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  • OCD and Its Effect on Relationships

    Imagine that worries, fears, and obsessions are the only things that you can focus your efforts on. No matter what the topic of conversation may be, you can’t fully participate because your brain is focused on other issues.

    If a family member or friend is trying to talk to you about their day, your mind is wandering elsewhere. Or if a coworker is trying to explain an upcoming project and action items, you can’t seem to focus on the task at hand.

    Focusing on just the worries, fears, and obsessions can feel like the world is moving by you while you’re standing still.

    This is what relationships can feel like from time to time for a person struggling with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Let’s learn more about OCD and its effect on relationships.

    Difficulty Communicating

    Communication is key in any type of relationship. OCD can make communication challenging. A person with OCD may focus their thought and attention ruminating on their fears and worries instead of focusing on being with their loved ones.

    A loved one who doesn’t struggle with OCD may have a hard time trying to understand where a person with OCD is coming from. They may not be able to see where the other person is going through and why they struggle with these worries and fears.

    On the other hand, someone with OCD may feel exhausted with trying to explain themselves and why they need to complete compulsions in order to feel like themselves again. This lack of communication and understanding from both sides can lead to issues within the relationship.


    Withdrawing from others or self-isolating can be common in individuals with OCD. The obsessions and compulsions can be a lot for one person. It’s hard to deal with on their own since it takes up a lot of effort and time, but it may be even harder to explain to someone who doesn’t struggle with OCD. Isolation may be easier for some people instead of answering any pressing questions related to their OCD.

    The Comparison Game

    Comparing your life to that of your family, friends, coworkers, or neighbors can be a common game that you may play. While everything is fine in moderation, and it’s something that may be difficult not to do, people with OCD tend to find a way to take this to the extreme. The constant obsessions and negative thoughts can cause someone with OCD to fixate on a previous partner or other people’s relationships and start to doubt their own relationship or develop feelings of dissatisfaction or resentment.

    Lack of Sex Drive

    Issues with sex drive and sexual functioning can also be common in individuals who struggle with signs and symptoms of OCD. These are some of the most common struggles that can lead to feeling rejected or not good enough:

    • Difficulty becoming aroused
    • Dissatisfaction
    • Fear of sex
    • Feelings of disgust
    • Low sex drive

    How to Move Forward

    Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) can affect relationships due to the constant obsessions and compulsions that make up the disorder. That being said, OCD doesn’t have to get in the way of any of the relationships that are part of your life. If you’re struggling with OCD or any of the signs and symptoms of it, you’re not alone. You’re also not alone if your relationship seems to be suffering due to your OCD.

    It’s time to take back control over your OCD and your life again. We’re here to help both you and your partner move forward in both of your lives and the relationship you share together again. Reach out today to set up a consultation.