The root of my Nazi obsession is a broader, more general obsession with being or being perceived as offensive, or even just impolite. Daily I'm constantly worrying about my behavior and speech, and even police my thoughts, trying to be as inoffensive as possible. I go over past things in my head, searching for signs that I may have offended someone. I think ahead of ways I can be even less offensive in the future. I invent elaborate mental structures in which I do offend someone and subsequently have to explain myself in detail and grovel for their forgiveness. It's especially bad with people of different races and abilities for some reason, but pretty much everyone I interact with, I'm terrified of offending them. Even when I'm anonymous I'm polite, since I worry that I'll be somehow un-anon'ed. Even when people deserve to be offended, because they have done or said something nasty and rude, I am too polite.

 

I think this is the root of my anger problem–I spend all day bowing and scraping to everyone, afraid to make them angry at me, and in turn it makes me angry at them. It's definitely unhealthy and I think it's a shame, because I believe that underneath all the obsessions and compulsions I actually am a polite person… and now I'm meta-worrying that my current politeness is so false that it's offensive to the people I'm being polite to. (Note to self–this is what happens when you don't take your antipsychotic; the thoughts get very elaborate!)

 

This all leads to my compulsions–compulsive apologizing and seeking reassurance that I have not offended someone. I say "sorry" probably dozens of times a day, and I want to say it probably hundreds… If I wasn't worried (!) that I would bother people by apologizing too much, "sorry" might be the only word out of my mouth.

 

In Japan this offensiveness obsession is called "Taijin kyofusho" and often involves somatic obsessions such as worrying about having a bad odor. I have had that for years, probably since the start of puberty. When I was younger I used to worry constantly that I was emitting a stench that I was unaware of, and that everyone around me was just being polite by not mentioning it. Now I eat Altoids obsessively because I am worried that I have bad breath… ironically probably giving me bad breath because of all the sugar. I also have strange bodily obsessions like thinking there is something unpleasant on my face, and have to touch my face or check a mirror to make sure nothing's there.

 

Fuck it. I'm going to take my Zyprexa now, and enjoy it while I have it, because I may not be able to afford it next month.

1 Comment
  1. Hildico 11 years ago

    OMG the mice in your icon are so cute \"\"

     

    I don't think I have it quite bad enough for it to qualify as BDD, but I will look for Camus next time I visit the library. Thanks for the rec!

     

    I'm sure my therapist will think of something rude for me to do… she's very creative. ::shiver::

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