Kat, 32, New Zealand

I’m a nurse. I have to perform rituals in the hope that my patients or people I love won’t die as a result of my stupidity.

kat-no-textI have had OCD since childhood and my behaviours often change. I have had a mental ritual of prayer since the age of 11 where I pray for everyone I know to be safe and free from harm. I am also a checker and have spent my life constantly checking to make sure no one dies (e.g. “Is the element off? If it’s not, my whole family may burn to death.” “Is the door locked? If not, someone may get in and kill everybody”). I was obsessed with cleanliness and symmetry in my early teen years but later developed an eating disorder and have obsessive rituals around food and eating. I hate the OCD and am aware that the eating disorder is a coping mechanism that although unhealthy, is so much easier than dealing with intrusive thoughts. I have also become a problem drinker.

Categories: The Wall

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2 replies »

  1. I admire the accomplishment of becoming a nurse despite the daily struggle of OCD thoughts. I hope that you can direct that compassion towards your patients toward yourself. I hope you can seek mental health therapy (or continue with therapy) so you can use more compassionate ways of dealing with the struggle than harming ypurself through disordered eating and drinking.

    You give your patients 110% to your patients. You deserve 110% as well. From one OCD suffered to another.

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  2. Sounds like a bit of the old Pure O mixed in with normal OCD. That is interesting about the eating disorder being a kind of compulsion in response to the intrisuve thoughts. We tend to be creative people and come up with creative solutions for fears we don’t know how to process. Well done for talking about it.

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