Don’t you think we all have quirks and things that scare us or things that make us nervous? Phobia’s. Mental illness’s. I’m wondering though if something really scares you, is there a difference to what they’re called?
I was watching a “special report” show of some kind or another and now I can’t remember the name of it but it had on all kinds of people who had terrible issues ranging from some who haven’t left their home for years to some where people can’t throw anything away. This one woman’s house was so cluttered and dirty that her kids had nowhere to sleep because all the rooms were full of trash and garbage and she ended up losing her kids to Child Protective Service and they are still in foster care because they had to condemn the house. It was really terribly sad.
I know that I’m not fond of bridges. I made a trip with my brother and I knew I’d have to cross that bridge I used in the picture and it literally gave me nightmares but how can you stay home from a trip because of a bridge? So I just sucked it up and dealt with it. By the time we got there I’d crossed so many other bridges that almost made me puke that this one was hardly anything. It was just so exaggerated in my head.
I’m also terrified of snakes. When we first moved where we live now I had this great idea to make all these flower gardens all over the place and the second year we were here I saw so many snakes that I literally didn’t go outside for a whole summer. I didn’t have any snakes where I used to live so it really did scare me. I think it was just the year for them and I haven’t seen any to that degree since. I wouldn’t let it bother me like I did back then though. I had to overcome it. I just couldn’t sit inside all the time. I guess that means then that it just scared me and it wasn’t a phobia or a mental illness.
This program I watched though, these people were really terrified of things that most of us wouldn’t even consider being afraid of. This one man hadn’t left his house in 6 years. He had everything delivered to him or he had his friends and family taking care of him and bringing him things. But what kind of life was he inflicting on those people? He would call his son on the phone and practically demand he bring him McDonald’s. The sad thing is, the son did it. So the doctor pointed out that all those people who thought they were helping him, were letting him think it was okay to live this way and they were in turn, enabling him to do so. This guy was afraid of germs. What he didn’t realize at the time was there are germs everywhere and even if someone brought him all his stuff, the germs were still already on the stuff. It was like some kind of light went on in his eyes when this was all pointed out to him. This doctor was also very nice. I wish I could remember what show this was and who the doctor was.
OCS’s were also really talked about. Like the lady who couldn’t throw anything away. She was afraid one day she would need something and then what would she do? So the doctor played the “what if” game with her and it really worked. What if you needed something you threw out? So what if you needed something and had to get another one? What would be the worse thing that would happen? Would anyone die? NO. You could see the light bulb go off in her eyes too.
One last man. He had such terrible OCD about leaving home that he kept turning around and going back to make sure he turned off the coffee pot and locked the door and that his dog was inside and many other things that he never did leave really. Another thing he kept thinking was he ran someone or something over so he’d drive a few feet and have to stop and check under his car. It sounds bizarre but this man was truly terrified. The other two people on the show kind of saw that the worst things they thought might happen, wouldn’t really be the end of the world but this last guy was nowhere near seeing it. The other problem is that this can lead to very bad depression.
What do you suppose the difference is in people? Some people can really see their fear and deal with it and move on but other’s just can’t. No matter how hard some people try, they just can’t get over what it is that scares them and it tears their whole life apart and then other’s just brush it off. Can you brush off your fears and carry on or do you sometimes just close the door and stay home?