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Body dysmorphia: One month update.

Permanent Linkby margharris on Thu Apr 02, 2015 9:26 pm

One month update from starting this blog.
It has been rocky. We have had some wins along the way. He has given up alcohol, cutting and mirror checking. The reduced compulsion time has spiked the thought attacks. Most mornings take hours to get out of looping thoughts. This is very hard to live with but it is still progress out.
I think making the list of compulsions to tackle was valuable as it set up a goal to achieve...Compulsion free. The idea being, if you reduce compulsions, the thoughts will be deprived of the fix. They will in the short term increase but ultimately become boring and will reduce. The panics they have brought have been truly horrendous.

As odd as it might sound my latest approach to label thoughts as just all questions in disguise seems to have worked. He didn't ask me to verify any of his usual BDD stories that arrive with a scream, panic and demand for Valium or a betablocker.
He did go over his stories yesterday quite often. I replied by adding," you mean..What if"
I think I was able to convince him his stories were really his hypotheses. His genius mind was wanting to find answers. No one knew for sure, what drug could save hair. He would answer, "But I think it is my fault."
That response is so typical of the hyper-responsibility of a BDDer. You want to take the blame for something. But would you think everyone was at fault for how their body looked? You really mean. " What if it is my fault?"..... so it was just his BDD talking again making him feel responsible for things he could never control. He didn't know it was his fault at all.

He has asked if he is too ugly to date again. He already has someone interested. Can he pull himself out of this? I told him he was fine but I wouldn't get into a debate with his BDD.
So the 'What if' approach seems to have taken the venom out of his BDDs.
He still is wearing the hat, touching a lot and taking the hair meds in panic, so there are compulsions still needing attention.
He is now on a cocktail of meds. Started 10mg of Prozac to get him moving in the morning. Started 75mg of Prothiaden to settle him at night. He is not running to the fridge so that is a plus. I think my son is just too unwell to do it without meds. Those of you who can still function might not have to deal with this side of treatment but we do. We don't have an option.
Thanks to my supporter, Donna, I plan to continue. Donna has made it out of her disorder. It is possible. She has been in a bad place and turned her life around to be able to extend herself to help others. Her OCD brain has been tamed. There is hope for us. Wish you all well over Easter. Marg

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