OCD IN THE FAMILY: THE BURDEN SHOULDERED BY PARENTS

bringing up a child with more-than-mild OCD is always an imposing task. Parents become frustrated that their child cannot be reasoned out of rituals and angry when he or she will not stop them. They blame themselves for their child’s symptoms, assuming they are somehow responsible. They often dread that their child may be developing some sort of a psychotic disorder.
The burden is partly lifted when parents find good professional help. They come to realize that OCD is a biological disorder, limited in its severity, and that they are not responsible for it. Further, they are provided much-needed structure for dealing with the disorder at home. But parents never get completely off the hook. Behavior therapy presents its own dilemmas, such as deciding when a child is showing attention-seeking behavior and deciding when to enforce behavioral limits. Furthermore, obsessions and compulsions make children moody and irritable. On top of that, because OCD children are unusually bright, loving, and dependent, patents tend to identify closely with them and to suffer their setbacks with great anguish.
In a survey of OCD parents conducted in 1993, the Obsessive-Compulsive Foundation found that more than 80 percent reported significant disruption of family life, particularly the loss of normal closeness in family relationships. Major problems identified in OCD sufferers were depression, lack of motivation, and inconsiderate behavior. Major problems for family members were excessive arguing and being drawn into rituals. Parents’ greatest concerns were the future well-being of the OCDer and how they themselves could get back to enjoying life normally.
Parents of OCDers must, indeed, strive to lead a normal life— this is crucial for both parents and the affected child. In order to do this, it is necessary to maintain a rational view of OCD and to avoid becoming overly involved in a child’s symptoms. The OC Foundation has several pamphlets that can be helpful, including, “Learning to Live with OCD,” by Barbara Van Noppen, “Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder in Children and Adolescents,” by Hugh Johnson, and “A Survival Guide for Family,” published by Obsessive Compulsives Anonymous. This last suggests that parents keep reminding themselves, “We didn’t cause our child’s OCD, and we can’t cure our child’s OCD.”
*41/338/2*

OCD IN THE FAMILY: THE BURDEN SHOULDERED BY PARENTSbringing up a child with more-than-mild OCD is always an imposing task. Parents become frustrated that their child cannot be reasoned out of rituals and angry when he or she will not stop them. They blame themselves for their child’s symptoms, assuming they are somehow responsible. They often dread that their child may be developing some sort of a psychotic disorder.The burden is partly lifted when parents find good professional help. They come to realize that OCD is a biological disorder, limited in its severity, and that they are not responsible for it. Further, they are provided much-needed structure for dealing with the disorder at home. But parents never get completely off the hook. Behavior therapy presents its own dilemmas, such as deciding when a child is showing attention-seeking behavior and deciding when to enforce behavioral limits. Furthermore, obsessions and compulsions make children moody and irritable. On top of that, because OCD children are unusually bright, loving, and dependent, patents tend to identify closely with them and to suffer their setbacks with great anguish.In a survey of OCD parents conducted in 1993, the Obsessive-Compulsive Foundation found that more than 80 percent reported significant disruption of family life, particularly the loss of normal closeness in family relationships. Major problems identified in OCD sufferers were depression, lack of motivation, and inconsiderate behavior. Major problems for family members were excessive arguing and being drawn into rituals. Parents’ greatest concerns were the future well-being of the OCDer and how they themselves could get back to enjoying life normally.Parents of OCDers must, indeed, strive to lead a normal life— this is crucial for both parents and the affected child. In order to do this, it is necessary to maintain a rational view of OCD and to avoid becoming overly involved in a child’s symptoms. The OC Foundation has several pamphlets that can be helpful, including, “Learning to Live with OCD,” by Barbara Van Noppen, “Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder in Children and Adolescents,” by Hugh Johnson, and “A Survival Guide for Family,” published by Obsessive Compulsives Anonymous. This last suggests that parents keep reminding themselves, “We didn’t cause our child’s OCD, and we can’t cure our child’s OCD.”*41/338/2*

Share and Enjoy:
  • Digg
  • Sphinn
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Reddit
  • StumbleUpon
  • Twitter
  • Yahoo! Bookmarks

Random Posts

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.