Thursday, December 8, 2011

It Really Does Work

Despite having a decidedly mediocre day yesterday, I had one amazing exposure. It worked in textbook fashion. I went over to my sister's to make cards and gift tags with her and with my nieces.

Just as she did last time I was there, my older niece used the bathroom (and let's just say she wasn't just peeing) and didn't wash her hands. I know that plenty of people never wash their hands, but I can't help but think that little kids aren't, shall we say, the most careful wipers.

So, yeah, anyway, she came back out and proceeded to feel to the urge to check out (and touch) all the many craft supplies I'd brought. Ooh, was I tense! I imagined ways I could avoid touching the craft stuff without looking obvious. I sighed as I mentally cancelled my plan to make some cards for a craft sale at work next week.

But I also knew this was a good exposure. My nieces pretty never wash their hands-nor did I as a kid- and nothing much came of it, so in my non-OCD head, I knew this wasn't really a big deal.

So, after a bit of angst, I did nothing. I made gift tags, I touched whatever I wanted, and I, and they, all ate dinner, some of it finger food, without washing up beforehand.

By the end of the night, I felt totally fine about it. No anxiety at all. I put all the craft stuff away at home without stress. I'll likely make cards for next week, unless I decide not to for some other (non-OCD) reason.

It was awesome! A successful ERP feels amazing.


  1. I LOVE this post! You are certainly doing your share to get the word out that ERP Therapy works. Thanks for sharing!

  2. YAY FOR YOU!!!! I love hearing these stories. I had slid back a little for a few days too until my therapy session yesterday and my therapist suggested we do a big exposure script during our session. It was hard, but it felt so good to WIN over OCD! I feel like I've been gently tapping OCD saying "do you mind leaving me alone?" lately, but on the days when I very forcefully kick it in the you-know-what I feel so empowered!!!! It's amazing. Great job.

  3. Wow! You did so well! I'm very impressed, and very happy that you had a positive experience. Every time makes the next one easier.

    Also, a little holiday message - You have a very uplifting blog with a great perspective on the good and the bad of dealing with OCD. It is great to see how much headway you've made over the year, and I hope next year is even better. Good luck and keep blogging :)

    Adventures in Anxiety Land

  4. Thanks for the kind comments, all!

    Congrats on the successful exposure, Pure O Canuck!

  5. Congratulations on your success! I really needed to read this post. I'm trying to decide if I should do the ERP therapy.

  6. Congrats!! Me, i would have told them to go wash up but good for you that you didn't throw out your craft supplies!

  7. Any success is good success. Keep on keeping on!