Saturday, November 5, 2011

I Guess That's Not What a Normal Person Would Do

What would a normal person do in this situation? That's what we're sometimes told as a way to figure out if a compulsion is "okay." Would a normal person avoid that situation, wash their hands after touching that object? If "normal" is problematic, try what would a person without OCD do in this situation?

Last week at the soccer game, I tried that approach. My 7 year old niece was playing with her friends on the sideline of my 9 year old niece's soccer game. Their game involved rolling soccer balls around in a big mud puddle, then pulling them out and seeing who could get the most mud off the ball by rolling it through the grass. I watched them do this for about 15 minutes, thinking to myself at first, Ugh. Then I decided, well, no one else seems to care, "normal" people must agree that that's just what 7 year olds do, and I let it go.

Then 10 minutes later, the game ended. My sister turned around and saw them and said, what the heck, stop playing in the mud! Then one of the other girls' dads saw them and said, what the heck, stop playing in the mud! Oops! I guess I got that one wrong.


  1. lol, I often can't discern between "normal" reactions to things vs. OCD reactions... because I am the OCD-er that reacts to everything, I'll try to "hide" a reaction to look normal, only to find out my gut instinct was actually normal! Not sure if that made sense, but what I mean is that I can relate to this story and it made me smile. :)

    I'm LOVING this blog... It's so encouraging to me and I thank you for writing your thoughts out and helping the rest of us to cope along the way.

  2. Ha! That's totally funny. I've had similar situations where I personally thought something was gross but I figured it was just my OCD so I let it go only to find out from others later that they thought it was gross too. It's like I've lost my ability to make reasonable judgments sometimes. I could so relate to this post.

  3. I guess the lesson isn't that normal people don't mind their kids playing in the mud, but that normal people just don't pay enough attention half the time to know the difference. ??? LOL