The national OCD charity, run by and for people with lived experience of OCD
A letter to stereotypes - By Lena
I do not think you realise how much it hurts to have the thing that scares you most, belittled and treated as if it were a mere phase. I do not think you know how alone and scared it makes you feel when you have no idea what is wrong with you, because of such severe misinformation. Isn’t it bad that the first time you hear your diagnosis, you think “That can’t be me! I don’t have a tidy room!”?. Why must you create one image when illnesses come in all shapes and sizes?
If I were to break my arm, would you not accept me because I was not hurting enough? No, you would shower me with sympathies and well wishes – why are mental illnesses treated so differently? Even now, one year into treatment, I am still unwilling to say what illnesses I have because I am ashamed, ashamed of what people would think if I were to confess that I struggle with anxiety and intrusive thoughts and food, I would be scared that they look down on me and judge me because I do not show how much I struggle, and I am therefore seen as someone who is fully capable of everything, when inside I am falling deeper and deeper into the abyss of anxiety.
What have you to gain from spreading ideas that are lies? If you wanted to make me feel insecure about myself – bravo, you have succeeded! It’s hard trying to get better from an illness that has stolen your childhood from you, and it’s even harder when you are constantly badgered by the idea that you are not ill enough or that you don’t look like you have OCD.
Logically I know that I am ill, but that is only because I am receiving three hours of different therapies per week, because a year ago I was locked in a psychiatric ward, even so I believe that I am a fake and that I don’t deserve help because I am not ‘OCD enough’.
This hurts. I feel like a failure at everything I do while you just ignore me and move onto your next innocent victim that believes your toxic lies. When will you realise that what you are doing is ruining the lives of those who are vulnerable enough as it is? When will you stop your vicious game? I really do not know how you came up with one image and one image only where everyone that has OCD must fit perfectly in? On what or who was that based? Please, yes I must beg you, and humiliating as it is, I believe that your selfish self will only react to myself throwing myself at your mercy, I implore you to give up your game and remove your henchmen from the media. It is too late for me as I have already been affected by your poisonous facts but for others, who have not yet fallen at your feet, I beg you to stop! You have had your fun but now it must end. Please.
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