Arrrghhhhh!! Mental Torture! Intrusive Thoughts & OCD.

My brain won’t stop talking at me!

My thoughts are just going round and round and jibber-jabbering away. I feel like there’s some kind-of convention going on in my head that I have to involuntarily chair- except all the members are like kids and wont shut-up talking at once, then they start screaming at each other and having arguments!!! Before I know it the whole thing has runaway with me and I’m totally out of control! Arrrrghhhhh!!!!! It really is excruciating mental torture!

Last night I got 4 hours broken sleep. My head aches and all my muscles are so tense. Relaxing has been near-on impossible.

Getting back to sleep last night was greatly helped by Bach Flower Remedy-White Chestnut (great for repetitive thoughts- it works surprisingly quickly) and some Lavender oil on my pillow. If not I’d have been on the sofa all night watching endless episodes of Friends and The Big Bang Theory- the only TV shows my brain can cope with at the moment.

When these kind of thoughts prey on me I find it difficult to concentrate. I can’t decide what to do first: get dressed, brush my teeth, shower, have breakfast? Then if I decide to have breakfast I spend ages deciding what to have. Then it takes conscious effort to get out a saucepan or milk. Then I get distracted because there’s junk mail sitting on the kitchen counter and I start sorting that out. Arrrrghhhh!!

My usual method of coping with these predatory thoughts is to up on out of the house and get into the city where the shops and general bustle distract me. Either that or binge eating. I’m trying to quit on both right now as neither is healthy. The city idea may not sound too bad, but it really tires me out and bus fair there and back is £4.00. Not too bad for one random day, but it’s not a good long-term solution and I get dependent on these little coping mechanisms pretty quickly.

Thought Quality

At the moment the thoughts don’t seem too dark which is a blessing in itself. They’re more just mindless chatter. But they are getting louder.

Under more stress they can turn really nastily into the realms of self-harm and death, which I definitely don’t want to happen this time.

I’m in a fortunate position not to be working at the moment. If I were the extra stress would tip me over the edge, and I’ll end up sitting at my desk, staring at a spreadsheet and trying to suppress really disturbing images and impulses. By the time I’d get home I’d be a total wreck.

“How are you today Rachel?” they’ll ask.

“Fine” I’ll reply. You really, really don’t want to know what’s going on in my head!!

Intrusive Thoughts

What I believe I’ve been experiencing are intrusive thoughts, which according to Wikipedia are:

“…unwelcome involuntary thoughts, images, or unpleasant ideas that may become obsessions, are upsetting or distressing, and can be difficult to manage or eliminate. “

They appear to be associated mainly with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) which I’m only just beginning to realise I think I may have.

(I know it’s not a good idea to self-diagnose, but I think this it is one of my compulsions and a way in which I get the constant mind chatter out of my head. I don’t recommend it though. I also think that I know myself way better than any doctor who spends about 10 minutes every few months with me. If I can get to the bottom of the issue I can look for CBT help online).

For more info please see:

Intrusive Thoughts Caused by Anxiety

Intrusive Thoughts

OCD

I always thought of OCD mainly in terms of the classic compulsions you hear about in the media, like excessive hand-washing or checking behaviours. But what I didn’t know about was Pure ‘O’, which I’ve recently discovered on the internet.

Pure ‘O’ is OCD with mainly obsessions and no visible compulsions. However it does appear that sufferers usually do have hidden compulsions like mental rituals that “cancel out” any obtrusive thoughts.

For more info here are a few links:

What is Pure O?

Various Subtypes of Pure O OCD

Bipolar and OCD 

Bipolar Disorder and OCD often seem to team up together too- estimates are between 10-35% of those with Bipolar Disorder also have OCD (About.com). For more info:

OCD and Bipolar Disorder

Blog: That Bipolar OCD Geek

Getting Through Today

Anyway, to get through today- without resorting to a city-trip or binge-eating- I’m gonna try the following:

- blogging to you lovely people (check).

- more lavender oil and White Chestnut Bach Flower Remedy.

- playing the piano and a bit of singing.

- maybe a bit of healthy cooking?

- I might look for some OCD CBT techniques online too.

- dog walk.

If anyone else has any tips I’d be only too glad to hear them!
I need to get out of my head!!!!

Related Posts on My Bipolar Life: Hypomanic Obsessions and OCD; Bipolar Disorder & Obsessive Research.

Photo Credits: freedigitalphotos.net

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8 thoughts on “Arrrghhhhh!! Mental Torture! Intrusive Thoughts & OCD.

  1. sakuraandme

    Boy Rachel, we sound very similar! Those child like voices invading your head! Oh yes! That happens to me. I have to do exactly what your planning. Find things to distract myself from myself! *laughing* It doesn’t always work which means I just have to ride it out! I get excited and exhausted all in one breath! Sleep evades me also. Thoughts race at a million miles an hour! Hope it all calms soon! …Paula x

    Reply
  2. Tallulah "Lulu" Stark

    I have the voices that invade my head too! I’ve attributed it to so many things besides OCD, which I never fully considered. I have thought about Borderline Personality Disorder, Psychotic Bipolar Disorder, and maybe Dissociative Identity Disorder. How did you come to the conclusion that it might be OCD? I might want to look into this.

    Reply
    1. rachelmiller1511 Post author

      The thoughts seem to centre around obsessions like my relationship or analyzing what’s going on in my head- I seem to get stuck in a knot of obsessive thoughts that I can’t get out of.

      Last week I couldn’t stop thinking about my relationship- am I in the right relationship? What could I do better? What am I doing wrong? What if I start to think about somebody else? The thoughts were so incessant and I guess they’ve been getting louder to this point where it feels like lots of people chatting in my head. But it feels like lots of versions of my own thoughts and personality. It’s so hard to describe!

      I looked at DID too, but quickly discounted it as there are definitely not different personalities. I thought about psychosis too, but I’m aware of what is real and what isn’t (at least I think!). Borderline Personality I believe I have symptoms of anyway, whether enough for a full-blown diagnosis, I doubt it- so that could be a possibility. Then I found this info on intrusive thoughts and it seemed to fit the best out of the others. The thoughts really do feel intrusive and unwanted and I keep trying to get rid of them which does seem to be what OCD is about.

      I really had to think hard about that!!

      Reply
  3. Sandy Sue

    I’m late reading this, so I hope your experiments in distraction were useful. I find doing something physical is helpful–exercise that’s a bit more strenuous than usual–or finding a project that can really absorb my attention. Tuesday I was having a day like yours, and I decided to set up a Pinterest site. It was fun and kept me occupied the whole day. I could point my obsessive thinking in one direction, which was actually quite calming.
    When my mind goes whizzing off into space, I rely on a list of distractions that I’ve taped to my front door. I use that space as a giant Vision Board with reminders and encouragement and cheerful images. It’s so hard to remember these things when I’m in the middle of frenzy.

    Reply
    1. rachelmiller1511 Post author

      That’s really helpful- thank you. My mind is still a bit wizzy, but I’m channelling it into re-arranging my bedroom and setting up an art table. I love your idea of a vision board- I’ll keep that one in mind.
      The first time I found Pinterest I was on there for a few days straight- I could hardly stop!! It’s brilliant isn’t it?!
      Thanks so much for the helpful suggestions. Hope you are having a good weekend xx

      Reply
  4. DJ

    OK.. I googled Intrusive and repetitive thoughts that torture me and came across this article. This sounds somewhat similar to what I’m going through but not exactly. All day long my brain is repeating the same thing over and Over and OVER again and what its repeating scares the hell out of me. My thoughts are things I would be terrified to say out loud but repeat over and over in my mind. My thoughts have to do with God. My thoughts are negative things against God that is totally oppositr of how I feel towards God. They are things I would NEVER say against God. The sentences repeat over and over in my brain giving me complete torture, anguish and anxiety. It haunts me day in and day out. Most people would never know something was wrong with me because I’ve become good at hiding the extreme mental anguish I’m in. You know that thought you might have that’ll cross your mind for a split second that is horrifying or disgusting but you are able to push right out of your mind. You say to yourself, Get out of there! And zappo you’re over it. Well I’m not able to do that. If a thought pops into my mind that horrifies me, disgusts me or makes me sick to even think about it.. my mind says, OK! This is what I will torture you with! This is what I will play over and over in your mind! I don’t know how much more of this I can take. Its been going on for years now. I, only 31 yes old. I can’t imagine living out the rest of my life in this complete torture. Somebody please help me :,-(

    Reply
    1. rachelmiller1511 Post author

      Get to a doctor if you haven’t already and say all this!! I know it’s difficult once you get into a doctor’s surgery, but it is so important to get help. You don’t deserve to put up with this and you can be helped. They’ll most likely refer you for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. You can get better from this- it takes effort, but it is definitely treatable. To help with the repetitive thoughts, try White Chestnut Bach Flower Remedy (see my page Bach Flower Remedies or Google), I would also suggest Cherry Plum and possibly Sweet Chestnut which is for extreme mental anguish. Bach Rescue Remedy is also very good. I use these products regularly and I do notice improvement.
      Good luck!

      Reply

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