I’m now officially diagnosed with OCD in addition to Bipolar 1 and Generalized Anxiety Disorder. I don’t have the compulsions but I do have the obsessions. For me those are the intrusive suicidal visions and impulses. When those get out of control, I’m not sure I can keep myself safe and I end up in the hospital.
At least now my doc and I know what we’re dealing with for my whole cyclical process. And I have a very good rational response when the intrusive thoughts come: It’s just an obsession, not a real thought or desire. That’s the Diffusion I can use (from my ACT therapy). I can also Accept that I have them, and it’s ok that I have them. It’s ok that I have OCD and the other illnesses.
I will continue to have intrusive thoughts. I’m grateful for weeks like this past one with very few fleeting or intrusive suicidal thoughts. I know this kind of week can last for weeks or months as it did last year. And I know that I could end up with very bad weeks as I did a few weeks ago when I wasn’t sure I could keep myself safe and I should go in the hospital.
I’m very, very, very, very tired of how much time I’ve spent on suicidal thoughts and on hospitals. I’m rather disgusted with myself over how much time it seems I’ve indulged on them. In reality, I know that I have not indulged them; they were very real and painful delusional realities. I can’t blame myself for that.
But I can look forward. I can come up with many things I can I do INSTEAD of going to the hospital when stress gets high because of the suicidal thoughts. That’s this week’s homework from my therapist too. She understands my disgusted feeling and instead of wallowing in that feeling, just let it pass and come up with the list of things I can do instead of going to the hospital.
So, here we go!
- Am I using all my skills? Use them to their fullest.
- Go stay with a friend for a few days.
- Do something physical: hand weights, housework, swimming.
- Make an additional appointment with my therapist.
- Keep calling friends/family until I find one to talk with about the thoughts or anything else.
- Go out with a friend/family for coffee or ice cream.
- Read a favorite book or watch a favorite movie.
- Read a new book or watch a new movie.
- Write a blog post. Watch for comments obsessively.
There’s the beginning of the list. I hope these work. I hope they are not just distractions but actual ways to remind myself that the thoughts are obsessive and I can do something other than go to the hospital. I’ll share other ideas at another time.