I haven’t written on here in absolutely ages. About three months, in fact. I guess I just got out of the habit of it when I came back to the U.K. (I was abroad for several months with my main aim being to devote time to OCD research and recovery). Since coming home I have continued with that, but it’s been harder for several reasons:
⁃ big life change in returning to the U.K.
⁃ trying to ‘get my life back together’ in terms of jobs and working out where to live : it’s difficult to deal with this stuff at the same time as working on ERP/recovery (I’ll probably talk more about this shortly…)
⁃ facing old triggers that were either absent or less stressful when I was away, in the form of places (Sheffield, for example, where I used to live and where I was well, then unwell) and people (e.g. my parents, who I hate hurting with my struggles)
I’ve had some huge breakthroughs with exposure and response prevention techniques, but have struggled to maintain the perspective shift experienced during those moments of clarity, which has led me to more frustration, fear and, at times, despair. In those times, desperate to return to a healthy perspective free of anxiety, I’ve used ERP as a compulsion: if I just do what I did before, I’ll feel better, forgetting that what induced the perspective shift was acceptance of my thoughts, of uncertainty, of fear, of the possibility of dying, rather than using a particular technique to make myself feel better.
The thing I am currently struggling with is acceptance of the fact that I have OCD, instead of desperately trying to get rid of it. Ironically, desperately trying to get rid of it is what fuels it, and acceptance is what makes OCD subside and wither away at its core.
I’m getting quite triggered writing this: what if I can’t accept? I’ll have to kill myself/I’ll end up killing myself/I’ll never be okay and I can’t live with this so I’ll want to kill myself. Etc.
Trying not to reassure myself, but it’s hard.