Do you think you may have, or know you have, OCD? - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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Do you think you may have, or know you have, OCD?

There was a thread started a few days ago titled "Do you think you have ADD?" and that got me thinking "I wonder how many out there are OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) like I am."

I've never been formally diagnosed with it but I'm pretty sure that's what you'd call it. Certain things in my life just have to be a certain way.

For instance,

1. When I was working as a medical transcriptionist all my reference books had to be lined in up alphabetical order in the bookends to my left. Whenever I would need to look something up I would take out a book, look at it and put it back right away. I knew others at the office who could let books just pile up beside them but not me.

2. When I am eating a meal I generally take a bite of the meat, then the starch (potato, pasta, rice), then the vegetable and rotate accordingly. I also don't like to have foods touching each other on the plate, unless they're meant to be mixed together. When I drink a can of soda I almost always drink out of the same glass and have to have ice in the glass.

3. I have a lot of music CDs. I have all of these lined up in alphabetical order first and then chronological order if I have multiple CDs from the same artist. My husband used to love to pick on that one while we were dating. He would come over to my place and if I was in the bathroom or something he would deliberately mess them up. But it never took me long to realize they weren't in their proper place. I'd usually have it figured out a couple minutes after getting back to the living room and put them back where I had them.

4. When I decorate the walls in the house, pictures and other things going with it are usually organized in a symmetrical pattern. When I place decorations on a shelf things are usually designed by height - the tallest items being in the middle of the shelve and working my way outside to the shortest items.

I'm really only OCD about certain areas in my life. There's lots of things I could care less about as far as organization is concerned. You should see my closets! Not only that, with babies in the house now it's kind of hard to keep things organized all the time. It just defeats the purpose. I'll get my house back someday - when the kids are all grown up and have a place of their own!

EDIT: One more thing I'm obsessive about - proofreading my posts on the Cat Forum. First I preview it, then after I submit I read it again and if there is something I don't like or think I should add I have to do that.
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 03:29 PM
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nah, you're not OCD! There are a lot of things I'm very particular about, too, but everyone has those. We are all different, but have a lot of preferences in common!

If you had OCD, there wouldn't be any question about it. You would get stuck in patterns that you felt "trapped" in. It's not something that you have control over and that affects just CERTAIN areas of your life. Your WHOLE life is impacted by OCD. The acronym is one that we have all started just tossing around when we often mean to say "particular." The real disorder, itself, is not one that we would talk about so lightly. It is a battle every day to try to take control of your actions and behaviours, rather than being ruled by them.

Someone being very neat or particular about their food not touching are common behaviours. I don't like my food to touch, either. I also have my CDs in a particular order and notice RIGHT AWAY if anything is missing or messed up, my closets are colour coordinated coordinated within the colours, my bookcases are organized by colour.... But, the key word there is "PARTICULAR." We all have our preferences for how things should be. It is how we take control of our world. OCD is a lot more complicated than just how you like to arrange things on shelves, your plate, your bookcase, or in your CD holder. The behaviours of OCD aren't choices we make. They are compulsions that we can't help without help.
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 04:08 PM Thread Starter
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I didn't mean to offend anyone who may have been diagnosed with clinical OCD but I honestly believe that there are varying levels of it. For instance, it may affect one person in the area of cleanliness - cleaning everything all the time, washing hands constantly, etc. Another may be effected by patterns and notice things like brick layouts, ceiling tiles, sidewalk squares, etc.

Maybe I'm wrong and I am just picky in some areas. I just know that it bugs the heck out of me if those "particulars" that I spoke about are messed up and I consider that to be a mild form of OCD, not clinical. There are many other "particulars" that I have that I didn't even get into. That's another reason I considered OCD. As my husband says, maybe I'm just anal.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 05:06 PM
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Laffs sounds more like Autism to me The guy behind till at Asda the other week asked if I was autistic or something because I line up and stack my shopping on conveyor belt in an odd way - not leaving any spaces

I wouldn't worry about it tho... if you had OCD it'd be a lot worse... Like, you would feel like world would end or someone would die if something wasn't it order.

One of my nursing portfolios was on OCD... there are various types but not necessarily recognised "degrees" of OCD... However they do say that some people have Obsessive Compulsive Personailties and that sounds more like what you are describing

Hayley x x
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by 2kids3cats4me
As my husband says, maybe I'm just anal.
Welcome to the club! We're just a bunch of control-freaks here!
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 06:38 PM
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Everybody has a little bit of OCD

I have OCD when I am stressed...
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 06:44 PM
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I throw around the OCB term as well. I am not sure if I have it or not but I have noticed my mom & brother have it as well.

The one thing is the organization thing, where I have to have everything straight not even in particular order just so they are not sticking out and going in the same direction.

Another thing is that I repeat myself or asking a question one more time just to make sure. I would already know the answer but I had this feeling inside that made me have to ask it again to feel better. After I ask the question I would be fine. I really don't know if it's OCB or just anal behavior

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 08:05 PM
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I don't think I have OCD, but I have a couple of 'number' quirks...not so much anymore, but pretty obsessive about it as a kid:

For example: When I look(ed) at a digital clock, I wanted to find a numerical pattern: i.e. if it is 1:23, that is is in sequence and it is an addition pattern: 1+2=3. I used to be much worse about this, and only catch myself doing it sometimes. When I was a child (I had a very tough time with math, btw) and looked at a digital clock, if I couldn't find a pattern, I would continue to watch the clock, preferably without blinking, until it got to a number that I COULD find a pattern with. Yeah, weird. I really think that started when I was having trouble with my math classes and this was a practice for me. The faster I could find it, the more gratifying it was.

Now, when I get tense I sometimes tap my fingers on my palms or my thighs, one at a time in fours: starting with the thumb. This would end with the ring finger and begin the next round with the pinky, which would end with the middle finger, etc...and I wouldn't stop until I got to end on the pinky. Then, I repeat. It is VERY annoying and I don't usually realize I am doing it...but by the time I do, I have to finish...God forbid that I skip a finger or lose count...then I have to start all over. I will be amazed if my description of this one makes any sense at all. btw...this does nothing to alleviate tension or makes it worse.

That said, I am generally sane.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 08:07 PM
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The thing about OCD is it controls your life.
The classic example is people who have to go back and check things over and over again even though they "know" they've checked them. This gets to the point where the checking takes so much time you have no time for anything else.
Doors being locked. You never actually get around to leaving the house because you keep having to go back and recheck to make sure you've locked the doors. When you try to leave, you need to go back again because you're not "sure" you locked that ONE door.

I think everyone has a touch of control behaviors, but the difference is if you can still function or not.

I know when I go on a trip for a few days I have to make a list of everything I need to do before I leave. Simple things like turn off coffee pot, front door locked, garage door down, lights off, ect... are on that list. When I've completed the task, I physically cross it off the list. If I don't do this, I spend my entire vacation worried that I've left the garage door open, or the coffee pot on But once I've crossed it off of my list, then I'm okay.
That is strange, but not OCD. If I had OCD even the list wouldn't be enough.

Jennifer and the monsters
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-28-2005, 08:32 PM
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I agree that a lot of us have a touch of OCD, at least about certain things.

At work, I need to be extremely organized and efficient, otherwise chaos ensues. Those of us who are successful at this job tend to be control freaks and show great attention to detail. We have had several employees who, while good nurses, were just a little too laid-back. We have to double check ourselves and be very detail oriented, or things get missed.
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