Jackie had the courage to do something I never went through myself—intense therapy for her OCD symptoms. By the time I found an OCD specialist I had already been taking medication for a while and felt better. The therapist I spoke to said exposure and response prevention (ERP) could actually make me feel worse, so I stuck to the path I was already on.
Read about her experience with ERP—her story is so inspiring!
I am pleased to introduce you to our newest guest blogger, Jackie Lea Sommers. You may remember Jackie from OCD Awareness Week in 2012, when she won our creative expression award for her short story, Tipping Point. In today’s blog, Jackie writes about her personal experience of conquering her demons through cognitive behavioral therapy. Jackie lives in Minneapolis and also blogs about OCD and creativity her own website at www.jackieleasommers.com. – CB
My Journey to Hell and Back, A Personal Experience with CBT and ERP
by Jackie Lea Sommers
You’d be shocked to hear just how similar my Minnesota hometown was to Mayberry, that sweet fictional town of Andy Griffith Show fame. We didn’t lock our homes or cars, everyone knew everyone else, and the whole town showed up each Friday night for high school football. My parents were and are the funniest, most generous people I know…
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Yes, ERP makes you feel worse– but only for awhile! In the end, it set me FREE FROM OCD, and that was well worth it all!
Thank you for that important note, Jackie! I think the therapist I spoke with may have recommended ERP more strongly if I had still been at rock bottom. I often wonder about that. I know it’s different for everyone, but it was amazing how much better I felt just knowing I had OCD and that help was out there. And that others had similar obsessions to mine! I can’t tell you how much freer I felt after learning that.
Agreed! It was so good for me to JUST KNOW what was going on! Just putting the name OCD to it was so empowering.