STRUGGLING with DEPRESSION, ANXIETY, or BIPOLARITY? LEARNING can really HELP. Start with ARTICLES above or Topics below. Ty! Bill

“My God, I can’t be thinking these things!” Relax, they’re intrusive thoughts.

I was walking down a sidewalk on Grand River Ave. in East Lansing, MI during my college years. Approaching me was a young mother happily pushing her toddler in a stroller. And the thought came out of nowhere: “Wonder what would happen if I picked up the stroller, child and all, and threw it into the street.”

I can’t tell you the huge measure of relief I experienced some 20 years ago when I learned about what I’d been experiencing. And the learning, in and of itself, had such a major positive impact upon the occurrence of my disturbing thoughts.

But the fun didn’t end there. Half asleep in my room, I’d hear the midnight freight coming down the tracks about 300 yards from the dorm. And I’d wrestle with the thought of jumping out of bed, running to the tracks, and throwing myself in front of the train.

Well, believe me, there were so many more of these horrifying mind intrusions, and the variety of the madness was absolutely amazing.

So how ’bout you? Ever experienced similar horror?

Take a look at these pieces of narrative from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR)…

Obsessions are persistent ideas, thoughts, impulses, or images that are experienced as intrusive and inappropriate and that cause marked anxiety or distress. The most common obsessions are…aggressive or horrific impulses (e.g., to hurt one’s child or to shout an obscenity in church).

Were you aware of this? If you’ve experienced what you now know to be intrusive thoughts, do you feel any better?

I can’t tell you the huge measure of relief I experienced some 20 years ago when I learned about what I’d been experiencing. And the learning, in and of itself, had such a major positive impact upon the occurrence of my disturbing thoughts.

You know, I remember some ten years ago a friend asked if she could confide in me. I couldn’t believe my ears when she revealed she’d been experiencing intrusive thoughts. Of course, she had no idea as to what they were and was frightened silly. Do you suppose she felt buckets of relief when I shared my experiences with her?

You bet she did.

Now, then – just because you’re dealing with intrusive thoughts doesn’t mean you’re suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Symptoms (I emphasize the word) such as intrusive thoughts can be a part of most any anxiety constellation – generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, PTSD, simple phobias, or social phobia. And, really, if the thoughts aren’t banging away at your life and causing big-time distress and interruption, they may not be representative of a disorder at all.

Well, what can we do about them?

  • Just knowing what it is we’re experiencing will kick a major dent into the occurrence of intrusive thoughts.
  • I noticed many years ago that the frequency of my intrusive thoughts significantly increased when I was under a lot of stress and fatigued. Soooo, let’s keep an eye on our lifestyle management skills, okay?
  • When an intrusive thought does occur, immediately transition your thinking to what you’ve learned, and accept what you’re experiencing within its true context. I’m telling you, you will not follow through on your feared behavior.
  • If you need additional assurance of what it is you’re experiencing, and what it is you won’t do, talk things over with your therapist or psychiatrist. And if you don’t have one, why not get one?
  • Do all you can to learn about what you’re experiencing. Education’s positive impact will amaze you.
  • Most of all, understand you’re not insane and you’re not a sociopath!

So what do you think? Intrusive thoughts – no fun at all, right? What have been your experiences with them, and what’s brought you relief? A comment (or two) will do just fine.

  • Feeling hopeless

    Hi bill, I just started having intrusive thoughts a few days again and reading this article causes great relief….until I start to drag myself into a depressive spiral of thinking I won’t be able to cope and I’ve reached the end of my mental rope. I am a mother of a toddler and have always had generalized anxiety. My son is my world, and my worse fear a year ago was losing him %50 of the time during a terrible custody battle. My doctor started me on Wellbutrin a month ago and out of nowhere my intrusive thoughts began, I am so upset with them and depressed I had a major panic attack and had my brother take me to the ER. I go see a psychiatrist tomorrow and I pray there is something that can help me. My boyfriend is moving in and I don’t want him to think I’m crazy. I’m a nurse and a mother and all I want is to be happy and not have these fears debilitate me and make me agoraphobic. I am ready to check myself into a mental hospital because I feel so hopeless and crippled. I feel like no one can understand and I wouldn’t want anyone to think I would ever act on my fears bc they terrify me. I want to tell my psychiatrist, but I’m afraid even he will think I’m crazy! Can you give me any helpful advice or comforting words. Is there medication that is prescribed for this? I feel I’m having a bad reaction to the Wellbutrin considering this happened out of nowhere! Thank you for your article.

    • Hey, FH! Thank you for visiting Chipur and participating.

      You know, it’s so good that you’ve shared in such detail. These are the realities readers need to lay their eyes on. Man, I remember feeling so relieved when I learned many moons ago I wasn’t the only one experiencing such “crazy” thoughts – and I’d never act on them. Please don’t drag yourself into that “depressive spiral of thinking,” because I assure you you haven’t reached the end of your “mental rope.” Oh, and for sure talk with your psychiatrist re what’s going-on. If he’s a decent doc, he’ll understand. Furthermore, how could he help you if you don’t tell him what’s up?

      Tricky thing about intrusive thoughts – they’re obsessions, but having them doesn’t mean one suffers from OCD. They’re very common as a manifestation of the mood and anxiety disorders. So when it comes to meds, it’s kind of a crap-shoot. But what else is new within the realm of psychotropics? Again, I’m not implying you have OCD; however, here’s a link to a piece from PsychCentral you may find helpful http://psychcentral.com/lib/medications-for-obsessive-compulsive-disorder/00083.

      I’ll also tell you fatigue and stress can generate intrusive thoughts, so do all you can to keep both at a minimum – though being a nurse and a mom may make that difficult (but you can do it!).

      25-30 years ago I had intrusive thoughts that would curl most people’s hair. I mean, “horrifying” doesn’t even do them justice. But I don’t experience them now, FH. And if I can pull it off, so can you. Please keep us posted, k? It’s really important healing information for all of us.

      Bill

  • Full of hope

    Hi Bill-

    This is feeling hopeless checking in :) just wanted to say thank you for answering my post when I reached out in an excruciatingly painful time. I have since been working everyday towards recovering from a lovely thing known as OCD. It is apparent to me now that it’s something I’ve struggled with my whole life, however last May, the intrusive thoughts I was experiencing took the wind out of my sails and I was sure I’d either end up locked away or taking my own life eventually….what a horrible feeling :( however, I think it’s important to anyone reading to know that after I received treatment, I am currently in recovery from my obsessions/compulsions. I started my reading everything I could about my disorder. Second, I realized I cannot be cured of it, but I can change my reaction to my thoughts. And THIRD, this is my favorite, after reading so many forums of people typing in agony, feeling hopeless, and no where to turn for help (as I did below) I’ve put the motions into affect to start a support group in my area. I researched the international OCD foundation website and have the backing of many therapist and psychiatrist in my area. I want to be able to help others realize they can overcome this. Back in May, I suffered the most horrible thoughts involving what I love most. I felt crippled as a person and a mother and the feeling that I was losing my mind was overwhelming. I was sure no amount of help could get me out of the dark hole of despair I was in, well, I’m out, I’ve started a new career and now am about to embark on a wonderful mission to help others. Again, thank you Bill and keep doing what your doing, because it was very comforting to me and I’m sure many to come. thank you and Happy new year!

    • What a transition – “Feeling hopeless” to “Full of hope.” I am so glad you checked back in and updated us. Provides a very warm feeling, for sure.

      Look at you – you connected the dots, knew you had a problem that needed to be addressed, and you took care of business. How cool is that?! And starting a support group in your area is the frosting on the cake. I’m sure you know you’ll help so many by providing a safe environment in which those enduring OCD can come forward and embrace hope and healing.

      Please continue to keep us informed of the goings-on, Full of hope. As a matter of fact, if you’d consider writing a guest post for Chipur I’d love to feature it. Click on CONTACT in the header and drop me a line if you’re interested.

      Thank you for your visit and great news. And you’re welcome…

      Bill

    • Hey FofH…
      Replied to your email (thank you), but it wouldn’t go through. Something I’m doing wrong?
      Bill

    • Jimmy

      Wow. I hope i can get to where you are, I am a 39 year old male who I guess has always had weird thoughts but they never bothered me until 2 Nov 2014, that’s when my life seemed to take a bad turn, i had a imagine/thought that bothered me so bad that now I can’t seem to get back on track, it took me about a month to shake this first rd then I was good for about 2 months then in Mar till now it comes and goes, it makes me feel so guilty and ashamed that I could have thoughts of harming my baby girl, my baby is 8 and I feel so guilty, ashamed, scared that me as her father could have these thoughts, I don’t like even thinking she is hurt or in pain so these thoughts have me stressed, scared and wondering if I am not some crazy insane man who needs to be locked up, I mean if they are not leaving me this most mean I am eventually going to do this right? My weight goes up and down with these thoughts, my Physiologist says I am not insane, but what if he is wrong, he says thoughts never hurt anyone and it’s my reaction That causes these thoughts to seem real. I am scared my life will never be the same. Can I trust my own mind again. I want this thoughts gone, they scare me and have ruined my last few months. I wish Naples Fla where I lived had support groups.

      • Emily

        Jimmy-
        I feel for you. I really do. This is exactly what happened to me, BAM out of no where. But you need to get a hold on this. (Easier said than done right?) does your doc have you on any meds? I needed meds to get me out of my stress long enough to over come it. I assure you. My thoughts were the same as yours. Seemed to pop up out of no where. My son is 5. I couldn’t eat, couldn’t function. Maybe I can try and explain it easier, like my therapist did. We are people with anxiety/ depression etc… We have learned our whole lives to survive by responding emotionally to things. We need to start responding logically-not easy. You can’t control your thoughts. Everybody has these weird, morbid, scary thoughts. But they use their left brain to brush them off. Our right brain dominant (you probably like to do creative artsy stuff huh?) reaction is to respond emotionally in order to protect ourselves and those we love. What are the facts to support you will harm your daughter? Is this thought rational or irrational? Irrational? Yes, I thought so…then no threat, on to your daily tasks. Another thing that helps is to read about others going through it too. I can give you some good links if you’re interested. You WILL be yourself again. I promise.

      • Thanks so much, Emily, for stopping-by and participating. So kind of you to reach-out to Jimmy – as you know all too well what he’s going through (and so do I). What you shared is on the mark, and excellent. Please come back, k?

        Bill

      • Jimmy

        Emily thanks for your support. I see a regular physiologist who can’t give meds and another that can but I only see him every 6 months, they both are great but don’t want to put me on meds. I see my regularly Dr more but as I said this all started back in Nov, and that month was hell, then in Dec it got a lot better with only two days that set me back, then I had another setback in January that lasted three days and then I was good till about three weeks ago and well it’s back, not as bad but way more often, to the point I think I maybe losing it, I guess when you have these thoughts happen so much I begin to worry that this is more than thoughts, I wish they would lock me up so my daughter would be safe, but then I break down cry like a baby because I cant believe a father would have these thoughts, my wife does not know and I am way to ashamed to tell her, I do have two friends that know and they try to tell me they no I am not the type of person to do this but I fear that maybe at 39 my brain has lost it, my dr try to tell me if I was really crazy the. Thoughts would not bother me and I would just react to them with no remorse but now that does not ease me, I am ok if I am busy but then the minute I am not and I get home here they come. So I am scared, ashamed and confused. I read the Imp of the Mind by Lee Baer and it seem to make me more worried. Thanks for your help.

      • Hey Jimmy…

        I’m glad you’re pursuing help. You say you see a physiologist. How did you make that choice, and is it working well for you (as opposed to seeing a traditional counselor/therapist)? Hey, not trying to create conflict – just curious. In fact, I’ll likely learn something.

        I understand your fear, shame, and confusion. I know this likely may not sink-in just now; nonetheless, you’ve done nothing wrong – nor will you…

        Bill

      • Hey, Jimmy!

        First of all, thank you for your visit and contribution.

        Secondly, I’m so sorry you’re having such a rough go. And believe me, I 100% understand what you’re going through, and the misery it causes. When my intrusive thoughts were knocking the stuffing out of me (30-35 years ago), I too had thoughts of harming a child. It was my stepdaughter and I can still remember the utter horror I felt when I was holding here walking down an open staircase into a cave – and thinking I would toss her over the railing. My God! Unfortunately, the thoughts diversified, so there were nightmares – and fear of insanity – around every bend.

        I assure you, I don’t experience these thoughts anymore – haven’t for a looong time. Oh, I still manage to come up with some funky creations; however, I see them for what they are and move on. Actually, I consider them to be warning lights on my personal dashboard – signs that I need to pause and check-in on my overall level of stress, and intervene. Biggest thing in overcoming them for me was not to compulsively react to them – internet searches, avoidance, reasoning with them, trying to force them away, etc. That only reinforces them and nothing improves. By the way, I like Emily’s reply to you.

        So please – hang in there, Jimmy. This is not a lifetime proposition, k? Don’t hesitate to share and update.

        Bill

      • Jimmy

        Bill,
        Thanks so much for your email and response above. I hope I can defeat this, I miss the days where weird thoughts never bothered me. I can’t lie now and say I trudt that will happen but I knowing I am not alone is a help,

      • No doubt, I understand you may not trust your mind right now. However, the day will come when you’ll feel more comfortable with the concept – and you will. Yeah, you certainly aren’t alone…

        Bill

      • BCat

        Oh, you’re not alone, Jimmy. There are so many of us hurting units out there and we have to stick together. Here’s a thought. When you think of the most interesting and thoughtful people you know or have heard of, they’re never the ones who have had an easy life. They’re the ones who have had the courage to confront their issues and share their process with others who are in pain. FYI, weird thoughts help sell books big time. Steven King and E.A. Poe could have written my book (and I love SK and EAP).

        You are acknowledging and confronting your pain and that’s the first step in healing. Acceptance, like Bill has said. When we get through these times, don’t we always say afterwards, ‘if only I had had more faith that I WILL get through it and I will know so much more’ it would have helped? So let’s all of us try to have more faith and know that at least we’ll be more interesting when it’s over. If only to ourselves, but that’s enough.

      • Sweet, BC. Thank you…
        Bill

  • Full of hope

    Hey Bill-
    Maybe I typed it wrong friendofocd@outlook.com. If that doesn’t work- leave me another comment! Thanks :)

    Emily

    • That was it. Sent another email. Let me know if you want your email address deleted from here…

  • Emily

    Bill it’s great that you reply so promptly to a person in crisis. It’s really great that you’ve overcome your behavior to weird thoughts. I just started my therapy last week and my therapist went into this whole left brain/right brain, logic/emotion thing with me. It really made great sense to me. He told me I’m not OCD, just “chronically anxious and depressed” he said that my whole life I’ve learned to protect myself through emotional response. He said I need to mindfully train my brain to take things for what they are and use logic and fact to guide my behavior- but I won’t go into detail, it was just a very interesting way of thinking that helped me to put things in perspective and give me the motivation to work in myself. I like how you say, “I still get the thoughts, but now I see them as warning lights” my thoughts always correlate when I’m under stress that im almost trying to deny having. So learning to deal with my stress in a healthy way consciously helps me to keep from getting to that rumination phase. I’ve also taken the whole left brain/ right brain theory and noticed whenever I’m being creative I.e. My support group, painting, playing guitar, writing, etc… I’m very calm and focused. This is a way to use my brain to my advantage- yes I may be prone to anxiety and depression because I’m an emotional thinker, but I can’t help but think I was also equipped by my creator with my own special anti-depressant tools :) so when I’m in a place of despair I force myself past the “what’s the point” thinking and paint something or craft with my son. It is instant relief. Thanks again for being helpful and reaching out to those of us who need to hear advice from someone who’s been there and overcame it, and Jimmy-we are here to support you and KNOW you’ll get through it too.

    • Thank you, Emily. And, see, this is why I love producing Chipur. Not only are we helping Jimmy, we’re helping anyone who happens by this article – any article. I appreciate your involvement in that…

      Bill

    • BCat

      Dear Emily, your post has helped me in this time of recovering from great stress in my life that has left me with chronic panic disorder. Ruminating on past faults is a sign of a card-carrrying depressed/anxiety stricken person, and that would be me. Feeling purpose and creativity is a sign of a fulfilled and happy life, and almost impossible when in the grip of anxiety and depression. I have so many talents – dancer, pianist, great cook, crafter – but I can’t enjoy any of them, feel like I stink at them, when I’m down. I have to force myself through ‘what’s the use’ thoughts, and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. Month in and month out of attack thoughts and how can one not feel like ‘what’s the use’? But there’s really no alternative to trying anyway, whether it works or not,

      But somewhere in there, I do feel better afterwards if I make the effort to do something other than let the toxic thoughts swamp me. Force myself to take a walk even though the world out there feels evil. Force myself to sit at the piano and bumble through a piece I thought I knew. It’s humbling but it feels like accomplishment, even if small. Those nasty thoughts want to take over and it’s an ongoing process to be mindful and remind myself that they are not me, they are part and parcel of stress. Your post has reminded me of this and your therapist sounds like a good one. We’re all in this together even when it feels like we’re so alone and wonder if we’ll ever really get past it.

      • What we’re endowed – and have to deal – with?! Guess that’s just the roll of the bones. Live, in spite of it? Well, that’s a personal choice. But I’m convinced doing so is the way to go…

        Bill

      • Jimmy

        Bcat I feel you, everyone here is great, but like you this has really kicked my butt, I am not a art guy or anything but more of a sports and outdoors guy, I love to watch my Clemson Tiger football and I am a Miami Dolphins season ticket holder, so watching Clemson on Saturday and Miami on Sunday was what I knew, but on the 2 Nov of last yr when I had my first issue I could really careless about football and really spending time with my daughter was my goal out of shame of my thoughts, then I had issues with any new feelings due to sparking the bad thoughts, I have never been the type of person to harm or hurt someone, I don’t even spank my daughter and usually when I punish her I felt guilty, so the thoughts of harming her devastated me. I did go throught a period where my life went back to normal for about two months then about middle of March here we go again, I am struggling with beating this now, and sometimes I wonder if the thoughts are more than thoughts, then I go to depression and am afraid to do the things I enjoy such as long walks due to to much time to think, work gives me peace but then when it’s time to go home I get nervous and scared that the thoughts will come back and then they do. My Dr has told me that thoughts don’t harm anyone it’s when they scare me that they take on more of a real life meaning, so it’s my reaction to them, but when you can’t shake them you begin to wonder if hey I am crazy, I feel they should lock me up so I can’t harm anyone, then I get in the shower and just cry wondering how could I have thoughts of hurting my baby my life, or when I walk with her she wonders why I cry and constantly tell, her how much I lover her, then there are times where she gets in trouble and I have to get on to her and end up in tears because I feel so guilty. I have to say these past 5 months have been the hardest time of my life, way more difficult than my year in Iraq when I was a soldier in the U.S. Army, I am not real religious but I have turned to God for help and sometimes ask him if it’s my time I am ok with it, pretty sorry right, 6 months ago I was happy, loving life could not wait for the weekend etc, now I am lost and worry about what life will be like from now on, pretty dramatic right, but the one thing that has been a positive out of all this is I now realize my Hobbys are just that and if I don’t catch a game due to spending time with my baby and wife then that’s great as well, but I am scared and wonder will I ever be Jimmy again. Not sure I can offer much help but I am here. Hope your doing better

      • Jimmy

        Well today has been another where my thoughts won’t leave, we had a nice lunch as a family then meet my mother in law so my daughter could spend the night with her, my wife and I came home to chill and watch a movie and bam, my bad thoughts centered on her, now I wondering if they are thoughts your some crazy obsession to harm my family, I have to say I am so unsure of my mental state, did smoking weed for about 7 months make my brain turn me into a crazy mental issue, I am losing it? I can’t say I am not, I don’t like the state I am in, I don’t like this at all, I miss being able to walk around my house without fear of a thought of harming someone haunting me, it seems the second I am not busy hear comes the BS, I am starting to get pissed with this, I see my DR Wednesday and my other Dr on the 24th, I hope we can get this under control, I know this sounds crazy but I wish I could go back to that day in Nov when this crap started and do that day over, I feel on 2 November I lost my sanity. I fear I am losing it, I fear through over and over of having these thoughts they might win, what if these are more than thoughts, can I be this evil, how could I ever even thank of harming the people who love me and I love, what would they think knowing I am dealing with this while they are around me, two people that love me, trust me and expect to protect them, what would they think, I am a emotional wreck, how in just 7 months has my life went through such a drastic spin, I found a picture my daughter made me the other day saying I love you dad, brought me to tears, what kind of dad deals with this, she is my baby. I don’t dare ask if this can get worst but will it ever get better? Hope y’all are doing better than I.

      • Hey, Jimmy!

        This will be a reply to this comment and the one just before it.

        First and always foremost – you are not “losing it,” and the whole mess can, indeed, get better. Again, I dealt with exactly what you’re going through all those years ago, but no more. So I can tell you for sure you haven’t lost your sanity – and your thoughts won’t win. You will not act on them, okay?! Oh, and having such thoughts pertaining to your daughter have no bearing on what sort of Dad you are. This is not a morals/values issue – purely funky thoughts. And the sooner you can accept that, the faster you’ll find comfort. Simply, don’t try to out-moral it. The more you engage with them, the many more times you’ll lose the encounter.

        You said in your first comment that you’ve place your love for Clemson and Miami Dolphins football aside – your only goal being spending time with your daughter. I’m encouraging you to return to your love of football, as I know you will continue to love your daughter and take care of her. The big issue here is reinforcing the thoughts by compulsively reacting to them – saying bye-bye to football and being overzealous in your relationship with your daughter. The point of intervention with intrusive thoughts – like any obsession – is at the compulsive reaction. Every time we do so, we reinforce the thoughts.

        Let me quickly address the thoughts you occasionally experience re your wife. It’s all the same dynamics at play. And the relationship thoughts, as unpleasant as they are, are common within the realm of what you’re dealing with.

        To know you’re getting “pissed off” at this is good news, if you ask me. That means you’re ready to do what it takes to dump ’em. I’m glad you’re seeing one of your docs this coming week, and the other not long after. All of you roll up your sleeves and get to work. You don’t have to live like this, Jimmy…

        Bill

      • Rich

        Hi Jimmy, I can tell you are hurting very badly. I know exactly how you feel, because in my mid thirties, due to life stresses, I got hit with intrusive thoughts. Some of the most horrible, violent, disgusting intrusive thoughts you could ever imagine. Let me reassure you of one thing more than anything else – the fact that you are so horrified, so tortured over the very idea of doing anything to harm your wife or your daughter tells me that you are simply not going to do it. You won’t. You might have thoughts that you will. You might actually even think the words “I am going to do [insert horrible act here]”. You may even ‘hear’ them inside your head. You’re not. You may even sometimes, while thinking the thoughts, feel a horrible ‘urge’ to do something harmful. You won’t. I know you won’t, because i’ve been in all of those places, and i have done none of those things. This post is long, but please read it. I know you have no reason to trust some random dude posting on the internet, but at least leave yourself open to this possibility – that everything i’m saying might actually be true. If you can admit that it is possible that what follows is the truth, you’ve already taken a big step.

        You know that feeling you get when you stand at the edge of a cliff or a steep drop, and you get that weird thought that you could throw yourself off? Maybe you’ve been there with a partner and you’ve had this weird urge to start pretending to push each other off? You know that odd, frightening jolt that goes through you when you have those thoughts and urges? That’s all that’s happening here. Normally we shrug off those silly thoughts, *even though we all have them*, because we just don’t take them seriously. We know, somewhere deep inside, that we’re not going to follow through on those momentary thoughts/urges because they’re more about what we theoretically *could* do, than what we really will do. The difference for you in this situation is that you love your daughter and wife so much that even the thought that it’s possible, in theory, that you could harm them, is almost too much to bear. Take your anguish as a sign that you are not a psychopath, that you love your wife and daughter dearly, and no simple random thought is going to change that fact.

        I’m going to share some simple lessons with you that I have learned which I hope bring you a little relief.

        1. Thoughts and actions are not the same, and one does not necessarily lead to the other. You can have all the thoughts in the world about harming your family – that in no way means that you actually will. You may be worried that the thoughts will compel you against your will to carry out those acts. You won’t. Though it doesn’t feel like it, you are still in charge – the fact that your daughter and wife are still safe and you’re here asking for help is absolute proof of that.

        2. Everybody has these thoughts, and having them does not mean you are a deviant, it means you are human. Whether you can believe this or not at this point, every single husband and every single wife is capable of having, and probably has had, intrusive thoughts about harming their spouse. This is not unusual. What is unusual in your case (and mine!) is that you believe that the passing thought you had one day meant something. It didn’t. It was one out of 60,000 thoughts that all our brains generate all day, every day. You just don’t remember all the other silly thoughts because they didn’t scare you so much.

        3. A random intrusive thought does not in any way say anything meaningful about you as a person, your innermost desires, your true character, or the course of your life. It says as much about your true self as a random piece of graffiti on a street says about the city it’s found in. A person who has a thought about murder is not automatically a murderer. A person who feels a momentary urge to steal does not automatically become a thief. You have lived for nearly 40 years as an upstanding person, loving his wife, providing for his daughter and protecting them to the best of his ability. I can tell this because you’re *still* protecting them from a threat you perceive, even though you think you yourself are that threat. *That* is the real you, not this intrusive thought that you had.

        4. The real, big problem with intrusive thoughts is that when we have them, we get scared. They terrify us. I know the depths of your terrible anguish because i’ve been right where you are. When we get scared, we seek reassurance that the threat isn’t real. This makes us think and think and think about the threat, only the more we think about the threat, the more frightened we get. This makes us seek a higher level of reassurance, a more cast-iron guarantee, which makes us think more …. and down and down the spiral goes. Your intrusive thoughts only have power because they scare you. They scare you because they are so contrary to who you really are, deep down inside – and this is what you need to realize in order to rob the thought of its power.

        5. One of my favorite movies of all time is ‘Wargames’ with Matthew Broderick – as a military man, you probably know it. At the end of the movie, a supercomputer runs countless simulations of nuclear war between the east and the west. After seeing that every single possible strategy and tactic leads to the inevitable destruction of both sides, it concludes “The only winning move is not to play.” You have a war going on in your head right now, between the intrusive thoughts and the desire to be (as you assuredly are) a good and upstanding person. This war cannot be won by fighting because that only throws fuel on the fire. Though it may be against your nature, this is a situation in which the only winning move is not to play. Don’t engage with the thoughts. I can tell you from experience, the more you fight, the louder that horrible voice in your head becomes. When you finally stop engaging, the horrible thoughts simply go away. It takes a short while, but they just vanish, like smoke in the wind, and when you look back on it 6 months from now, you will be surprised that you ever even worried about this.

        Short version – Everybody has funky thoughts. Some are terrifyingly disgusting, vile and horrendous. They don’t say anything about who you really are. Regardless of what the thoughts say, the real you is in charge, your family is safe, and you are not evil.

        Rich.

      • Jimmy

        Rich,
        Thanks man, your awesome, I am glad you took the time to send me this, I will probably read it a few times, I needed this, rich it means a lot that another person who has never meet me understands and gets what I am going through, I am usually not a open person but this has been the one thing on my life that has had me wondering a lot of stuff I would never question or worry about, not sure why I got through this for awhile then to have it come back, I guess I hate to admit but this has me more scared than I ever wanted to let on. I hope you will continue to post and keep in touch, I want the old Jimmy back that was not perfect and had some flaws but still took care of my family and had fun. Rich thanks so much, everyone on here as been great, I have even had one person send me emails because she wanted to help. I am scared but at lease I know I am not a mindless murder that has some how just decided to come out. To everyone that has wrote me thanks, it means a lot to me that strangers were willing to not judge me but try to console me and help. Rich please stay in touch and thanks man, Bill I have the upmost respect for what you have done and can’t say enough for your time. I will beat this.

      • Though I don’t know you, Jimmy – I believe in you, and your ability to get through this. I am so heartened by the Chipur readers who have reached-out to you. Pretty special! Please keep us posted…

        Bill

      • Wow, Rich. So spot-on. Thank you for reaching-out to Jimmy…
        Bill

      • BCat

        Thanks, I’m doing fine, today is a good day and it’s easy to keep engaged. Sounds like you need to kick some butt, football-wise. Or, grab a ball and play with your wife and little one. I’ve never been a sports fan, but my husband is and I’ve really, really gotten into the Giants, It’s so good to just have some good ol’ American fun with others who are living it up and cheering for their team. It’s so uplifting.

        Let me say this – kids can be challenging, especially when we’re just hanging on. I once lost it with a dog whom I loved but who was very scampish and barky, and in the midst of hitting him, I thought “Oh My God, this is what my father went through with me – losing it”. It shocked me and gave me compassion for him. I guess counting to 10 is still the best defense, and looking at those thoughts and saying “Thanks for visiting, but I don’t need you, so go away”.

        Those thoughts and feelings seem to crave attention, and I’ve found that acknowledging them satisfies them. Denying that they’re there is too hard. I believe the Good Creator wants every good thing for us, and if we feel as though He sees us and cares, it’s soothing. Prayer is always a good distraction. Go Giants – kick some butt!

      • BCat

        One more thing — Jimmy, do you go out walking? I know, I know, it’s the last thing you wanna do, but man, you gotta go beat some cheeks on the pavement and get some movement on this stress. No matter how awful I feel, a walk always, always makes me feel even a little better. I pound the pavement and say my mantra “I’m a strong, good person, and I deserve to feel good. This will pass like smoke in the wind (thinks, Rich) and I’ll be stronger because of it.” You’ve got a lot of friends here and I think you know you’re in our prayers. You’re in mine.

      • Jimmy

        Walk yes I do about 5 miles before work Monday throught Friday sat and Sun I do my 12 plus, I had to stop gives me to much time to think and then the thoughts over whelm me, but I no now that giving into them makes them stronger. Btw did you read what Rich sent me, read it it really helped me.

      • All of you make me feel really good. And I thank you…

      • Jimmy

        Bill thank you, you have helped all of us. I am thankful for this site and the people who lend advice and experience in dealing with this, I am still scared but believe I am in the right direction. Thanks everyone I owe you all,

      • Just pass it on, Jimmy. You’ll have your chance. And you know what, all? Just imagine what positive impact this piece – with its comments – is going to have on anyone who happens by. That’s so good…

        Bill

      • BCat

        You are a sweetie, Bill. A real down-home sweetie.

      • Aw shucks, BC…

      • Jacob Register

        Hey Gang,

        Saw this the other day and was sad I missed out on the “party”. I just wanted to chime in and give you a few thoughts and words of encouragement for Jimmy. I like you was hit out of the blue with crazy thoughts. Completely normal guy, had a solid job with a large insurance company, recently got a girlfriend I had been trying to get for years, loving life but going through a stressful time and BAM! The thoughts come out of nowhere and felt so “real” and so “powerful”. I can remember each time when one really “stuck”. I was down roughly 30 pounds, getting one hour of sleep a night. So I get it….

        It’s been a little over a year now. I’ve tried to….

        -Out-moral the thoughts (I’ve gotten more religious)

        -Force them out of my head
        -Read book after book and article after article
        -Try meditation, Yoga, exercise you name it

        I realized after a few months of being completely miserable that I was putting nearly ALL my attention on getting rid of these thoughts and in a way, giving them all of my attention. That’s where acceptance came in for me. I acknowledge now that I probably have something biologically or structurally different with my brain. However, I don’t have to take the thoughts at face value. Here are some things that helped me:

        1. Mindfulness- A thought is just a thought. Most of the time we have no control over what enters into our mind. We only have control over how we react to it. Headspace is a great application that you can use for about 10 dollars a month. It’s just a guided meditation application for your phone or laptop. It’s pretty convenient. It takes a long time to take effect but I know it has helped lots of people with obsessive and intrusive thoughts.
        2. The four steps by OCD expect Jeffrey Schwartz. Google him, you can find the steps in a few seconds.
        3. Talking to someone who has experienced them. I’ve tried to talk to my friends family and girlfriend about this and they understand to some extent. But unless you have truly had them it’s very hard to understand how real thoughts and urges are. Talking to Bill has really helped me (Hey man!). The fella had it much worse then I did and came out pretty okay (that’s debatable ;) )
        4. Cut out all compulsions. My big thing was “googling” the issue. You will be SO uncomfortable in the short term. It pays off in the long term.
        5. Nueroplasicity. Your brain is constantly changing. Science has proven you can literally change structures of your brain with positive behaviors.This is NOT something you have to suffer from for the rest of your life.

        Yeah, it’s been pretty much the worst thing that has ever happened to me. But when I look back at how different I was before this. I’m kind of glad I got to experience it. It has changed my life and in many ways. I’m volunteering at a local crisis center now, I’m on the verge (I hope) of getting into grad school to hopefully become a counselor myself. I’ve met and connected with so many people along the way. I’ve started going to church and getting involved in so much more around my community. It’s made me a wiser, more compassionate and stronger person. Seriously, if my odd/obsessive mind can’t stop me… then what the hell can?

        Hang in there, turn it into a blessing and just know deep down… any urge or thought you have has no reflection on who you are or what your intentions are! I still have these thoughts every single day, but when I compare it to how I was just a year ago I’m in a completely different world. Maybe things happen for a reason, I’m in the camp that they do. I’ve seen it too many times.

        Give it time, let your mind heal. You can do this man!

      • Jimmy

        Hey thanks man. It’s been about week and I am doing a lot better, it’s been good to read your comments and Rich, everyone here has been great. I agree with a lot of what you wrote, I hope one day in year or so I can say it’s been a year since I have had these things, but the longest I have made is two months, I hope to get there this time and keep it going. Like you said when this all first started my life was heading down a bad path, my weed use was bad, even though I was not using to escape problems I did use it to relax and sleep, now I can’t say that that is what caused this but it scared me into stopping and realizing what’s more important to me, my relationship it’s God, my wife my daughter and friends has been better, so this whole thing has not been all bad. I am still scared that this will always be apart of me so I take it one day at a time. I hope to keep in touch with Rich and you as we seem to have a lot in common, thanks for your advice words of incouragement. My email is jcutchens@yahoo.com. Thanks Jacob

      • Hang in there, Jimmy. We’re all in this together, bro…

        Bill

      • Jimmy

        Thanks Bill, this site has definitely helped me, it’s nice to have people that understand what your feeling and going through. I realize I am not alone and that in it self helps. Thanks to everyone here I feel I am on the right track.

      • Keep us posted, man…

        Bill

      • Hey Jacob!

        Ah, you didn’t miss the party. It’s perpetual, right? Excellent input – both what didn’t work, and what did. Thank you for taking the time to share. You know, it’s one thing for me to write about such things, but’s it’s so much more that others chime in with their experiences – and reliefs. I’ll say it again, just think what your contribution means to not only Jimmy, but to folks who’ll stop-by in the days ahead.

        Thanks again, Jacob. And who could argue that my “coming out pretty okay” is debatable? LOL…

        Bill

      • Jimmy

        Hey man. How are you,

  • Found an old Chipur article on TFT. May be worth a look-see http://chipur.com/thought-field-therapy-tft-tapping-out-mood-and-anxiety-woes/

    “…corduroy-type grooves in the noggin.” Love it…

    Bill

  • Jimmy

    Bcat, sorry for the late reply, I just saw your response. Rich post really help me along with Jacobs, you and I have a lot in common as well, my thoughts scare the shit out of me, to the point I would avoid anything that I thought would cause them to reoccur , I don’t know what caused them to happen or I guess what made them scare me but it did, for months I blamed it on weed, but not sure that is what did it, I am on some high pain killers now due to having neck surgery next week and was scared that they would cause me to have them do to that feeling they give you of relaxation and chill feeling they give you like weed, but so far so good, I am worried that during the surgery and recover they may come back, it’s almost like I am learning how to react to different emotions again. I know there is many ways to get over this but riches post help me, and I think the longer I go without having them the more confidence I will get, man I would love to say it’s been yrs since I have had them, but not sure that will happen, but I can hope. I hope you find something that works for you as well. I am always here if you just need to chat or you can email me. Jcutchens@yahoo.com. Sometimes I don’t get updates from here as fast. We can beat this B.

  • Jimmy

    How is everyone doing? Been a while since I last posted. Hope everyone is doing great.

    • Well, looked who stopped-on-by. Everything is just fine on the Chipur side of the fence. Question is – how have you been doing?

  • Jimmy

    Taking it day by day Bill. Been able to not let my thoughts scare me, but still am scared of them. I know that I can’t be so not to give them strength.

    • It’s an acquired discipline, Jimmy. The more you practice, the better it gets. Once again, I assure you – you ARE NOT the awful things that zing through your head. Never will be. Give it time, man. It gets better. I should know – been there…

      Bill

      • Jimmy

        Thanks Bill. I will be glad when I get this under control.

  • aussie bloke

    Hi all,

    I have had my run in with IT’s for a few years now. I have more better days than bad in a month now, but I still get bothered by them.

    Bill how long did it take you for the grip of the IT’s to fade away?

    • You know, it was a bit of a process, AB. And thing is, they were at their worst for just about 23 years, ending around 1995. Believe me, there wasn’t a whole lot of info available on the phenomenon in those days – so I had no idea what was happening to me, much less what to do about it. That’s why they lasted so long. Once I learned about what they were – and got a handle on my panic/anxiety disorder – the grip went away in several months. Am I saying the leaning toward very funky thoughts, on occasion, disappeared? No (still there, by the way). However, what I would consider classic ITs hit the highway – and remain in the rear-view mirror.

      Appreciate your visit and comment, bloke…
      Bill

      • aussie bloke

        Yeah it’s been a couple of years now, I’ve found a good psychologist who has taught me a bit about mindfulness, I take mess, which help as well. But then there is still those days that just get you off guard. Any suggestions on other avenues I could try to help more?

        Thanks bill

      • Check-out the work of Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz at UCLA. Here’s a sample http://hope4ocd.com/foursteps.php Now, it gets into the entirety of OCD; however, I think you’ll find it interesting and helpful…

        Bill

      • aussie bloke

        Wow 20+ years of that and making it through is something to be really proud of. I’ve learned to let the ITs just be but then I get that horrible feeling sometimes, oh no I’m use to them now and I must be my thoughts. Did that happen to you at any time Bill?

        I’m from Australia by the way if you hadn’t picked up from the name:). Where are you based?

      • Yeah, I was kinda’ thinkin’ the Australia thing, AB. No doubt, the name is a smidge of a giveaway. I live in the northern suburbs of Detroit.

        It was, in fact, a loooooong 20+ years. Appreciate the props. You know, we really are amazing folk. As long, and as intensely, as we struggle, we keep placing one foot in front of the other – and carry on. Guess it’s often because we haven’t much choice. But, realistically, we do – we could just pack it in and fly the old white flag.

        Sure, I’ve experienced the “horrible feeling” you mention. However, I’ve come to know that anything can come to mind if one leans toward ITs/obsessions – anything. Owning that insight, it’s really easy to continue-on without creating and sustaining the infamous and ever-intensifying cycle of chaos. Guess I just don’t take myself – my thoughts – so seriously.

        Again, thanks for visiting and sharing, AB…
        Bill

  • Jimmy

    Hello everyone, well I am back. It’s been 6 months without my intrusive thoughts, thought finally they are gone. It’s been a yr since my first experience with these thoughts, so in some way I think I worried myself to having them, but a week ago bam I got one, not as bad this time but never less they are back. Today I was great thought maybe this time i was done and thought let’s see how long I can go with out them again, but then just a few mins ago they came back. I hate them, they scare me, they make me wonder if I am ever going to do them, j feel guilty for having them. I had a really hard time last April of getting rid of them until I had neck surgery, then from May til now I was free of them. I want them to go and be gone, I am tired of them. Aussie Bloke, if you check this I am here man, bill is great, wish I lived near him so I could see him and get over this. I feel ur pain, not sure how bad yours affect you, or if you even wonder if they are more than thoughts, like urges etc, I do but others guys here say they felt that as well so that helped, it’s funny how people would respond to my post and seem to understand or write to me what they bad been through which helps. Good luck man, I am here.

    • Well, there he is! Welcome back, Jimmy. I’m sure you wish it was under different circumstances. Okay, so you’re in the midst of a bit of a recurrence. But you know what? It happens, man. And I would suspect as time goes on you’ll go longer than six months in-between. Yeah, and please don’t forget that six months of freedom. If there was anything horribly/irreparably wrong with your brain, that wouldn’t have happened. Okay? Try to stay patient, Jimmy, ’cause you know the more you push for their disappearance, the longer they’ll stick around.

      Thank you for the update…
      Bill

      • Jimmy

        Bill,
        Thanks man, I am trying to realize that I have beat this before. I think I have worried myself back into having the thoughts again, then once that happens you start wondering if you will act, then comes the guilt. I think once I realize the thoughts are nothing more then I will be fine, I hope that I don’t have some form of OCD, I appreciate all the support, this site has been a blessing, I never forgot anyone here, I did look in every so often. Bill thanks for your responces. I reread what you and other send or reply back to me, but I get into a hole and can’t seem to get them to stop and like you said the more I push or fight the worst and more real they become. Keeping busy helps but I want to get back to being able to relax and chill. Hope all is well with everyone.

      • Carry on, soldier…

      • Jimmy

        Lol. Thanks Bill, I sure wish I lived near you so that I could have sessions with you. It’s nice to have someone that has been through and beat what so many of us are going through.

  • Jimmy

    Bill, I hope my Doctors are treating me correctly. My therapist that I see ref that can’t give meds says similar things that you suggest, he says my issue is my reaction to the thoughts rather than the thoughts, my other Dr that I see can give me meds but I only see him every few months, he does not want me on meds rather just being able to redirect my thoughts, I asked if I had OCD he said no. I see my reg therapist Friday, neither have the experience in this as you do Bill. I am currently on meds for my neck and back from my pain management dr. I have 10/325 oxy!!! I took one yesterday and they calmed me down, today I was really bothered by my thoughts again so took another pill and a half and again it relaxes me, I know this is going down another road of bad stuff, I have for neck and back pain but did tell my wife to hide them so I can’t take them to ease my thoughts. Bill I will try whatever you recommend, it seems the longer and more upset I get over my thoughts the more real and dark they get, it almost seems they are urges which then freaks me out even more, at times I wish j was locked up, not sure if anyone else has this like me but they can get pretty bad and real, then I feel guilty and ashamed. During my 6 month break of these thoughts I would get a weird thought but was able to let it pass. Bill whatever advice tips you can offer I am willing to try, heck I would even fly to you for a few sessions lol. I hope my post help others. I realize now that telling what I am going through may help some one else realize they are not alone. So many have sent me emails and comments that so similar to my issues. Bill your awesome man. Thanks bro

    • Jimmy, Jimmy, Jimmy – slow ‘er down, man. Hey, I know what it’s like to be hair-on-fire lit up, but when that happens we have to catch the reality of our present state-of-mind and consider/react to it as though a dashboard warning light is on. It’s not about compulsively reacting. No, it’s about assessing what caused the light to come on and calmly addressing it. And that’s what I’d recommend you do, Jimmy. And, remember, you have six months of intrusive thought freedom, so between you and your team, you had to have come up with some solid strategies and techniques. I know all about checking-in and reassurance, man. I get it. But I’d rather you work on the reasons behind those dashboard lights (stress, no exercise, poor sleep, crappy diet, etc.), than have you frantically all over the internet grasping for reassurance and some sort of hope the nightmare will suddenly end.

      Got it?
      Bill

      • Jimmy

        I think what helped me 7 months was I had neck surgery, so my mind was clogged with other things so I guess I was not able to stress over my thoughts. I did not see my psychologist or my psychiatrist during that time. I did see my psychiatrist two months ago for a random visit but since at that time I was 4 months free of thoughts he told me keep doing what I was doing and to call if they come back, I see my psychologist every 6 months but only for like 10 minutes. They both tell me that it’s my reaction to the thoughts that is my problem. I do see Dr. Smith tomorrow which is my psychiatrist. Today I looked up intrusive thought therapist here in Naples and called but have not heard back. I thought it was better to find someone who has a better idea of what they are to help treat me. I don’t go on the internet anymore to try to find answers. I want to beat this and I don’t know what caused this to start a year ago. hope I am not a pain I have never had something that broke me down like this, thanks for all your time Bill.

      • Never a pain, Jimmy. I know how it is – I really do. Good idea to pursue a therapist who specializes in intrusive thoughts. Give it a go. Finally, refer to the first sentence of your comment. It speaks well for the power of mind diversion – “out of sight, out of mind.” I’m not suggesting another surgical procedure; however, the goal is to find something equally as powerful to pull your mind away from the thoughts…

      • Jimmy

        Thanks Bill, I just want to beat this, I don’t want to be scared anymore, I want to enjoy life again. I have never had something that has taken me down like this, I have always had weird thoughts but they never bothered me, until November 2nd last year. This group is the only group I tell this stuff too. I take your advice to the fullest. I don’t know you but I repeat you and trust what you say. I have to beat this, I am starting to get mad at how these thoughts bother me but they also scare me in a way nothing else has, BTW you see my Clemson Tigers are #1. Bill for some reason from your picture you remind me of Lewis Black. I love him him. Lol

  • Jimmy

    Well I am back. After a year of battling these damn thoughts. My doctor thinks it’s time for meds. He had hoped through counseling with my Dr, that I would be able to move on, there was hope, I went two months then battled it for a while then 7 months free, then battled it for a week then got 3 weeks free then just Sunday bam back again. So now meds, not sure if I like that but I guess it’s worth a try, always thought meds would make other things worst. Hope everyone else is good. Hope my Tigers win this Saturday, my Dolphins suck.

    • Hey, Jimmy…

      Well, a med stint isn’t the end of the world. And I think you have every reason to expect relief. Listen, could be the med will help you wrap your arms around your circumstances a little better so counseling may be more effective for you. Just don’t want you to equate giving a med a go to things going downhill fast. Keep things in perspective, okay? And, by the way, would appreciate your sharing what’s prescribed and how goes the journey. It would be great info for those stopping-by.

      Thanks, man!
      Bill

  • Jimmy

    Thanks Bill, I sure will post updates. I know how it helps to read others that are going through same things. Bill counseling does help but a lot of Drs that try to help know the book terms, but do to them not knowing what this is really like its hard for them I think to understand. I have one that I respect and repeats a lot of what you say. 1, It’s my reaction to the thought that causes the issue, 2. Thoughts are not anyway what we are as a person, 3. Everyone has wracked thoughts, they just pay them no attention, 4. The more I let the thought scare me, or the more I pay attention to it the more real it becomes, 5. Try to change focus or laugh the thought off. Well it’s not that easy, when you have a thought of harming your child, a loved one or anyone for that matter it scares the crap out of me. I have been able to beat this a few times, once for 7 months, and during that time I was able to blow off thoughts like these, then I told myself, it’s not that bad, you made it worst than it was, then as I got closer to the yr date of this nightmare beginning I got nervous, scared, wondering when it was coming, then bam, then I got another break then bam, now I am in that funk where it’s like, I won’t beat this, the thoughts seem like urges, when at work and not having them I stop and say wait can’t be happy they will be back, then a bit of panic then I get busy and they go away, then guilt, then I am like I don’t want to be a dad, I don’t want my daughter, do I really love her, then more guilt, then I get busy, then I feel ok, I get in my truck to head home and I get nervous, waiting for them to attack, worry about how I will react to my daughter wondering do I want her in my life, while thinking if I did not have her this would not happen, then guilt, then I think if I loved her the thoughts would not be of her, then guilt. Then I get home and my heart is beating I am nervous, I see my baby, I kiss over and over saying I love you ever time I walk by and kissing her, then she starts being a normal 8 year old talking back, saying no, telling my wife we are mean etc, then due to the stress I let go and I yell slam a door and go to another room, feeling bad for yelling at my two ladies, my wife and Maegan, then I say wait, I got really mad, I was so upset yet I never thought of harming her, so then I am like ok I am not a psycho, then later I get irrated about a situation and I see my self snatching stuff out of there hands and yelling etc, then I am like crap, my thoughts are not so wrong. I realize now, I am a very sensitive person, never knew that till this started, I realize I worry to much, I realize I am emotional, I realize that sometimes I am real hard on my daughter. I realize my biggest problem is I worry, and I think into stuff to much which with this is not good at all, I still worry that even though like today I got a break from the thoughts I think I don’t want to be Maegans dad, I wonder if I love her and is that y these thoughts are about her, I hope it’s just the funk of having these for a few days, I realize now these thoughts cause me to be depressed, even thinking or wishing I would just die, or it would be better I just passed away, then I say hell no, that’s not fair to my baby girl, then I get pristine and think I will beat this, then I start to panic because we are going to Disney next week I worry, not wanting to go afraid these thoughts will hit and I will lose it there, think about how the thoughts will happen, then I think I got to go, it’s not fair to my baby to not share in her bday fun because I am going through this. I in many ways am my worst enemy, I think and worry to much, one day a few weeks ago when the thoughts came back, I went to meet my wife and daughter for lunch, they hit, then my daughter got sick and I had to take her home, man I was scared, I thought O know, will I lose it and give into my thoughts and harm my baby girl,the whole drive home worrying scared, got home and got her resting in her bed and a movie on, what do u know the thoughts went away. I realize now, I have something not right, was it the weed I smoked that night that caused this, and why can’t I get rid of this, they say anxiety causes these thoughts but I have had them hit when I was just sitting watching tv, but I have noticed when stress at work or other things appear they go away, or if I am busy etc, I hope that’s a sign I am not crazy, when your in the slump u just can’t seem to think u are normal. Like me now, I hope me wondering if j want to be Maegans dad is just me being depressed etc, but I know when I take my precocet it relaxes me and I realize I do love her, now I know that taking the pain pill when not in pain is A NO/GO and that opens other doors but it helps give me a break from thoughts and I relax, again I know this is not good and I am not going to make it a habit of I will flush them down the toilet. I know this is long and bad grammar but I hope when a person reads it they can relate. Bill I will try the meds, I do worry that they may make things worst, my doctor says no, I worry that what if my thoughts aren’t from anxiety, but yet the thoughts cause anxiety and the meds don’t work, see over thinking and worrying. Never use to be like this, now has this entire year and experience been bad, it’s sucked but it has made me a better Dad and husband, WTH, so I guess the thoughts aren’t me, but?? I think I cause a lot of my issues with the thoughts, line my last counselor said, man you really let them go uh, yep, I try to figure them out, I give them power. I do need help I guess, I have never liked people knowing my business, I never would tell stuff about me that I thought were bad, not sure why I share this but it helps. I hope my long bad grammar helps some one. I also hope it gives you Bill an idea of what my issues are, I do realize now more people than I thought have this, some not as bad some worst. We can all help each other I guess. I realize now how powerful our brain is, and how scary it is, I now worry about what will this weekend be like with no work, how will going to the Dolphins game Sunday feel, see this makes me so aware of my feelings, makes me afraid of my own brain and thoughts, but during my 7 months of being just Jimmy, nan I did not worry about nothing, getting mad, being alone, being with my daughter alone, I enjoyed life and was able to deal with anything, I try to tell my self, if I was a killer, physco I don’t think I would get breaks from these intrusive thoughts and I don’t think they would have me this upset, scared and depressed. Bill thanks, as always any advice you give I read and try. Hope anyone reads this gets some help or can give me some confront. We are not alone!!! Good night everyone.

    • Thank you for opening-up – sharing – with us, Jimmy. I know it may not come naturally; however, it’s a good sign you’re doing it. Yes, we are not alone. I suppose the best evidence of that is the fact that I immediately related to the details you provided. I get it, because I had it. And I’m sure the same applies to many others. Keep moving forward, Jimmy. And please let us know the med selected and your progress. Again, I suffered in a like manner decades ago; however, no longer. If that can happen for me, it can for you – and others.

      Best!
      Bill

  • Jimmy

    Thanks Bill, besides right now being afraid that the thoughts will be back any minute, the fear of me actual doing harm to my daughter, and feeling I have now of not wanting to be her dad and wanting to just pack up and leave had me upset, depressed and all out of wack, this thoughts really kick my ass. The guilt is bad, I hope the feelings are just due to the thoughts and stress, my Clemson Tigers play for the ACC Championship tomorrow and I could careless, nor do I about the Dolphins game, so I try to say it’s not really me it’s the thoughts and all else they bring. The weekends are the worst, no work. But I beat this serveral times before and once for 7 months, I never acted on this before so y now, it is weird that when I get mad, they are gone. Thanks Bill will keep you updated. I try to post my different experiences just incase so wine stops by and maybe can relate. Have a great one.