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Is this HOCD?

I have been experiencing obsessive intrusive thoughts for about a year now. But I do think it was triggered before that not long after me and my ex boyfriend split up when I was 20 (23 now). And from what I remember I just thought a girl was really pretty, and for the rest of the day I just couldn't stop stressing about it. It just wasn't as bad because I was quite busy working and studying so it didnt really pop into my head. But it was triggered again last year when a man asked me if I was a lesbian at work because his girlfriend thought that of me. Then he said "I didn't wear makeup and have my nails done" ergh. Its so annoying because I usually do have my nails done and feel pretty without makeup or just mascara but at that time I was constantly working all the time and tired so it made me so insecure. The joke is he asked for my number afterwards. Anyway, it didn't become obsessive until the lockdown started and I was at home all the time.

These thoughts have been on and off and my biggest fear is that I won't have a husband and children like I always wanted and end up being with a woman instead.

It's so strange because I have always been boy crazy, and am currently seeing someone but it isnt going well mainly because I keep having doubts about whether I like girls or not. I feel dishonest to him as the only person who I have spoken to about this is my Mother, and to a couple of therapists who say this is hocd. My mom said from everything I explained I still sound straight and that I never shown any signs or gave her any doubt to think I would be attracted to girls.

When I was young though I was exposed to pornography and would watch it on and off. I have watched and masturbated to lesbian porn which is my main concern, but only when it focused in on oral sex. But throughout that time it never made me question my sexuality, I think it was because I wouldnt imagine it happening to me or anything. Other than that there isn't anything that would make me question myself. I haven't had any same sex experience or fantasized about being with a girl. Infact there have been times where a girl has tried to kiss me and I just moved away and when girls have shown interest and I just wouldn't have any interest back.

Before this I just looovveddd men and now it just feels like I can't without thoughts of the same sex popping into my head.

I feel as if I pay so much attention to how I talk walk and dress now too. I am constantly looking back at how I was before, whether I acted quite boyish or not, but I have always been quite a girly girl. And I have always been a very shy and anxious person. There have been a couple of times where people have outright asked me if I am a lesbian and when I say no I feel like they are kind of shocked about it which just makes me overthink. I am just scared that they are right and they see something I cant. The thought of me being with a girl makes me uncomfortable so surely if I were lesbian or bisexual I would just enjoy the thought, and I have tried to be openminded about the thoughts but it just doesn't feel right.

I have had gay and lesbian friends in the past and I never gave my sexuality a second thought. But the thoughts are always there so I am just concerned incase I just didnt realize or its changing or something. This anxiety has made me leave my job and have constant problems with my man. I avoid tv shows, movies and any music that I feel would trigger me. I avoid my friends completely because I constantly have thoughts about them (which is weird because when I am or have been around them I dont have the thoughts or worry about liking them or anything).

I know that this has been quite long so thank you to whoever read this and hopefully replies lol. I am just so anxious because of the porn and would want to know others' opinions on my problems.

2 Responses
Avatar universal
I just want to emphasize aswell that I didnt mention there is I know I'm not a lesbian, my worry is about being bisexual. The amount of times I have said to myself 'what if I'm bi?' in a day is ridiculous. Its not a bad thing but I just know that it isn't right for me. Yet the thoughts don't stop and surely if I was it wouldn't make me so anxious. My family are very open minded and would be fine if I were, but I don't feel like that's my concern.

Any thoughts ? Thanks!!

Avatar universal
This is a hard one.  I personally don't like the term HOCD.  It's a label that, when applied to you, can make you begin to think of yourself as fitting or not fitting the label.  The problem with most people who post on here is that they are, deep inside sometimes, extremely biased against gay people even though they are not that way in any malicious sense but because of the centuries we've been through demonizing gays.  It's hard for any of us, even those who absolutely know they are gay, to escape this long and current history of believing being gay is a sin.  There was a time before that when being gay or bisexual was normal, so times do change.  But in your case, you really don't seem to evince a bias against gays at all.  You seem much more generally concerned about this because it goes against what you have always believed you want, which is marriage and a family.  Of course, you can have that as a lesbian.  Gays can have children now.  So maybe there is that insidious bias we pretty much all have after centuries of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam teaching us to think of homosexuality as a horrific thing.  Which of course led to the discrimination that did make it a really hard thing to be.  I always say, most of us at some point in our lives reach a point of insecurity about our sexuality usually due to problems with relationships or a relationship that causes us to wonder about maybe we're not succeeding because we're gay.  But I also think actions define us, not just our thoughts.  Everyone thinks.  Lots of thoughts.  So whether or not HOCD is a thing or just another one of those made up diagnoses that exist today to sell drugs and therapy, what you do have is a really bad case of a phobia about being gay and anxiety that has grown so obsessive with you that you're letting it destroy your life.  When you get to that point and you're already in therapy, you need a different therapist.  And when it gets to the point where you are quitting work and avoiding people and life, medication starts to become something to explore as well with your therapist.  You don't want to let any phobia drive you into isolation.  We're probably all bisexual in the sense that sex feels good no matter whether it's just with ourselves so the act itself just feels good.  But your sexuality is more about who you love and want to be in relationships with, not just the sex act.  So you really have two choices here beyond trying to figure out why you have gotten so insecure about your sexuality with your therapist, and that is, either try having sex with a woman and see if that floats your boat or just go on as you have, which is a completely heterosexual life.  Both are fine.  That's not the problem.  The problem is, you're letting it eat you alive, and that's the mental illness part of it because the mere fact you find women attractive, well, who doesn't?  Most women do look at other women even if they are completely hetero and completely hetero men can admire a really good looking man.  Doesn't mean that's who you want to be with.  That's for you to figure out, but that's not why you're suffering, that's just a choice just like all the other choices you make in life.  You're suffering because you're letting this obsess you, and so the real problem again is to learn how not to do that.  The rest will take care of itself in your actions.  Peace.
2 Comments
Thank you for replying!! That was a lot to understand but I appreciate your explanation. I am not so concerned about a hocd label, I am just in need to understand if the symptoms match with what is considered hocd, as I have always had severe anxiety anyway so irrational fears are not new to me. I want to know whether this is just all in my head.

It was just the fact I have watched lesbian porn before and enjoyed it I am just trying to understand if that is a cause for concern, however I stopped watching porn althother maybe a year or two ago. But as I mentioned it was only when it was focused on oral sex I would watch it.  Anything else I would skip past. And since having these thoughts, the idea of being with a woman in anyway isn't appealing to me.

I don't have a desire to sleep with a woman so I won't do that to see. But you can see my dilemma, as the thoughts don't seem to stop. I am just afraid that my orientation will change all of a sudden when I am older as I have always known I am straight and love men. In the same way that these thoughts came out of nowhere and haven't seemed to stop.


I don't think you understood the label thing.  If you had never heard of something called HOCD, you wouldn't obviously think you had it.  Thinking you have it can cause you to get it.  That's how labeling works.  But at bottom, the problem is you suffer from anxiety and therefore when you get troubling thoughts you are more likely to become excessively troubled by it than someone who doesn't have an anxiety problem, who would have the same thought and just go, huh, that was an interesting thought and move on.  Watching porn did what it does, which was make you horny.  That's why those who like it watch it and why those who make it make it.  Me, I'm not that into watching other people engage in actual sex, I'm more in to suggestive things.  But I'm a guy but if I saw two women giving oral to one another I'd want to be a lesbian too for a moment at least, because it's a pretty sexy thing to watch.  But I wouldn't obsess over it.  You are.  So again, the problem you have isn't HOCD, it's anxiety and what you let it do to you.  It just means your therapy ain't working.  Yet.  Peace.
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