You may have OCD and not even know it.

And the problem not having a name for what is wrong is that you don't get help.

There is effective treatment. Psychologists at the Maudsley Hospital in London have developed a special form of cognitive behavioural therapy in their OCD clinic. This is the approach that I use and it works well.

Typical obsessions include fear of shouting out obscenities in church, worrying am I gay, scared of going to new places because you don't know where the loos are and if you don't know, you risk wetting your pants. Others include fear of jumping off bridges, stabbing people, running people over unintentionally and unknowingly. Other people need to handle things in a special way, or say special magic words. The list is almost endless. The key aspect is that you are responsible for causing harm, to yourself or to other people.

The thoughts are normal. We all can look at a knife and think I could stab that bloke with that knife, But for most of us, we let that thought go. If you have OCD these thoughts don't stop. And because the thoughts are hateful to you, you worry that you are deep inside a depraved and dreadful person, so you feel shame and guilt too. It is endless and causes misery.

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