Counselling helped manage my OCD

It all started when I was 11 years old. I had just started secondary school and found the transition a little more difficult than I'd imagined. I did make friends but quite soon one of them started bullying me and made me feel very low. 

A short while later I began picking up small rituals that I felt compelled to do for no real reason. I was stepping on drains a certain number of times, touching certain objects twice and avoiding many situations in case I couldn't complete my compulsions.

At first, I had no idea what was happening but once we got the internet at home I was able to look up what I was doing. I found some information on obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and knew immediately that's what it was. I still didn't know why but I felt such an overwhelming need to complete the rituals.

My behaviour continued until I was 16 when things eased a little. I realised it was about control. I was trying to control my environment, stop bad things from happening and doing things an even number of times, so things would stay the same. By 17 I had started college and was in a new transition. I didn't enjoy college but the compulsions did lessen more and more during this time.

By 18 I had a few rituals left but they were more out of habit than real urge. My OCD latched onto new parts of my life, mainly food and my weight but was much more manageable and didn't interfere with my daily life. I started seeing a counsellor after the birth of my first daughter. The anxiety rushed back like never before and I felt totally out of control. My counsellor helped me through and really helped me get back on track.

I have to say counselling has really changed my life and I don't know where I'd be today without it.

I go through periods of feeling really well but do go back and see my counsellor regularly just to keep my emotions moving through me. I'm not very good at getting emotional without her! I have to say counselling has really changed my life and I don't know where I'd be today without it.

Read more of Aimi's story on Happiful.

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