January 26, 2011

OCF Conference 2011

I’ve started to write about three different posts, but haven’t been able to finish them yet, so I am going to post about the upcoming OCF Conference in San Diego, CA on July 29 – 31, 2011. 
Has anyone ever been to this?  I am planning on attending.  It will be my first time.  All part of the process of “acceptance”, I think.  Accepting my “flawed-self” and presenting myself to a group of people who undertstand my experience.  Here I am.  I have OCD - sexual orientation & relationship OCD - at that!  I guess there’s always the possibility that even my fellow OCD sufferers will reject me and think I’m a freak.  :o) 
I have booked my ticket to San Diego, and I’m so very excited for this conference for a few reasons:
1.  I am hoping to learn more about Pure O.  I think in the last few months I have learned a lot about Purely Obsessional OCD, but in relative terms I’m an amateur when dealing with this disorder, so I could use as much reinforcement as possible.    
2.  I want to connect with others who are in the “OCD Club”.  Writing a blog and connecting with others with OCD has been such a great experience for me.  I don’t have the option of attending a self-help group, so the support that I receive from my blogging friends is very much appreciated. 
3.  I am hoping to connect with some key players in the OCD world from Canada and perhaps help to start a Canadian foundation similar to the OCF.  After the hell that I have gone through with this OCD, I am more motivated than ever to help others who suffer.  I am determined to help spread the word in Canada so that people will seek help sooner, and there will be a greater number of appropriately trained therapists who can help.  Of course, this will jeopardize my anonymity, and I struggle with this idea.  But I think for me - part of recovering from this disorder and truly accepting myself, I have to begin to be honest with people about the fact that I suffer from OCD.  (More on this in a later post perhaps.)
The conference program hasn’t been released yet, but I hope that there are several discussions on “intrusive thoughts”. 
I am hoping to leave the conference in July feeling re-energized to continue my battle the control that OCD has over my life.  At this point, I could also use an injection of renewed hope. 

4 comments:

  1. Yes! I went to the conference last year and loved it (then again I am super into all things educational about OCD)! I plan on going this year, too, and am already getting excited about it...that's how big a dork I am. As soon as the program comes out I will be mapping out which presentations I want to attend and when.

    I would highly recommend the experience, especially if you have never been. I met some people there that I still keep in touch with - one of whom I now consider a really close friend. In fact, even though we live thousands of miles apart, I still talk to her or send her messages regularly, and in some ways I feel closer to her than my "normal" friends because I know she knows what this is like!

    As for the anonymity part, I can understand your concern. In the end I think we have to weigh the pros and cons of that anonymity. I admire your eagerness to make people more aware of OCD in Canada. That sounds like a very noble goal and one reason why jeopardizing your OCD might be worthwhile.

    Ah, you have me all excited now - the conference isn't for another 6 months and I already can't wait!

    If you want to know anything else about the conference feel free to email me - ocdreflections@gmail.com. It was a wonderful experience for me. I met other sufferers like me who could relate and learned even more about the disorder (and was inspired to keep fighting!).

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  2. *jeopardizing your anonymity...oops! :)

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  3. Fellow - that is so AWESOME to hear! I share your excitement too. I am really looking forward to making more OCD friends - sounds silly, but one of the things I'm struggling with now that my boyfriend and I broke up - is the feeling of being very alone with this disorder. I am so far in the closet with this stuff - I feel like I'm being dishonest. But - to be truthful - I feel a lot of fear and shame about telling anyone - most people just don't understand OCD. Anyway - I will send you an email soon - hopefully I can meet you there!!!

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  4. I would love that! Certainly send me an email if you want to talk about the conference more.

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