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Ds with bad anxiety and OCD

(14 Posts)
NorthenFeminist Sun 01-Nov-15 18:43:33

Ds is 14 and having cbt via camhs for anxiety and OCD.

The thing is it's not improving at all. He is often tearful and gets so frustrated that he bangs the funiture and hits things too.

I'm struggling to cope. I'm not trying to make it all about me but I'm mentally exhausted and feel like walking away sometimes. I won't, but it's just all so hard. 6 year old dd also gets upset by it all.

I just don't know how to help him.

PolterGoose Sun 01-Nov-15 20:47:38

There's an MNer with lots of experience of OCD with her ds, I'll message her and see if she can help.

Sorry it's so hard, my ds doesn't have OCD, but lots of anxiety related stuff and it is very tricky to manage flowers

NoHaudinMaWheest Sun 01-Nov-15 22:27:37

Hi I'm the poster Polter mentioned. It is so hard managing the anxiety that comes with OCD.
I must get them both to bed now and try to have an early night myself but I will be back in the morning.

NorthenFeminist Sun 01-Nov-15 22:54:11

That's great thank you

NoHaudinMaWheest Mon 02-Nov-15 11:04:03

Hi again. Dealing with OCD is exhausting so don't worry about saying so. And sometimes you do have to walk away temporarily. I found that if I didn't sometimes (I mean as in going to have a cup of tea or watch a tv programme and ignoring what ds was or wasn't doing) I would not be able to deal with it at all.
I also had a younger dd (though not such a big gap as you) and worried about the effect on her.

Can you tell me a bit more about your ds? My ds also has ASD which makes responding to the CBT tricky. He had specialist help from a clinic in London and was sufficiently severe to need inpatient treatment.

It was CBT that helped in the end but it isn't just something that anyone can do as it needs to be applied correctly. Ds was and is also on medication. That isn't a cure but reduced the anxiety sufficiently for the CBT to work.

There is a work book produced by the team that treated ds which teenagers can use on their own or with parents. It depends how severely affected your ds is though. My ds wouldn't have been able to work through it with me.

I don't know if any of this is helpful but feel free to ask any questions.

bbkl Mon 02-Nov-15 12:32:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

NorthenFeminist Mon 02-Nov-15 14:36:32

Thank you that is very helpful and I'm sorry for what you've been through.

Ds struggles with a fear of being contaminated by germs or chemicals but the thing that is most troubling is the mental rituals. He has certain words that he had to say in the right order before he can cross the threshold of any room or when opening and shutting doors. He often feels like he hasn't gotten them right and it can sometimes take him an hour to leave or enter a room. He understandably gets frustrated and angry so often ends up swearing and banging things about. He will sit and sob for long periods too.

I try hard to remind him that OCD is like a bully and he has to try not to give in but he can't usually ignore it. I actually don't know what to do to help him. I bought him books but he won't read them, he also won't do the homework set by cahms.

Dd get upset by it too so I'm usually trying to calm her down as well. I'm pulled in so many directions!

I just want to make him better. I love him so much and it's heartbreaking to see him suffer like this. I'm also consumed with guilt because I feel like I've let him down in some way and that's why he's ill.

Thanks for the replies. I really appreciate them.

NoHaudinMaWheest Mon 02-Nov-15 15:24:44

I understand the guilt as I experienced it too (not helped by H telling me that I had always been too soft with him). However you do know that it is definitely not anything you have done. I clung to the psychiatrist saying when he was first diagnosed that OCD was nothing to do with parenting.
I also understand the being torn in two with dd and ds. Sometimes I just had to go with the OCD even though I knew it wasn't the ideal solution because it was just how life was and I was only one very worn out person.
Have you considered medication? I was not keen at first but like bbl got to the point where anything was worth trying.

NorthenFeminist Mon 02-Nov-15 16:44:45

Camhs have mentioned medication. I was a bit reluctant at first but having read your post and a few others I've changed my mind and I'm going to ask about it at our next appointment. If it can just bring his anxiety down to a level where we can do the cbt techniques properly it'll be worth it. I'll try anything tbh.

Thank you for your post. There's no much support or understanding of OCD out there so this really helps.

How is your ds now? How does he manage day to day?

NoHaudinMaWheest Mon 02-Nov-15 18:31:05

Ds is very much better now and the OCD doesn't often make much impact although it is still there. He is 19 now and doing A levels.
However it has been a long road. His symptoms first appeared when he was 8. They went up and down a bit but became very severe when he was13. After more than 6 months without leaving the house and not really functioning at all he was admitted to hospital for 8 months. He was much better after that but still struggled quite a bit and only really got back to functioning reasonably well after a further 4 month hospital stay when he was 17.
He wouldn't read any books either. In fact he tore up the one his father insisted on giving him.

NorthenFeminist Mon 02-Nov-15 18:44:47

That's so good to hear that your ds is so much better. I can imagine how hard it's been for you all.

Ds first started when he was 10 but it was only the odd little thing and I didn't realise what it was. I just thought he was a bit of a worrier and that he'd grow out of it. I wish so much I'd sought help for him them.

How has your dd coped with it all? And how are you? Do you find yourself worrying that it'll come back?

TheSecondOfHerName Mon 02-Nov-15 18:59:30

Hi there. I have a DS with panic disorder, generalised anxiety & depression. He also has obsessive behaviours and intrusive thoughts. He self-harms and is often suicidal.

Things that have been helpful from the NHS:
Fluoxetine
CBT
community psychiatric nurse
Melatonin to help with sleep
A course of EMDR

Things that have been helpful at school:
Pass to leave lessons
Regular appointments with the same LSA

Self-help things that have been helpful:
Exercise (running)
Relaxation techniques
Using moisturiser on hands to distract from the compulsion to hand-wash constantly.

New things we are trying or about to try:
Reduced timetable
Punch bag

I hope you are able to find some things that help.

NorthenFeminist Mon 02-Nov-15 19:46:18

Thank you, that is very helpful, some really good ideas there. I never thought of a punch bag but that is a really good idea. Ds definitely needs a safe way to let out his anger.

Jerbil Fri 06-Nov-15 01:38:25

DS1 has OCD. He cannot access CBT as he doesn't have the receptive language skills or willingness when it is bad. He feels completely overrun by OCD. I've found OCD UK a fantastic charity with lots of advice etc.

However, as my son couldn't tolerate any interventions and things were getting worse (2 hours to leave the bathroom etc), I agreed with the Psychologist about putting him on medication. At that point he was referred to a psychiatrist, and is now on fluoxetine. it's made a massive difference to his life!

inbox me if you want to talk. hugs cos I know how helpless it is to watch them suffer.

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