Could use some advice on pinpointing OCD and guilt behavior
I apologize if this post is a bit lengthy. I have been dealing with some sort of OCD guilt that I have never experienced before.
I will preface this by explaining I have never been diagnosed with OCD, though I have had many symptoms over the years. I am a checker. I also scratched my head obsessively as a child, I have a history of intrusive thoughts, and anxiety attacks.
I will just get right to it
Last year my boyfriend (now fiance) went out for New Years Eve with friends., including his roommate, and a friend of the roommate we had never met.
I am not a big drinker and ended up having way to much to drink, coupled with the fact that a week prior, i had my wisdom teeth out and they had used so much anesthesia that i still felt the residual effects, not to mention I was also on hydrocodone for the pain. A very bad combination, especially for someone who is not used to taking any, let alone all.
So we leave the party and walk home with roommate and his friend, i notice along the way he looks EXACTLY like a guy I dated years back. We get back to the apartment and somehow end up in a massive fight with my boyfriend. Luckily, my best friend was staying in the apartment above us so i went upstairs to vent to her.
She asked if I could run downstairs and get her a cigarette. i explain sure, that I believe our mutual friend Derek is sleeping on the couch. I run downstairs quick, wake the sleeping person on the couch, only to be startled that it was the roommate's friend. I asked if he had a cigarette we could have, he explained "yes, they're in my jeans on the floor"..i remember thinking that was odd, and then going back upstairs.
After a little while longer my friend talks me down and I am feeling better about the fight and decide to go to bed with my boyfriend.
The next day i woke up with him, everything was fine. My friend came down, the roomate stayed sleeping until the afternoon, and the roomate's friend left for home before any of us were up.
Here is where the problem comes in-I had a very realistic dream that night that the roommate kissed me.The only way i knew it was a dream was because it was daylight in the dream. I didn't even remember the dream for two days, but once I did i couldn't stop obsessing about it. I even vomited at the thought of it being true. I re-ran the scenario in my head a million times, and even explained it to my best friend. She reassured me that it wasn't even possible, that i was with her the entire time.
Even so, I still cant shake feeling horrifically guilty about this. As time has progressed I've made up even more scenarios in my head like, what if i slept with him and didn't remember? What if I was raped and don't remember? What if these are suppressed thoughts and not scenarios.
My fiance is wonderful. I told him about the dream back when it happened almost a year ago. He assured me that was too out of character for me, and I wouldn't do such a thing. But was also stern that he doesn't stand for cheating and if i ever did, our relationship would be over. We have since gotten engaged and moved in together. We've lost touch with the roommate, and I wouldn't feel comfortable bringing it up anyway...
It feels as though I am subconsciously trying to make myself feel guilty. This has been going on in waves for almost a year. It gets worse when I am menstruating or when I have to be in situations when i am drinking.
Is this normal? Can anyone please give me some advice? I cant wake up the rest of my life feeling this way
All I can say is that you sound like a classic OCD sufferer. You had a paragraph where you wrote "what if" three times. We are essentially playing mind games on ourselves. We take something that didn't happen or are afraid it will happen, then we what-if it, and then we catastrophize it and next thing you know we are believing it did happen or will happen.
Honestly, I think it is time to get some help with this. I started out as a checker too and it used to take me a while to get out the door. Then I moved on to irrational thoughts and boy could I come up with some crazy stuff. Mine flares up when I'm under stress.
So now you are engaged and living together and he throws out the comment that he doesn't stand for cheating. Well obviously that goes without saying but for someone with OCD who has this scenario going on in your head...you are afraid you did something (which you didn't) and that the relationship will end. So there is the big catastrophe that you are playing at.
So my opinion is to get some professional help with this from a psychologist. Get the diagnosis, learn cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and go from there. It will help you with the checking, it will help you stop a panic attack either before it happens (because you will recognize your own thought pattern and what brings it on) or stop it during the panic attack. I use CBT and it is invaluvable. And if that doesn't make it all go away, then you can always think about meds.
I was med free for a number of years but stressors got to be too much and so I went back on meds. I use CBT, take meds and I live a very normal life so don't think for a second that you have to wake up for the rest of your life feeling like you do now. In order to get better though, you do have to act and get the professional help you need. Take care and post again if you need anything else.
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