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Leah,is it ok to chat? Why do ocd cause memories to become…

Hi Leah,is it ok to...
Hi Leah,is it ok to chat? Why do ocd cause memories to become distorted?? I asked you this before but my notes when I write things down is disappeared? Hope you are ok?
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10/18/2017
LeahMSWuofm
LeahMSWuofm, Clinical Social Worker
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1,111
Experience: 10 years post-MSW experience
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Hey Lucy, I am ok! How about you? OCD is on a constant mission to have you believe what it thinks is true. It finds ways to do this by constantly bombarding you with the obsession. As you know, you have memory of something historical happening so your OCD takes advantage of normal gaps in your memory and fills them with details that make you feel as if obsession is true. Everybody has pretty poor memory when it all comes down to it, so your OCD uses this to it's advantage to distort the way you recall your memories and makes you recall inaccurately that you were super worried and therefore must have been thinking about the murder.

I know this answer isn't super clear. The afct is, OCD and memory involvement is really confusing and not really all that well understood. Regardless, you know that your OCD causes you to focus heavily on the way you felt in the past and that obsession causes you to recall things in ways that may or may not be accurate. Even if you accurately recall feeling bad, we know it wasn't that you were feeling bad about a murder because that never happened. But again, OCD doesn't really care about the facts and therefore will focus on the feeling bad memory as evidence of the obsession.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
Hi Leah,Sorry for the late reply...that makes a lot of sense!! I would like to share with you Leah how I remembered this started off had the thought 'what if i killied someone in past and forgotten' I remember a niggling feeling in the background saying I remember life has not always been plain sailing in terms of 'worry and never NOT having something always on your mind' then the compulsions started what if it was that time I was at the party or was it that time I was walking alone at night? So I would mime those times and decided right no because my friends was there so would of told me!! Then it skipped to I remember every time I was ready to go out either clubbing or pubbing wedding etc i remember (is true) always having that sense of fear 'will i make these events without getting interupted!?

Honestly, that sounds exhausting to worry like that, . I really feel for you. That is interesting that you know you always worried but can now identify when the OCD actually formed. OCD is so crafty that you even think your friends are lying - you don't trust your own alibi! How has your OCD been doing since we talked last?

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
I have kinda have gone down hill again,but still fighting!! Leah why is it people with ocd always worry that they have forgot? Like once when I was with my ex boyfriend half way through our relationship I got a thought 'what if i cheated on him at the start I have a feeling I did!! I was worried who i forgot it was?

Hello, I thought i had replied yesterday but think I may have gotten distracted right before sending...

With OCd, they really don't understand the connection to memory. They think that some people with OCD may have "encoding problems" or even weaker memories which makes memories more susceptible to being misunderstood. But they aren't sure if the memory problems or the OCD comes first - they don't know which one actually causes the other. MOst people don't do too much worrying about their memory and how accurate it s - they just figure if it was really important they would have some memory of it and move on. Your OCVD is the cause here for the thinking and thinking and thinking and because of the type of OCd you have and your obsessions, the memory has to be involved because you ruminate about something happening in your past and worry about the unreliability of your memory.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
Thank you Leah,I nocited every time I have a fear...its always the fear that I think I forget!

For sure! We know your OCD is strongly intertwined with your memory and this is why it becomes really important for you to just let worries go instead of spending lots of times trying to assess if your memory is accurate or not. Easier said then done, right? :)

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
I would say leah!! Before I go Leah is it normal like the gaps I have to visualise what goes it that gap? Also I understand for example not remembering a night and ocd can fill in that gap of the night!! But never herd of memory gaps like mine?

[email protected] Most people have really spotty memory. For instance, I consider my memory to be pretty poor and have lots of things that I have limited recollection of. These mundane, everyday things just don't get stored in a place where it is easily acceptable. So again, everyone would have gaps ion memory if they really took the time to explore it. But, most people don't think this is an issue, don't feel worried or dwell on it, and don't spend time trying to analyze what is in the gaps where they don't recall. they just assume it couldn't be all that important and move on.

Just as an example. ask most Moms about their memories of their kids when they were very little. Most will state they are shocked at how fuzzy things are even though the times were precious. I can barely recall my daughter as a young toddler - I have memory of some of the important things and the sense of it being happy times, but mostly. those memories are just not all that easily retrievable and certainly not highly detailed. Photos and cell videos help remind me what she was like. But, I know this is normal and don't dwell on the details being missing either, and I certainly don't jump to conclusions that the gaps in my memory mean I have forgotten something that happened that was very bad or important :)

So your fickle memory is normal, Lucy, but your dwelling on it and trying to account for the gaps is your OCD.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
it's still normal for my ocd to complete the gaps with what seems more real,but when I try and think of it to be something else (what should be the real memory version seems a lot more off the truth

Your OCD is making up things to fill in the gaps and then, your logical mind kicks in to say "huh, not sure that makes a whole lot of sense." But your logical mind has to just ignore the things the OCD makes up because if not, the two of them just argue and this is perpetuating the OCD trying to win the battle.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
Hi Leah would you like me to open another thread? I don't want this getting to long

No, it is fine, Lucy. :)

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
O thank you Leah,I'm sorry I found it a bit difficult what you ment in the last reply?

Let me try to clarify...

Your OCD is on this mission to make you believe that it's story is true. This causes you to overanalyze and think very deeply, scanning memories etc.

But, you also have this part of your mind that is separate from the OCD and knows that the murder and your other obsessions are not really true. Soemtimes, it gets overpowered when the OCd is at its strongest.

I kind of visualize these two pieces of your brain arguing about things with your OCD yelling like "It is true!! I promise I know. Pay attention to me!!" and then your other part of your brain being like, "Look, OCD, I am well aware you exist and are full of lies and manipulations. i know that the murder never happened and this is all just some game you like to play."

Instead of allowing your logical mind to keep arguing with the OCD who it knows is a liar, your logical mind just needs to respond "I know OCD is part of my brain but I am not going to let him rule the way I think because he lies and stresses me out. I am just going to ignore him."

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
I understand now,it's strange because when I have my mind tell me I have killied someone the method it tells me is that I have strangled someone,I'm not in doubt over any other methods of killing?

I think OCD tends to hang on to the silliest for details. A lot of people can pinpoint why they have a specific obsession,like saw something on a movie, they have always been afraid of this thing, something happens to a loved one, etc. but other people don't always have a good root of the origins. Regardless, OCD can be pretty specific and doesn't always have clear cut ties for why it gets hung up on some detail. Or perhaps, strangling is something that just sounds horrible to you, even not in the context of OCD so it is a thing your OCD runs with.

LeahMSWuofm
LeahMSWuofm, Clinical Social Worker
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1,111
Experience: 10 years post-MSW experience
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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
That's sounds about right Leah!! Take care Leah ttyl
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