I began writing this blog as a place to put the feelings, thoughts, experiences and ideas that were running around my brain. Blake had just recently stopped treatment for his OCD, having refused to participate in a meaningful way, and I was feeling rather deflated. Family members often asked me about what was happening at home and I found it difficult to adequately retell the details of our family’s day-to-day experiences with OCD. With a blog, I could share experiences to help them understand what is going on in this life that we are living. I also hoped that I might reach others who did not know what day-to-day life with a family member with OCD is like, as well as connect with those who are living it today (or who have in the past).
I have been blessed to begin to make some amazing connections. I did not anticipate how incredibly touched I would be by the people who read and comment on my posts, most of whom I have never met. I am doubly blessed by the incredible support I receive from the small number of loved ones – family and friends – who follow this blog. Thank you all for sticking with me on this journey thus far.
Another thing I did not anticipate is how profoundly affected some of my loved ones would be by reading the words I write. I receive calls, texts, e-mails, etc., on a regular basis from these people. I can tell from their tone that they are hurting from what they read – some of this can be a lot to absorb. And I regularly hear the question, “What can I do to support you all?” It is the pain that these people feel that I want to address now.
First, when you write a blog about living with a family member who has OCD and who is refusing treatment, your blog tends to be snapshots of life with OCD (at least mine does). Sometimes when others read your blog, it may look like that is what your whole life is about – and it can look pretty darn dreary. In our family’s case, most of our day is not about OCD. It is about being a family with two teenage boys; a mom with a part-time psychology career; and a dad who works very hard, does not particularly like his commute and who does everything he can to spend most evenings and weekends with his family (and his favorite college athletic team 🙂 ). It’s about homework and clubs and commitments; world issues and personal triumphs and trying new recipes. There’s just too much stuff to put in this blog, but this family’s life is about much more than OCD – it’s just what the blog highlights.
Next, in answer to the question, “What can I do?” – you are already doing it. We are blessed by your love and support. There is no question in the mind of any member of this family that we are loved. Just the simple fact that you read this blog lets us know that. We are even more touched when you go and learn more about OCD and anxiety on your own – that is icing on our love cake! We know we can reach out when we are feeling low and you will be there. Maybe the question might be, “How can I support YOU?” You are perfect as you are.
So, when you read, know that I have already gained solace from writing about the situation. Know that we are finding beautiful moments along with the tough ones. Know that we are driven by hopefulness – we refuse to give up hope! And know that we love and appreciate you. Have a beautiful and blessed weekend.