Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) Support Group

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a psychiatric disorder, more specifically, an anxiety disorder. OCD is manifested in a variety of forms, but is most commonly characterized by a subject's obsessive (repetitive, distressing, intrusive) thoughts and related compulsions (tasks or rituals) which attempt to neutralize the obsessions.

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throwing things away

When I was younger, I start throwing things away that I didn't like seeing or didn't think I needed.

Like tossing away notes, essays that were written, projects done in class. Keep the stuff looks fine or got on an A on (rare). Tossed out graduation announcement, prom stuff, choir annoucements.

Don't have stuff from elementary school, high school, college, middle school, grad school.

Tossed away homework, but have some things saved on floppy disk. All I have left is textbooks, pictures and reprinted projects with no writing on it and awards.

Also was thinking about tossing away my diplomas cuz don't deserve or want them, but decided not to.

Getting rid of stuff because don't like clutter, feel relieved when I do it. The less stuff I have the happier I will be.


Want to know why I am doing this and if anyone else feels this way.

Been going on for 20 years and more.

Replies

deleted_user
deleted_user

I just threw away so much stuff over the weekend. Things that I saved for sentimental value but then never looked at them for years. How sentimental can they be? Feels good to have less stuff...for certain.
deleted_user
deleted_user

Well it sounds like you have the opposite of hoarding ocd. I think ridding clutter is a good thing to me. I like cleaning things out as well. But it may be good to hang onto the diploma. It shows YOU did graduate. You did the work. It is something nice to have. My parents received an elementary school diploma I think it was of my uncle. I liked looking at it bc it brought me to another time. I know diplomas dont mean anything. You dont need a piece of paper, but it is nice to reminice (sp?) sometimes.

Here is one other thing. I played the autoharp at church in my teen years and it was given to me. I got to the point where I was all done playing the autoharp and felt I could get rid of it. Thankfully I knew the people who took it. Now, years later I wanted the autoharp to have for sentimental reasons, as well as maybe just playing it for fun occasionally. I got it back thankfully. If I didnt get it back, I would have had to deal and would have that small sad part of missing it, the past. So yeah, throwing things out is great to have less stress, but there are somethings that you may just want for sentimental reasons.
deleted_user
deleted_user

I'd say two things. First, it's OK to get rid of clutter. (Well, not ME Clutter! But, you know.) We have way to much "stuff." The second thing I heard, however, is that you don't "deserve" some of the things you throw out. Be sure you aren't doing some of this as self punishment. We OCers are big on that. If you got the degree, you deserve the diploma. Or look at it another way... does ANYone deserve either the good or the bad that they get? I think that, in fact, is the bigger question. When you start throwing things away, be sure you aren't getting some self-loathing high off it. I think that would be a defeatist OC kind of thing to do.
deleted_user
deleted_user

I feel better when I toss things out, everyday I feel like I want to toss things out, but make myself not to.

Usually I have to figure out what I need to keep and what I don't need in life.

Sometimes I don't need to keep things, because when I look back on things I really don't need to keep it, I know what kind of student I was just don't have the evidence to prove it besides grades.

It could be depression or stress-related.
deleted_user
deleted_user

Lots more I can toss out, but keep it because it might be useful in the future.

Emails too (deleting them). I don't like it when there is too much stuff (like too much food in the fridge). Too packed and get stuff and have no where to put it.
deleted_user
deleted_user

My experience of throwing things out was a bit different. I threw things out if i thought they were dirty. Even things that were expensive or sentimental.

I once thought my clothes were so dirty, that i got a pair of scissors and cut them off me, even though it was my favourite outfit! I was in tears, so upset because i didn't really weant to throw it out, i just felt like i HAD to. I couldn't be dirty.

When i was at school, doing my homework was a nightmare. I kept getting "bad"thoughts, i thought that if i didn't throw my school work away then something bad would happen. It got me into trouble with my teachers because my work was always handed in late.

Sorry , but different from your experience just thought i would share
deleted_user
deleted_user

I am the same way. The less I have the happier I am. The less stuff I have to give my energy to. It drives my family crazy. I think at sometimes I go to extremes and I'm not sure I'm making the right decision about throwing stuff away. Then I feel so guilty when I throw away the kids toys and they ask for them. It happens all the time. I sometimes feel it is the only control I have over my life. I don't know.
deleted_user
deleted_user

Jacquline? You R the opposite of a hoarder,,,,,never heard of compulsively throwing things out but your line about "feel like I do not deserve them" thing sounds like serious self-esteem issues,,,,

I like throwing things out but not anywhere near in a compulsive way,,,,I also like, at times, deleting emails I have moved to trash, but do not do it often,,,,,

I do keep sentimental things like photo albums, diplomas, sports trophies, varsity letters, year books and some sports memorbilia,,,,,

what does your shrink say?
deleted_user
deleted_user

I have bought and tossed or gave things away as far back as I can remember. I feel weighed down with to much stuff and feel less anxiety when I can look around and know where and what everything is. I also shop a lot replacing a/o upgrading one thing for one better. I think I know I have a compulsion to shop but then I have a compulsion to purge (material possessions). I used to say I was a minimalist and didn't need a lot of "things" but I would still buy and upgrade. I've never heard of anyone else doing this so I guess it's nice to know I'm not alone. It would be a lot nicer if I could figure out how to stop.
I found the perfect purse and camera and since I found them I have not bought another. I tell myself that if I can only find the perfect "everything" I can stop shopping and stop tossing. This is so depressing.
deleted_user
deleted_user

I am a hoarder and could use a little of your problem..lol! This is how my mind works...I keep piles of books because if I get rid of a book there is no tangible evidence that I'd read it. When we were cleaning out my parents house someone found an old softball trophy of mine and asked it I wanted it. In a moment of non-hoarder thinking I said to throw it out, but years later when my own daughter started softball I regretted throwing out the trophy because I had no tangible evidence that I had played on a softball team. I don't throw out magazines because again, tangible evidence that I read on these subjects. I need to find a way around this. There is the sentimental value issue too like, I got the object on a great trip or some loved one had touched it, etc. I've got to find a way to let go of this clutter!!
deleted_user
deleted_user

When I was a kid I held on to things, then one day I remember looking at my bedroom thinking it needed cleaned. So I threw stuff away and I have not stopped since to this day. It makes me feel good as I'm doing it, like everything is clean and orderly. It's such a high.
I have thrown away my yearbooks, senior pictures of friends, some of my childhood photos, home videos, items from traveling, jewelry from relationships, some of my husband's stuff he wanted, gifts that people get me for Christmas (after some time passes they should forget what they got me) and some items that seemed sentimental for a while but I convince myself I can live without.
For some reason I regret getting rid of things and I tell myself I won't do it ever again. That only lasts until the next time I open drawers to see what can go in the trash or to a consignment store.
I want to stop doing this, I know it is wrong and there are so many things that I will never see again or can ever replace. I know we can't take all of our stuff with us when we die, but when we die, someone else is going to throw our stuff away.
deleted_user
deleted_user

I think it is the funnest thing in the world to do lol sad huh but to declutter and clean it drives me nutts but i get into it i hate it but i love the feel after i do it kind of like a drug i guess lol i dont know but i like to get rid of things give them away or sell em on fb yardsale lol i am truely a non clutter person my husband on the otherhand no he is a hoarder so to speak he likes keeping stuff from jr high buttons or pins or garbage pail kids the simpsons all that i threw out everything but kids memories basically and a few of mine
deleted_user
deleted_user

I tossed away a lot of stuff. In fact I go through phases where I throw TONS of things away, some that I probably shouldn't...But I also have an ever growing larger keepsake box with EVERYTHING written in it.
deleted_user
deleted_user

It's better to not be too sentimental. I think being sentimental is the root of many of OCDs. So go ahead and clear the stuff. What you don't see you will not remember to miss.
deleted_user
deleted_user

I wish I could throw away more things..I hate all the clutter in my life and I am trying to get rid of things...once they are gone...it doesnt bother me...its the letting them go..that bothers me..I guess because all my life everything was out of my control and this must be a form of control to keep things...I dont know...but do need help with it.