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Author Topic: Intrusive thoughts about saying offensive things  (Read 258 times)

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Offline Quetzal828

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Intrusive thoughts about saying offensive things
« on: December 23, 2013, 03:10:35 PM »
I go through phases where I get bombarded with really intrusive thoughts in social situations. I'm a very polite person, typically quite shy, and I dislike drawing attention to myself. But in some situations I'll have these "visions" of blurting out something horribly offensive -- for example, calling an African-American person the n-word. I have nothing but good will toward other people, so these thoughts horrify me. Sometimes, I'll try replace the n-word with another positive word in my mind, trying to redirect my brain to something like the word "beautiful." But then I just get stuck on that word and pretty soon I can't carry on a conversational at all because I'm too wrapped up in my head.

Another example is this: I'll be a large meeting in an auditorium at work, and suddenly I'll start to envision what would happen if I stood up and started yelling and blurting out swear words or something like that. Or what if I started taking off my clothes? Sometimes I'll be around young kids, and I'll have these horrible thoughts/visions about things like, "What if I slapped this child?" Obviously these things would be very out-of-character for me, and perhaps that's why they scare me so much. Any advice for how to deal with them?
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Offline eduk8or

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Re: Intrusive thoughts about saying offensive things
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2013, 05:36:50 PM »
I get  this too!  I am a teacher and often worry about doing the same things you mention in front of my classes.  As you have discovered, trying to replace the thought with something more positive just makes it worse.  One thing you can do is to just accept the thought.  We have thousands of thoughts everyday, most of which we pay no attention to.  If you can recognize the thought as any other thought and just let it go, that sometimes works.  Another thing is to picture putting the intrusive thought into a balloon and visualize it floating up and away out of your mind.  And finally, you could just satay to yourself, "oh, it's just my OCD flaring up on me" and while recognizing it, just letting it go at that...  Hope this helps!
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