Problems with Scrupulosity


#1

Does anyone else have problems with this? Always being in a fear of sin? I feel like I am constantly in confession. I don’t know if that is a problem as it’s a sacrament however is there a point when it can become a problem?
I only ask because I’ve heard it has driven some saints almost insane and even Martin Luther suffered with extreme scrupolousity to the point it made believe it was impossible to live to Gods standards in the Catholic church. I’m not sure if thats entirely true but it seems to be a problem for me. Does anyone else struggle with it?


#2

I do, although it’s not as bad as it used to be. Make sure your priest knows that you have issues with scrupulosity when you go to confession and follow his advice to the letter. This article is also helpful, at least it was for me:


#3

I absolutely love that essay! I highly recommend it to anyone who suffers from the pain of scrupulosity. I think it should be required reading for scrupulants.


#4

I suffer from scrupulosity/OCD greatly. It can be extremely difficult. (you might also want to look into seeing a therapist, because if you have long term scrupulosity, you may suffer from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and can benefit from medical help).

Let me give you some advice:

What you need to do is find a Priest who is familiar with pastoral treatment of scrupulosity and do exactly as he says, and if you are comfortable with him, start seeing him as your only Confessor. The Catholic Church has developed a very effective pastoral method for helping scrupulants over hundreds of years, but you have to do your part and that is to obey your chosen Priest/Confessor. You will only confess to him, and he will guide you. No going behind his back and do not second guess him and never, ever question his advice on an internet forum, no matter how bad your anxiety is.

For example, I was going to Confession a lot for a while. My Confessor felt this was becoming unhealthy and compulsive so he decided that I can only confess about twice a month, at most. His instructions were that I would wait at least 2 weeks between confessions.

VERY IMPORTANT: do not post questions related to your scruples on here. That is very harmful. Once you find a Priest/Confessor who will work with you, you must take your questions to him when it is allowed. You need to learn to live with the anxiety in the meantime. You follow his rules. It is very important that you use the force of your will to resist giving into scruples, because they are poison for your soul.


#5

I did big time. I converted 5 years ago and it hit me hard to the point where I was always stressed and would spend all day worrying about sin. I was always going to confession confessing doubtful sins.

I knew I could not be right in my scrupulousity. Something was wrong. I saw a ocd specialist and was diagnosed OCD. But I could not continue in treatment past 2 sessions because it was too expensive and my health insurance did not want to cover “talk therapy” so I sought information on scrupulously. 4 books later I got a spiritual director, a Carmelite priest and he predicted I would be better in a year. Well 11 months later I had my scrupulously 95% under control and I maintain that even a couple years later.

You gotta find a spiritual director. I mailed a Carmelite monestary to find mine. I explained my situation and asked if they have a priest who is competent in dealing with scrupulous and would be willing to help me. I’m so glad I did.


#6

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