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Finding Work or a Job When You Have OCD

I am generally a pretty positive guy.

A long time ago, when I was talking with a therapist during behavior therapy, I recall she was trying to tell me something about the nature of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). She said that I seemed very happy talking to her while I was talking to her. However, she said, in the end, after the therapy session, OCD would try to remove the hope I was exhibiting during the session once I walked out to the sidewalk. Reality would take over.

In this article, I argue that it is OCD — and not reality — that tries to systematically remove hope of this particular sufferer. If it doesn’t remove hope about one subject, it systematically moves to the next thing.

8 Comments to
Finding Work or a Job When You Have OCD

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  1. Thanks for sharing how you feel, Keith, and I’m sorry things are so difficult for you right now. I do want to say that not all OCD sufferers struggle in the same way, and many do improve. My son had OCD so severe he could not even eat. He committed himself to ERP therapy, graduated college, and is now living on his own and working in his chosen field. Like everyone, I’m sure he has his ups and downs, but OCD no longer controls his life. I am wishing you all the best as you continue your fight against OCD.

    • Janet, thanks for this encouraging story about your son. It’s great to hear of his commitment, persistence, and accomplishments. Wish him the best.

  2. Hi there

    for so long i have been feeling guilty for being ill. like im a lesser being and having to quit my job. I had to do this as i felt i was going insane with hardly any sleep. I hope we can all spread that you should not be guilty or feeling worthless. I love everyone with this disorder because it makes u seem selfish when deep down you want to give so much

    • Hi friend,

      I hear you and wish you strength and persistence.

  3. Keith, thanks for posting your story. My daughter is going to be 21 in August and my ex-wife and have done our best to get her the therapy she needs since she was a young child. It’s heart-breaking to hear how the disease makes you feel and I can definitely empathize with your situation. She has worked sporadically and for only short periods because her OCD seems to always get in the way… unsure of her duties, asking too many questions to “make sure” she’s doing it correctly, taking more time thinking instead of just doing, etc. Each failure makes her lose the precious little confidence she has in her abilities. So frustrating to watch it happen to an otherwise very intelligent woman who longs to become independent. I wish her and you the best!

  4. Thank you for posting this Keith. This could not be more accurate for me. It validates a lot of things. I often feel like I am in a world that I can’t handle. I feel hopeless everyday despite my rigorous efforts to make things better. Up until now, I have been through 4 therapists who have wasted my time leaving me with the view that the best way to stop the miserable cycle is to shut myself down and end my life. I am glad there are people like you who can articulate what others, like myself, are too frustrated and exasperated to communicate properly: the anger, loneliness and sense of desertion. I am also extremely impressed that you earned a degree in Psychology. The fact that you took so much time to study something so uncharted, for your benefit and now for the benefit of others too, based on the fact that you are 4 steps closer to understanding the brain…and hopefully the disorder…practically makes you a champion.

  5. from a person who fighting with ocd more than 20 years:
    your job should be low-stress
    best job for you is :
    1.Nature Photographer
    2.Computer Graphics Designer (ps,3ds max,maya ,etc)
    3.Interior Designer
    and any Jobs that do not involve peril or distressing situations

  6. I’ve had ocd ever since I was 8 years old it’s so good to see that other people ho have ocd feel the same way, all my life I’ve been changing who I am trying to be accepted as normal and live a normal life like everyone around me
    I’ve come to accept what I have and use it to my advantage i’dk how I’m going to but I know if we use our ocd for a positive and for the right thing we can become succesful like the others and to ignore what others say and believe in our self’s
    I meet a person who taught me that we choose our path in life imagine driving a bus and there are the passenger’s the bad thoughts at the back but two path ways in front of us one leading to a he’ll of a life were yu are not in control and a heaven lofe were yu are happy and in peace you have to take control and drive the bus to what direction you want and not listen to the passenger’s you choose ur route

    I believe we choose 50% of ur life wether yu believe in God or not the other 50% is not in ur control , try and lift both of ur legs at the same time it’s I’m possible but you can lift one

    Life in general is a test and we go through trials these things helped me out alot and also distracting myself keeping myself busy surrounding with good people helps too,

    At the end of the day wether you have ocd or not everybody will go through some type of health problem and that doesn’t make us with ocd any less than anyone we are unique and beautiful



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