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Friday, November 21, 2014

OCD and Lying or Making Excuses/A very stressful week

It has been a very stressful week.  Deer hunting week.  My husband is a hunter.  Lots of contamination issues for me with that.  But here we are on Friday, and I've gotten through, with lots of OCD issues along the way.  Which brings me to this paradox--My OCD doesn't want me to lie, yet I lie in order to hide my OCD from others. I don't like to lie in general.  In fact, my OCD wants me to be very honest.  I am the type that feels like I need to be extra truthful.  I have been known to take things back to the store that I was undercharged for, and make sure that I pay the correct price.  I feel like I need to tell people things, that they don't necessarily need to know. is where it gets tricky.  I have been known to make tons of excuses and flat out lies when it comes to protecting my OCD, or when in an OCD situation.  I've told lies to get out of going to family gatherings.  I've called in sick to work (when I wasn't sick) because of OCD.  Yep, just did that today.   Times where I needed to concentrate on a ritual and couldn't get to work that day, or one time I had to run some "OCD errands"--oh yes, there is such a thing.  Going out to buy something that needs to replace a contaminated object.  I prioritize the OCD, so I call in sick to work.  I don't do this routinely, today is probably the third time in the last year.  My husband took the whole week off work to deer hunt, so he would be in and out of the house all week.  I am supposed to be working downstairs at our computer.  I already have a huge obsession with needing to know what he is doing in the house, and this week being hunting week, escalated things about 1000 times.   Earlier this week, I called my daughter in sick to school, because I didn't feel comfortable and wanted to make sure he wasn't "contaminating" anything around the house--touching anything I didn't want him to.  She hung around upstairs so she could tell me if he was touching anything.  It makes me feel like a horrible parent to write and read that sentence right now.  I realize I'm involving my daughter in my compulsions.  I'm relying on her for reassurance, to "make sure that nothing happens".  I also realize that I am making her think somehow her dad is dirty.  I know this, so please please don't comment on that to bring it to my attention.  Trust me when I say that I am fully aware of this.  It's just an example of how bad my OCD is and the lengths in which I will go to, to feel comfortable.  I called in sick to work today in order to clean some things around the house.  He used our computer which is a "clean and safe" item normally.  I also had to go downstairs for a few minutes, and then I was fixated on the thought that he might have sat on "my safe couch".  I knew I would then have to wash the couch down (even though he probably didnt even sit there), and wash the blanket draped over the couch, and clean the computer.  There was no way I could focus on my job and get all this cleaning I totally let the OCD win, and gave in and made up a lie to my work that I was sick.    He got a deer yesterday, just in case you're wondering.  I will give him credit that he washed all of his hunting clothes out at the farmhouse washer (so it wasn't at our house), and wore clean clothes home.  But there are tons of thoughts going through my head.  At some point, I would think he had to be wearing the clothes in his truck, after dealing with blood and organs.  So now his truck is contaminated heavily.  Also I would imagine he took pictures of the deer with his phone, and so going back and forth from a deer his phone, contaminates his phone even further. Then of course now his hands are always contaminated, because he is always on his phone.  So doorknobs, fridge handles,  everything he touches is going to be contaminated.  I am going to need even more space between us, and will either avoid touching certain things or washing my hands more frequently again. I'm really frustrated, because I had been doing so much better.  And now this has thrown everything off again.  Because his carseat is now contaminated with deer blood/guts, I think that all of his clothes will be contaminated. Because even his normal day to day clothes will be contaminated whey touch that carseat.  And now I'm going to start having problems putting his clothes through the washer again, because I don't want the washer contaminated.  And even though my husband realizes I am grossed out by all of this, he is oblivious to how this could send me spiraling backward.  Just when I was finally starting to get some freedom from this.  Ugh!!!!
I have also lied to my parents/family over the years.  I've become really good at just making up quick little white lies to explain a situation.  I told my parents when they visited my house, that our main bathroom toilet flusher was out of order, just so they wouldn't use my "safe" bathroom.  One time at a work meeting I didn't want to "contaminate" my clothes by sitting in a public seat, so I came at the last second to the meeting and stood up, and told everyone I had hurt my knee and just needed to stand for a bit, because it hurt too much to get up and down.  When I was getting my hair cut last spring, I told my hairdresser that I didn't want to wear the cape over my clothes because I was super hot from the weather that day and also claustrophobic.  I did this to avoid feeling "contaminated" by the dirty cape that has been worn by hundreds of people and also probably has remnants of bleach/hair dye on it, and wanting to avoid figuring out what to do with my own clothes after that.  I haven't actually had my hair cut since then, because I don't want to deal with it again.  These are just a few examples, but it is amazing to me what I can come up with on a whim.  I really don't like it.  I don't like how lying comes so naturally to me to make excuses so I don't look "odd" to other people.  Because let's face it, one excuse here or there doesn't look so strange.  But I hate lying.  I hate how my OCD has that much control over me.  It also shows that we realize our behavior is illogical, but we are trying to put on a normal appearance.  These are some examples of what might make OCD sufferers appear "quirky", but in reality the problem goes so much deeper.  Something that non-OCD sufferers can not understand.  What is the biggest lie you've ever told with your OCD?  What are you struggling with in regard to your OCD today?


  1. It is hard to have to lie to cover up ocd stuff, but remember that maybe you can get to a point where you don't have to lie because it's significance will decrease.

  2. Oh yes, this is SO familiar to me. On one hand, I was so honest it was ridiculous (and I've driven back to stores too, to report an uncharged item) and yet I would lie with the best of 'em when it came to hiding the OCD. Oh how I hated the lying! Though my OCD is so much better post treatment, I'm still temped to lie a little now and then. Although, recently I've just come right out and told people why I had to do something a certain way. I guess you could say I've come a long way!

    I think we may have talked about this before, but my memory stinks and I just can't remember. Have you considered getting CBT/ERP therapy? You are clearly suffering terribly and I feel so bad for you. If you could see someone who is a true OCD expert, I think you would really benefit from it.