POCD Versus Pedophilia – Differential Diagnosis

Repost from the old site.

This is one of a number of posts I have written on mental illness. It deals with it from a diagnostic point of view that is probably most interesting to sufferers or clinicians, but may be interesting to some laypeople. I’ve been studying abnormal psychology for 30 years now, and experiencing it for 25 or so.

POCD is a subtype of OCD that is usually thought of as pure-O, or pure obsessional. Pure-O’s do not have the usual behavioral rituals that the hand-washers, etc. have; instead, they have cognitive rituals. It is necessary that there be more documentation on this subtype of OCD because unfortunately, quite a few people are suffering from it, and clinicians barely understand it.

Due to this lack of understanding, clinicians think sufferers are psychotic or suffer from pedophilia. Many clinicians have a poor understanding of OCD as it is, and this series is intended to enlighten them about different forms that the illness can take.

I’ve written some stuff on POCD on this blog, and therefore, I get sufferers coming to me with the condition. As I don’t have much issues with POCD these days, I’m capable of doing therapy with them online.

After talking to quite a few of them, it’s clear that it’s like any other type of OCD, since OCD sufferers, especially pure obsessionals, have a certain “sameness” about them such that you can nearly diagnose them on pure Gestalt alone.

I can tell pretty quickly after talking to someone whether they are suffering from OCD.

One thing to get clear on is that POCD will apparently never be acted on. I’m not aware of anyone acting on any of these obsessions.

There is another type of OCD called Harm OCD, and I have talked to a few of those folks too. Two of them were convinced that they were serial killers. I quickly figured out that they had OCD and were completely harmless. People with harm OCD never do anything violent, and people with POCD never molest kids.

Once you know this, you can talk to them about all their scary thoughts with worries.

I might have a hard time doing therapy with an actual pedophile or a psychopath who really wanted to kill people. As a general rule though, these types do not feel there is anything wrong with them as they enjoy being this way, and they never seek help.

The usual POCD sufferer is a young man around college age or so, but many sufferers are young women too. A few are older, but this is much less common. Sexual obsessions in general seem to hit young people the hardest of all for some reason. Most people with harm obsessions are also young people, mostly males, though once again, some are females.

OCD is a fear-based illness. It will latch onto anything in society that is frightening.

Nowadays, with Child Molester Mass Hysteria on the rampage and everyone worried about “pedos” and “predators,” it’s only logical that people with OCD would find this the perfect fear. What could be more terrifying than the fact that one may be a pedophile? Not much. Hence, POCD.

We have also seen a marked increase in fears of AIDS among OCD sufferers. AIDS is salient in our society, it’s terrifying since if you get it, you’re about dead, so OCD will latch onto it.

The best way we can do differential diagnosis here between POCD and pure pedophilia is to link to some websites.

First of all, a fellow I have been talking to has posted his history online here. He’s given me permission to link to it. It’s five pages, but if you read it, you should start to get a feel after a while about what this illness is all about.

Note the chronic doubting, the omnipresence of fear, the uncertainty about feelings and whether they are real or not, the questioning of everything from one’s thoughts, feelings and history all the way to the actions and thoughts of others.

What’s going on here is a hyperanalysis of the individual’s history, thoughts and behaviors along with continuous checking of “scientific sources,” followed by more rounds of unproductive doubting and worries. As you can see, nothing ever gets resolved here. The worries and doubts just go round and round. Once one gets settled, a new one comes up. This is truly a case of one’s mind actually chasing its tail.

In this case, he is trying to prove whether or not he is a pedophile. He finds evidence, questions the evidence, checks, cross-checks and tests the evidence, then starts all over again.

There is atmosphere of wondering, uncertainty and doubting to the point where the person can start doubting his own perceptions. Thoughts and feelings can seem like they are actually occurring, and the person becomes uncertain about what is really happening and what is just in their mind.

I talked to one woman who had lesbian fears during conversations with other women. I asked, “You get lesbian thoughts and this bothers you?” She said, “No, I worry that I’m going to say lesbian stuff to her. Then after the conversation is over, I wonder if I made lesbian comments to her.” As we see, the person doubts their actual perceptions and wonders if things occurred that are did not even occur.

This doubting of one’s own perceptions is actually quite common in this disorder and is almost pathognomic.

Unfortunately, it looks very strange, and clinicians often misdiagnose it as psychosis.

In this post, he says he can hear what people are thinking. That’s a schizophrenic symptom, but when I questioned him about it, he said he just watched people very closely and thought he could figure out what they might be thinking, but he didn’t really hear it with his ears. He admitted it wasn’t really possible for him to know exactly what was in someone’s thoughts.

When I heard that, I knew he did not have schizophrenia or a psychosis. Once again, though, we see internal thoughts and external perceptions being confused, common in OCD.

I wasn’t impressed with the others in this thread, one of whom was accusing him of being a pedophile. An administrator, a clinical psychologist, finally gets it on page 4 and says he has sexual obsessions.

In this post, he says he is losing his attraction to women, and the attraction to kids seems to be increasing.

There is another sexual obsession called HOCD (homosexual OCD) that works much the same way. The person goes into horrible worries, thinking in a similar manner as this guy, that they may be gay or bisexual. In severe cases, they think that they are losing their attraction to the opposite sex and getting a new attraction to same sex. HOCD is very common; much more common than POCD.

As it’s not possible to turn gay, bi or pedo against one’s will, this is the common denominator in all sexual obsessions and is pathognomic.

Gay, bisexual and pedophilic persons do not feel as if alien forces are turning them into something they do not wish to be. They are what they are. The attraction, wanted or not, feels normal, natural, right, correct, real. They may worry about the way society will treat them, but it isn’t a question of being transformed into something you are not.

He is also masturbating to pedophilic fantasies, but I’m not worried about that. He’s doing this as some sort of checking behavior to “see if he’s really a pedophile” or to “get it out of his system.”

People with HOCD often do the same thing. They search out gay porn on the Internet and masturbate to it to “test their reaction.” Then they go find some straight porn and masturbate to that to “test their reaction” to that. Then they endlessly compare reactions to try to figure out if they are gay or not. Typically, the testing never reveals any significant answers, so it just goes on and on.

This is called checking and it’s also pathognomic of OCD.

The truth is that in males, sexuality is fixed by age 15. That means straight, gay, bi or whatever, you can’t change after that. What turns you on, turns you on. Behavior can change afterward, but not attraction. In females, it’s different, but no female turns gay or bi against her will.

In one post , he tries to argue with the OCD by saying “I’m not a pedophile” (thought compulsion). His mind argues back, of course, by saying the opposite and telling him he is one.

This is also pathognomic of OCD.

OCD acts like a gremlin in your mind. It contradicts you and tells you stuff you don’t even believe in and makes you confused.

The truth is, that’s not really an internal dialogue, it’s just OCD talking back and being contradictory. The result can be endless wars in the mind whereby one uses thought compulsions to try to contradict obsessions. For some strange reason, these don’t seem to work very well, and the OCD often just fights back even harder with more intense contradictory statements.

Although masturbating to pedo fantasies may seem disturbing, I’m not worried about it in this case. Humans, especially young males, are polymorphously perverse, and can get turned on by just about anything.

A pedophile in general has a true preference for kids and does not have much interest in adults. They have been this way since early adolescence. It doesn’t probably doesn’t come on after age 15 or so, and neither do most other paraphilias. The root of all paraphilias, like the root of all sexual orientation, seems to be in the birthing storms of the teenage years.

My take is that OCD is lying to this guy. As you can see, he also has HOCD. He’s suddenly developed gay fantasies. How? By looking at some gay porn on the Net. In his case, both pedo and gay fantasies were fantasy-supercharged due to their forbidden and taboo nature, not due to any real attraction.

OCD is lying to him, telling him he’s gay and pedo and he’s losing his attraction to women. HOCD sufferers also feel that they are losing their attraction to the opposite sex and gaining a new one to the same sex, but this is just an illusion. How this strange illness does this I’m not sure, but I think it has to do with the way anxiety and fear work on the brain.

HOCD sufferers are also typically young people and most are males, but there are quite a few young females too. They usually are shy introverts, like most OCD sufferers, and often have little sexual experience. The extroverted obsessional exists, but is quite rare. People seem to grow out of this gay OCD thing with age, or at least move onto other obsessions.

Since homosexuality is salient in our society and a is popular meme in our culture and yet is not quite accepted, it’s a logical fear for OCD to latch onto. For many young people, homosexuality is just wrong enough and taboo enough that the fact that the thought that one might be gay or bi is quite terrifying.

If at some point, homosexuality and bisexuality become more accepted, OCD sufferers may stop worrying about being gay and start worrying about something else.

The nature of the OCD fears is not important. Depending on the era and society, OCD will latch onto whatever fears seem most terrifying for the time and place. The illness is mobile, and once one fear is conquered, a new one can be acquired.

HOCD is a particularly horrible type of OCD. I’ve been to boards on the Net full of sufferers, and many are seriously miserable, deeply depressed and contemplating suicide. For some reason, obsessionals, while often complaining of being suicidal, rarely seem to commit suicide. I think the fact that they are so fearful and inhibited keeps them from taking this final step.

For a glimpse of how real pedophiles think, and to tell the difference between POCD and pedophilia, check out this Wikisposure page that gives bios of numerous actual pedophiles that they are tracking. After you read through a number of the bios, you will get a common feel for what these guys are all about.

This, like all paraphilias, is not an anxiety disorder. The dominant emotion is not fear and doubt as in OCD. These guys aren’t going round and round about whether or not they are pedophiles. That they are is clear as air to them.

Pedophilia, like all paraphilias, is an illness of desire, of appetite. It’s like an addiction. They love it. This is what gets them off. They don’t want to change, they don’t want to get better, and the truth is they probably can’t anyway.

I assume that true pedophilia, once fixed in adolescence and cemented in adulthood, is incurable. What gets you off, gets you off. It’s not going to change. They can’t help it, but at the same time, society needs to be protected.

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233 thoughts on “POCD Versus Pedophilia – Differential Diagnosis”

  1. oh, and one of these sites is on wordpress…the exact same site as this blog…so it isn’t illegal, but all I can do is think of the address. I am probably making this worse!

  2. right im a 16 year old boy evry thing was well until about a week ago. before all this i was pretty much a daily masterbator to legal porn you know like spankwire and pornhub nothing of illegal nature. it came to a point in my life where i started to think quite a lot about the type of person i am. as a christian and raised up by two loving parents who beilve strongly in god. i decided to cut down on porn because i was uunhappy with the type of boy i was bcoming. but then i new masterbatuion was normal and natural to all teen’s at my age so instead of visiting these sites i would go on google images and type in the name of an actress i found attrcative or a model (female, non pornography) that would turn me on and i would masterbate over that, but then i started thinking once agian ” is this still bad” so i decided to go on yahoo answers and put up my question so people could answer it now wishing i never did. and one perrson answerd saying your fine masterbation to pictures of non ponographic images but he/she carried on to say but masterbating to porn is bad , he said something like imagine how child molesters or phaedo’s turned out that way, its because they wanted more and more and then something new to satisfy their addiction of sex/masterbation. so after i read this i felt great, but then i started to say to my self “im soo glad i stopped masterbating to porn videos,i would hate to become a molester or phoedo, imagine rapeing a child ewww” i actully thouught that in my head. And thats wear it all started. my OCD had come into play with intruusive/unwanted thoutghts which made me feel sick, depressed angry you know and all that. now i feel like im managing to reduce the ocd buut what freaks me out is when i see a child especially girls, my thougths go made like ” what would happen if it was me and her in a dark alley way or in a room with jst me and her” i say to my self nothing would happen and then think i wouuld rape/abuse or even kill her and this is sooo terriable and sometimes can feel my heart pounding away. i am doing exams at the moment and my sister told me to go to the library with her and i was soo scared to go there, at first because the first flow of the library is the childrens section and i was soo scared of looking or being next to a child at one moment i went to get a book which was in the childrens section trying to not look at any kids my heart was nearly in my mouuth i was soo scared. but after looking up all this OCD AND INTRUUSIVE THOUUGHTS THERAPIES i fouund the best way to overcome it is to get rid of anxiety by being comfortable around children if you have no knowleadge of this type in joe barry mcdoragh/panic away and so i thought if i can be arouund children my anxity will dissapear leading to no sickening thoughts soo now im like should i go to the library and uuse the computers at the chidrens section to become anxity free but then i tell my self OHHH MY GOD I WANT TO BE AROUND CHILDREN IM A PHAEDO. and the strange thing that is killing me is that every time i see a female child i feel that an erection will come but never does only when i look at an atttractive female of my age or above. SOO please reply and tell me is this just OCD or is it really phaedophilia. and i want to tell my mum buut dont know how she will react. and would it be benificial to do the joe barry mcdoragh panic away programme or the lindenmethod.co.uk which are both programmes which help suufferers of ocd, anxiety problems, panic attacks and things of that nature. thankyouuu.

  3. Hello,
    I am a 17 Y/o boy and i don’t know what i am 🙁
    I am a preterm born child (don’t know if i wrote that the right way) and i was born on the 7 month. I have a physical disability, but not mental (although i have a low esteem i’m pretty very shy)
    A few months ago, i somehow developed a fear that i could really hurt people…Just… bad images came onto my mind (like killing, torturing etc) and i became VERY scared. I couldn’t sleep, i even cried and i was convinced that i’m probably a psychopath (I became pretty depressed) :S. I know i would NEVER hurt people (i do have fiends and all, i’m not that lonely)
    And now, for a week or so i’ve been having scary thoughts about being a pedo 🙁 again, i would NEVER hurt a child. I constantly try to stay away from people, because i’m scared that i get urges or something… I really dont want to be like that! I pretty much hate myself now, i can’t sleep because i’m constantly afraid of being a pedo or a psychopath. 🙁 I remember when i was younger, about 13, i liked girls that age and now i’m scared that i still like them again… And it makes me even sadder that i don’t like big boobs (it’s probably weird that i’m scared because of that) like all the other guys like and i have a dislike of girls at my age because they all drink and party all the time… 🙁 I’m REALLY scared that i will stay that way for the rest of my life and what happens when i really do hurt anyone? Or what happens when i really get urges (i’m pretty convinced that i get them 🙁 )? Because i HATE PEOPLE THAT HURT OTHER PEOPLE, it’s really wrong 🙁 Sorry for any grammar errors, english is my second language.


  4. Hello, I attempted to contact you via hotmail from your email listed here. I suffer from OCD, have since I was very young, and my mother also has OCD. Life has been utter hell because of it, and there are times when I just want to die, or “reset” myself to be normal. my email is aacquaire@hotmail.com.

  5. Hi Robert, for 5 months now I’ve been battling what I think is POCD. It started when I was 19 and a half I was high from weed and a family guy episode was on. When the naked baby appeared I thought ‘I could watch child porn if I wanted too’ It kicked off a month of questioning myself, looking at kids to see if I was attracted (all the normal POCD stuff) before I finally found out it was OCD and contacted mental health support.

    Now 5 months down the line however it’s getting scary. I have read paedophiles like their thoughts and it seems my OCD is telling me I like them to. I worry about harming children as I don’ t want to but my OCD tells me I do and now a days my shock to these thoughts is reducing. Sometimes I wonder if it would be easier to accept being a paedophile although I don’t want to be one (as I write this my OCD is telling me I do) The worst bit is walking past kids and I’ll get a thought ‘I want to molest them’ and I’ll be shocked but then my thoughts will tell me I do want to.

    I have never viewed illegal porn nor masturbated(checking) as I have heard many do and actually I can masturbate fairly easily to regular porn, although I seem to be losing attraction to woman when I used to literally drool over them. I read your thing about early adolescence for the paraphillas and as far as I can remember mine has always been with feet and female domination (which I am perfectly happy about). Just a bit confused and scared and a little extra information to give me confidence during exposures would be amazing as I am trying me best to beat this by myself until my therapy starts. I’ve actually had good weeks which I suppose is more than some of the other poor people afflicted by this horrible illness. I really admire than you take the time to help these people through these hells

  6. I don’t know if you’ll read this, but I think that I have POCD. I’m 19 years old. Lately, I’ve been terrified that I’m a pedophille. I’ve always loved working and talking with kids (in a harmless way, of course) but at the same time, I can’t stand to be around them. They both terrify and irritate me. A while back, I was accidentally exposed to explicit material involving children. I reported it to the website, who hopefully reported it to the authorities. It’s bothered me since I saw it, though. But lately, I’ve been scared that I’m a pedophille. I’ve always been close to my nieces and nephews, but now I’m terrified that I want to hurt them. I don’t enjoy the thoughts, they mortify me, to be honest. But I can’t evenn look at my nieces and nephews without feeling dirty, or some dirty thought passing through my mind now. I don’t enjoy them, and I really just want them to go away. I’ve contemplated suicide out of fear that I’m going to become a pedophille, and that these thoughts aren’t just thoughts, but urges. I’ve always been a very nervous and fearful person. Is it POCD? or something far worse?

  7. Hi mr. Lindsay,

    I’m an 18 year old young man and I have been intensely worried for the past 1-2 months about whether or not I am a pedophile. I really don’t know about this POCD but I am extremely comforted by your article. I was attracted to women (and on the odd occasion men) right throughout life. And a about a month ago I lost all libido for women and men. And now when I look at children I get extremely nervous. This is characterised by weird (alikened to that of an endorphin rush) feeling in my pelvic area, but I can never become “fully” aroused. I have managed to become aroused as I usually would over my girlfriend or people that I’ve had sexual encounters with, but I mentally can’t think about it or be aroused by it. I don’t actually think about child porn or sexual imagery of children but the mere mention, sight or any word to do with children causes that weird feeling. I have only ever had this feeling when I acquired shin splints from hard training in the gym and track workouts (however that feeling was far greater). When the feeling associated with children arises I get quite agitated despite that it is physically satisfactory but not arousing, and I get quite mentally unsettled. I too like many others contemplated suicide as I became quite depressed and self-conscious about my body, I began to lose interest in sports and other hobbies. It was quite scary and still is. My situation seems quite alike to that of Daniel two comments above me as well H.. I was wondering if you had any strategies to combat this problem? What is your email address so I can email you?

    Thanks again,

  8. Robert I still really stuck on this , does a pedo file get depressed and anxious about there thoughts ? Do they like them for a second then feel guilty , I am so mixed up with sme people saying yes they do and others saying that bullshit . Please please can u set the record straight , it the one thing preventing me from getting better . U will be doing me a huge service in helping me recover . I had this 2 yrs and iam female and class my self as a extrovert , u do seem to get a lot of men writing to u but I believe it’s 50 /50 men and women suffer from pocd .
    Please can answer ASAP as I the anxiety will be killing me waiting for u to respond.

    1. First of all, this is looking for reassurance, you should never look for reassurance if you have OCD, it’ll make it worse. Secondly if this gives you anxiety and makes you doubt yourself, it’s bound to be OCD. I imagine liking kids is like having a sexual fetish, and as someone who does (about feet not kids) I can tell you I don’t feel guilt or depressed about liking feet, I can’t even explain why I like them but I just do. However if it was illegal to like feet I’d imagine I would feel depressed. I imagine paedophiles love their thoughts, and what gets them depressed is the fact it is illegal if you see what I’m getting at?


      above is a really good article on sexual obsessions that may answer any further questions

    2. Yes I believe that they do feel depressed and anxious about their thoughts sometimes, and they do like them and then feel guilty. But it’s not that common. A lot of them don’t feel that way at all.

  9. Ok iam spiking now because I don’t no what’s the difference between someone who has pocd thoughts and real pedofilla . Like I get anxious , sundial about my thoughts and I wish they would go . I only started to get them at 30 though so all my life I have been attracted to males only . I also a history of anxiety and panic attacks , depression since child hood . I got better from the all, but this is the most difficult. Please help , me understand the difference. Like wen u say they feel guilty is it just a small amount or do have a lovely time to them selves and then decide to feel guilty.
    I have never tested because one it’s disgusting and 2 it’s morally wrong so I never would test just to satisfy my doubt plus it makes ur OCD worse

    1. I don’t see how you could possibly be developing pedophilia.

      As far as pedophiles and how they feel about their thoughts and whatnot. Well, they love them, they are very exciting and they get off on them. Do they feel bad afterwards? Well maybe some do, like a gambler feels bad after a gambling run. I’ve never talked to a pedophile yet. The only people who come to me about this stuff are POCD types LIKE YOU.

  10. Thanks for helping ,another thing u said in ur article about boys sexual orientation is set at 14 I think , what age is girls set ? U didnt mention females

  11. Females sexual orientation moves around really ,
    You said in ur article the onset of pedofilla is 14 in men

  12. Thank you for this. I live in fear. I live in the fear that I can’t tell anyone my thoughts and worries (I’ve told my boyfriend about it and he did not think I was a pedophile). The thing is, I love working with kids! I love doing summer camps and daycare and stuff like that. But I’m terrified of being one-on-one with a kid, especially little ones. I have never had a sexual thought or desire about a child but this fear is literally consuming me. I’ve lived with it since I started babysitting at the age of 14. I’m now 23. I have always been attracted to older men, but still I have this fear that deep down I’m a pedophile. I don’t even know how to handle the situation. I can’t just go to a therapist and be like, “I’m afraid I’m a pedophile” and get arrested or something. Any tips? I am the most nervous person on the planet. Thanks.

      1. hey, can I send you an email on my story of POCD? an insight from someone such as you would mean the world to me. I have already written the lengthy email as I wouldn’t want the story to be broadcast here, but your private opinion would be absolute welcome by me.

  13. Hello everybody suffering from ocd,
    Ocd has many ups and downs.You donot realizes what it is because it never concentrate just on one subject,its core feature is a doubt and you go on doubting yourself because of the fear of happening something bad .And that bad things are usually the horrible crime nowadays.I think today’s society is not as good as we wish to be ,i know ocd people are the most dearest and best people in this world because they always have a faith on beaautiful life but because of over conciousness ,their heart is very tender toward the society and their sensitiveness make them feel responsible toward everything happening in this world.In reality they are so much good people who always wish good for others,and due to the negativity that they face in this society ,their judgement becomes doubtful;this is because he /she becomes over responsible and more concious due to the effects of those things going around,sometime women hormones during pregenency plays a vital role on developing this symptoms.But nothing to be worried about.whatever the psychologist give name to it ,it is not much difficult to get rid of it ,gradual practice of ERP is necessary to be fully recovered :and come on helping each other we can get sucess and i hope this illness had given you everybody so much knoweledge and wisdom that you can overcome it.Sorry for poor english..

  14. Dear Robert,

    I think that I am suffering from POCD for 10 years…well I must say that I first felt it 10 years ago and it is returning in series for 2-3 months…I had a pause of not think about it for 6 years and it came back. Do you have any idea how to overcome it?I know that I ma not pedo but it want leave me alone in las 2 months

  15. Hi, I know this is late but I really need help. I’m a 16yo male and I’m confused if I’m really a pedophile or suffering from pocd. About 4 months ago I stumbled upon a picture of about a 9 year old under dressed and I masterbated and thought really nothing about it. I then started to worry that I might be attracted to young girls. I started master arming regularly and I would feel terrible afterwards. I started researching what is a pedophile and I thought I was one, but then I realized I only got these thoughts when I was alone or bored. I never have urges to touch a kid because that’s gross and i know it’s nasty. I can’t imagine murdered having sex with a young girl. Note that for awhile I stopped and I started back being intrigued by poemrn of older woman and I had a girlfriend who I loved and I didn’t even think about younger girls. Then I saw a younger girl, probably about 9-12 and I was aroused I masterbated. I then started worrying that I might actually be a pedophile. Then I started feeling really bad and contemplated suicide. I hated that feeling and I never get aroused from looking at a kid now but I still feel like I’m a pedo. I know that I would never touch a kid and I would never have sex with one, but my mind keeps saying” you know you like this and you want to” and it’s killing me, I tested today to see if I would have a response ( I didn’t look at CP, that’s gross) but I didn’t get an erection but a felt a little something down there. Im really starting to think I’m a pedophile, the thoughts won’t leave me alone. I literally think about it from the time I wake up till the time I go to sleep. I get a weird feeling in my stomach and I get shaky when I see a kid. I just want to be normal and not have to worry about this. I don’t have a problem getting girlfriends, I still find girls my age attractive. I keep testing to see if I like young girls. I tried masterbating to one and it didn’t feel right, I then tried masterbating to a girl my age but I didn’t really get a major climax ( sorry for the graphic ness). I keep getting this same picture in my head of me and a little girl and I hate it and want it to go away. I think it’s gross but my mind keeps telling me I want it but I know I would never touch a kid. This is ruining my life. I have a great social life and was never abused as a child. Please help me.

    1. Hi, i know your message is old but i wanted to know how you now feel about it? Im currently 16 and feel horrible.

  16. Hi I recently fixed and got over my HOCD and got bad anxiety and breakdowns due to it and when I got it fixed and conquered over it my brain started saying I’m a pedophile because of something tht almost happend bt I stopped before it happend and knew it was wrong my brain says I’m a pedophile and I don’t get the anxiety I think I’ve gotten over it due to the HOCD but its still annoying and takes up my day it isn’t as bad because it only recently came and I fear it will get worse and ill start getting anxiety I don’t want to be a pedophile I’ve nbever looked at a kid tht way and its annoying even tho I don’t get the anxiety please reply and help

  17. Very helpful writing. Can I write my daily struggles with OCD and could u possibly advise me?

    I find there is absolutely no support/information on OCD. Doctors just prescribe but never inform.

    It’s a very hard and lonely struggle!
    Thanx again
    Kind regards

  18. Hi Rob is there a way i can speak to you without it being documented on this page? I think that i am suffering from POCD and i feel you would be of great help. Thanks.

  19. I believe I have a combination of both POCD and pedophilia. When I first had a crisis about it I was very afraid it was true, I tested, I avoided children. I’ve worried that I might abuse a child. But I certainly fit the definition of pedophilia in the DSM. I believe most people with pedophilia feel bad about it and have never abused a child.

  20. Hello, I read your article and with the way you describe OCD, I think I might have it… I constantly move on from one fear to the next. In high school, I worried that I was addicted to porn. When I moved out on my own after graduation, I worried I was a pedophile because I had a crush on my girlfriend’s 14 year old sister and her friends. I even “experimented” looking at little girls in bathing suits, but I just couldn’t. Just last year, I worried that I was a sociopath. Right now I’m struggling with worry that I’m just going to break up with my girlfriend for no reason; that I’ll just stop loving her. Every once in awhile, I worry that I would have no problem killing someone. I don’t imagine doing it. I just worry that I have the capacity to be soulless…

    I just constantly go through ups and downs where I feel like I’m on top of the world and then I feel like an emotional void. Then I worry that I’ll never feel emotion again… I just go through long periods of feeling empty.

    I just went to make an appointment with a counselor at the university I go to. Should I bring it up with whoever helps me or should I just let him/her reach the conclusion themselves… Maybe I don’t have it? I don’t really know. My friends joke that I’m a hypochondriac of mental disorders. I’ve gone from being codependent to a sociopath to narcissistic… So this might just be another case where I’m trying to identify with something. I don’t know.

  21. I’ve been trying to go on these forums less and less, but I just wanted some reassurance.

    I’m pretty sure I have pocd, even though I went through a very normal, heterosexual ordeal during puberty. Now I’m a senior in high school who’s never really had a girlfriend, and this pocd has gotten so bad that, like you wrote, I’ve been combing through every moment of my past. Sometimes I am so convinced I am a pedo that I have tried to “get myself off” to these horrible images, mostly just to test myself. I’ve always been nervous the whole time and I never really got aroused or was even able to, well, “finish,” but it still makes me feel lousy as hell.

    For the record, I did go through hocd right before this, and I am seeing a very nice therapist. I just thought your opinion would help.

    Please reply ASAP!

    1. Wow…two and a half years later, and I can’t believe I ever felt this way. I have always been worried in the back of my head that someone would find this comment and get the wrong idea, so I guess this is just my way of putting this dark and weird period of my life to rest.

      For anyone reading this article, I just want to tell you IT DOES GET BETTER!!! I am now a junior in college with several great friends and a lot to be thankful for. I continued seeing a therapist and also get help through mild medication. I now see how dumb it all was and how despite my worst fears, the things I was NEVER going to abuse a child. I never have, and I never will. Why? Because I am not a pedophile. Period. I thank God that I am here today, happier than I’ve ever been in my life, no longer worrying and thinking, “Am I a pedophile?!?!?” My God, I can’t believe I even thought that!! What an idiot I was!!!!!!

      Thank you, Robert, for encouraging all of these people that they will be ok. If things got better for me, I know they can for everyone else too.

      God Bless 🙂

      1. Hip hip hooray! I am so glad for you! This illness can definitely get a lot better. I am not sure if it ever goes away completely, but it can get so much better than you think you are in Heaven compared to the Hell that you were in before.

        I love a success story!

  22. I was just wondering when sexuality was set in women? I’m 15. My mom is convinced I have pocd and I’m almost sure but theres always the doubt. I have suffered from depression in the past and anxiety presently along with ocd and ever since I read this pornographic story of a father having sex with his young daughter I’ve been worried about pedophilia. I’ve cried on countless times because of the idea. I don’t avoid children but I don’t surround myself with them but I’m also confident I wouldn’t act on any thought or urge because I wouldnt want to. I grew up attracted to boys and up until that story I always enjoyed older guys ther than yoyounger ones. I’m extremely scared& would very much appreciate some help.

    1. It is probably never fixed or set at all in the female. It can always change around. However, the number of true female pedophiles is extremely strong. Any strong female sexual fixations probably date back to puberty.

      1. thank you. I’m still extremely terrified of pedophilia. like I said, I am a female currently going through puberty, are there any 100% ways of knowing if I am actually a pedophile? I just want to know so I can stop worrying about it.

  23. The problem with me is that my checking has gone physical. I don’t intentionally touch kids, but I am really clumsy because I am afraid of touching kids. And so, I actually end up touching them.

  24. Thanks Robert. before I read this article I thought I could be classified as relatively normal. I don’t know if I want to be normal or what normal is. however im glad to not be masturbating to homosexual of pedaphalic fantasies. I was worried that people would find out I look at porn. milf and matures are my favorite and now you’ve let me come out. next i’ll be telling everyone I smoke pot.

  25. I’m 17 now, and I did something when I was 14 that I regret. Back then, I was one of those flashers on Chatroulette. Then someone who looked pre-pubescent saw me. He could have been of my age though. But I sorta had slight pedophilic urges, so I didn’t stop for him. Three years later, I now have POCD.

  26. I would just like to say that the guy who wrote that stupid comment knows he is a pedo. all the more reason for him to avoid children. he’s ok with it just like it says above. they just know and have always known. People with pocd aren’t ok with it.

  27. Hi, I’ve been suffering with what I hope is pocd for about 5 months now. It all started when I was watching a tv show on pedophiles and I suddenly began panicking thinking that I may have molested my little sister when I had to change her when she was little, I have one memory of having to help her wipe her vagina, and actually itsplits into about five different memories of what happend during that. In one I was evil and tried to make her feel turned on and in another I have a thought that she might get turned on but I think it’s funny and in another Im scared, they all feel real. I’m so terrified, when this began I couldn’t get out of bed for 2 days because I was so sick and sad. I don’t know if I molested her. I have HOCD as well , and I had regular OCD as a child. I’m a 16 year old male. If you read this, please help me.

  28. I have a strange combination of OCD and pedophilia. I’ve always had slight pedophilic urges, but my OCD is exaggerating them and affecting my sexual tastes. And also, earlier yesterday, I saw a bunch of kids bathing in public. I looked at them for a while. It was a strange combination of checking and voyeurism.

  29. This article is an eye opener. Big thanks for the author for straightening things up. I’ve never been diagnosed with OCD, although I’ve had some issues with hearing voices, seeing images and anxiety in the past. Probably my doctor didn’t find out what was wrong with me. But enough of that. What I want to say is that I have some of these symptoms that suggest OCD. It all started last summer. It was a rough year for me, a lot of stress was involved and financial problems occured. I remember one day I was drinking water from a big bottle and an idea shined in my mind. I remember a story when some guy died because of a kidney failure of overdrinking. Suddenly I started shaking, feeling cold and terrified. I’ve called the hospital. The doctor was angry at me. He said everything is fine and I should lay off the drugs (I don’t take them, maybe 4-5 times I’ve smoke MJ in my life). This health obsession hold me for a few months. I’ve started reading articles about diseases, cancer and every time I got to the symtoms I started feeling dizzy. I was convinced that a disease is developing. The next obsession that developed was fear of suicide. Unfortunately I saw an aftermath of a 16yo girl that threw herself under a train. When I walk on the train station I am frightened with thoughts of jumping on the track. When a train passes by I feel my legs getting soft, all I want to do is to hold something hard to avoid jumping. And the last part, my fears of being a serial killer and pedophile. I am from Poland. There was a big media circus about releasing a serial killer-pedophile that got paroled from death penalty in 1989 and served 25 years in prison. This is probably my most uncomfortable obsession. Killing myself or getting a disease is less painful than fear of harming someone. I am affraid of being with somebody alone in the kitchen, because I could grab a knife and kill him. I don’t go to the forest for jogging because I am terrified that I will meet somebody and kill or rape him. I don’t play with my brother’s daughter because I am afraid of touching her in an inapropriate way. I don’t go to the park or any other social place where young underage people meet because I fear of looking at them which could develop a some sort of paraphilia. Even though I sometimes look at young people, but there isn’t anything sexual in that. And I don’t prey for them but it’s hard to avoid when I go to play basketball with my friends because a lot of young kids also come to pitch. I like hearing laughs or watch how kids play because it reminds me when I was a kid. AND THAT’S IT! I even wish that some of them will go home and just leave us old folks alone. This is really uncomfortable. I am a big man and I often cry because this is not me. The fear of murder/rape etc. is so hard that sometimes I get a panic atack. I love my friends, my family and every one that didn’t do anything bad to me. I would never, ever do such a horrible thing like rape or murder. Right now I am looking for a treatment but there is a lack of professionals and those who I met in the past didn’t actually help me. In some cases they even made things worse. And I don’t want to have any problems with child welfare, false accusations etc. Cheers to you all.

  30. Thank you for all you wrote, you almost saved my life ! Now I’m sure I’m not a pedo. I will never thank you enough !

      1. I think I’ve been too enthusiastic…
        The thoughts went back quickly.
        I think I need some help to get out of this… I’m so terrified, if I am a pedo, my life is over. I’ve already had a hard coming out (yes I’m gay) but I managed to rebuild my life and I was so happy until now. One day, I made a dream in which my friend was having sex with my little brother, then it all started.
        I Was so afraid to be a pedo that I stopped being with my little brother for a week. I really think I’m not attracted to children but there’s always a doubt in my head. But come on, I’m not a monster, and I’m only 16! I was so attracted to men (of my age or older) one month ago, and now I’m not sure anymore… I’m actually lost and I can’t take the risk to talk about it to someone else. I wanna be happy so damn hard… I wanna be a bit normal for one time in my life. Please I need help!

  31. Hi,

    I know this is an old post, but I think this is the right place to discuss my current problem. I apologise for rambling.

    In the last month or two, I’ve been having very paranoid ideas that after not having any kind of issue within my adolescence (I’m a 23 year old heterosexual woman, attracted to 21 – 60 years old, depending on how well the man ages), that I have suddenly developed paedophilic tendencies. I’m usually very visual observant (artist), so I will pick up on things that normally people wouldn’t, I’m very into detail as well. It might help that I was statemented with learning difficulties, meaning I used art as a form of communication in a way, and had to go to a speech therapist when I was two, to three years of age. I also had short term memory loss, and therefore had to retrain my memory’s way of retaining information. As a consequence, I am able to remember a lot of things, even to the smallest detail.

    I have also in my adolescence read paedophile related fiction, but at the time, because I was of a similiar age to the “consensual” child protagonist, I was able to put aside the dubiousness nature of the stories. Reading fiction like that now, unless it is of second nature to the actual plot line (Let The Right One In for example) is very difficult, knowing a lot better.

    It’s only been in the last few days that I’ve discovered that OCD can cause this kind of paranoia (having been directed to OCD related paranoias having looked into signs of paedophilia), or excessive intrusive thoughts, along with the sub types. I’ve come to realise also that I also share intrusive thoughts related to relationships, like I will overthink about my partner (in a relationship with a 26 year old man for nearly two years, now engaged), whether it is him being unfaithful, or myself being unfaithful and this has usually been the pattern on and off (it got so bad that I cried at one point).I have also had intrusive health phobias during adolescent years, especially about my teeth. I have never, ever had paedophilic related intrusive thoughts before, though. If I have had them before, like sudden intrusive thoughts about abusing animals, I probably shook them off easily, as you should, because it’s just your mind throwing out misconstrued information you’ve picked up, right?

    Since discovering this, I’ve tried to rationalise my own paedophilic tendencies to be possibly related misconstrued visual information. I have a tendency to day dream, and it can result in me staring into space. So, for example, if I am in the company of a friend who has a toddler, I can look into the direction of them, day dream and not realise where I’m looking at until I come into complete focus. I could be looking at the toddler, and then quickly note: “she has long legs, like her dad’s” (and saying this, I have met the toddler’s dad, so know the comparison), and in the past, if I have thought this, it is done out of observation, and usually me being able to see how the child will grow into a potentially attractive person. Like if I see a pretty child, and it’s not down out of sexual malice. But now, when I was discussing recent paedophile related crimes with my aunt last month, and it had recently come out, someone made sexually advancing compliments to a 13 year old…it made me think back on my actions, and that’s when the intrusive thoughts kicked off.

    Every innocent thought or memoy I had about my friend’s toddler, and as a consequence every child I came into visual contact with, has now been regurgitated into something potentially sexual, and it’s like my paranoia is making me rationalise those kind of thoughts also, and when I try to discuss my sudden thoughts with family, even what I say comes out wrong (instead of saying ‘long legs’, I said ‘amazing legs’, but not in a sexual way, it was my way of saying, she has long legs for her age, which makes her tall. Plus I’ll note she is slender for her age, which is a good thing, she’s healthy), even though the likes of my mum will say ‘I know where YOU’RE coming from, but it is the wrong way to describe a child that age’, and told me not to worry about complimenting because its her parents job really, which is true, meaning I can come across as misconstrued, because of poor choice of words, no matter how innocent my intentions. (I have also had a terrible time with describing my own thoughts well with anything while growing up, which doesn’t help.)

    Past directions of my concerns, led me to look up paranoia, and one way to deal with it was to approach the paranoia. Luckily, I had a run for Cancer Research a couple of weeks ago, and it was an open event, so women and children were allowed to attend. I was observant, but I didn’t feel I was a sexual predator, I had gone back to my normal observant self, and told myself I wasn’t one (in my head). I was fine, and was fine for a good few days after that…but in the last couple of days, ever since Rolf Harris (a veteran British television presenter) was convicted of harrassment and underage activity, on top of new info on Jimmy Saville…it was like my paranoia came back, resulting in me finding out about OCD, and this article.

    I’m now truly struggling on how to deal with this, and how to stop it. 🙁

  32. I have had POCD since I was 15, I’m 16 now. I hate going out into public, I hate doing anything outside that would even run the RISK of me coming near a child. I’ve done distant checking, I’ve noticed that I no longer feel that attracted to mature girls my age, like the feeling just vanished. I noticed that I text slightly when starting at young girls. But it’s not even arousing to me. I hate myself. I wish I wasn’t like this. I am the type of guy who doesn’t even like killing spiders. I literally put them in my hand and take them outside. There’s a voice in my head that hates these thoughts, wants them to go away. Then there’s another voice who tries to tell me I like these thoughts, I hate that s
    voice, that voice always lies. What makes it worse is that I actually have an uncle who did that crap to a little girl. I don’t want your be like him.

      1. No, it’s quite alright, I actually just felt like I needed to vent out somewhere. Thanks for replying though.

  33. I’ve been suffering from hocd for neatly two years now. I’m a 28 year old female I’m s heterosexual relationship. Before hocd intensified (I think I’ve had it for years but very muted) I worried I was attracted to grade six boys. Now, with hocd, I worry I’m attracted to teenage girls…. I feel like I might be. What concerns me the most is that this actually might mean I’m gay. I read about a guy who was worried he was attracted to children, boys, and through that he learned he was actually gay.

      1. I don’t have a functioning email for this stuff at the moment ( I don’t like to use my email that I have connected to social networks and stuff) so I will make a new one if I can

    1. I have felt attraction to 12 year olds in the past, I am 17 now, but these girls may have looked older, and at the time I was trying to emphasize on their developed features. Before pocd I ignored any girl below 14 in public and had a preference for 15 and up, now every time I see a young girl I obsess and try to figure out if they are attractive, and sometimes I might think I do and it causes anxiety, but when I let the ocd rest I think back and just think that they were cute and will look good when older, but I can’t tell because I think too much, and I feel more anxiety and worry more then anything, and i get a reaction every time I see a young girl, which I thought never happened in the past

  34. Hello, i am so happy to find your article, in some months i will be going in a group for people with ocd since i have pond mostly now (well i hope so). I am 19 years old and a woman. I have had ocd my whole life and also been abused by my grandfather wich have led to having obsessions about incest (second words ocd..). I have also had Hocd. All the time i had to proove i was not into girls but it was more the “scary”thought of falling in love with a Girl (i have always been attracted to women sexually) so in a way i was into girls. I am also into boys but i have always been kind of confused with my sexuallity. I was obsessed with the girls that dressess lot like boys and if i got turned on by them (don’t ask why..) and am not scared about that anymore since it’s not my thing. And then it got into being kids that i had to obsess about, don’t remember how exactly it started (maybe cause i was about to be an aunt for the first time). and i’ve had terrible thoughts about me raping kids and violent thoughts and so on. it mostly haven’t been turning me on, but sometimes i got a groinal response and i of course freak out. I don’t feel any kind of urges by just being Near a kid or even holding my niece, but if i get bad thoughts while holding my niece i have thing (ocd-thing) that i have to touch a grown up afterwards (you know just like touching them accidently) and then i will feel like the thought will not have any consequences. It is the thought of if the thoughts fills my head so much that i might become a pedo, that scares me too. Then the other day i got a flashback of me having a fantasy about maybe an 11-12-14 year old when i was about 16-17 and it males me feel like a pedo and is convincing me that i am a pedophile. I am 19 years old now and i have also have been scared of stapping other people and kids when being near knifes and such but i kind of wish that harm-ocd was filing my head even more than pocd. Just want to know if that fantasy maked me a pedofile?..

  35. I have POCD and many other sub.types. What I reacted to in your article was that you did not think it was a big deal he masterbated to child fantasies.I have done some research and found out that you can be diagnosed as a pedophile just on the pure fact of getting turned on my fantasies of kids.

    So it is said that by having intrusive thoughts you can get groinal responses because you react to it being a sexual thought, and context is irrelevant.
    My question is, how do you know if its a groinal response or actual arousal?Because many people get turned on my thoughts they dont like or are disgusting, and without being attracted to the thing in real life.

    So how do I know when I get a pocd thought, if its a groinal response or actual arousal to the thought?

    1. Well…You should not be dx’d with OCD just based on whether you get turned on by kids or not. Studies show that 90-100% of normal males are aroused by girls to some degree or another. It is just that pedos get turned on by them a lot more and they are not into matures. Also pedos sit around and jerk off thinking about little girls all the time for fun and normals don’t.

      Most POCD’ers do not masturbate to the thoughts, but some do as a form of testing.

      I also had a female I was working with who was masturbating compulsively to POCD stuff but there was a tremendous amount of anxiety, misery, depression and distress associated with the masturbation, which was often described as tension relief.

  36. Trigger warning
    What about pedophiles who are avoiding children too ? ( like the first comment here )
    Thanks for the answer

    1. Yes, a few pedophiles avoid children but this is not common. What are you getting at here?

      Assuming you are a heterosexual male, would you avoid beautiful women out of sheer terror? Think how silly that sounds. That’s what it would be like for a pedophile to avoid kids.

  37. My friend gets perverted thoughts sometimes when children are playing; he catches his self,but sometimes people notice and he becomes terrified and depressed. His perversions sometimes come out of nowhere, with no warning.Out of control to say the least. It started when he resented society and wanted to get back at society for judging him for his OCD, How can one start to deal with this? Any suggestions as far as workbooks, worksheets, books, specific therapies? thanks

  38. Hi, Robert. A year or so ago I read this article about a child pornographer who had been caught, and despite never feeling attracted to a child I worried that maybe I was just sublimating it (as I tend to do with my attraction to women, which I actively ignore/avoid for religious reasons since I’m a woman) or had never been exposed to a situation which would bring it out. I pushed that thought away, but recently I read another article about a teenage boy who discovered he was attracted to children and hated himself for it. This reminded me of those fears, and I have started to worry again about the possibility of sublimating it or, on the other hand, the possibility of accidentally turning myself on to children because I feel I can’t control my brain/body. I’ve never had intrusive sexual thoughts about children, which is the reason I doubt the possibility of POCD. I just have the fear that maybe my body would/could be attracted and I don’t know it yet. Does that sound like it could be POCD? Also, do you think it’s possible for someone to create legitimate attraction to children by obsessing over it? Thanks in advance.

  39. Hi, Robert. A year or so ago I read an article about a child pornographer who had been caught, and despite never having been attracted to children, I started to wonder if maybe I was and was just sublimating it (as I do with my attraction to women, for religious/moral reasons since I am a woman) or if I just had never been in a situation that would “awaken” those feelings for kids. I pushed the thought away, but the other day I read an article about a teenage boy who discovered he was attracted to children. I’m really kind of terrified that maybe I am attracted and it’s just something I’m ignoring, or that by obsessing about it so much I’m going to develop an attraction that I won’t be able to turn off. The thing that makes me doubt POCD is that I’ve never had intrusive sexual thoughts about children. It’s just a deep fear that I’m sublimating it or that I’ll turn myself into a pedophile over the obsession and fear. Does that sound like it could be POCD? Also, do you think it’s possible to develop an attraction to children in that way? Thanks in advance. Oh, and I’ve also suffered from religious scrupulosity and minor obsessive compulsions in the past, though in general I do just fine on a daily basis.

  40. Hi I hope you are still active here Robert. I think I have been suffering from POCD for about six months now (plus a few weeks in 2014 wich i could shake off pretty easily) I would like to give you more detail about my case per e-mail if you are still doing that and hear your opinion. (Sorry for eventual grammar mistakes since english is not my first language.)

  41. Not sure if my message came trough the first time so i’ll try it again. Are you still active on this site Robert? If so please let me know i would like you to tell you about my case.

  42. Hey Robert.I thought your article was really great but the last paragraph what is up with the Wikisposure page at the bottom.I feel like that doesn’t help people like me who have POCD it just eggs us on and more fearful.I mean otherwise it was really good.

  43. Hi,

    I think I’m suffering from POCD. Well, when I was 14 I spent months being anxious over the possibility that I was going to become a pedophile. This was because I spoke to somebody my age, actually a little older, on social media in a sexual way. My anxiety began in January 2013 and lasted until about March, it then came back in the summer and lasted until about November 2013. Ever since November 2013, I have been happy, attracted to men and women, though I identify as gay to others. Since then I have been comfortable with my sexuality, I even believed I have been in love with this boy my age, we’re 17.

    So a few weeks ago in the Easter holidays, I was bored a lot and masturbation started to bore me, and I questioned myself that maybe I’m not attracted to what I’ve been attracted to since I remember. The night before I went back to college, I couldn’t sleep. I was having these intrusive thoughts about children, and to check that I wasn’t attracted to them, I masturbated to the thoughts, and it happened so quickly, then I started to think about it again, and I masturbated again, my stomach and nerves were in agony.

    The next three days I suffered horrendous anxiety, obsessing over the idea I could be a pedophile. It made me feel sick, anxious those three days, and all I wanted was to be by my mum. The Monday after the night I masturbated to the thoughts to check there wasn’t anything wrong, I masturbated after college to what I usually masturbate to, just normal porn. The littlest thought of a child just made my stomach hurt and made me cum quickly. I tried to masturbate again, but my penis wouldn’t get hard, as I was so anxious. Until Wednesday, I was anxious, overthought everything, my stomach dropped every time I saw a child, and I felt horrible.

    On the Monday and Tuesday I went in my mum’s room cause I was scared. On the Wednesday, I felt a bit better, I got home masturbated to what I usually would do, and I felt better. The next day I was back to normal and remained myself from that Wednesday and the following week. On the Sunday one week and one day ago, it started to come back, I was checking my groinal responses to whenever I saw a child on TV or something, then I read about pedophilia on Wikipedia, and I became extremely anxious and terrified that I was one. The next day, every time I saw a child, my stomach hurt, and I had a groinal response.

    The same happened on Tuesday, I thought I was gonna get better after Tuesday again, but then I dreamed about my situation and woke up with an exertion. This made me more anxious and made me check myself even more and made the groinal responses more intense. The Wednesday, I masturbated three times to what I usually masturbate to, but the groinal responses felt the same, intrusive and intense and made me believe I was a bad person. The next day on the Thursday, I forced myself to have a positive day, the groinal responses were still there, but I blocked the anxiety away.

    I was with my friends the whole day, and as soon as I was on my own, the anxiety started to come back. By the time I was on the way home, I think I was having a panic attack, I couldn’t breathe properly, and my stomach went into meltdown. Every time I saw a child on TV, I looked at my penis and looked at what happened. Nothing really happened, sometimes I believed I wasn’t a pedophile, and sometimes I believed it. I calmed myself down that night and thought it was gonna get better. The next day was the worst. I woke up with the situation still in my dreams.

    I saw my Nan who made me cry cause she said she loved me with all her life and made me feel guilty. Then on the way to college, I just felt like a bad person and had a groinal response every time I saw a child. When I got into a college, I couldn’t breathe and felt sick and believed I was having another panic attack. The day got better, I went to town with my friends, though the groinal responses were still there. When I got home I tried to masturbate for the first time in two days, it felt good the first time. Then my thoughts took over, and I masturbated to them twice. I climaxed to them, so I don’t know how I felt, just accepted that I was probably a pedophile.

    The next day the idea of being a pedophile made me feel sick and anxious once again, and I went to my mum’s room for comfort. That night I was going to a party and felt horribly anxious. I masturbated three times that day to what I usually masturbate to but didn’t enjoy it, to get rid of groinal responses. That night I easily got drunk and forgot all about the situation and felt happy. The next day again I believed that I probably was a pedophile and was terrified. I lay in my mum’s bed all day for comfort and even took six sleeping pills and a Cocodomol, not caring if I woke back up.

    I refused to eat the whole day, and that night when I did eat, I felt guilty and ashamed for eating, as I felt like I was a bad person. I have suicidal thoughts, thinking I should die now whilst people remember me as the good person I am now. I hope this is just POCD, I have so much to look forward to in life, and I’m so scared, my body is confusing me, and sometimes I just want to die. I then started to feel a bit better for the following week, started to feel like myself again. Now when I masturbated on Saturday, little thoughts came back, and now I feel like the worst person again.

    I keep checking my penis to see if it goes up or down to the the thoughts, and it does both. All I can think about is death. Also when I’m asleep, I don’t dream of bad thoughts, but I dream of me being a bad person, and I’m constantly waking up touching my penis to check if it’s hard or not. It’s so scary, when I don’t feel anxious, I feel like it’s all real. Anything to do with this stuff will make my penis feel funny. So done with life.

    Now when I start not to feel anxious, I’m scared that I’m accepting being a pedophile. I’m scared that in the coming weeks I’m gonna turn into a monster. Then I think about the time I masturbated to the intrusive thoughts, and it makes me feel like I should do it again, I don’t, and then I check my penis, and it feels normal again.

    Also every time I masturbate, little thoughts pop into my mind, and then I stop masturbating to see if the thoughts make my penis go harder or softer, it just stays hard. If I ejaculate more than I should, then I feel like it’s because of the little thoughts, then that terrifies me. I’m taking Prozac now, and I’m scared if it will make me be happy with turning into a pedophile, which I don’t know if I am or not. I’m so scared.

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