To be able to healthily manage obsessive compulsive disorder is to be a constant judge. To incorrectly differentiate which thoughts are skewed projections of anxiety and which are valid fears is to do myself an injustice. And, contrary to common assumption, this job requires an emotionally impartial scrutiny of mental territory that goes beyond fear-based thoughts. Almost every rational thought has an irrational OCD counterpart ready to creep in and mimic sensibility.
Is this paranormal knowledge of “what feels right” the art of sharp intuition, or the convincing trickery of delusion?
Is this opposition a factor of my inborn personality or nurtured disgust?
Is this repetitious daydream an inspired fantasy, or just intrusive imagery?
Is this throbbing adoration love at its truest, or obsession at its sickest?
At the end of each trial, whether the verdict places cognitive guilt on obsessive compulsive disorder or not, this disorder still and always manages to uproot a deep-seeded philosophical conflict within me. If a foreign entity is responsible, even if only occasionally, for my brain’s generated thoughts, then who do I call Valerie? Can the “self” really exist in a mentally ill brain?
– Valerie Parente (4-2-16)