Monday, June 20, 2005


One of the unpleasant conditions I have always lived with is obsessive-compulsive disorder. While my OCD has improved tremendously since I began treatment twelve years ago, for a long time it caused me great distress. As a child I would run up the big stairs to the back of the house where my room was, repeatedly, to check that I had shut my bedroom door. I used to have to check the stove a ridiculous number of times, making sure all the burners were off, before I could leave the house. When I was in high school, and had an very old and beleaguered car, I would check for oil leaks dozens of times a day, anxiously peering under the car repeatedly. I would seem to forget that I had just checked, or disbelieve what I saw, or simply feel compelled to do it again. This weekend a touch of that returned; the aftermath of my car-repair last week seems to be a revisiting of that old obsession, and yesterday I found myself checking the oil something like ten times in a row. I did so again this morning. I have to get a handle on it. I am driving myself nuts. At least I never had the common OCD symptom of washing my hands hundreds of times a day. That one seems truly awful.

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