My name is Donna. I have always been a worrier. When I was about 30 I was hospitalized for 2 weeks and they said I had a nervous breakdown. I was seeing a psychiatrist and psychologist. The psychiatrist said I should quit my job as nurse, which I loved, and stay home and raise my two kids. That was a big mistake. It took me about 2 years to get my strength together and go back to what I loved. My husband always said I got better in spite of the psychiatrist.
When I look back, the medical field knew nothing about general anxiety disorder or OCD. Throughout the years I’ve done pretty good until about a year ago. I started seeing a different psychiatrist and psychologist. It was my psychologist that diagnosed OCD. She also asked me if I would be interested in a support group. I said sure. That is when I met Gregg Sansone. I finally met someone who knew what I was going through. He is kind, understanding, and yet tough. This is what I needed. We don’t need people to feel sorry for us and we don’t need to have a pity party. I have learned from Gregg that people with OCD are like soldiers. It can feel like HELL but we must keep going. We have to face our fears everyday and continue to keep moving our feet. I have learned so much about OCD through Gregg. I never realized it was all about needing to feel certain about everything. We have to learn that being unsure is the cure. And believe me it takes work everyday but I know from Gregg that our lives are worth it. I have learned that you have to feel it to beat it! It’s the only way! No doctor ever told me that. They just gave me Ativan. I am proud to say that when I feel fear and anxiety now I just let it be there and burn itself out or do an exposure. I have called Gregg on the weekends feeling awful and he has helped me write up an exposure. He’s also taught me how to actually do an exposure. I’ve learned you have to give the exposure some real time and true effort. I always come home from Gregg’s support group feeling great.
I know now that the feeling can’t hurt me. It’s like the bully on the playground. If you face your fears they will go away and they have. I admire how much time and compassion Gregg gives to everyone in the group. I know I feel better today because of Gregg. You have to understand OCD to beat it and that’s what I’ve learnt from Gregg. I hope someday I can make a difference in other peoples lives like he has. I know by staying busy it just might happen.