Something I just posted on my OCD Blog:

Lately, I haven't been doing the greatest in my fight against OCD. Actually, nope, I take that back, I am fighting the fight, strongly, but unfortunately my OCD has new strength. I am weary, I am stressed, I am exhausted, and I am weak…my OCD knows all these things and is attacking with the ferocity of a caged tiger…because that is what it is, a caged tiger that sometimes gets loose and mauls my thoughts, emotions, reality.

I told a friend today that I feel like I live in two worlds. I live in the world that all of you reside in everyday. The world that holds reality and goodness and love. But inside of my brain amongst all the factoids I learned in college and the childhood memories is another world. The everyday person will find it hard to even find, let alone notice this world existing within their minds. Even folks with mild OCD only skirt the edge of this world. But those like me, those with severe OCD fall full force into this world every day and every day we battle to get out of it.
Some days are good, some days we can sit on the edge of the world and only see glimpses of the OCD…these days are joyous triumphs. But other days are bad. We fall deep into the depths of the world and scarcely see the reality outside our brain. Lately, I have had a hard time reaching the edge of this world, and some days I hardly exit it. This is why my hands are scarring. This is why they are red, dry, cracked, and pained. I am applying petroleum jelly to them at night now, just to get relief from the pain. And it only somewhat relieves the pain. It is hard for me to carry out the act of moisturizing my hands with things like petroleum jelly (another OCD trait), so they often are at the mercy of my will.

I see my hands during the day, I stare at them sometimes, not believing I can do this to myself. And then, guess what, I wash my hands. You would think the pain I now feel when I wash my hands would cause me to withdraw them and not wash as often. But somehow the pain reinforces my need to wash them. The drier my hands are the more I feel they are dirty…and so it becomes a vicious circle.

I am stronger now than I was so many months ago. I am better equipped to handle the onslaught of my disorder. But it still hurts. Truly hurts. And when I look at my hands and feel the pain, I can't help but feel a little bit pissed off…at the OCD and myself…

  1. tpmnight 10 years ago

    I’m sorry you’re having such a tough time right now.  I can completely sympathize with having dry, cracked, painful hands and the overwhelming need to wash them over and over, again and again. It’s one of the most maddening things ever!!!!! Hang in there. I know that you’ll get on top of this OCD monster again. I’m thinking of you.   

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  2. Mand862 10 years ago

    Thank you for your honesty.

    Sympathise about the OCD – but I hoard instead of washing hands. everything I used I need to keep more or less, that I even stop eating certain things as I worry about the anxiety from throwing the package its in away!

    Anything I keep – lids, wrappers, bottles, you name it – i have a compulsion to keep and get comfort from that!!

    drives the people i live with mad as i keep all in loft away from everyone but it always builds up!

    I hope your pain eases with the vaseline – I was taught 20minute distract – although difficult in your case as you feel pain in hands but if can try go for walk and ignore it for 20mins at a time – apparently this soon works 🙂


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