[Papabear Note: This letter is from a furry with whom I have spoken before, so I know his history, including that he has OCD]
So … do you sometimes ever just have very dark thoughts of doing something that you would never do for no apparent reason? Cuz, I did just now and it’s really disturbing me. Something to do with doing something really bad with animals that I would never do. I love and care about animals, I would never want to hurt them in any way, shape or form.
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This is a topic people don't like to talk about, so kudos to you for being brave and honest about such a disturbing thing.
Everyone has dark thoughts. I've had them myself. Sometimes, I have even wished death on a person. I'm not proud of that, but there it is. The difference between someone who thinks dark thoughts on occasion and one who acts on them is the difference between a normal human being and a psychopathic murderer. You see, a normal person has something in their brain (call it a conscience) that is a wall, a sign that says STOP!, that prevents them from acting out that aggression. You have that wall, so you're okay.
There is a difference between you and me, though, which can cause you to have recurring thoughts of hurting people. There is a subset of OCD called "Harm OCD," which is the fear of harming someone or yourself. You obsess about objects that might serve as weapons and worry constantly that you might harm someone either consciously or unconsciously, not even knowing you're doing it.
These are obsessions that are symptomatic of your particular form of OCD. They do not reflect on your moral character as a human being, and they do not mean you will actually carry these actions out. They do not make you a bad person. Can't stress that enough.
To treat your Harm OCD, you need therapy. Therapists use a form of behavioral therapy called Exposure Response Prevention (ERP) in which you are continuously exposed to objects that trigger your Harm OCD until you become resistant to them. Repeated association with something and not acting out on it eventually establishes pathways in your brain that tell you that your fear regarding that object will not become reality. For example, say you are afraid you will take a kitchen knife and stab a person or animal. The therapist might instruct you to carry a plastic, dull knife around with you everywhere until you realize that you will never use a knife as a weapon.
Here is an excellent summary about Harm OCD you should read.
Please seek the guidance of a professional to treat your condition.
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