Help with OCD

Hello.

I recently came to the conclusion that I have obsessive compulsive disorder. For a year now I have struggled with constant aggresive blasphemous, sacriligious, and just disgusting thoughts.

Do I talk to my local confessor, even thought I’m not confirmed yet?

What do I do?

God Bless,

PiousTemplar

Bump

Please help me out

Don’t go to confession too often.If you really feel there is something you want to confess and it will make you feel better then confess.Try to pray as often as you can.Say the rosary daily.It’s my favorite and it can carry you away once you begin to like it.Go to a dark place where you can be alone with God and Our Lady.Confess to them the thoughts and sins you commit.Tell them your sorry and will strive to do better with their help.

Firstly, having dealt with similar issues (anxiety/OCD) for some time now, please allow me to commend you for taking a huge step! It can be a difficult thing to admit.
Secondly, have you been diagnosed by a (qualified!) professional therapist/psychologist? If not, I would highly suggest doing so; there are many Catholic and/or Catholic-friendly psychologists, therapists, and counselors now–some of whom are faithful Catholic priests–who will be able to confirm or clarify your diagnosis.
This is not to say you are totally wrong! On the contrary, you may have hit the nail on the head, but it is always best to go to someone who makes helping others with such things his or her profession, and who works with them daily. For example, if you thought your appendix about to rupture, you wouldn’t try to remove it yourself (at least, I hope you wouldn’t :D); you’d go to the emergency room and have a doctor diagnose and treat you. In that case, you might be spot on about the appendix, but it might instead be a kidney stone or some other ailment.
In the same way, a qualified psychologist/therapist will be able to help you sift through your symptoms and determine your exact diagnosis, as well as possible courses of treatment to help you heal. I have had great success with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, for example. To use CBT, I try to conquer my anxious and compulsive thoughts by changing the way I react to them, and I meet with my counselor a few times a month to talk about my progress and setbacks, as I would go to physical therapy were I recovering from surgery. Only you and your therapist can decide (with God’s guidance, of course) on the best course of action for you to take.
As for your confessor, you should definitely inform him. If he is familiar with OCD, he may be able to give you more guidance in your spiritual walk. However, if he is unfamiliar with this, you should probably find a confessor (if possible) who IS familiar with OCD, as he will be better-able to help you. It’s like a runner picking a coach; if the athlete has an old hamstring injury, there will be some things he shouldn’t do while training so as not to aggravate the old injury. A coach who has not dealt with hamstring injuries probably won’t be quite as much help, but a coach who has dealt with hamstring injuries can help the runner develop a much better training plan, and even give the runner some exercises to do to strengthen the injured area.
Please know that God still loves you more than you can possibly imagine, and that His grace is ALWAYS enough. You are not to blame for your thoughts. They are an involuntary symptom. Nor are you “defective” or “damaged” in some way; we all have our different trials. Saint Therese of Lisieux struggled with anxiety for years, and many other saints suffered in similar ways. Have courage! This is just another battle you have to fight, so arm yourself and know Christ’s love will win in the end. You’re in my prayers.
Sorry for the War-And-Peace-length post; I’m not very good at being concise. :shrug:
Peace and Grace,
Joy
P.S. Saint Dymphna is the patron saint of people with mental difficulties and problems; she’s awesome!

I would talk to the priest who will be your confessor. You wouldn’t have to go to confession to speak to him. Just see if you can make an appointment to discuss this with him. He will have good advice for you. I will pray for you as you make the journey to Catholicism. I know it will be a little more rocky due to the OCD, but don’t give up.:thumbsup:

Thankyou so much for your replies guys! I am loving my progress to confirmation in the Church. I will discuss this as soon as possible with my local parish priest and see if he can guide me in the right area. Joy, your post was most informative and encouraging.

Thanks again! God Bless!

PiousTemplar

It’s important to note that OCD can be handled as a medical problem as well. A doctor need not be a believer in order to understand and treat OCD that has a religious manifestation.

You’re most welcome! Feel free to PM me if you have any more questions/need any more encouragement. Of course, I’m neither God nor a qualified therapist, so I can’t promise perfection, but I’ll do my best. :slight_smile:

I agree with what Joy said. Cognitive behavioral therapy and especially ERT has been so helpful for me. I also highly recommend the book Overcoming Obsessive Thoughts. It’s only like $10 on amazon. It helps SO much and even has a special section specifically for religious OCD.

And here is a warning…I don’t know how bad yours has gotten in the past but look out for times of emotional stress and frailty because it can get REALLY bad. It may be helpful to make a list of ALL your fears…anything at all that scares you no matter how remote or unlikely it is to happen. There may be a time when you will have to face down all of them one after another.

I have really vivid picture-thoughts. When I was a kid my dad called it a photographic memory and it was a great boon to me…I could “see” things in my head so clearly, and had a rich fantasy life. But it can turn right around and bite you in the bum. Especially when you feel a lot of responsibility in your life. But if you stick with ERT long enough (took me 5 solid months!!!) they WILL go away!! Stay strong and remember, God wants you to be brave. You aren’t tainted by what you see you are just facing down the devil.

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