Valentine’s Day is time for romance, longing hearts everywhere looking forward to that special time with their loved one which reinforces the warmth of their relationship. For many people, though, Valentine’s Day is a torturous time of self-doubt.
It can be the worst day, bringing all kinds of insecurities to the fore, leaving people conflicted and confused, guilty and distrustful, all because of a disorder called Relationship OCD, or ROCD.
ROCD is a form of OCD which strikes romantic relationships. The sufferer has irrational doubts of their partner’s love and goes to extremes to test their commitment. They will constantly call or text, drive by their home or office, and secretly check emails and communication histories.
They may look for telltale signs of infidelity in a facial expression or tone of voice. They yearn and repeatedly ask for reassurance, but it is never satisfying. They can think of nothing else and eventually will destroy the relationship, ironically many times on Valentine’s Day because it provides such a trigger for insecurity.
Obsessive thoughts and doubts about your own feelings
Another type of ROCD causes the sufferer to doubt their own feelings taking the same obsessive scrutiny to their own feelings and actions. They might look at their partner, probing for flaws in order to end the relationship.
They suffer over how to approach Valentine’s Day: to gift or not to gift. If a gift, what kind? What is the proper message? Many people with this type of ROCD will break up just to return a few days later.
There can be a happy ending
Psychologist Steven J. Brodsky specialized in this type of anxiety disorder and has encouragement from people who may be especially suffering during this time of year: This type of hot and cold behavior, these doubts, are because of a mental health disorder and can be treated successfully.
Brodsky has many clients that have gone on to enjoy successful marriages and have families. If you sense that the object of your affection has become an obsession, there is help and you can get better.
Sources: MedicalNewsToday, OCD and Panic Center of NY and NJ