Thursday, 26 August 2010

Obsessive Child Disorder...

My child has OCD, I know you aren't supposed to say things like that but I don't know what else to call it and I need help...

It manifests itself in her incessant need for perfection. Mainly to do with clothing. Laces must be a certain length. Dresses must sit a certain way when she sits down. She won't wear trousers as the crutch makes a bubbly thing. Coats and cardigans are rarely zipped or buttoned, unless it is freezing or raining and I insist, as these too make a bubble. Collars must not touch her neck or face. The Tongue of her shoes must not be seen to be sliding sideways as said shoes will be removed, regardless of circumstance.

I wouldn't mind if she fussed a bit and moved on, but her whole mood changes. Offending items will be removed, thrown, even on occasion bitten. And she gets so very uncontrollably crazed and frustrated. Pulling, pushing, dragging, crying...

I don't know where she gets this need for perfection. I am one of the most haphazard, thrown together, unironed people you will meet and my child is the anti-me. I do not get it and therefore have no idea what to do.

I have tried ignoring her and leaving her to her frustrated pullings, tuggings and bitings in the hope that she'll realise there's nothing that can be done. She tends to go on and on until the point of crying uncontrollably if the offending item won't "behave".

I have tried helping, but feel like by aiding her I could be making the situation worse. And my help is usually not very well received anyway, as i tend to get it wrong and do not help the offending item to "behave".

It is getting worse as she gets older, so much so her father has noticed and we know how unobservant men can be (no offence).

What do I do? How do I deal with the situation? Can it be dealt with? Will she outgrow it? Will it develop further? I am at a loss and very frustrated...


  1. I can offer no help but lots of sympathy. My son refuses to have labels in or on anything, he won't wear new clothes and wont wear anything that has writing on it. Its all very frustrating.

    Hope you get it sorted xx

  2. I can only suggests you find a way of helping her cope with her frustrations when they are not to her liking. I make curly haired beauty count to ten when she is has a tantrum and take deep yogi breathes. It sort of helps her control her feelings but not really for your situation. You know what sets her off - so when you see it happen can you distract her in any way? I may be a need on her part to have some order in her life and this is what she is trying to control, hence the dramatic mood change when things don't 'behave'.

  3. This will sound so obvious and I am sure that you would have thought about it already. Is she experiencing an emotional difficulty - school, friends etc? Stress is a cause of OCD. It must be frustrating and worrying for you.

  4. Really good advice already, failing the above it could be worth getting her referred to a psychologist. Bare with me here. My daughter has major issues with anything medically related see our blog and her psychologists have been amazing and helping so much. Obviously it is worth trying out other techniques first but sometimes the problem can be made worse if you don't know what the root cause is. I hope you manage to get this sorted xx

    PS been trying to follow your blog on and off all day and the error page keeps coming up? Not sure if it is just me as never had a problem before. Gemma xxx

  5. I think that to some extent all children go through variations of this syndrome. It could just be a passing phase. But if it genuinely worries you to this extent (and you obviously witness it first hand), you should consider some professional help.

    It will just give you the peace of mind you need to carry on your life without the worry of another unpredictable 'misbehaved' moment...

  6. I can't offer any advice, but I can send a virtual hug.

  7. No idea, just lots of Mummy sympathy. Quite different but also worrying my little man is being assessed for a communication disorder/ aspergers at the moment and it is a worry. Have your chatted to a HV or GP?

    Mich x

  8. Thank you all very much for your advice and hugs, really appreciated Xxx

  9. I don't know what is available by her but here I would refer her to a child development specialist (usually neurologists on team). You need to rule out certain things like tactile sensitivity and you need help on dealing with it.

    I would definitely get her checked out so you know if and what you are dealing with.


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