Is this HOCD? Help

Hi I am a 21 year old male who until recently never questioned my sexuality. I have had crushes on girls for as long as I can remember. Also I feel it is important for you to know that I have had anxiety, ocd, and panic disorders since I was 4 or 5. I have never had any problem "performing" when I am with a girl and have never thought of a man while with them. It's just that now every time I wake up I have this dread that these homosexual thoughts will pop into my head. As I head to class or watch tv and see some guy I freak out thinking what would happen if I act on all these compulsive thoughts. The thing is I don't want to, I find it disgusting, which makes me feel worse and worry more and I start to twitch. I have recently been put on Lexapro and Lorazepam which has helped some yet the only way for the thoughts to go away completely is for me to drink. Once somewhat buzzed I don't have a single homosexual worry in my mind and go after girls and love it. This unfortunately has led me to drink almost every day just to cope. I know I'm not gay and am not attracted to men but why won't these thoughts go away. It's not like I think homosexuality is wrong, I believe everyone has the right to make themselves happy, but these thoughts do not make me feel happy or calm, they make me feel anxious and scared, and mentally tired. Back when I was younger I had suicidal thoughts worrying about other things and just don't want this worry to get that far. I have read dozens of the questions on this site and they make me feel better and I calm down and realize I'm not but have to come back all day every day and read them over and over and analyze everything. I'm even starting to obsessively count again which I thought I had gotten over years ago. I just want to go back to five months ago when I didn't have these thoughts, when I could do whatever I wanted, whether hanging out with friends, partying, or hitting on some girl without wandering if all these compulsive thoughts are true and my whole life until now has been a lie.

Hi Jacob, Everything you

Hi Jacob,

Everything you describe sounds like symptoms of HOCD; which is not surprising as it sounds like you have a history of OCD (with the counting).

What concerns me is that you are using alcohol as a coping mechanism, and that is a dangerous road to go down (especially combined with medications like Lorazepam). Every time you drink and it helps the symptoms subside, you reinforce the drinking. That's not a road you want to go down.

Does your doctor (whoever is prescribing the medication) know that you are drinking regularly? I'm guessing he or she doesn't because he probably wouldn't have prescribed the Lorazepam. That being said, medication isn't going to help you much if you keep drinking.

Even if you stop drinking (and I strongly encourage you to do so because self-medicating with alcohol is not a good thing), medication alone will probably not help you very much. Also, Lorazepam is meant to be used only very short term (usually no more than 4 weeks) because it is very easy to become dependent on it if used any longer.

The best treatment for any type of OCD is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT); it will teach you to manage your thoughts so that they no longer control you.

However, just with medication, therapy isn't going to help you if you keep drinking to alleviate your symptoms. If your drinking has reached a point where you don't feel you can stop, then you need to consider "dual diagnosis treatment" (treatment that addresses both your substance abuse and your mental health issues).

Once the drinking is stopped, then I hope you can work with a psychologist or other mental health professional who is trained in CBT and has a history of successfully using it to treat OCD. It takes time, but it is very effective.

Dr. Lane

I need help too, i have been

I need help too, i have been straight all of my life, and i dont even know when this started happening, i just started getting those thoughts in my head. It drove me insane and i would spend all day shaking my head or saying to myself your straight your straight, im stronger than this. Sometimes it seems like the thoughts are real and then other times which are coming by rare now, i think wow i know im straight what am i doing. I tested my feelings by watching gay porn and i was actually aroused and it might as well been the end of me. Whenever i watch it now it seems like i like it until im masterbating for a while then i fell disgusted. I finished once and i felt dirty. This is driving me nuts though, ive read somewhere that hocd can lower your attraction towards women, and i think its starting to happen, and i feel like im being attracted to men, everytime someone starts talking about it i just try to stay quite and other times i try proving to myself that im not gay by just talking and acting normal. I still find myself shaking my head whenver a thought pops into my head. I think if its hocd its getting worse and worse. I really hope its hocd because i dont want this but then sometimes my brain says i do want it then i get a tingling and start to get aroused and then i get more anxiety and i feel like im actually bi or gay now. But i still try to keep saying im straight. I recently found out that one of my friends is bi and i was kind of disgusted and now thats all i can think about, before i thought i had hocd but eversince i heard that now i think i might be gay or bi and its driving me nuts, i want to be straight. I always have been, i used to get aroused really fast by woman and really easily now its not as fast. Me and my friend were talking about girls one night and he said one like him and it didnt bother me as much as it usually would, because she was a girl that i thought was pretty good looking, usually i would be jealous but that time i didn't care, this past week we were talking about the same thing and the same girl and i was completely jealous. I don't get it. Sometimes i just explain to myself how can i be gay or bi, then i convince myself that im straight, but then ill think of something that makes me think otherwise and i feel like everything that my brain makes up about this is false. I really hope i can get rid of this, hopefully it is hocd, because i want to be straight, and i cant take this. I monitor whether my actions like sitting walking talking things like that are gay like all day, and i dont want that, im trying to stay away from porn, and its been like 5 days so far. I have never been in a relationship with a woman i have been as close as it gets to love with another woman for like all of highschool and i still get nervous when talking to her. After all of highshchool i didnt look at other guys in the lockeroom and get excited, it was just normal i didnt overeact and i didnt have any of these thoughts. I feel like never being in a reltaionship has effected me too. But if i forgot anything ill post another comment, but i need to hear that these thoughts are from hocd, i dont want to be gay or bi, and i constantly try shaking my head of these thoughts. Thanks for reading my story and ive had this for about 7 months mayb but it got really bad about 4 months ago, it started out just kicking my legs when thoughts came into my head when i was trying to sleep. Also i really like watching blow job videos and then i think thats another reason y this isn't hocd, and i feel like i have other types of ocd as well, like thinking about people you care about, and something happening to them, and ill do certain rituals. Please tell me that i am straight, i have been so sure until now and its tearing me apart.

I just turned 19 also.

I just turned 19 also.

I feel straight now because

I feel straight now because im thinking like a straight man would like thinking about strip clubs and stuff but then i dont know then that thought is in the back of my head just saying ur bi ur gay, and i just try shaking my head, and then other times i fell like im actually gay or bi and i get slightly aroused but then that makes my anxiety worse, because im getting aroused, this is driving me insane.

Also when i am having an

Also when i am having an attack or whatever it feels like im actually gay or bi but when im not having an attack and the thoughts arent going through my head alot i think about it and it doesnt seem like its right or me to be gay or bi i dont really know how to explain it, it doesnt seem like something i would do especially with how much i have loved women my whole life.

Hi Brandon, Unfortunately, I

Hi Brandon,

Unfortunately, I can never say for sure if someone is straight or gay or bi. All I can do is give you my general sense based on what you describe. For the most part, it sounds like symptoms of HOCD; but that doesn't explain why you enjoy watching blow job videos (I assume between two males?).

The bottom line is this (although if you have HOCD your mind will twist this around): if you are gay or bisexual, than you would feel sexually and / or romantically attracted to males. And for the most part, it doesn't sound like that is the case based on what you describe in your posts.

The more you fight the thoughts, the more power you give to them. That is the catch22 of OCD. And it does sound like you have a long history of OCD symptoms.

If this continues to distress you then I recommend that you find a psychologist or other mental health professional who is experienced in treating OCD using a specific type of therapy called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (I encourage you to not waste your time with other therapy approaches). CBT is considered one of the most (if not the most) effective treatment for OCD symptoms.

I hope this helps!

Dr. Lane

Thank you for the help it

Thank you for the help it gives me some confidence, but if this is hocd which i really hope it is, its getting stronger everyday because if i feel like i dont fight it it will take over and i dont want to be gay or bi, i just dont, i cant stop shaking my head and even when i dont shake my head it just feels like my brain will explode because now its basically feeling like im not as attracted to woman as i used to be, i dont know if that is ocd or if thats true, if it is true i dont want it to be. Thanks for the help.

And i was talking about a

And i was talking about a woman giving a blow job, i used to enjoy watching those, but when i did watch men i got aroused but i got this weird feeling througout my body, not really pleasureable more like unconfortable.

I also saw that you said ocd

I also saw that you said ocd can twist it around, does that make it seem like you are sexually attracted but not actually? and I was wondering how to get by without fighting ocd everyday, because it feeds it but how should I stop thinking about it. I dont want to go to a phsychiatrist yet well i do but i havent told my parents about this yet and i havent told them i probably have had ocd all my life, and i dont have the money to fork over. Thanks again

Yes, this is very possible.

Yes, this is very possible. The obsessive thoughts associated with OCD can be very convincing - that is why they cause so much anxiety.

Dr. Lane

Its getting worse i find

Its getting worse i find myself masterbating many times throughout the day and eventually i started masterbating to those thoughts because wehn im not doing nething ill see something and ill get alittle aroused which i dont like unless its getting aroused over a woman, and i keep gettting more frustrating but how can i help these thoughts go away i dont want them anymore i want to be my normal straight self, its starting to convince me that i have no hope and im thinking about it all day because i have calsses online, its driving me nuts, its making me really angry and im yelling alot more too. thanks for reading.

Hi Brandon, Unfortunately, I

Hi Brandon,

Unfortunately, I can't give you a simple answer as to how to make the thoughts go away. That is why I recommend therapy; it's an involved process that takes time, although it can be very effective.

I actually don't recommend that you see a psychiatrist necessarily; rather, I would recommend a psychologist, clinical social worker, or other type of therapist - but most specifically a mental health professional who uses Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and who is experienced in treating OCD. That being said, medication alone can help some, but it isn't an effective long term treatment.

The more time you have on your hands the more vulnerable you are going to be to this disorder. You can try filling up any empty time with other activities, including regular exercise (which can help with anxiety), hobbies, projects - things that require you to focus on something else. However, if your symptoms are strong, that may not help very much. Treatment really is the best recommendation I can give you.

If you don't have money or insurance, you might see if your parents are willing to help (if they are able to) because most parents would not want their child to be suffering from a disorder like this. If they can't or won't, you may look into a local mental health clinic. Some offer sliding fees for individuals without insurance or the means to pay full fees.

I hope this helps and I hope you are able to get treatment soon.

Dr. Lane

I was doing ok for a couple

I was doing ok for a couple of days now its back and worse than before it feels like, I haven't mastebated in almost a week, and im started to get turned on by the thoughts again and it keeps telling me I like it and I am denying it, and every time I see a man I think am I attracted or is it fooling me and that happens almost everytime I see someone. It's driving me crazy, is there a way to help this without therapy besides working out and stuff I alfready know that. I am losing hope even after you have given me hope after your first post. I need some help I am going insane.

Its really getting to me it

Its really getting to me it really seems real, I can't tell if the feelings are real or not I don't want them to be at least I hope I don't want to be. I was playing gran turismo and had the driving line on and I was trying to stay on the right side of the line as a way of saying that I am straight, that sounds like ocd but this seems real but I don't want it to be, I want to be the way I was, straight without questioning anything, I want that back so bad I want to be my straight non worrying self.

O and you also said that

O and you also said that sexual orientation doesn't just change, if that is true than I am straight, but the thoughts seem so real, I can't even tell if I like them deep down, because I get aroused I don't know if its tabboo or not but it's driving me nuts.

Hi Brandon, I am so sorry

Hi Brandon,

I am so sorry this is causing you so much distress, but what you describe is very typical for HOCD. Since you don't want to go to a therapist, the next best thing I can recommend is working on your disorder on your own (not an easy task) by using a book to help you.

There are several self-help books on OCD that are available. One that I recommend (which appears to be based on Cognitive Behavioral therapy techniques) is by Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz, entitled "Brain Lock: Free Yourself from Obsessive-Compulsive Behavior". It's available on Amazon. There are several others as well that may be good.

This will take a lot of work and dedication on your part, but if you truly want to learn to manage and perhaps even overcome these disturbing obsessive thoughts without therapy, this is my best recommendation for you. Just be sure to not give up to quickly - the process takes time so you have to be patient.

Dr. Lane

thanks, just wondering what

thanks, just wondering what is cognitive behavioral therapy.

In a nutshell, CBT is a type

In a nutshell, CBT is a type of therapy that focuses on the interactions between your irrational thoughts and beliefs, your feelings (e.g. anxiety, depression, sadness, etc.) and your behaviors (e.g. with OCD, constantly checking or performing rituals to relieve your anxiety).

A skilled CBT therapist can help you identify the irrational and faulty thought patterns that are causing you so much distress. Once identified, you can then learn ways to manage them and develop healthier ways of thinking.

That's a very limited explanation - it's more complex than that but hopefully that gives you a good idea.

Dr. Lane

I am still having a hard time

I am still having a hard time with this because I basically convince myself that this is just not true and I am actually straight, but the thought in my head is just there saying you haven't had a girlfriend yet and you won't find one that you love and loves you. My friend keeps getting woman after woman and its driving me nuts and my brain keeps telling me that hes good looking and its really pissing me off, and evertime im looking at stumble upon at the woman, you will see a man once and in a while and my eyes always look right away also and it makes me even more mad. I was doing fine today, until it just hit me and now im so angry, I convinced myself it was hocd, and now it feels like i might be bi because even when I watch that 70's show I don't even want to look at the men because my brain says that they r attractive, and it really drives me nuts because whenever I see a guy on there my brain says that stuff and whenever I see an attractive woman it just says I don't think thats hot, and I don't feel as attracted as I used too, I need this to be gone but then I am worried that either it won't go away or I could be gay or bi after being straight all my life, after criticizing gay and bi people all my life, thats the last thing I want, except that my brain tells me that I would like that lifestyle then i get more anxiety. I've been straight my whole life though, I feel like if this is a taboo effect its insanely real feeling. Thanks for reading.

Is it possible to find out ur

Is it possible to find out ur bi after how many years, I hope not because that wud really not be good, well I don't think if u look at some poeple and they r decent looking u notice it but u dont think about but this is really pissing me off more and more because I say that i wudnt want to have a relationship or other things but then sometimes i get a tingling and sometimes i dont and my brain makes me feel like i would want to but that causes more anxiety, im straight, I know it, I hope it, I'm still judging myself and all my actions tring not to do nething feminine. thanks for reading again.

I’m convinced I have hocd and

I’m convinced I have hocd and need help. I’m 24 year old male and since the end of August I have been experiencing a lot of stress and anxiety. When I returned to college for my last semester after completing my internship over the summer I found a subpoena, saying I had to go to court for misdemeanor possession of paraphernalia . The thought that I would have a paraphernalia charge on my record when I entered the job market began to worry and depress me.
One night around September I overheard a friend say “he’s weird, gay or something” referring to me. That night in bed I couldn’t get his comment out of my head I began to analyze and analyze why he thought this. “Am I gay? Why does he think this? I have never been in a serious relationship is that why he thinks?” I continued to ask myself. The idea that people thought I was homosexual began to grow into my brain and began to loop uncontrollably. I just tried to ignore my thoughts but the more I tried the more I would think about them.
One day I realized I was staring at a friend’s crotch area, it made me feel uncomfortable and I was disgusted he noticed and from then on I could tell he began to feel uncomfortable in my presence. I guess I began doing this to everyone I encountered because my friends began to treat me differently and talk among themselves. Sometimes I could overhear them talking about me or commenting.
In December I graduated college and moved back home to find a job. I hung-out with my neighborhood friends as I always did till I began doing the same thing and they started to notice my staring problem. Since then I have avoided all my friends and dont have a social life anymore. I concentrate on my new job but I stare at people everywhere including work.
Last month I began working for the same company I interned with and since then I feel as everyone at work has noticed my staring problem and have begun to judged me on a daily basis. This problem is all i can think about and has taken over my existence. Recently, I get the feeling that they try to avoid me or speak among themselves about me. This problem has ruined my social life and has become an issue at work. I haven’t told anyone in my family about it because of fear of getting judged, it was hard enough to tell them about the misdemeanor.
Over the past week I have begun to research online my problem and found out there are a lot of other people like me who refer to this disease as HOCD. I desperately need help my mind is driving me crazy. I don’t want to stare but It’s like I can’t control it and when i do i feel awful and fear the consequences. I say don’t stare and I automatically do. It has become difficult to make eye contact as my eyes always move to the crotch area. I have never done anything homosexual and get no pleasure from this that i am sure of. I feel terrible every time I compulsively stair and the fear has taken over my life. Please advise i need help immediately.

Hey I just wanted to make

Hey I just wanted to make sure you see my comments above, and I tried not fighting it but then it feels like I'm giving up and I can't do that.

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