"It's like having the sword of Damocles hanging over you"

Employment Support Services Client

I feel solid in myself now – not scared. I’m getting support in terms of getting out of my comfort zone. I want to get back into work. I want to write about mental illness.

OCD can exhaust your mind.

The more you think about it or focus on it, the worse it gets. At its worst it’s like being stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea. The fear is death or becoming infinitely more ill.

I started to get the full-blown illness when I was 14. I hid it – I didn’t want anyone to find out. I thought it would split the family up and I’d be labelled a ‘loony’.

It felt like I was out of sync with the rest of the world. You become a split second behind everything and everyone. You lose spontaneity and connection.

It’s like having the sword of Damocles hanging over you. I’ve had to demystify it. I’ve had to look into my soul to build the foundations.

I feel solid in myself now – not scared. I’m getting support in terms of getting out of my comfort zone. I want to get back into work. I want to write about mental illness.

I do feel a lot more at peace with myself. Now, when I go to bed at night, I’m not tormented by my OCD

Our specialist employment support helps people across Sussex to access and retain paid work, complete education and training and get involved in volunteering.