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OCD and HIV
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OCD and HIV

Hello, i have OCD since i was a child. But recently, i'm very afraid about having HIV. It began i think, after a risk exposure. Yesterday, for example, i was buying a coffee, and then, when i opened the top of the cup, i realized that the coffee wasn't full, and the foam was strange and quite red. Already thought in my mind 'it's blood'. Then, i was the entire evening  trying to figure out how could it happened. And my conclusion, is, that maybe they gave me the coffe that another person left.... with blood in it.
I really feel bad about these. Because i don't know actually is a real risk anyway.
Thanks so much everyone here.  
Tags: OCD, Blood, HIV, risk, people
15 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_m_tn
It generally does start after some type of risky exposure but although OCD can't be cured it can be treated.You need to see your doctor and get the ball rolling from there.Medication,CBT & exposure therapy are some of the treatments used.All the best.
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks RainLover71. But the situation i describe, do you think it is a real risk? (the coffee thing)
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Avatar_m_tn
No,in reality it is never a risk even if there was blood in the coffee because HIV is very fragile & becomes inactive once exposed to air.It was your OCD mind telling you it was a risk.
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Avatar_m_tn
ahh, well... it's freaking annoying. Because i think i know that it is not possible. Anyway, i cannot forget it. It happened yesterday, and i'm still on it.
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1699033_tn?1405352675
The reality is Charles that you are thinking irrationally.  You already know this by your statement "I think I know that it is not possible."  What have you used in the past to get over your irrational thoughts?  Do you use CBT?  Did you take medication at some point in your life?  Do you see a therapist?  

What you have to do is not give these types of thought any credit.  I'm sure you have purchased many coffees in your life and it was no big deal.  You need to remember those past times and use it against this thought in order to move past it.  Past positive experiences are a key.  

Tell yourself "ENOUGH" and "MOVE ON."  Any type of self-communication that will get you past this thought.  If you nip it right from the get-go, it can't take on a life of its own and make you completely crazy.  
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks so much JGF25. I was using 'Sertraline', but i left the treatment about 2 years since now. I was using that, because i have a biological tendency to depression, and, of course, the OCD that is with me since i have 6 or 7. I will try to do what you say, actually, is what i do sometimes: i tell myself enough, and try to move on. If i don't do this, i think i would collapsed.

* Now, is my OCD talking: 'so, i cannot get hiv by this way?'
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1699033_tn?1405352675
No, you cannot get HIV this way....it is definitely your OCD talking.  Have you been under any stress lately?  Anything that would make your OCD spike?  
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Avatar_m_tn
Yes, i have exams at Uni, and i feel worst about losing time thinking about this.
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1699033_tn?1405352675
Well of course those exams would do it!  I have found that it doesn't take much to set us off and back into OCD mode.  You may want to think about seeing a doctor or even a therapist on campus to see if there is a way to get perhaps some klonopin or Xanax to help you through this period.  It may put you to sleep through your exams though.  Anyway, you know what it is and you know why it is happening....practice your self-communication and I hope that it goes away for you.  
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks so much! i really appreciate your concern.
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Avatar_m_tn
I just wonder charles if there was no HIV or blood borne viruses whether you would have had that reaction--the answer is no.The point I am trying to make is that most of the population fear this virus because of the images we see of people with full blown AIDS and the stigma of the virus but in reality it's an extremely difficult virus to contract.Fear & OCD go hand in hand.Another very important fact now is that HIV,although a chronic disease is very manageable with ARV medication--it's not a death sentence anymore.
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Avatar_m_tn
That's a very good point indeed, RainLover71. Thanks a lot! you both.
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2083175_tn?1336085912
I myself have a fear of contamination, germs and diseases. I can understand how you feel, I can also understand how your brain works when confronted with the unkown. My mind also goes directly to blood and the worst case scenario whenever I see a stain on my clothes or a surface that could be brown, red, orange anything that could be blood. And of course of it could be blood it has to be contaminated. When I say it like that and really think it through, I can see that it is more than illogical. It is OCD and OCD is fear. Fear of the unknown, and the uncontrollable.

In the situation you described above there is zero risk of infection. None. At all. You preceived there to be a risk, but I can assure you there was none. You have to know the facts. HIV is a fragile virus. Becoming infected by casual or enviromental contact is slim to none. Now, I understand OCD and that slim to none is still a preceived risk in our minds. You cannot allow this to be a thought in your head. I know that OCD can leave us feeling helpless, but we are in control of our thoughts. We just allow them to over power us. Is it easy to tell the thoughts to bug off? No. Not at all. It is a very difficult thing to do. It takes practice and a lot of hard hard work.

You cannot allow this to control your life because you, like all of us deserve better. When you have a thought that is an HIV fear, let your mind go instead to the facts. NO, this is not a risk. If you have to repeat it every time this fear pops into your head then do it. You have to continually fight the monster to put it at bay. And of course, always remember that we are here to support you and help you through this battle. You are not alone. And together we are stronger than we are alone.
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks lola! it's all about the 'what if' like i rode. 'What if someone putted blood in my coffee, or what if they gave to me the coffee from another person, or what if...' A big list, that involved the worst. In this case, that someone put blood in my coffee, because i noticed the foam was strange, and it wasn't full, then, i worried a lot, and my mind goes beyond, and beyond trying to find the risk, or trying to find the no-risk and be safe and in peace. That's the cruel part of it, because i was happy days ago, but it comes back, and attack you and you feel guilty and responsible of the act that is causing you this anxiety and fear. I tell myself 'why you drank the coffe?' 'why?' and you feel sad because you cannot change the past, and you try to seek answers that calm you down. Well, it's a quite a S****y feeling.   - excuse me about the S** word -
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2083175_tn?1336085912
I totally here you, we all have good days and bad days and the what ifs are always there. And I also know the feeling of guilt, why did I do that, but the truth is that every day we face different obstacles that will send our OCD soaring, but there are also good days where we will not fear much at all.

It's not an easy thing to do, but we can get through it.
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