Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Anal? OCD?

I was having a chat with my fren Kristy one day when we came across the word "ANAL". Well, apparently, it's a word given by her hubby, describing her behaviour of being "Anal". It basically means being irritatingly fussy over small things and only the person who is "Anal" understand why things r done the way it should be done. Ok...... a bit confusing? It is also similar to the signs of having an Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), as described by another friend, Maria who claims that she has it, and so does her 5-year-old daughter!
A quick look at the definition of OCD, as found in Wikipedia -
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental disorder most commonly characterized by intrusive, repetitive thoughts resulting in compulsive behaviors and mental acts that the person feels driven to perform, according to rules that must be applied rigidly [Aniston: OMG! This is so me....!], aimed at preventing some imagined dreaded event; however, these behaviors or mental acts are not connected to the imagined dreaded event [Aniston: So true! It's all in the mind of the beholder! I'm one, for example].
According to the current epidemiological data, OCD is the fourth most common mental disorder and OCD is considered nearly as common as
asthma and diabetes mellitus.[1] In the United States, 1 in 50 adults have OCD.[2] In severe cases, it affects a person's ability to function in everyday activities. The disorder often has a serious impact on the sufferer's (and his/her family's) quality of life [Aniston: It happens to me. Hubby couldn't understand at times why I did certain things and we ended up quarreling over my 'analic' behaviour!]. Also, the psychological self-awareness of the irrationality of the disorder can be painful. For people with severe OCD, it may take several hours a day to carry out the compulsive acts.
who?] believe OCD may be related to levels of a normal chemical in the brain called serotonin. When the proper flow of serotonin is blocked, the brain's "alarm system" overreacts. Danger messages are mistakenly triggered. Instead of the brain filtering out these unnecessary thoughts, the brain dwells on them—and the person repeatedly experiences unrealistic fears and doubts.
The phrase "obsessive-compulsive" has become part of the English lexicon, and is often used in an informal or caricatured manner to describe someone who is meticulous,
perfectionistic, absorbed in a cause, or otherwise fixated on something or someone [Aniston: I dont see any harm in being meticulous and perfectionistic...it makes life more organized and well-planned, the way I see it. Ok, only ppl like me would understand what I mean here] .[3] Although these signs are often present in OCD, a person who exhibits them does not necessarily have OCD, and may instead have obsessive-compulsive personality disorder [Aniston: Ok, perhaps my condition is not as severe as OCD......maybe OCPD. That doesnt make me any less "ANAL"....haha] (OCPD) or some other condition.
Ok.....got it loud n clear? Now, back to my conversation with Kristy about being "Anal", Lets just assume that being "Anal" and having the OCD r the same in this particular post. We both concluded that we are so "anal" that it's driving people around us crazy at times. As we revealed our 'anal' behaviour to each other, we couldnt help but shook our heads and agreed that we r indeed "pain in the ass" to certain people on certain things that we do and think. They might sound, look or appear perfectly normal to us but it is NOT to others.
Ok, let me give u some examples of me being "Anal":-
1. Slippers and shoes outside my front door have to be arranged properly in a line. Pity my maid but it is a MUST - everyday!
2. All rugs in the house must be colour cordinated and no such thing as mixing a black rug in living area and a blue one at the dining area. Both areas must have the same colored rug! No fancy-looking or cartoon-looking rugs please!
3. All cutleries (spoons, forks, knives) in the kitchen must be arranged in a row and facing the same right position in the drawer. No such thing as having one face right and the rest facing left or on top of each other!
4. My guests who dine at my house must all be using the same set of cutleries. No such thing as mixing the old with new ones. NO NO!
5. Bedsheet! They must be colour-cordinated - not only between the mattress and the quilt cover, but also the curtain! No such thing as having an earth-toned curtain with a green bedsheet! No No!!!
6. All cups, glasses, plates, bowls and most kitchen wares used in the house must be either white in colour or transparent-looking. I forbid the usage of multi-colored utensils.
7. Before going to sleep every night, I will scan the room once before shutting my eyes. Everything has to be in the right place and order. Curtains must be drawn perfectly - not even a cm away from the end of the rail. Should it be imperfect, I will drag myself out from bed just to that small adjustment. Don't expect me getting a good night's sleep knowing that the curtain is not in perfect order! [Hubby couldnt understand the reason I do that every night but it's a routine for me]
8. All clothes, towels, underwears, socks in my wardrobe/closet/drawers must be folded MY way and only the same way I want them to be. They are to be arranged and put nicely in place. For example, a towel has to be folded into half, then another half and finally into 3 parts. ALL towels in the house, including the kids' are to be folded the same way.
9. My wardrobe is properly arranged according to the types of clothing I have. They are put in sections pre-determined: -
- spaghetti-strapped blouses
- long-sleeved blouses
- short-sleeved blouses
- long pants
- 3/4pants
- short pants
- long skirt
- short skirt
- long dresses
- short dresses, etc.
Note that all my hangers are white in color and hubby's - black. Not enough hangers? - I'd rather my maid hang a few pairs of pants on one hanger (until I get more) than hanging them on multi-colored hangers, [bought and used by hubby during his bachelor days until I came into the picture].. which I've stored away in the storeroom - not to be used anymore - fullstop!
Dont let me see anything misplaced or mixed with each other....I'll go beserk! Not only my own closet...hubby and kids' too!
10. The arrangement of flowers, trees, plants, flower pots in my garden have to be in a flow and balanced. Example, 2 potted plants placed in front of the window must be balanced from one end to the other. Dont let me see one is closer to the end and the other having a big gap from the edge of the window. I'll ensure that they are perfectly in place. Tress planted in my garden have to be in the balanced position - meaning, a tree planted between my bamboo trees must hav the exact gap from the next similar tree planted. No such thing as having one in between 2 bamboo trees and the other between 3 bamboo trees. That explained how I got so tanned when the landscaping work was done in my garden few months back! I was supervising the whole afternoon just to make sure the trees are planted they way I want them to be. Even pebble-stone tiles placed on the grass must have the same balance gap from one to the next.
Having 10 examples here is enough to make one think I'm really "ANAL" or so Kristy and hubby thought. I havent even started on the way I pack for travelling. Kristy shook her head when I told her how and what I take with me when I travel, even as near as back to hubby's hometown.
Also, the amount of fights hubby and I went through when renovating and decorating our new nest....all because of my OCD behaviour! Paint, tiles, curtains, furnitures, etc.....
Kristy said that I'm worse than her! But wait till u know how "Anal" she is when it comes to her food! Gawd! She's worse than me in that sense! haha.....we shall stop there!
So, how do we conclude if we are "Anal" or having OCD or just plain fussy and organized? Well, if u asked me, I'll just say that I'm just being a lil more fussy that people around me, while retaining my sanity at times. Ok, perhaps I'm being denial... but call me whatever you want.....but I'm just gonna be myself and continue being "ANAL", if that's what I am.
So, are you one as well????? *wink* *wink*
Have a great day!
*just in case u r wondering why there arent spaces between the lines in the post, it's something which I couldnt rectify as well. Tried hitting 'enter' after a few lines but they all get crammed up once I hit the "publish post" button" - annoying! *

1 comment:

chris said...

haha...I didn't know you're THAT anal Kath!!!

But I relate to folding towels. It's the exact way I like mine folded as well!! Can't stand it if it's not folded 3 times on the last fold.

But seriously, the curtains? You're definitely OCD :P