We find these words in the Bible - Luke 9:20.
And the question got me thinking about how OCD can become an identity of sorts. Dr. Steven Brodsky would often say (probably still does to his current clients) “you are not the OCD.”
This 'OCD identity' might come about through certain people in our lives who ‘think’ they know us well and sometimes voice a remark upon seeing us in a worrisome state. Such as..."It’s the OCD.” “You’re being Obsessive again.” "You're obsessed." “Remember, you have OCD.” Grrrrrr….
And so we could easily assume that all they 'see' is...a germaphobe, an eccentric, the afraid-of-everything person, one who ruminates, a worry-ward, whatever…when in reality, not everything that upsets or bothers us is an OCD issue.
The older I become the more I realize that it's important to be around supportive, nonjudgmental people. Because we all have inherited and learned behaviors and fears, some of which present a challenge.
There's a difference in being told, "oh, get a grip" as opposed to "I'm sorry you're having a hard time, let's see what can help." But if all we receive is negativity and criticism...be it about having OCD or otherwise...truthfully? Who needs it?
We are who we are, doing the best we can..
No like? Hasta la vista, baby.
Yes, this is how I ‘take back’ who I am from being identified with OCD. This is one of the strategies Dr. Brodsky has taught me to use.
So, it’s not so important to wonder what others might answer to: “Who do you say that I am?” Paramount to that is how we answer that question for ourselves. Because primarily, we need to KNOW that we are MUCH MORE than OCD!
For instance, my reply is: I am a person who has capabilities, talents, the ability to have helped and continue to help others, a person who can be enjoyable company, who has long time close friends, a loyal husband, and certain accomplishments under my belt (however big or small.)
And now I ask you to ask yourself that same question...Who do you say that I am? Answer it by compiling a list of all that you are, have done, and enjoy, and leave the OCD out of it. Don't let the OCD 'bully' answer the question for you.
OCD is something we 'have' - it is not something that we 'are.'
Believe it. Live it. Strive to be free of it…one moment at a time. And if your symptoms are too powerful for the time being to even do this simple exercise (been there, know that) then call a therapist or read a self-help OCD book.
My book is among the many out there. Here is the link:http://www.amazon.com/dp/0974296309/?tag=mh0b-20&hvadid=3489185487&ref=pd_sl_2k27ffbr68_e
Of course, you can just Google OCD and you'll have access to other helpful books as well as beneficial web sites.
Also, feel free to contact Dr. Steven Brodsky. www.ocdhotline.com
He's an OCD specialist in NYC and gives a free evaluation via e-mail, and will do phone sessions in most cases to those who cannot find a therapist in their area.
Wishing you the inner-confidence to know who you are, minus OCD.