Wednesday, December 07, 2005

OCD – The quirky mental illness

Okay, I have OCD, the cutesy acronym for obsessive compulsive disorder. Actually I like the moniker "OCD." Growing up, people would call my "anal" and it did not seem very lady-like (or girl-like). "Anal retentive" I guess was what it was short for, and I just did not like the idea of retaining anything in my arse. Know what I mean.

I am not going to tell you all of the particulars of OCD – there are actually some aspects of this disorder that are not that pleasant.

I have been diagnosed with OCD – actually, it happened after I started counseling. I had a lot of the classic symptoms. I actually did not even know about the disorder before I entered counseling. And you can take medicine to lessen the symptoms – but I will tell you that the medications are particularly influential on your thoughts, and to some extent, your personality. I am glad that I took these drugs, but I am now off of them. I would rather deal with my OCD than the side-effects of the drugs.

I don't want this entry to be clinical; I am an OCD patient, not some sort of counselor. But I have learned a lot about OCD – and I definitely don't want to talk about the demons.

So instead of saying something clinical, I will let you know what happened the other day at the gym, and it is because of OCD (not that I should blame OCD for this, but if I did not have OCD, it would not have happened; I blame myself, but part of me, all of me, has OCD).

Anyway, so I am in the gym. And I go to the gym 5 days per week – and have a different routine each day of the week. Tuesdays are swim days. I am at my locker, after opening it, and I am getting into my very plain-looking "Olympic" one-piece bathing suit (actually, it is made by Dolfin – and I think it may be a Speedo knock-off). And as I am carefully placing some of my clothes in the duffle-bag, I notice a small hole in my panties. Without really thinking, I toss them in the nearly garbage. I continue placing everything very carefully in the locker, and I am off to hit the showers before swimming.

I am a clean person – but I still don't really understand getting wet before swimming. It is a rule, and as a person with OCD, I salute, shower, and then hit the lanes. So after the swim – in an indoors pool that is 5 degrees too warm to really swim well in, I og back to the locker, grab my shampoo, hit the showers.

Then I come back to my locker – and get ready to dress and leave. I search through my duffle, and I can't find my freaking panties. They are just gone. Then I trace my actions back to me tossing them in the garbage. So I dress without panties. More uncomfortable than sexy, and I am a little surprised actually. That is little embarrassment #1 because of OCD. The other was as I was dressing.

I heard a cel phone go off in a locker. And my first instinct was to find a piece of paper to take a message – you know, something like, "Hey, I heard your cel phone go off while I was dressing. It went off three times; it could be important." Then I thought, "Man, this is ridiculous. It was a compulsion to perform that menial task.

Not terribly insightful of witty today, just writing words. Oh, and the next day, I brought an extra pair of panties to put in my desk drawer, "just in case."


Goddess said...

You know, I have a disorder as well. I dont know the name of it, but everything has to be in its place all the time. If it is not in its place, it is out just long enough to finish whatever it was I was doing with it.
Very hard to be that way with a 7 year old and a 3 and a half year old.
To their credit, the kinda roll their eyes and laugh at me as I am exclaiming that there is no way Barbie needs all of her furniture at one time. I mean, she isn't even sleeping in the bed.
I used to be very, uh anal, about their rooms, but I now just close the door and go in there at the end of the night to pick up before they go to bed. Of course, this is after they "pre-cleaned" for me, so I wont have a heart attack.
As far as wearing panties, I got into the habit of not wearing them that often. With low rise jeans, I just hate how they always seem to be popping out, screaming at everyone around to look at me! Arent I pretty?
So yeah, I guess I only dont wear them with jeans. Or pantyhose. Everything else I still do. Hey, I spent good money on those under garmets!
Welcome to the NPW, (no panty world!) If you practice, I promise it will get easier than cursing!

Grant said...

Are you sure you're OCD? It doesn't seem that extreme to me. I think a lot of doctors are quick to diagnose and label, especially when there are drugs to be pedalled. Of course, what do I know about OCD. I'm APDO. :-)

Ddot the King said...

I agree with grant. Doctors diagnose people far too quickly. Like telling me I need medication simply because I think I'm a King. Losers. Anyway that was a funny story. Sad but funny. On another note Monk used to be funny but now I rarely watch it.

Ddot the King said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Leesa said...

goddess: thanks for the story.

grant: After reading about OCD, I am pretty sure the diagnosis was correct. I am not going to go into the "real symptoms" here - some of them are more scary. I just was thinking about a cutsy story - the only part that is a bit obsessive is the fact that now I have spare panties in my desk.

ddot: I understand; actually people take an average of 9 years to diagnose OCD. Could be a mis-diagnosis, but after reading about it a few years ago (after diagnosis), I am pretty sure I have it. The compulsive part is okay by me - it is just some of those images that keep popping in my brain that I don't like.

~Deb said...

You know, the most intelligent people with high IQ's are the ones who most likely have these disorders. AND----did you know that intelligence borderlines with insanity? Isn't that fun? (hehe)

I have it too sweetie---not only do I have OCD, but I am also a hyochondriac, which interferes with my doctor's visits, because I do not want to touch those dirty door knobs. I have a weird thing about touching shopping cart handles, and.......holding hands freaks me out. My girlfriend HATES when I don't hold her hand, and that's something I never told her. Shhh, I hope she doesn't read your blog.

We'll live to be 100 yrs old with our problems----it's definitely a good thing!

Great post!

Monica said...

Ohhhh if only we could share our excentricities...I'm ADD (undiagnosed ny a doc) and whole I have some OCD issues (crooked pictures, mini blinds, and phamphlets on counters) my bigger issue is in my own environment I have to make a concious effort to 1. see and 2. care and 3. do something about the little cluttery things. I have somewhat given up on the care bit....I just need to see and do, or it begins to look like my house has been ransacked.
I got lucky for a few weeks last winter...I was down with the flu for days with a VERY high fever and apparently burned off whatever distracts me form seeing and doing, and for weeks my house was to bottom. As I got back to normal physically (and gained back the 15 pounds I lost) it wore off.

Leesa said...

Deb: Yeah, serial killers are suppose to have high IQ's too. Hmmmmmm. Not a group I want to be associated with. Oh, and I am not a hypocondriac, but when I go to the doctor's office, I have to remember not to reveal all of my symptoms. Because I get too detailed.

"Do you have a fever."
I have noticed that my temp is up 0.2 degrees. When I am sick, I check my temp every hour or so. You know, just in case there is a change (and it normally varies slightly).

monica: Funny. I wish I could have a high fever and lose part of my excentricities. Although I like my querkiness (sp?).

Anonymous said...

The signs and symptoms of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder over 6.6 million people (one out of every 40 people) suffer from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCS). This disorder often begins at times of emotional stress, major life transitions, health problems, and events representing new levels of responsibility.

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