Obsessional Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, otherwise known as Pure O, is a psychiatric disorder considered to be a milder form of OCD, which may or may not be overtly manifested by the individual with the disorder.
Although considered a form of OCD in which obsessive thoughts are present, individuals with Pure O may exhibit seemingly unnoticeable symptoms. For example, a person may dwell on obsessive thoughts of committing violent or destructive behaviors. Part of their obsession may also dwell on violent acts that one might have inadvertently done in the past. Such obsessive thoughts may also be of any violent events happening accidentally. Thoughts such as fearing that they may have committed an action or negligence that will cause events such as fire or family members being exposed to danger will replay in the mind.
While some obsess on thoughts of violence, others may obsess on thoughts that may be non-violent in nature, such as basic bodily processes of swallowing, or even breathing. An individual may even experience intrusive thoughts that he or she may have a different sexual orientation than what they actually once believed. In some extreme cases associated with one’s religious belief, an individual may hold the irrational and intrusive thoughts of blaspheming or committing sacrilegious actions.
To correct such recurrent obsessive thoughts, individuals with Pure O may go to the extremes of checking and reassuring themselves that such fears or beliefs have not occurred or could not happen. They check the news or the Internet for updates if, for example, a house they fear would have burned down really did not burn down. Others may fall into the trap of constantly reminiscing and detailing specific events of a certain day just to reassure themselves that nothing violent had happened.
While some individuals with Pure O begin to withdraw from other people, events, or even objects associated with their obsessions, others feel more free to confess their thoughts with their closest friends or family members, even to the extent of confessing such thoughts to strangers in an effort to obtain reassurance that their fears are unfounded in the first place.
Although obsessive OCD or Pure O symptoms may vary among individuals, this form of OCD is generally considered as less severe in contrast with more destructive and debilitating forms of the psychiatric disorder. In fact, some compulsions may prove to be highly unnoticeable as some individuals master methods to conceal their real condition.
However the symptoms affect an individual with Pure O, professional help might be needed if the disorder begins to interfere with the daily routines, ensuring that it will be properly and effectively dealt with.