Contents. IFS & Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
This pandemic has caused the worsening of mental health conditions for many people. Some people have their life burdened by OCD experiences that rotate around contamination, and this pandemic, together with the restrictions on living, have affected the livelihood of many people living with OCD.
The workshop starts with an introduction to OCD explaining how we can view OCD experiences through the IFS lenses. We will also touch on different types of OCD.
The second part of the workshop is entitled “Getting to know the protectors”. We will present the most common protectors we have found in our clinical work with OCD. These entrenched firefighter parts work hard to try and keep clients from being overwhelmed by distracting or preventing overwhelm from exiles. From “protectors that don’t want to disturb the waters” (and make the client not talk about OCD during sessions), to protectors that lead to compulsions (clients are aware of extreme behaviors, but cannot stop). We will also explain the idea of EP (emotional part) – ANP (apparently normal part) from Non-IFS studies.
In the third part we will introduce the ideas of exiles in the OCD system. We describe how the current set of obsessions and compulsion do not necessarily have much to do with the original trauma, but they want to hide it and keep it out of awareness. Exiles tend to be linked to early childhood repressed anger. Desires to “undo” thoughts; history of compulsions, and “magical thinking” are the early stages of OCD. Exiling in OCD systems is often extreme, and, perhaps, a better way to describe it is to say that exiles have been dissociated.
In the fourth, and final part, we bring case studies, common clinical difficulties when working with OCD, etc.