Really losing it right now...

Discussion in 'Help Me! I Need to Talk to Someone.' started by Silverchair, Jan 9, 2012.

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  1. Silverchair

    Silverchair Member

    To cut to the chase, I have OCD. My biggest obsessions are about illnesses and things wrong with my body. Over the past week, I found out that I got the job I was trying for. Since I start next week, I thought I would get some appointments out of the way. Well, I lost insurance a couple years ago and haven't had a physical ever since. For many years then, I was having normal pap smears and my underactive thyroid has been well controlled on the same dosage of meds for the past 5 years. I feel reasonably healthy, I dance ballet, and I have had no abnormal symptoms of any kind. So, since I don't have health insurance, i called my local health department. I have never been to one so I asked what all was involved in the exams, she said a pap, basic examinations, pelvic examinations......and STI screening. All of a sudden like a ton of bricks, I felt fear overcome my whole body. I thought to myself, OMG I have never been tested and what if they find something? I tried to calm down and tell myself that I have been in a monogamous relationship for 8 years now and surely any STI would have had time to wreck my health by now. Well, then I researched a little bit and for the most part, I was right about that...until I read up about HIV. I read that you can be asymptomatic for as long as 20 years, that is without treatment. I have been a nervous wreck ever since. I have a constant upset stomach, heart palpitations, can't sleep, and have no appetite.

    What I am worried about is that I have only had two partners, including the one I am with now. I only had intercourse with my first partner twice...but the condom broke and we stopped immediately. I don't remember but we might have had oral a few times, but I am not sure. This incident would have happened a little over 8 years ago. Then, I met the person I am with now and we have had intercourse a few times in the beginning, all protected as well. BUT, even though I haven't had intercourse in over 7 years, we have had very regular sexual contact. My first partner only had one sexual encounter before me (and from what I know, she is in the army now which I hope is a good indication she wasn't infected) and my partner now has had 2 partners and had one encounter each that was protected (and all of these partners in both situations have children which I also hope is a good sign that they have indeed been tested). I am almost 24 and my initial risks would have been when I was in high school and 16 years old. I was a different person then, a foolish person. I have no sex ed where I live and I honestly didn't know better then. Even when I became more educated in college, I still thought, well, we have been together this long and have been healthy so that must mean we don't have anything. It makes me really angry that I wasn't better educated and angry that through my past appointments that noone ever offered or suggested testing to me (despite me being totally honest about my sexual history).

    I am so scared. I have an appointment tomorrow morning to have a full workup and I can barely function right now. I will NOT be able to handle waiting on the tests to come back, I simply will lose it. All I can think about is how guilty I feel for being so stupid then...and what if I gave my boyfriend a disease....and how will I kill myself if it is positive because I certainly would lose everyone in my life and lose everything I have worked so hard to get. My life was starting to look up...and now I can't help but think that my past will come back to bite me and take it all away. Having OCD is making this 10000 time worse. I logically know that I have no greater chance to have HIV than any other illness but the anxiety magnifies it as something much bigger than that. It is like I have already made my mind up that the tests will be positive. I have been praying constantly and I feel like God won't help me because I deserve this disease for being so stupid and careless. Sex has always been a source of great anxiety for me. I have currently been battling irrational pregnancy scares for the past 2 years...but this is much worse, MUCH worse. I feel so sick and I just want to disappear.
     
  2. Wastingecho

    Wastingecho Well-Known Member

    take a deep breath - tests are standard part of the physical (at least my daughter tells me so) - can you try to focus simply on the event (the exam) and not the results?

    odds are you won't find a problem but if there is one, better to find out and be able to deal with it

    i don't have OCD but i have the same problem with tests, always focusing on worst case scenarios and they have never happened yet (crossed fingers)

    if you want to talk, let me know

    good luck
     
  3. Sadeyes

    Sadeyes Staff Alumni

    I am so sorry you were so triggered by these exams, but the likelihood of having those diseases is low, and no matter what you have, it is better for it to be diagnosed early...you can tell the tech who does the exam to see if the results can be rushed...sometimes they can...and please find other thngs to focus on until you get the results.
     
  4. Silverchair

    Silverchair Member

    Thanks for the replies. Well, I had the exams and they really scared me. I had always avoided health departments because I feared that their care was below standard...well I was sort of right. An RN gave me the exam instead of a doctor...which freaked me out first. Second, I had to specifically ask for the testing because they did not offer it at all, despite me being honest about my history. So there I was trying to explain to her that I have an anxiety disorder and that, no, I didn't have a serious reason to think I have an STI. So she said she would send me down the hall to her "girls" who would give me counseling beforehand...well, they didn't. She took my blood and sent me on my way. I was so upset. Why would they said they would give me counseling and then not do it? I felt so ashamed going in there that the girl taking my blood would think that I have been sleeping around or taking drugs or something. To boot, they only tested for gonorrhea, syphilis, HIV, and claymidia, which is great but there my anxiety will be probably worrying next about having a different STI. The tests take 2 weeks to come back, which is totally unacceptable for me, I haven't been sleeping or eating all this time and 14 days is just too much for me...I don't know how I am gonna handle this. She also said I need a tetanus shot because I have never had one, and also asked why I hadn't had any Hepatitis vaccines. I told her that I was never offered them and they weren't required when I was in school. She asked if I was gonna work in the health care field and I said no, and she dropped it. So, she gave me the tetanus shot....and didn't use gloves....and then laid my cotton swab that had a little of my blood on it...ON HER DESK! I was so freaked out! Why would she do that?? It made me feel so afraid that she was this unsanitary with a lot of people and then I started wondering what I have been exposed to while being there. Even worse, I started thinking that the lab may flub and mix my tests up or do them wrong.

    I keep trying to be logical with myself but that only lasts so long. Part of me wishes I had never had the tests done at all.
     
  5. Wastingecho

    Wastingecho Well-Known Member

    must admit i'm more than a little surprised at the lack of standard protocols for dealing with the procedures you went through - i had to give my son injections for an extended period of time and i always used gloves and proper disposal techniques

    i have to have blood taken this weekend but i know that the location that takes the sample is NOT the one that processes it - i imagine it's the same in your case otherwise the results wouldn't take that long - so believe that the lab will run the tests correctly

    i never had the hep vaccine and i can't cope with needles - i tend to have panic attacks after an injection or blood draw

    i try (and usually succeed) to not let that stop me - doesn't mean that i don't have the panic attacks, i just work at not letting that stop me - lots of focused breathing and preparation

    what's happened is over, in the past - try to look forward to your job

    i also think you can count on some of us to "hold your hand" if you want us to

    :hug:
     
  6. Silverchair

    Silverchair Member

    I know the past is the past, I just want it to stay there. I have NO intentions of ever doing anything like that again. My anxiety about sex is so bad that me and my partner have been very close to being completely celibate for the past 6 months or more. If I ever lost him, I can' t even imagine being that intimate with anyone else again. I just pray that God doesn't make me pay for those mistakes with my life. I want all this to be over with so badly. I would gladly give up every dime I own just to have them give me the results now. What do they expect you to do for two weeks? Go on living while your worrying yourself to death?? I wonder if there is any way I can call them sooner and get the status on at least one or two of my tests...I wonder if that is possible? I really don't see why the tests would take more than a few days to do. I am losing my mind here. I am expected to start this new job and go on living while my heart continuously skips beats and my stomach is killing me. I am running on very little sleep as well. My boyfriend keeps reassuring me that I am fine and that there is a very good chance I would be violently ill if I had a disease for that long, that makes me feel better but then I remember what I read about it being asymptomatic for that long and then my stomach sinks again. It is a constant cycle of panic, calm, panic, calm. I feel like I am in a nightmare.
     
  7. Silverchair

    Silverchair Member

    Called today on the off chance they could tell me something, and she said the earliest I should call is next friday. I can't do this. My body is giving out on me due to stress.
     
  8. Wastingecho

    Wastingecho Well-Known Member

    What do you normally do to distract yourself? Maybe we can come up with something.
     
  9. Silverchair

    Silverchair Member

    I've tried everything. I keep just trying to get chores done and watch television but the thoughts keep coming to me. It is my birthday today and I don't even care. Everyone is making a big fuss out of it and I just want them all to leave me alone because I can't handle it right now. There are at least 7 more long days til I hear back from these tests and by then, I don't know what will become of me. I hope all of this waiting is worth it and that I can get a HUGE relief very soon. My boyfriend and best friend think I am crazy for worrying this much, but they don't understand how my mind works. In reality, something may be a small threat but to me, it is magnified into something very life threatening. I am such a stupid person. How could I go this long not worrying about this stuff, it is has 8 years for crying out loud.
     
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