How Do You Really Know?
Q: I was diagnosed with OCD about a month ago and I keep thinking "how do you know". I mean I do have many of the symptoms but I don't wash my hands compulsively or do other compulsions. All I do is let's say something happens during the day that scares me (there are a few) then I will pretty much go crazy for the day, week, or if its severe enough year. Right now I am feeling calm but I think I know why. You see ever since i've turned 24 I gained 10 pounds that I can't seem to lose. Well really I actually think I can lose it (i've been skinny all my life) but everytime I start my diet and the weight begins to come off I begin thinking that the reason why I am losing the weight is because I have cancer and that I am dying so then I freak out for a while, stop my diet and then become normal for a bit until I attempt the diet thing again. During this diet phase I freak out. The last time I attempted it I developed a cyst in my mouth. Can you imagine what happened?? I FREAKED out. If I exercise, I attribute the sore muscles to Hodgeskins disease and then I FREAK out. I really want to lose these 10 pounds because I will feel a lot better about myself but I can't without going nuts. Is this OCD for real?
A: Ha ha ha. Laughing with you, not at you. I used to think like this all the time. Everytime I got a cold and my lymph nodes swelled, I would think "Cancer"!! I actually got a cyst in my breast at age 25 and assumed the worst. I totally understand this one. There are many different OCD symptoms. I dont get the contamination one which involves washing hands. My OCD is mostly just mental thoughts which I dismiss by running through thoughts in my head and dont involve physical compulsions. I actually got a cyst in my breast at age 25 and assumed the worst. How did you know that you had a cyst in your breast? For the past year almost my breast has been hurting me on the side. From June to October I was in a horrible state (checking for lumps every 5 minutes) but I never felt any lumps. Anyways by October I began driving my boyfriend so nuts that he insisted that I go to a clinic to relieve my mind. After staying up nights and pretty much almost failing all of my midterms I decided that if it was "C" then I should probably get it over with and go to the doctor. So I went to the clinic (I have no family doctor I hate doctors that know you). The doctor felt around and said I had no lumps and that the likelihood of having "C" at 24 was very small and that "C" doesn't hurt. Anyways I felt better for like 5 hours and then I went nutty again. Finally now I have just gotten used to the pain. It only hurts when you touch it in a certain area and some days aren't as bad as others. I also now get nervous about taking showers because everytime I do I have a compulsion to check for a lump which even the idea FREAKS me out. I also hate looking at my body because I am scared I will find something that I haven't seen before and it will FREAK me out (ie the mouth cyst). In my opinion not knowing about something is so much more relieving then knowing. Anyways if you don't mind my asking, did you have a lump or was there pain and no lump? I actually feel my OCD flaring up today (if I even have it who knows) so maybe if you want to answer, it may be better if you answer after april 17 because I have a final exam then and I won't be able to study if you answer the wrong answer. You see I am graduating this semester I need to pass this exam and thats it I will have my BCOMM finally. Anyways thanks.