember yourself, and I'm like u said a nice guy, caring and all that. Which is why these thoughts dragged me down so easily its just against my morals but yeah I've gotten past the worst. Now its just another stupid thought I either ignore or simply see as something stupid.

    Yeah man im not an excessive drinker or anything I'm actually a light weight but everyone likes a beer or two with their friends. That's all I'm saying, I still want a normal life and I'm not gonna let this stop that but ive learnt I need to be sensible and keep it under control, so yeah I'll take baby steps and not get plastered that was never the plan haha.

    Thanks again for your support bro its good to have someone who knows wat your going through

  11. Ben1993
    Ben1993 avatar
    3 posts
    17 January 2018 in reply to Oxymyth

    Atta boy. Sounds like you're doing great. Just remember that there's nothing wrong with having a shitty day here and there as well - I sometimes get a bit down on myself for having an off day.

    Anytime at all man. Always feels good to know that you're not alone and people have gone through almost identical shit. Makes me feel a lot more sane anyway.

    Keep it up dude - recovery ain't instant but as long as your making progress/trying!

  12. Chloe_M
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    Chloe_M avatar
    56 posts
    5 April 2018 in reply to Oxymyth

    Hey Oxymyth,

    I completely understand what you are going through concerning intrusive thoughts, except mine are about germs. If I touch someone I don't know or something I am not familiar with, I get into this thought spiral sort of thing about how these germs are going to give me some horrible disease and that I'm going to die. This results in a panic attack (which involves hyperventilating, sweating, shaking and crying), or me going crazy with my hand sanitiser and coating myself in it.

    I am seeing a psychologist soon, and hoping to get a diagnosis. I think I am suffering from either OCD or GAD (generalised anxiety disorder).

    I have this strategy that I use to try and control anxious thoughts. These thoughts range from simple worries to major incidents. It may not work for you but give it a try. You may have seen it in another of my posts.

    Construct a table with four columns. In the first column, write the heading Situation. In the next, write Emotions. In the third, Thoughts, and in the fourth, Alternative Thoughts. Under Situation, write the situation or thing that is making you anxious. In Emotions, write down how this situation makes you feel and how your body reacts to that physically (e.g sweating, shaking, hyperventilating, crying etc). Under Thoughts, write down the intrusive/anxious thoughts. Finally, under Alternative Thoughts, write down any thoughts that don't make you anxious that you could think instead.

    Here is an example of the 'Thought Table' I did. Sorry it isn't in table form as I couldn't post it like that, but you should get the picture.

    Situation: I missed the bus

    Emotions: Scared, upset, anxious, nervous, sweating, sick feeling in my stomach, dread.

    Thoughts: Dad will be mad, I will be late to school.

    Alternative Thoughts: Dad will drive me, it's not the end of the world if I miss the bus, at least I will get a seat if my Dad drives me.

    Hope everything works out for you Oxymyth x

    Chloe_M

    1 person found this helpful
  13. Chloe_M
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    Chloe_M avatar
    56 posts
    19 April 2018 in reply to Chloe_M

    Hey Oxymyth,

    noticed you haven't posted in a while

    was just wondering how you are doing at the moment and if you are okay.

    here if you need me xx

    chloe

  14. Oxymyth
    Oxymyth avatar
    5 posts
    10 November 2018 in reply to Chloe_M

    Hey guys

    Been awhile now since I've posted or even looked at this site.. lots have changed in that time so I'll go ahead and explain

    My situation was dire at the start of this year.. I had a somewhat mental breakdown with the beginning of my intrusive thoughts overwhelming me. Dark thoughts that seemed to consume me and for awhile I didn't think I was going to be the same ever again.

    Ive since been able to suppress it to the point it isn't an issue anymore and i feel won't be again. Ive had many weeks of therapy and learnt new skills on how to deal with these thoughts and fears. Skills that have in time proved themselves to be very effective. In the end however I think it's about realising these thoughts aren't a threat or shouldn't be paid attention to because there simply thoughts and they don't mean anything and you will never do what they suggest.

    My SA and GAD (social and general anxiety) are still a problem but much less these days. I think anyone with anxiety or depression can be webbed into intrusive thoughts like I did.. we all get them but truth is my brain wasn't working properly and the reason is a complication caused by anxiety. Idk I'm no expert but Ive learnt some great skills to improve and manage intrusive thoughts and anxiety and I believe that the whole experience has made me a stronger person. Now I can concentrate on my passion of writing novels and painting.

    Thanks for your concern chole that's nice of you, and thanks everyone else for the tips and shared experiences I hope you all are in a good mental state as well...

  15. geoff
    Life Member
    • Awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    849 posts
    11 November 2018 in reply to Oxymyth

    Hello Oxymyth, it's great to hear back from you, and in this time you seem to have experienced a lot.

    Can I just point out from this comment and one on 7/1/18 reminding people that we are all different, however, I still drink socially while taking my AD's.

    These intrusive thoughts are what we all worry about, but they don't come true, we think they will and that's what confuses us, trying to convince us they are actual events that are going to happen, they won't, so you have to imagine yourself doing them, how would you feel and how would the person in the dream feel if you did, horrible.

    Now you have learned to become a stronger person, that's great and that's what's on the other side of depression and that's something you have learned.

    It's terrific to hear back from you.

    Geoff.