This always happens to me. After each and every time I have socialized with people, once I’m home I feel like crying. Along with the desire to cry, my mind ruminates over some or all of the things I had said, as I had spoken to those people. For the many, many years this has been happening to me, I always wonder and try to figure out afterwards if it is my OCD – Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, being hard on myself, both, or more. I haven’t come up with a concrete answer. Since writing my problems out, sometimes helps me resolve them, bear with me as I try to break apart each feeling and see if I can come up with an answer here. I was just with a large crowd yesterday and I currently have these feelings.
“My mind ruminates over some or all of the things I had said, as I had spoken to those people.” As I think here about what I just typed, the first thought that comes to my mind is perfection – always striving for everything, including myself, to be perfect. Along with the ruminating my mind does, I have many regrets…”I wish I wouldn’t have said that.” Believe me, I’m, a fairly quiet person, but as each one of us engage in conversations with others, we sometimes comment on something someone else said. I don’t like to gossip, but even small comments can be regretful. Often I wish I wouldn’t have said anything, but then it would be weird if I didn’t contribute to any conversations at all. Also, sometimes when we have an issue going on in our lives at the moment we want to talk to someone about it, then wish we hadn’t. I think that – overly talking about and sharing my personal life, makes me feel violated and exposed. I remember my mother always used to tell me that when there was a problem at home between my father and their young sons, she would often put on her coat, leave the house and walk to Church just to sit in the pews. She always passed a few homes of friends along the way, but never went into their homes and shared her anxieties with others. She said that the next day the issue(s) would be gone, but if she spoke to people about them, those people would always remember them. That’s true. If my main issue here is striving for perfection, that is my OCD. If it’s the feelings of violation and exposure, then I think that’s another underlying psychological issue – one that I need to discuss in my psychotherapy sessions.
As I type all of this I’m also thinking that another reason could be that I’m not forgiving of myself – allowing myself to make mistakes and being able to forgive myself if I feel I said a little something I later felt I shouldn’t have said. There isn’t anything I have ever said that brought harm to anyone, or became a discussion of ‘gossip.’ These are all feelings inside myself and with myself. Could the only reason be hating feeling out of control? That, too, is my OCD. OCD is known as being about control – trying to overly control that which you feel you lost control of in your life. When I’m home alone, I can control everything I do and I don’t speak to anyone much – only short conversations on the telephone. When I’m out and with others, do I want to ‘control’ every word that comes out of my mouth? Possibly so. Is letting go – speaking naturally in conversations with others, as I relax, such a terrible thing? To me and my OCD, it feels so. I think after I come home and my mind ruminates the conversations I had while I was with others, it IS a way of making sure I said the right thing. Could it all be because I’m very hard on myself and expect perfection from myself at all times – expecting myself to always say and do the ‘right’ thing? That could be my OCD, or maybe an underlying feeling of never being good enough – possibly in my mother’s eyes. Hmm? It’s very possible. Another issue I need to discuss in my psychotherapy sessions.
As I’m typing all of this, the lucid part of me tells me this shouldn’t be the way it is. I deserve to relax, I deserve to socialize, I deserve to allow myself to make mistakes, I don’t have to control everything I say and do, I don’t always have to strive for perfection and I don’t always have to say and do what is considered ‘right’ to me. It’s easy to type, but not so easy to ‘buy.’ I’ll have to work on it more in therapy, but at least I know what the issues could be.
I think the overall feeling of wanting to cry is because I felt out of control – feeling out of control in a situation I was put in where I wasn’t able to totally control everything I said and did. Both small and large crowds make me feel very out of control afterwards. Is that totally because I have OCD, or is some of it ‘normal?’
I very often wonder if any of this happens to others. Has any of it ever happened to you?