In the creation of A Penny For Your Intrusive Thoughts, our mission is to allow those with OCD to share their isolating intrusive thoughts in order to help others know they are not alone.
Writing down and submitting your intrusive thoughts is an incredibly vulnerable process. When we created this project, we weren't sure if anyone would feel comfortable participating. As OCD sufferers ourselves, we know how deeply personal and terrifying these unwanted obsessions can feel. Yet, through the power of anonymity, our project has taken off!
It turns out, allowing a space to write and submit our scariest thoughts can be just as healing as it is terrifying. After attending a panel on taboo intrusive thoughts at the IOCDF conference, Cassie experienced how powerful anonymity can be. When we allow an anonymous and nonjudgmental space to reveal what feels most shameful, we can can begin to talk about otherwise deeply stigmatized topics. Within the mental health advocacy community, there is often an unspoken pressure to put a name and face to our mental illness in order to combat stigma. While this is can be an effective form of advocacy, we believe everyone can add to this conversation even if they do so anonymously and that anonymity in fact allows for the most stigmatized voices to be heard. When you choose to submit your thoughts through our project, you are part of of a movement to destigmatize intrusive thoughts and expand the conversation on mental health. Even as creators of this project, Cassie, Darcy and Natalia submit their own OCD intrusive thoughts as a form of exposure therapy and healing.
When you submit your thoughts through our survey, they get put into a Google Spreadsheet, where as a team we regularly read and sort through all submissions. Every submission is read, edited for clarity, and put into a compilation, which we feature on our social media. All submissions are completely anonymous and as the creators of the Google survey we do not have access to any information about the submitter other than the thought itself and the date and time it was submitted.
Our team is comprised of three OCD sufferers and a therapist for supervision. We do not provide mental health counseling services or therapy. You are not alone in your battle against OCD and if you are looking for professional help, check out our resources for more information.
Thank you for your vulnerability and willingness to participate in our project!
Cassie, Darcy, Natalia, and Dr. Amy Jenks