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OCD (Pure-O) or actually suicidal?


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Hi,

 

I replied to a post yesterday, thought I could start a new one. I'm feeling like I'm losing my mind and sanity here. Perhaps I've come to the right place :)

 

The last three years (until 7 months ago) I used to obsess about my heart. I remember checking my heart rate 100 times a day, checking my blood pressure everyday, run to the doctor all the time, you name it. I had a lot of anxiety and brief panic attacks (30 seconds or so with overwhelming panic). Got treated with beta blockers and the problem more or less went away, however......

 

....only to be replaced with something FAR worse. 

 

A guy on the local football team I support killed himself. I have no idea why. The last game he played he got a red card and penalty against him, but still. He was young and healthy, and obviously not that depressed, I mean, he could play football, not just lying in his bed ruminating on how much his life sucked. At that time, I experienced a lot of stress in my life and my blood pressure anxiety had acted up. A vague but distressing thought started to enter my mind: Could I do that? What's keeping us from killing ourselves?

 

Soon this distress started to snowball into real fear. I started having intrusive images of jumping from my balcony, cutting myself, overdosing, jumping in front of trains or buses, crashing into traffic, along with avoidance behaviour. I disliked spending time in my appartment, I hated being alone, I disliked driving, I hated pharmacies, I avoided trains. In other words, I came to that terrible realization that I'm surrounded by stuff that could kill me (or more precise; that I could kill myself with). You've got to eat and to eat you need a knife. To get to work I had to drive, take a bus or walk next to traffic. My appartment has a balcony and somewhere I need to stay. So I couldn't escape from the "danger".

 

I got a lot of symptoms which I instantly related to depression. I never felt safe, so needless to say, life wasn't very joyful (though I could laugh, be social, exercise, etc.). My appetite got lower. I didn't sleep well, I slept very lightly and woke up all the time, with heat flashes, sweating, a brain that would never shut up. My brain was telling me I was going to die anyway, so why bother. I knew very clearly that I didn't want to, but I felt like it would happen anyway.

 

My therapist diagnosed me with OCD. She ran depression tests, result; possibly very minor depression, but not likely. Symptoms anxiety related. My GP started me on Zoloft, felt far worse until I had some improvement. He also added Remeron for sleep (which works fine) though my appetite improved a bit too much. 

 

Now (7 months later) I feel different. Not sure if I've improved or not. I "fired" my therapist and I'm seeing a p-doc instead. He is great. 

 

My thoughts have changed. I no longer have that "brain won't shut up" and I have far less intrusive "urges" or images. My anxiety is reduced. But the thoughts seem to have morphed into sentences like "I want to  die" and "life is not worth living" or "I don't want to get better" or "I might as well give up". And the intrusive thoughts making themselves known at times, often before I'm doing something "dangerous" like shaving or cooking or driving. The funny part is, I do NOT want to die, I want to get better. At least that's what the "conscious" part of my brain is saying. I have no reason for wanting to die. Except for this OCD or whatever it is, my life is fairly good. I have a good job, I have a girlfriend, I have great parents, I have friends, I exercise, I have hobbies. I own an appartment and I make twice as much money as average for my age. 

 

Yesterday my p-doc ran a depression test. No depression. No (or very minor) issues concentrating, no lack of initiative, no unreasonable guilt, no bad thoughts towards myself (except that the cursed Remeron has made me gain some weight). But still, I feel this nagging thought that I will just kill myself sometime or that my life really isn't worth living, I'm just failing to see it. I'm telling myself "if my life isn't worth living, why do other people not kill themselves, my life isn't any worse than their life" and my brain can reply something like "they just haven't realized they are better off dead" and I just shake my head. I hate those thoughts but somehow I just feel compelled to think them. If I had a guarantee that I would never kill myself, I would easily stop thinking such thoughts. In other words, it feels like my brain find some purpose in the thoughts, that they are protecting me from harming myself, some weird failed logic. I think, if I stop thinking such thoughts, I would just be ambushed by the thoughts and kill myself.

 

And - I actually miss my anxiety somehow. When I felt anxious I could be more certain I had OCD. My p-doc tells me I do feel anxiety, it just manifests differently this time. He also told me it's not possible to be LESS suicidal than I am - that I'm the complete opposite of suicidal. But I feel I can't trust that - because (of course), living 50 more years with those thoughts feels troublesome. Even if they never go away, I wouldn't kill myself, but life wouldn't be great, if you understand what I'm saying.

 

I don't understand - what exactly are "real" suicidal thoughts? Is that thinking about suicide on purpose? I've never made a plan for harming myself and I don't want to. Of course, my brain is telling me that "you already have a plan, just do (whatever the intrusive thoughts are saying)". I've never wished not to wake up tomorrow. When I keep my brain occupied the thoughts are more or less gone. Still, I just feel so damn worried that one day I will just be too exhausted to fight the thoughts and just give in to them. I can't let that happen.

 

Can ANYONE relate to this? And if someone has experienced severe depression and suicidal thoughts, can you describe how they are like, and if they differ from mine?

 

 

 

 

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I could answer your questions.

 

However, as someone who also has Pure O, I'm not going to because I am absolutely sure you will figure out some way to feed it into your obsessions.  Researching shit like this on internet forums is another manifestation of Pure Obsessional OCD.  Trust me.

 

Having suicidality due to depression manifests much differently.  You're having intrusive thoughts, just as your psychiatrist has said.  Take it on faith, because questioning everything is obsessional OCD in action.

Edited by saveyoursanity
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Thank you. Though I'm almost tempted to beg on my knees for you to tell me the difference, I clearly understand your point.

 

And you are right. I figure if I had true suicidal thoughts secondary to depression, the thoughts wouldn't be the problem, I would come here telling how much my life sucked and ask how to kill myself. I'm definitely not doing that.

 

It just feels sometimes like I have two personalities, one (the OCD) telling me I should kill myself and the other (which I assume is "me") freaking out and saying "no way".

 

OCD is really some f***ed up shit..

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I'm glad you understand what I meant.  I'm not withholding the comparison because I want to be cruel, I'm telling you that the constant searching for information is part of your illness AND mine.  Trust me, I know how bad it sucks.   :glare:

 

You mentioned a friend who had suicidal thoughts secondary to depression explaining it as the solution to a problem, whereas for you, the suicidality IS the problem.  That's a great way to think of it and I think you should continue with that.

 

I'm glad that you're seeing a therapist and a psychiatrist.  There is hope for the OCD to lessen dramatically or even go away entirely.  I'm crossing my fingers for you.   :cool:

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