Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Are YOU Obsessed???

There is a new show on A&E called Obsessed about people with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

Here is a short description about the show:

Intense and highly personal, A&E's true-life docuseries Obsessed examines the lives of everyday people impris- oned by unmanageable, repetitive behaviors and sometimes debilitating fear. Whether it is Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, General Anxiety Disorder, Hoarding or a variety of phobias, the unscripted series gives viewers a chance to see first-hand how an obsession can radically affect a person's life.

Here is a sample of the people they have had on the show:

Nicole has to control what her mother and brother's hands do. They can't be loose, they must be together, clenched, or hidden, or she goes into a severe state of panic. Nicole has an aversion to "soft touch" - but only with her mother and brother. When her mother touches something "too lightly," Nicole is compelled to touch it with great force, hit it, or plug her ears. In addition, whenever her mother makes a "K" sound while speaking, Nicole has to make a hard, repetitive "K" sound to counter the softness of her mom's "K." These obsessions make it hard for her to be as close as she'd like with her family and really limits the amount of time they can spend together. The last time the three of them were together in a room (aside from holidays) was years ago. Nicole also pulls out her eyelashes. She says the pleasure of this act sends a rush all over her body, but the immediate guilt afterwards is devastating. She is reduced to tears because it isn't "normal."

At this point, Nidia's OCD runs her entire life. Unless she's asleep, she is engaging in rituals of some form of another. She washes her hands upwards of 50 times a day, to the point where the skin is cracking. She limits her food intake to minimize her bowel movements, and when she does have a bowel movement, she spends hours in the shower administering enemas and cleaning herself out with a toothbrush. She doesn't stop until she bleeds, which is how she determines she is done. On two occasions this resulted in hospitalization and she required blood transfusions to save her life. Once out of the shower, she covers herself from head to toe with body sprays to minimize any odors she may give off. Mat has become an unwilling participant in her OCD, as he feels he must be present for her shower ritual in case something goes wrong, letting her know when it's time to get out because she has the tendency to zone out while performing her ritual. Nidia rarely leaves home so as not to be too far from her bathroom. She cleans her dog, Bubba, to excess, brushing his teeth and wiping his anus and paws multiple times per day. Her inability to work has caused financial strain, and her exhaustion and fears of leaving the house have limited her social life and resulted in a complete lack of intimacy with her husband. Mat is on the brink of leaving Nidia because as much as he loves her, he can no longer handle the stress of it all.

Before you get freaked out, let me tell you that while these are the extremes, OCB (obsessive compulsive behavior) is REALLY common. Most people have it, in fact.

Here is mine- something that until now only my husband and a few really close friends know about me.

If I get a drink of water out of the faucet with a GLASS, I HAVE to rinse the inside and outside of the glass THREE times, in a clockwise circular motion, otherwise I WILL NOT drink out of the glass.

The funny thing is, this rule only applies under certain conditions...such as:

It has to be a GLASS- not plastic, or a mug, or anything else.

It has to be water running out of the faucet- getting a drink out of the fridge doesn't count.

It has to be ME getting the drink- I don't care if my husband gets me a drink and doesn't rinse the glass.

What are YOUR OCB's????


  1. I have to take 3 paper towels when drying my hands in a public bathroom. No clue why, but I noticed that's always the number.

  2. I alphabetize everything. I mean I am constantly alphabetizing in my head and sometimes rearranging the letters to figure out what other words I can make out of the word I am fixating on.

    I know. It is weird.


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