‘Be­cause we are bad’

Life & Style Weekend - - RELAX - with Robyn Dou­glass

WHEN she was just a child, Lily Bai­ley was as­sailed by thoughts she knew to be “wicked”. Her imag­i­nary friend, a voice in her head, told her that if she re­peated rit­u­als like wash­ing her hands the right num­ber of times, her bad in­ten­tions would not be re­alised. She has ob­ses­sive com­pul­sive dis­or­der, and in her case, felt com­pelled to make end­less lists of of­fences she had com­mit­ted dur­ing the day. Such ob­ses­sive list-mak­ing in­ter­fered with nor­mal life and she ended up so mis­er­able she at­tempted sui­cide. Thanks to a lov­ing (and wealthy) fam­ily, psy­chi­atric help came early and was even­tu­ally ef­fec­tive. Her ac­count gives an amaz­ing in­sight into the con­di­tion by set­ting out the men­tal con­ver­sa­tions that en­slaved her.

They would be funny if they weren’t so bizarrely sad.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.