Do you constantly worry about things that could go wrong at events? Are you plagued by intrusive thoughts about what could happen at your daughter’s wedding or your company’s holiday party? You are not alone! In this blog post, we will discuss how to cope with intrusive thoughts related to real-life events. We will also provide tips for overcoming OCD in general.
What Is Real Event OCD?
Real event OCD is a type of OCD that is characterized by intrusive thoughts about potential disasters that could occur at real-life events. For example, you may worry about your child getting hurt at their school play, or your house burning down while you are away on vacation. These thoughts are often accompanied by intense anxiety and can be very debilitating.
While it is normal to have some worries about upcoming events, people with real event OCD tend to obsess over the potential for disaster. They may spend a lot of time researching ways to prevent the disaster from happening, or they may avoid the event altogether. This can lead to significant distress, For example, you may have intrusive thoughts about your child getting hurt at their school play, or your house burning down while you away on vacation. These thoughts can be extremely distressing and may cause you to avoid events altogether.
Symptoms Of Real Event OCD
There are a few key symptoms that are associated with real event OCD.
- Intrusive thoughts: This is the hallmark symptom of OCD. You may have persistent, unwanted thoughts about potential disasters that could occur at events you are attending. These thoughts may be accompanied by intense anxiety and feelings of dread.
- Avoidance: Because of the anxiety caused by their intrusive thoughts, people with real event OCD often avoid events altogether. This can lead to social isolation and missed opportunities.
- Compulsive behaviors: People with OCD may engage in compulsive behaviors in an attempt to prevent the disaster from happening. For example, you may excessively research ways to prevent accidents or check your child’s school play schedule obsessively to make sure they will be safe.
It is important to note that having intrusive thoughts does not mean that you are automatically going to act on them. People with OCD are aware that their thoughts are irrational, but they cannot control them. This can lead to a great deal of anxiety and distress.
Causes Of Real Event OCD
Real Event OCD can have multiple causes.
- There is often a genetic component, as OCD tends to run in families.
- Environmental factors, such as stress or trauma, can also play a role in the development of OCD.
- Having negative past experiences can also be a contribution to the development of these irrational and scary thoughts.
- Sometimes, the cause of OCD is not clear at all.
Types Of Real Event OCD
There are a few different types of real event OCD, depending on the focus of the intrusive thoughts.
- Accident/injury: This type of OCD is characterized by intrusive thoughts about potential accidents or injuries that could occur at an upcoming event. For example, you may worry about your child getting hurt at their school play, or your house burning down while you are away on vacation.
- Natural disaster: This type of OCD is characterized by intrusive thoughts about potential natural disasters that could occur at an upcoming event. For example, you may worry about a tornado hitting your child’s school during their graduation ceremony, or an earthquake occurring during your wedding reception.
- Violent crime: This type of OCD is characterized by intrusive thoughts about potential violent crimes that could occur at an upcoming event. For example, you may worry about a shooter attacking your child’s school, or a bomb going off at your company’s holiday party.
Behaviors In Real Event OCD
Some common obsessions in real event OCD include:
- Worrying about potential accidents or disasters that could occur at the event
- Intrusive thoughts about embarrassing oneself or others at the event
- Fear of losing control and doing something inappropriate at the event
- Uncomfortable and disturbing thoughts of the occurrence of a mishap
Common Compulsions In Real Event OCD are:
To try to prevent their feared outcome from happening, people with real event OCD may perform compulsions such as:
- Avoiding certain activities or places at the event that are associated with their fear
- Checking and rechecking things repeatedly to make sure they are safe
- Asking others for reassurance constantly
- Researching safety hazards and emergency procedures related to the event
Effects Of Real Event OCD
Real Event OCD can have a significant effect on a person’s life.
- It can cause them to miss out on important events and can lead to social isolation.
- People with real event OCD may also struggle at work or school, as they are constantly worrying about potential disasters that could occur. This can lead to a great deal of stress and anxiety, which can hurt a person’s overall health.
- It can lead to a significant increase in anxiety as the preoccupation with these intrusive thoughts can have significant impacts on one’s mental health.
- An individual may also not be able to enjoy events or socialization processes as their minds may be too busy measuring out the possible negative outcomes of a particular place.
Tips To Deal With Real Event OCD
If you or someone you know suffers from real event OCD, there are some things that some things can be done to ease the anxiety and help manage the condition. Here are a few tips:
- Avoid making decisions when you are feeling anxious. If you need to make a decision related to the event, wait until you feel calmer before doing so.
- Try to stay present at the moment. Obsessing about potential disasters can take away from your enjoyment of the event itself.
- Practice mindfulness techniques such as deep breathing or meditation to help you stay calm.
- Talk to a therapist who specializes in OCD. They can help you develop healthy coping mechanisms and challenge your intrusive thoughts.
- Seeking professional help is an important step in managing real event OCD. If you are struggling with the condition, please reach out for support. Therapy, medication, or a combination of both can provide for effective management of these symptoms.
Please reach out to the mental health professionals at Mantra Care for effective and affordable online therapy sessions.
In conclusion, real event OCD is a type of OCD that is characterized by intrusive thoughts about potential disasters that could occur at real-life events. If you are struggling with real event OCD, know that you are not alone and there is help available. Remember to be kind to yourself and take things one step at a time. OCD can be extremely debilitating, but there is hope for better and more effective treatment.
A Word From Mantra Care
Your mental health — Your psychological, emotional, and social well-being — has an impact on every aspect of your life. Positive mental health essentially allows you to effectively deal with life’s everyday challenges.
At Mantra Care, we have a team of therapists who provide affordable online therapy to assist you with issues such as depression, anxiety, stress, workplace Issues, addiction, relationship, OCD, LGBTQ, and PTSD. You can book a free therapy or download our free Android or iOS app.