What’s an OCD Specialist?

I told my friends I can’t do the trip, which is a weight off :).

I’ve decided I need to look into alternate options for a psychologist since the place I found is taking a while to find space for me, and besides their profile didn’t mention ‘ERP’ which is a critical checkmark for determining an OCD specialist’s competence. There’s a website called OCD Action which has a section on finding a therapist.

Again I was kind of resigning myself to settling for less because I actually haven’t seen anybody mention ERP yet in any of my research, even though it’s such a core concept in all OCD resources (websites, podcasts). And technically it’s a subset of CBT yet if you are truly an OCD specialist there’s no way you can avoid the topic of ERP. You wouldn’t be so vague about it. ERP is scientifically proven as an effective core strategy with OCD.

This complicated nature of the search for an OCD therapist (with associated pitfalls) is itself described on OCD Action as a common problem experienced by OCD sufferers in the UK. I’m not the only one who’s had to learn these things. When a therapist mentions that they have ‘experience’ in treating OCD, it actually means nothing. You can’t learn about OCD and OCD treatment strategies indirectly or by accidentβ€” it takes targeted, persistent study. You’re either an OCD specialist or you’re not, and it’s actually pretty irresponsible to attempt to treat OCD without being one, given the severe nature and pathology of the condition. I have a psychologist friend who’s been invaluable in helping to raise and discuss some of these points.

Sorry for the clickbaity title, it actually made me feel a bit sick to type it but seemed the most appropriate.


14 thoughts on “What’s an OCD Specialist?

    1. Haha. Yeah here’s the thing (for me at least), the trick is to turn it around into a game. Small acts of rebellion, making it silly. I’ve found it can be quite exhilarating at times when you’re making progress and feeling more confident. There can be a lot of reward.

      I think what I need is more structure and outside encouragement/reinforcement/progress tracking.

      But yeah the hardest thing is getting from a point of feeling defeated and too scared to contemplate anything, to getting ‘on the train’ and making small wins in a positive loop. I’ve been in the defeated state a lot lately.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I had the same problem here in California for many years. At one time I actually starting to wonder if there were any therapist here that specialized in Ocd, specifically Erp therapy. The past few years I have actually found some, I’m just shocked it took me so long.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a useful insight, thanks! That definitely makes me feel less crazy. Wow, it really is a specialised field.

      I guess the number of recovered OCD victims who are able to get the qualifications to themselves become an OCD specialist is going to be quite small. And unless you’ve personally experienced it, it’s not going to particularly stand out as an area of interest and need, probably. I’d love to be one such person. But first I have many health and societal obstacles and I’m getting older, lol.

      The good thing is that community support is relatively strong for OCD. But yeah I will persist in my search, thanks.


      1. Whats really sad is I’m one of those people that always say ask for help hahaha. I just want people to talk to someone and not go through it alone. I went through it alone for many many years because at the time ocd wasn’t heard of. It was horrible having nobody to talk to and i don’t want anyone to experience that feeling. It sucks that help is so hard to find.


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