There are few things in life that are responsible for my anger. Put simply, I'm just not a very angry person. I feel guilt terribly easy and if something goes wrong in my life, I am the first to blame myself. Whilst I'm not particularly tolerant of stupidity, very rarely am I filled with rage. However, every time I hear a comment such as this, I really do want to punch someone right in the face.
Let's get something clear. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is NOT cute. And whilst it is the fourth common mental illness in the world, there is, statistically speaking, no way that every 15 year old girl in the world has OCD. Just because you cleaned your bedroom for five minutes or enjoy bubble baths, does not mean that you have OCD. It is a serious condition that is constantly degraded and talked down by society, turning it into something that is weak, quirky, and worse still, 'cute'.
Despite the rant I am currently typing, I must make it apparent that I do recognise the slightly funny side to OCD. I mean, as serious and as destructive as it is, it is kind of odd and strange. We all look at our weird compulsions and thoughts and giggle at ourselves and at how silly it is to think in this way. Sometimes you just have to laugh, so that you don't cry.
The thing that does bug me about the stigma associated with OCD, is that it is seen as a nothing disorder. According to society, it just means that you're a bit of a perfectionist or like straight piles and clean things. Your usual OCD character within a movie, book or TV series is typically made fun of for being a neat freak. The part that the media conveniently 'forget' to include is how graphic and terrifying the thoughts can be, as well as how time consuming the compulsions are. The stereotypes surrounding it just make me want to stand on top of a mountain and scream my lungs out. At school, I regularly get the "Gosh, you're so OCD!" and, honestly, it hurts that people don't understand how much that statement is actually true.
People often try to shake my hand or touch my face as a joke, just because they know it bothers me. Females in my grade are big on the whole hugging thing, and so it's just assumed that I too would naturally wish to engage in such unhygienic and unnecessary tasks. I'm ridiculed for my constant usage of hand sanitiser and for refusing to use the computers at school because of how many other people have touched the keyboards. School is hell for us OCD people, and I don't think I'll ever forget it.
This has got me thinking though, about how naive we as human beings can be. We make jokes at the expense of others, not even stopping to consider that we could be hurting someone close to us. Our words can be such a powerful weapon, and we need to take that into account when thinking about the way we use them. I feel that the best way to handle having people make sly comments about OCD is to remember that whilst people are continuously crossing the line, they don't realise it. Nobody can see the line except you, the one who drew it. And yes, some only put a toe over the line, whilst others prefer to take a run up and dive right over it, but it helps to remember that people aren't intentionally out to make your life hell or to destroy your self esteem. They don't understand, just as I don't understand them and their social interactions.
So, my goal for this week is to try and be genuinely nice and caring to the people around me. If they don't understand what I'm going through, what makes me think that I can understand them in their entirety. There's always more to people than what meets the eye.