Posted on October 31, 2019 in Worry Wise
It's National OCD Awareness Week. Millions of children contend with OCD. Parents are devastated and destabilized when their very reasonable kids begin doing things that are very unreasonable (like washing their hands over and over till they are raw) or thinking strange things (like they cheated on a test when they didn't, or touched someone inappropriately when they didn't, or that they'll lose control and hurt someone-- when they won't). Exessive hand washing is hard enough to understand, but this other scenario of what we call "bad thought OCD" is very confusing to parents who-- understandably-- follow their instinct to "reassure" their child that those things aren't happening or that they are a good kid. It doesn't work. In this post, my colleague Dr. Lynne Siqueland shares with us her wisdom mapping out the frighening, but ultimately managable territory of bad thought OCD showing us that the goal is to not pay attention to the content of the bad thought, don't analyze it or give it meaning. Instead, boss it back, ride it out, exaggerate it, use sarcasm at it, but don't give it authority. Here's to less worry all around.