Accepting Uncertainty: My Fight Against HOCD, Part II


This three-part article was written exclusively for by Aaron on He discusses his struggle with HOCD, how it all started for him, his rocky journey towards recovery and what finally helped him find relief.

Click here to read Part I.

Later on, I went to a psychiatrist and he told me that I shouldn’t be freaking out because I was young and just discovering aspects of myself that were new to me. This psychiatrist even told me at one point that he would not give me medication because the side-effects of the medication could sexually incapacitate me eventually.

This first psychiatrist freaked the living soul out of me and I had a major spike, but this didn't stop me from looking for help. I visited yet another psychiatrist who told me that I did need medication, and that this would finally allow me to live a normal life. However, the idea of being put on medication still unsettled me, and this prevented me from taking medication for many months.

A New Hope

I eventually found a psychologist very familiar with OCD on my college campus and she referred me to a psychiatrist who also worked on-campus. The therapist explained that what I had was classic OCD and that she had seen many different cases and variants of it before. My new psychiatrist explained to me how medication is often used to treat anxiety and OCD, and told me that when combined with therapy it could really help me regain stability in my life.

I went through a whole year of individual therapy with my psychologist and tried three different medications before finding the one that worked best for me. After a while I also started going to group therapy, where I got to speak to others who also suffered from OCD. It's been more than two years since this all started and I am doing so much better than before.

Learning to Cope

I'd like to share a few things that I know helped me through my long journey towards recovery. One of the first things I learned was that hoping your OCD will go away will certainly not make it go away, we must accept this fact. Getting over your OCD will require work and effort. I know that it is a painful task, but you need to actively seek therapy and a healthier life.

Seek a therapist with experience in treating OCD, who understands Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and knows how to effectively use methods such as Exposure and Response Therapy. Therapy is really useful because you'll learn how to work against destructive patterns of thinking and you'll learn to sit with your thoughts and accept them for what they are, just thoughts.

Leave questions that yearn for certainty unanswered and don't obsess with trying to justify them. When you really want to double check and find out an answer to some doubt in your mind, let yourself stay in a state of doubt.

In Part III of this article, Aaron discusses what he discovered about himself and HOCD in his journey towards recovery as well as the importance of having a support system.

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