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Unhappy OCD is taking over my life - January 28th 2015, 03:17 PM

I have really been struggling with my OCD lately. There's 4 main battles I deal with constantly. One is fear that a fire will be started. Anything can set that off. I can be watching TV and all of a sudden start panicking and thinking about the house going up in flames, and then I start to smell smoke so I get up and check everywhere. Another is pet related. I always have to double and triple check to make sure they are all alright. 3rd and 4th are the worst. 3rd is smells. I get intense anxiety when I smell any human smells. I literally feel like I can't breathe around people. It is really hard in public because I'm always on the verge of passing out from trying to not breathe.
Last is hard to explain. I get convinced that various parts of my body are not supposed to be there (like nails or tiny spots of skin.) And I will pick at it nonstop until I feel like its gone.
Any advice? Whenever I mention it my mom just says I need to get over it or she'll say I need help (which is a useless suggestion because I lost my job and can't afford therapy, and my parents won't help).
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Re: OCD is taking over my life - January 28th 2015, 03:27 PM

Hello! Have you tried checking the services your community has to offer? Sometimes you can get free therapy services provided by your town or state. (Which would be something beneficial to look in to.) Other than that, maybe you should find other things to focus on when this happens. Like when you start to pick at your nails or skin, you could try working out, or doing something that involves using your hands. Try using air fresheners when you think you smell smoke, so instead of smelling something that triggers this behavior, you smell you favorite scent. I hope this helps! Feel free to message me anytime.

"One day, in retrospect, the years of struggle will strike you as the most beautiful." ~Sigmund Freud

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Re: OCD is taking over my life - January 28th 2015, 08:55 PM

hey there,
I've had a lot of OCD tendencies (not officially diagnosed) as a child and still do. It gets worse when I'm already stressed out about other things. You're really not alone in these four things you mentioned because I actually can relate to 3 out of 4 of these.
It can get pretty intense but you can work through it. One thing that helped was to challenge these thoughts. It helped to talk to myself (you don't have to do it out loud :P) and almost pretend I'm another person and I was helping a friend get over it.
Another thing you can try if you prefer to go to therapy but can't pay for it at the moment is try online resources. There are online resources these days that would give you worksheets, videos etc so you sort of do a "self-help"
Since you're 25 years old, I don't know if you're currently in a university but if you are, there are usually services that the school offers either free or on a sliding scale. Furthermore, there are generally support groups that are free or for low cost that are run by peers who struggle with OCD/anxiety or mental health problems in general.
I hope I helped some, and that you figure things out.
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