Monday, August 16, 2010

The Beauty of OCD Friends

I posted a while ago I posted about the plusses of being part of an OCD support group. In honor of my group's upcoming summer picnic, I thought I'd talk about the benefits of making friends of your support group members.

  • You look forward to seeing each other. For people with particularly debilitating OCD, or during times of intense struggle, seeing friends at my support group reminds me that OCD isn't all there is to my life. When I can look forward to hearing about what's going on in someone else's life, it takes the focus off of my own.
  • You don't always have to talk about OCD. At the group, of course, the tendency is to talk about our afflictions. But sometimes that can get old, and sometimes we just want to talk about movies, our families, or our jobs. When you're genuinely friends with the people at your support group, it's easier to relate to each other on these more personal levels.
  • You can go "way back." A number of the people with whom I attend the support group have known each other from other support groups, therapy sessions, and the like. This history creates a feeling of "I knew you when," whether the "when" was a hard time in someone's life, a good time in someone's life, or a benchmark for progress. The longer you attend support groups, the further back you'll go with the people there.
  • You can relate. I recently made a friend outside of my OCD group with whom I can share my OCD struggles. She doesn't have OCD, but she can relate. In that way I know she understands me and how my mind works.

Here's to a fun-filled picnic this weekend!


  1. Have fun at the picnic! I just went back to my OCD support group for the first time in a couple years, and it was really nice to see everyone.

  2. In my group we always joked that we couldn't have a party / picnic, because no one would eat anyone else's food.

  3. Hi, Anonymous.
    (I didn't post your comment because I wasn't sure if you wanted me to given that we're in the group together!)

    I hope you see this comment, too: I'm glad you did your assignment! I can't wait to hear how it went! :)

  4. Your blog has been my OCD support group! Thank you so much for posting about what you're going through. I believe OCD is what I have because it fits with the ever-varying nature of my doubts and fears, but I haven't been diagnosed. I just recently started seeing a therapist and she said she doesn't worry too much about the labels. She is trying something called EMDR which is used for PTSD. Has anyone on here tried EMDR for OCD? I have some memories that can be "traumatic" if I focus on them, but I grew up in a loving home with a wonderful family. I'm concerned that this therapy is just going to make things worse since one of my OCD obsessions is worrying about whether or not I was sexually abused in childhood and have "repressed" it, even though I have no memory WHATSOEVER of anything like that and was very innocent and naive about anything sexual for much longer than most people are privileged to be.

  5. Readers, thanks for your comments. Heather, I've never heard of EMDR--what does it stand for? I'm glad you've found my blog helpful, and I hope your therapy helps you.

    I really need to come on here and post an update soon! A lot has happened since my last post in April.

  6. It's Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing. You focus on a traumatic memory and do these left to right eye movements. The theory is that your brain has not processed those events correctly, and the eye movements help that to happen. There is a lot of pretty good research that shows it helps PTSD. I'm going to go ahead and give it a shot, but I am concerned that it will just get me to obsess more about negative things.