Hello ACF! After seeing other people on this forum suffering from scrupulosity, I think it’s time for me to tell my story.
Two and a half years ago I realised I had scrupulous tendencies: I was going to confession far more often that I ever had before and doubting the validity of each confession, as well as that one time when I went to confession three times in one day.
I was questioning the type of music I was listening to and the movies and tv shows I was watching. I would analyse the lyrics to make sure everything was okay. I was allowing my thoughts to get the better of me in general.
I would have trouble praying. I thought every word I prayed had to be perfect, so it would take me a good half an hour just to say one decade of the rosary.
I developed a couple of other forms of OCD from this also.
I was obsessed with perfection to say the least. All I wanted to do was please God and it was putting me on the edge on insanity.
I was like so many other people on here; asking questions regarding the choices I’d made and whether they were sinful or not and hoping someone could put my mind at ease by telling me I was being stupid.
So after a while of this I realised that by relying on others was doing me more hard than good; I needed proper help.
I honestly did not know where to start. I was a mess. Where do I go? Personally, I think it’s one of the hardest health issues to solve. If I went to the doctor, he wouldn’t understand the spiritual side of things, but if I went to a spiritual director, they wouldn’t understand the whole psychology of it.
I had a few priests that tried to help me, but unfortunately I soon realised that it was
So I went to the doctor and was diagnosed with anxiety. Up until that point I never realised the scrupulosity was a type of OCD, meaning it’s all driven by anxiety.
The doctor referred me to a psychologist and after a good few months I realised it was rubbish. Someone talking to me about my problems wasn’t going to help them go away.
So I saw a spiritual director for a couple of months. To be honest, that hardly helped either.
So I went back to the doctor. I was literally running out of hope by this stage. That’s when he put me on medication. That was the only thing that made me better. After so long suffering, I had finally reached the light at the end of the tunnel. Within a couple of months I had started to get better and so many of my symptoms were slowly going.
I’m still recovering to this day, but I’m in a much better place today than I was two years ago.
I’ve learned so much from this experience, one thing being that scrupulosity, anxiety and mental illness in general is not something that is from God, or that He wants. He doesn’t want us to suffer. He was us to live life to the full. Worrying and troublesome thoughts prevents us from doing that.
This is a quote you should hang on to if you’re in the same boat as me:
When you’re at your worst moment.
When everything seems impossible.
When the world seems against you.
The breakthrough is right around the corner,
I promise you that
If you believe you are suffering from scrupulosity I advise you to do the following things:
1.) Get off this forum - resist the urge to come on here. It is only making you worse. Anxiety forces things to stick in your head, meaning you may overthink things you see on the forum.
Also you can’t rely on other people to act as your conscience. Obviously if you’re scrupulous, then your conscience has been corrupted. It takes a while to fix this, but it will happen.
2.) Get help - I suggest you go to the doctor and explain your situation. Obviously if he’s not religious, he will have a hard time understanding the whole concept of being spiritually ill, but he will be able to recognise the signs of anxiety.
3.) Pray - prayer is the most powerful tool aginst the devil. Keep your faith as strong as possible throughout your time of suffering and offer this up to God; it will be worth it in the end. There’s also no shame in asking others to pray for you; the more prayers the better
I felt I had to share my story. I really hope that if you’re suffering from scrupulosity, you will be able to take something from my experience and use it to help yourself.
God loves us. He wants us to be happy and enjoy life. Take things one day at a time and I promise you, He will help you.
Don’t forget to smile