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Scary Thoughts, Dark Feelings, Help?


Hello, Thank you so much for all of the help that you provide. I’m a 23 year old male. For many years I have occasionally felt what I would describe as a "creepy dark cloud" over me. This feeling typically comes on only in the later evening hours before bed. I just don’t feel "right" at such times, although I am able to function normally, just as if I were simply in a ‘bad mood’. It is a very foreboding feeling. Back to normal when I wake up in the morning. A few months ago I had a bad day, and experienced some sort of an "attack" in which I felt like I was losing my sanity; slipping from my grip of reality briefly. I felt like I needed to speak with someone immediately – someone to ground me. I felt like I was losing control over myself. In recent months since then, I’ve begun to struggle with intrusive thoughts which often involve the worst things I can imagine. The idea will occur to me to kill someone I love, or a friend, or myself. I am *extremely* troubled by these dark thoughts and feelings. I feel so guilty, like a monster. I try to redirect myself, but sometimes that is of little comfort…These thoughts seem to be the product of my own mind – I’ve never had any auditory or visual hallucinations that I am aware of. No dreams of murderous acts or anything like that, either. I feel like whatever is wrong with me preys on my greatest fears. These thoughts represent the antithesis of what I *want to be*. I don’t think I am capable of ever hurting anyone, but I am very disturbed by these intrusive ideas. I hesitate to call them compulsions, but there is an element of that, I think. In recent weeks, I have improved a bit for no apparent reason… I’ve finally started to feel "normal" again on most days. Please, any thoughts or educated guesses you could offer would be really appreciated. I’m so scared that I’ve begun to slip into some psychotic zone here. What all might be wrong with me?

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I am inclined to agree with you that you are experiencing "compulsive thoughts" better know as "obsessions." Of course, I cannot be certain and that is why I want to encourage you to see a Clinical Psychologist for evaluation and treatment. However, let me continue:

Intrusive thoughts or obsessions result from extreme anxiety. It is possible that the strange feelings you have a few hours before going to bed may be in response to having to face something the next day that is uncomfortable for you. Something uncomfortable can range from looking for a new job, facing a daunting task at work, fears about losing a job, family or romantic problems, economic problems and so on, the list of possibilities is very long.

It is very common for someone under a severe anxiety attack and under a panic attack, to feel like they are "losing their mind." However, you state that you do not experience hallucinations and that you continue to be able to cope.

I suspect that you are frightening yourself when you entertain ideas about "losing your mind." Rather, think of it as something is troubling you that you are unaware of. On that basis, look for and find a psychologist and let’s see what may be going on with you. You may need psychotherapy and/or you may need psychotherapy and medication.

Remember, we are living in a tough world with difficult times and everyone is experiencing some level of emotional discomfort. On that basis, do not ignore your symptoms but do not scare yourself either. Get help.

Lastly, if you have a friend or relative you can call and talk to when this is happening, call that person. Best to pick someone you trust and with whom you can be honest. Your girlfriend or wife would be a natural. Talking usually helps ground all of us when feeling upset.

Best of Luck

More "Ask Dr. Schwartz" View Columnists

  • Brittney

    I too am 23 and was diagnosed with my first disorder at the age of 9 and have been adding to the list ever since. When you speak of the cloud, is it visually or theoretically there? I understand both but if you are not literally seeing the cloud I would suggest practicing relaxation and meditation techniques to reduce, or maybe even eliminate, the stress this weighs on you. I am fearful that you had the moment where you felt your sanity fleeing and would hope for you to rectify whatever your issue(s) may be before falling into a full-on psychotic break. Have you attempted journaling your feelings day-to-day? I carry a notebook wherein I describe my feelings, symptoms, actions, etc. and voice record a comprehensive notation of the day in its entirety. There is a book, "The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook", that can be found, reasonably priced online. I like In it there are techniques, theories, guides, and advice relating to what seems to be anxiety running amuck throughout your mind. Don't be fearful. I was and it took seven years of my life. You are more important and you know yourself better than this attacker and, with that, you will find the path leading to your wellness. Please feel free to contact me if you find my thoughts helpful and I truly hope progress begins for you post-haste. All the Best.


  • its noisy in here

    what your going thru i go thru as well.execpt my thoughts are more a scary thing. not to be in control of your own thoughts but i hope we all find the help we need...GODbless

  • unliya

    I am too a 22 year old female. I also have the same problem. I suffer from Anxiety disorder. Eventhough I have uncontrolable thoughts like you I have a good control of me in outside and I'm quite sure that I'm spiritually a good person. I suppose you are the same too. So I think there's no reason to panic. How ever I'm glad that I have this amazing experience that only a small percentage in this world can have.

  • jt

    i felt like this so much lately and thought i was going crazy. in the first 3 days of this, which was sparked by a nightmare, i felt like i had no hope at all. then i came across a diagnosis on wikipedia and became aware that i might be bipolar. just knowing this and knowing that i wasnt alone helped me so much. however one morning the crazy thoughts came back and i had no more comfort. i felt i would harm everyone i loved. this is very bad for me as i have no previous mental issues or anything like that. i recently started to feel as though it was the devil himself coming after me as sending me signs. you wouldnt believe this but only 2 days ago i seen a man kill a woman out for no reason on the english news. this scared me because im sure he had what im experienced. i felt exiled from this point on and had to plan every movement i did before i thought i was gonna hurt someone. i felt as though this illness was not known and was not treatable and that i was just a freak for having these thoughts and thats when it played on my consciense and i started to question my spirit. but i know i am a good person and seeing this site has vastly improved me. i know now that i am not alone and feel no threat towards any one else. its a dark road ahead of me and i know its gonna be a struggle but thanks to everyone who has left a comment and i am sure i will be rid of these demons in the near future.


  • Anonymous-1

    As i was reading the first post about the dark feelings, i felt compelled to say that, i have had all the described feelings and episodes happen to me when i was 14. I am now 15, and my issues are just but forgotten. I think that asking the doc is an excellent idea, but aproximatly one year ago, when i had my bad trip, i found that only speaking to others who have had this happen to them before really helped me get push through. I have no knowlege of was psychologically happened to me, (it wasn't puberty), but i do have a vague idea of what caused this. My grade 7 teacher was a very stuck-up lady, who always had to have it her own way. Wheather it was solving algebraic math equations, i had my way of doing, i would always have to write out literally hundreds of lines. Now, you may not think that is a big deal, but wait and see what happened next. Naturally, as all my free time went by writing lines, i finally decided to challenge her, and refused to do my lines. I was sent to the office, where i had the principal and vice principle come and tell me that i hurt my teachers feelings because i was directly questioning her authority. I explained the situation, but as you know, the only changes an individual can make in a system is at the top, talking with the big people, not a representitive. This is hardto explain, but i felt that i was going all or nothing with this whole situation, and i just lost everything. That evening, i felt very far away from everybody else. When everybody was at the dinner table laughing, it was very distant from me, as though a hush settled just around me. I just couldn't shake the feeling that something was wrong. The next day, in math class, my teacher was sweeping around the room hading out worksheets. As soon as she put down the worksheet in from of me, i had a panic attack. I know this doesn't happen, but it feels like your heart starts pounding out the seconds, and i felt that i was continuously running short of breath, no matter how fast i breathed. Even though it felt like a while, this only lasted half a minute or so. I hadno idea what just happened, so i went home. That is the day the "feelings" started, and would last the better part of the year. It started with obsessions, such as turning off a water faucette, leaving the room, and then thoughts creeping in that somehow the water was still running. I would check the water multiple times, until i was worn out. I knew what i was doing was nuts, but it was less work checking then thinking about it all day long. I'm pretty sure i'm just a normal teen, but "normal" seems a strange word these days. Our minds are so complex, we have the power to dig ourselves into immense holes, but we also have the power to get the hell out. It is as if we can "overide" our system, but it does take time. For me it took a year. If every day you are aware that you are having uncontrolled thoughts, feeling, impulses, and resulting emotions, and you are fully aware that a while ago, something clicked, evntually, that something will click back, and you will have learned a great deal about your true self, the hell you went through, the stuff you're made off to throw all that crap to hell. As you're reading this, i know you're probably getting that guity feeling that you're not up for the fight, that you will crumble and brutally chop someone into a fine powder, BUT YOU HAVE TO LISTEN TO ME. IT WILL PASS, AND I KNOW BECAUSE I HAVE BEEN TO HELL AND BACK WITH THIS, AND I NO LONGER AM A SLAVE TO MY THOUGHTS. ON RARE OCCASIONS WHEN I THINK OF SOMETHING GRUESOME (AND WHO DOESN'T) I LAUGH IT OFF, AND SAY THAT I'VE BEEN THERE, AND I'M NEVER GOING BACK!

    I now want to discribe some of my "symptoms" to this whatchamacallit? Stress? Agravation? Anxiety? Obsessive compuslsive? All at once??

    I too had constant thoughts about harming myself and others around me. I could do nothing about this, but wait out the storm in confused pain everyday, and horror and disgust at myself. I "battered down my shield" and stayed away from anything or anybody that brought on my feelings. I began having distinct patterns of lifestyle and behaviour to try and get away from factors that cause my thoughts. This cause me to become more and more of an introvert. I began having much more time by myself with my feelings! wonderful, right?! The situation got worse, and i started wondering if this is what i would feel like for the rest of my life. Miracoulosly, the best and quckest way to solve a problem, is by first identifying its cause, where it originated, why it originated, and its severity. I don't know about you, but i got it pretty pretty bad. One day, i got up, and decided that this BS had to stop, and it had to stop soon. I forced my pitiful self to slowly expose myself to the factors that cause my thoughts and feelings. I would stay only until i knew it was safe. In a year, i'm happy to say, i might have been through what some adults havn't even been throught. I trully saw the power of the human mind. I no longer have feelings or constant disturbing thoughts.

    Things that have helped my pull through was playing sports and getting out alot.

    I am pretty sure i understand what you are going through, and all i can say is "batten down your hatches", you might be in for a long night, but it will end, and you will come out a new, better person, with more experience with self-control, your enxiety, and your feelings.

    Ride out the storm, my Friend

  • Redbird

    I have read all of the posts and I must say that I felt a relief that I have never felt before. I felt like I was a monster who wished harm to those I loved and I was afraid to be around them and was afraid of anything resembling a weapon. My life has pretty much been ruined because of this since I had my first episode when I was in elementary school and now I am pretty much in the last stretch, so to speak. I have always been treated for depression but not for obsessive compulsive disorder. Although I recognized I suffered with OCD, I think I was too frightened and ashamed to share the whole story with my counselors. Please don't be guilty of that. It makes all the difference in the quality of your life to get the proper treatment. I feel a lightness that I haven't felt before to know there are people who have coped with this and found answers. Thank you and bless you for your posts. You never know who you are reaching out to and you are helping others and well as yourselves.

  • shawn

    Hi im shawn im 24 years old and been dealing with attacks since i was about 13 its seasonal comes to me every couple years but up to recently about a week ago i to felt the same exact way you descride to a t I thought I was going crazy and i was afraid to say what my thoughts were cause i didnt want to feel judged but i have went an seen a doctor with telling her only some simptoms n was prescribed medication which seems to be helping it seems to me all this started from was finding out my gf was pregnant and ofcourse cloudy weather here in vermont very depressing but i just wanted to say your not alone and im glad im not too

  • An anonymous friend

    I was feeling really crappy today because of an episode I had this morning. I came on the internet looking for something positive, something helpful, and I believe I have found it. You are all beautiful for sharing your stories, your fears, and for some of you, your successes. You have given us hope, you have given me hope, and so I thank you.

    For about 8 or 9 years now I've been dealing with troubling thoughts, guilt, etc. I think a lot of what I feel now, however, started because of exposure to pornography on the internet and in books, when I was about 9 to 11 years old. I truly believe that the internet really messed me up.. too much is available for the innocent to corrupt themselves. Even to this day I sometimes watch pornography, because I feel I HAVE to, and it disugsts me.

    I can't tell you how many times I have broken down over the last couple years, sometimes in front of my family, calling myself a "monster" and generally hating myself. This does not help. We must stay positive. I am grateful for my loving family, who put up with and support me, who love me.

    Please, everybody: this disease is not the end, we all have hope. I think I'm going to try to find a good psychologist, a good friend, and live with the knowledge that the night will become day, that this "cloud" over our heads will eventually leave.

  • Paul

    It is my belief that sometimes it's better not to necessarily see a psychiatrist because sometimes they medicate people and medication can have frightening side effects. But what I do is I see a psychiatrist and ask for a PRN order. That means that the psychiatrist prescribes me medication but if my mental illness isn't bothering me, otherwise known as remission, I won't take it. PRN stands for the Latin pro re nada, which means as needed. Unfortunately, many people don't know what a PRN order is. Technically what I have is mental illness. But sometimes I am not having an episode so I go off my medication. I play heads and tails with my medication. Fortunately, my psychiatrist respects me and writes PRN. For me, it works, since if I feel an episode of my mental illness coming on, otherwise known as prodromal symptoms, I know where my PRN is. I don't know if this works for all people, to go to a psychiatrist and ask for a PRN order, but it works for me: I play heads and tails with my psychiatric medication and I do well and I get by.

  • sara engle

    i need help my with boyfreind i dont see him more than a week every other weeek i keep thinkin that something is going to happen like death or injurys i dont no wat id do with out him please help

  • Anonymous-2

    It started as Manic/Depressive, then Bipolar, now Bipolar w/Phycosis. Lately I've been getting a lot of discomforting thoughts especially when at work. I mention work because I have to interact with the public, and I get real nervous around people. I've been using self-talk techniques which seem to help a bit. It helps to replace the negative thoughts with a positive thought about yourself!

  • BuryingCeasar

    I was a really sensitive child, more sensitive than most, I suspect. I had a lot of difficulty with stressful situations in movies for instance, recently I recounted to a few friends how, the first time I watched the Lion King I was afraid at the beginning that Scar was going to kill and eat the mouse. Nobody thought this made much sense.

    Overall, I was a happy child, I came from a loving, fairly functional family, so I don't want to give the impression I was stressed all the time or depressed. But I realised recently that I've always had a pattern of dredging things up, sometimes years after they've happened and reconsidering it. For instance, as a pre-schooler I was very shy, and I really hated it when people I didn't know talked to me. I couldn't figure out why strangers would speak to me, it didn't make any sense. Once in a grocery store, I was looking at a book and making up a story under my breath to go along with the pictures. Some nice old lady came up to me and said, "Oh, can you read?" I don't remember how I responded. But years after this happened, I started thinking about this situation a lot and worrying a lot about how I'd responded. Had I ignored her? Said something weird 'cause I didn't want her to talk to me? I used to cry about this at night! I kept feeling like if I could only remember what happened I might feel some assurance - like maybe I'd actually responded appropriately, and if I could remember this, I'd feel ok. But it was a lose-lose. I COULDN'T remember what had happened, and even if I could have, there was the possibility it would have been something I was ashamed of. It took me a while to let this go. I was now at an age where I knew how to appropriately respond to a kind stranger, but I couldn't rectify the past and this infuriated me.

    This is why I now suspect I have OCD and so does my mom and my therapist (suspect it, not have it themselves lol) Not the kind where I have to turn off a light a dozen times, but the kind where I can't let go of distressing thoughts and situations as easily as most people can. When I was in fifth grade, I had an aggressive incident with another kid that was really out of character for me. I don't mean I beat the shit out of him or made him bleed or did anything extremely serious, but it wasn't appropriate behaviour and I anguished about it the rest of the year. Then in seventh grade I relapsed into feeling guilty about it again. Then in tenth grade (5 years after the fact, people!) it came back temporarily.

    What really made these aspects of my character a real issue for me, though, was when I started thinking some really dark things last summer. Everyone does sometimes. But these things were very disturbing and I had difficulty letting them go. I feared I was becoming a sociopath. I'd analyse the thoughts to try to find a resolution, relief or closure, but it always seemed to come back to me possibly being a sick or evil person. It started with a news article I read about a sexually abused child. I could not get this article out of my mind. I kept thinking about how it would feel to be the victim, to be the mother of the victim, but worse, I also imagined myself as the rapist. I thought about the factors that might lead someone to do that, and how they might justify it to themselves. This made me feel terrible. I felt like it meant secretly I was sexually attracted to children and capable of partaking in such a thing. Eventually I let this go, and reasoned that I wasn't capable of it, that it was just a dark fear, and we all have dark fears.

    I started feeling a lot of guilt about the state of the world, though. That summer and at the start of the school year, I started thinking more about starvation and genocide than I ever used to. I felt really guilty about the life I was living. How could I have been a happy, complacent North American so long, somewhat distressed by those issues, but not feeling I had a role in stopping them? I decided I had to do more. But the more I learned about world hunger, for example, the more hopeless I felt. The fact is, 1000s of people die of hunger a day. I am only one person. Besides, there were so many other issues. Like poverty in my own country, diseases that needed cures, blood that needed to be donated and ad nauseum. I began intellectualizing in a really dark way too, thinking: if the worst case scenario in life is death and we all die, how can there truly be a worst case scenario? Does it really matter how or when we get there?

    It all just built, and has continued to be an issue throughout the year. I fluctuate between feeling hollow and empty, to feeling really emotional, and sometimes somewhere a little in between. The dark disturbing thoughts are often there, with the main fear being that I'll feel this way the rest of my life. I don't fear acting on them, though I often have feared that, but I'm now at the point were I just want the thoughts to go. Very little offers relief. I very much miss the more routine daily stresses that once made up my life: homework (I'm in high school), mild situations with family or friends, thinking about career decisions. I now live a life focussed on darkness and meaninglessness and too much need for escapism.

    Anyways, I'm afraid this probably hasn't been very uplifting for anyone, except in the line of letting people out there know they're not the only ones victims to the bizarre and frightening realm of their minds. I do truly believe regular people can have a very overwhelming fear of darkness within or possible sociopathy, though. For people who are over-analytical and need to find meaning to all their thoughts, that creates problems. People have said here feeling like they can identify with people who've done dark deeds, I think regular people can experience this too. I think we are really just convincing ourselves we identify with killers, we don't really. Yes, we can have cynical aspects to ourselves, darker aspects, somewhat narcissistic aspects, we can be capable of considering dark philosophical ideas, etcetera but there is always the light at root of all this, and I'm hopeful we can all find it. People who are actually nuts, don't worry about having nutty thoughts either, I don't think. Like someone who really wants to kill someone, doesn't worry about what the desire means. So I think we need to keep that in mind too.

  • *just me*

    Im dealing with almost everything you all have mentioned and its the most terrifying thing in the world! Im afraid to talk to anybody about it but im going to because i need to get out of this scary obsessive thinking! What medications have you all taken to help you to stop thinking these horrible thoughts? At times i feel i have a control of it but then as soon as i acknowledge that im in slips away again! WHat the heck? I fear phsychatrist will think im unstable and want to have me admitted somewhere or something crazy like thaT! Ive suffered from anxiety and panic attacks for years now but not these horrible troubling feelings! Could it be a little bit of post-partum depression?

  • BuryingCeasar

    Don't worry about going to talk to someone, it's very important that you do! Even though I am still struggling a lot, I am glad that I see my sympathetic therapist who doesn't judge me.

    If you go to a pyschiatrist/psychologist and say something like, "I really hate my neighbour Ted and I'm fairly certain I'm going to kill him", there's a legal obligation to inform authorities, but if you say something more along the lines of, "I am struggling with a lot of dark thoughts/existential angst..." etc., you should be shown compassion and understanding. It would be up to the person you see to prescribe or recommend a medication and to possibly determine factors that might be contributing to why you're thinking and feeling the way you are. Trust me, you will not be put in a straight jacket or something and hauled off to a rubber room! So make the right choice for yourself and your mental health, and find the courage to admit to someone how you're feeling. Remember, though, it's important to find someone who's well-reputed, as some people who get into the line of therapy work have major issues themselves (case in point, a friend of mine who mentioned to a therapist that he helps his mother out a lot around the house, and was told he had an oedipus complex... yikes.)

  • cecil

    It is really sad to read all your stories stemming from your various experiences. I do however think, that resorting to some kind of "treatment" for a "perceived" psychotic ...issue..(depression....and all it's other.....strapping's) ... is somewhat extreme.....! REALLY..!! I guess, there are individuals .... 'supposedly' naturally stronger emotionally ...(maybe..?) than others...yeah! but, my freinds. Let's not give in to others...... who capitalize...on preying on the emotions of others..... !! ' a weakness

    The first symptom of this weakness..... is to EVEN ....consider visiting ... a SHRINK...!

    Please do take care. These shrinks.....ALWAYS... have to step your fears up a notch.......'cause they NEED get PAID for their orchestrated consultation.

    Let's be weary ....yeah!

  • Anonymous-3

    Thank you guys for sharing your challenges online. It took a lot of courage to be able to share your challenges online.

  • Anonymous-3

    Thank you whoever posted the post titled 'Scary thoughts, dark feelings, help?' for sharing your challenges online. It took a lot of courage for you to share your post online.

  • Anonymous-3

    You are right by saying 'We must stay positive'. I have to remember that. Thank you for your words of hope.

  • happy2share

    i know exactly how you feel. I'm 23 female and i'm a nurse.i don't know if it would help but i advise you to analyze first yourself before seeking professional help. Personally i don't believe in the beneficial effects of this psych drugs(I've seen its side effects to those who use them and i think it only got worse). I have the same thoughts about a month ago and i confined myself in my room for 2 weeks. my mom keeps on telling me not to think about it and try to get busy with stuffs that i'd like to do.i forced myself going out, talking a lot and hanging around my family (even though i'm bothered with this horrible thoughts) and it helped a lot. i still have my panic attacks and i still think of those horrible thoughts running through my mind mind but i think i am getting in control of it.

    don't be scared to tell how you feel to someone you trust. i still have nightmares and having trouble getting to sleep and always thought that i'm going nuts but i managed.

    i'd recommend taking vitamins with melatonin t after dinner 'cause it helps you feel more sleepy and don't forget to pray (i know it sounds corny and all but it really does help me) whatever your religion is.

    always think positive.control your thoughts.stretch your body.go out with friends or by yourself.pray. i know we can all get through this.

    F.Y.I. my mom and my grandma goes through the same experience and they are still both sane, healthy and happy.

    have faith GOD is with us.keep posting

  • Mama

    My 13 year old son is having severe anxiety and panic attacks and has recently begun having horrible thoughts at night of dead people and who knows what else. It's terrible. He has never seen a scary movie, we homeschool and don't even have cable.

    I haven't found the answer but wanted to share that we are looking into Julia Ross, author of The Mood Cure

    She deals with fixing brain chemistry with amino acids. It gives me hope. Also, look into Carl Pfeiffer's book "Nutrition and mental illness". Good stuff.

    This is a scary time for us all to be dealing with this. Wishing you all well and God bless.

  • Jack Mavic

    Hey everyone,

    I am so glad to have found this website. I am 22, and I too have the same kind of thoughts that you all describe. They are all FEARS. Sometimes I feel in control and I don't think about it, but what really drives me nuts is that whenever I notice that I'm doing better about it, the bad thoughts rush back in and I am back to stage 1 all over again. It's like climbing a mountain you just can't seem to reach the top of. 

    It all started with a panic attack I had almost a year ago. I was with my girlfriend in the car when all of a sudden, out of nowhere, I started getting really violent intrusive thoughts. Thoughts that I was fighting and pushing away while I was driving. I was getting more and more scared, and by the time we got to her apartment, I nearly fainted and rested on her couch. I was afraid I was losing control, and was absolutely terrified... 

    Since then, I've been getting a lot more scary thoughts, compulsions, sometimes they feel more real than other times, and I keep on fighting. Lately, I've also had the fear of becoming so overwhelmed by this constant 'war against those negative thoughts' that I'd eventually give up. It can become very difficult, and generally, my biggest frustration, what makes me depressed the most, is that I am afraid I might get stuck with those thoughts and feelings for the rest of my life. 

    I love horror movies too, which poses a problem for me. I have quite a few phobias and fears, some irrational, and I keep imagining scary and frightening scenarios in my head that I don't even consciously think of, they just pop up. 

    I know that this is ANXIETY, and I have been diagnosed with a Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Some people find it easier to deal with their problem once they have it identified, but I feel like it's just as hard. It's a battle I feel I can't win, but I won't stop fighting. I hope that I can overcome it one day. I have been seeing a psychologist for just about a month now, and I am taking lots of vitamins (fish oil, b-12, daily vitamins, 5HTP, magnesium...). My psychologist gives me good advice, but I get many side symptoms that frighten me as well (including my vision, difficulty breathing, tightness in chest, lightheadedness, numbness in arms and legs, clumsiness, difficulty talking and as mentioned, terrible dreadful thoughts and feelings). 

    I'm not sure what to do. I've heard of the Linden Method, but I don't know if it's worth the money. Any suggestions? I would really appreciate any recommendations, I've been fighting this for so long and it's taking so much energy out of me, and it is consuming my life. I am having a hard time enjoying things now because all those negative thoughts or obsessions that something is wrong with me (anxiety symptoms and bad thoughts) keep popping up and interrupting my day. Suggestions?

  • sally s

    Hello Oct29, 2008,

    I have been in your situation and I don't want to bring on any fear, however, I went through the same, almost exact thing, however, it came back. Now years later I am doing very well, living incredibly. I do research all of the time, was accepted into med school but became overwhelmed with fear so I could not go. Please contact me via email, I would love to chat, I believe my info could help you entirely and I am now in a psych grad program and pre=accelerated nursing program as well, I want to make up for lost time.


    Sally S

    I hope you are well

  • james v

    when my panic attacks come it feels like the darkness is overcoming me & i cant stop what im going to do. then i pop some paxil, close my eyes & it goes away. but man is it ever scary, cause i respect all forms of life (except for gangstas & people that prey on the weak). wish i knew clinically what this is all about. maybe how 2 confront & stop it, but ive been to so many counselors & none of them do anything but listen for an hour, take my money & say "ok well ill see you next week". :c(

  • Tuirirangi Kereama

    Hey man, I know exactly how you fell. Everything you a going through I am going through right now. I have been getting than I was, I was getting pretty depressed about it at one point, just felt really bad, guilty and I hadnt even done anything wrong, just purely having the thought in my mind was really distrubing. I find it hard now to look at people just incase they think Im a creep, rappist, murderour everything really. Just scray stuff, find it hard to look at a picture of my niece just because im affraif of getting unwanted ideas into my head. Its really scary, draining. I think the best way for us to fight it, is for people who suffer from the same thing should talk about it, its easyer for someone with it to understand where your coming from. I will never hurt anyone but its just a scary thing.

    I think try and find a Dr. and also, i know its hard, but try and remind yourself that its only a thought.

    And try and putt living rules in place. I try and live by a vow, a rule, and i tell my self everyday, I am the best person I know, I am a good person. And try and live by it. I think it helps alot

  • Just a girl

    I am a 28 year old girl. Two days before my 18th birthday my father attacked my mum and I physically (not sexually). I really thought he was going to kill my mum. It was a terrifying event in my life. I forgave my father the following year and we have had a pleasant relationship for nearly a decade now. However, it was after this life event that I began having 'evil thoughts'. These were thoughts that made me detest myself, think I was an evil person, wish I had never been born and make me not want to be on this Earth. These thoughts made me avoid certain situations - eg I didn't choose a specific uni course due to the thoughts. The thoughts were worst at times of stress. They would then vanish and I'd think, " how could I have thought that about myself - I'm a lovely person! How silly of me!" But then, after a while they'd come back. I tried to keep myself busy - hoping that would keep my mind off my evil thoughts. That didn't work though. It just made them worse.

    Then 3 years ago, while doing a University Masters I had a complete nervous breakdown. The evil thoughts took over me. They were so fast and there were so many - I thought I was a murderer, a beastialitist and all kinds of other things. I was terrified I'd hurt those closest to me, or even a stranger. I became agraphobic and wouldn't leave the house on my own. I couldn't drive a car in case I ran someone over, go on a plane, go anywhere really as I was terrified I'd hurt someone. The thoughts were so powerful and disturbing that they made me physically sick. I could no longer function as a human being. I wanted to have the 'evil' part of my brain cut out - or to have a brain transplant. I knew it was all coming from my head.

    But there really is hope and help. After suffering with this for 7 years, my despair and inability to function meant I had to talk to someone - so I opened up to my boyfriend. I told him to go and find someone normal to love, before telling him why I felt I was an awful person. I then opened up to my mum (with my boyfriend at my side). It turned out my mum and grandfather had suffered the same thing but I hadn't known. I was so relieved at my mum and boyfriend's reactions - they told me my thoughts were just an outlet for all the stress I was under. For years I had feared that my mum would banish me from the family - even though I'd done nothing wrong!

    I then went to the Dr and deferred the end of my masters. This was a huge deal as I was terrified a mental health issue wouldn't go down well for my career career choice but - my sanity was worth more to me.

    The Dr referred me on to a psychiatrist who diagnosed me with OCD - the thought kind. I was so shocked. I thought OCD was cleaning too much etc, but those are the physical OCDs. People don't realise that you can have it internally and hide it very well. I was put on escitalopram and referred for CBT with clinical psychologist for 4 months. I was so scared that they wouldn't be able to "fix" me and that I'd tricked them into diagnosing me with OCD, when really I was just an awful evil murderer, beastialitist etc.

    I am so happy to tell you the CBT, drugs and 6 months time off to relax all worked to help me be myself again. I no longer have the intrusive thoughts and if one does pop in very occasionally (once a month if even!) I just say hello and go about my business. I know I'll always have OCD and am aware that stressful situations such as buying a house, having a baby etc can flare it up. But I am aware of it now and know who to talk to.

    My boyfriend and I are now happily married and looking to the future. It's been 3 years since I had the breakdown and received treatment. I realise that stressful situations aren't great for me, and so didn't return to my masters course. I don't have a high flying job, but do have one I enjoy and that i can leave behind at 5 on the dot. Life is about more than achievements. For me I have learned that it's about friends family and inner peace.

    When I was in the grip of OCD I just wanted to die. I felt that everyone would be better off without me. It physically and mentally hurt me to just live through a day. But help is truly at hand. It's so difficult to pass that point of saying the 'awful' things aloud but people really will understand - especially your Dr. So go easy on yourself, 'cos you know your a good person and lots of people love you. They'll be there to help you back to health. As my sister told me - you can hurt your leg or get an upset stomach, so it makes sense your brain can get sick. It can also get better too. Love to all those suffering from this. Have the courage to get help and know deep down that you're a good person who would never hurt anyone.

  • Anonymous21

    Hi everyone, I am 29 years old and have recently started suffering from anxiety depression. I've been really frightened over the last few days as I've been getting really dark thoughts, I feel like I'm losing my mind as the dark thoughts are mainly focused on my loved ones. These thoughts are making me think that I'm a violent murderer and I don't understand why I am having them. i only have to look at my loved ones and these horrible thoughts come in full force, they really frighten me and I feel like I can't talk to anyone about it incase they think I'm crazy or that I will actually harm them.

    For some reason all my dark thoughts are with knives and I'm even getting to the point now of wanting to lock all sharp items away. I know I'm not a violent person and wouldn't dream of hurting anyone, but these thoughts are so real sometimes you start to doubt yourself. I really wish they would go away they're ruining my life. I have a wonderful husband and family and we have just opened our own business but I just don't feel any interest in it as I don't want to be around people for fear of having these awful thoughts. Please someone help!!!!!!!

  • Cara

    Wow i do this too and it scares me too death! I hate it. you are more than welcome to email me i want to see a pychiatrist but im afraid they will put me in the pych

  • Anonymous-4

    As long as i can remember, i've had these thoughts of killing those i love, those i don't know.i once mentioned this to my mom and she got quiet and talked about therapy, i of course declined but the thoughts haven't stopped... I today thought about stabbing someone with the scissors i held. i sometimes fear i won't control myself. I'm glad to know i'm not alone in the world with these feelings..

  • Anonymous-5

    The people the wont leave me alone the tell me to hurt people when they make me mad. I want their warm blood in my hands they say it will make it better. I know they lie. They arent real I am in control thats what i tell my self. But the only thing that gets me through the day is the image of the people thats i have to get along with getting their head bashed in with a bat the blood every where. I want to be normal but I have to fake sympathy. I think humans are ugly decussting flimsy things that dont belong. I am just not sure.

  • Renniqe

    i am so glad I'm not the only one. I really thought I was the only one. I got so afraid and scared . I keep getting feelings of you know.. killing my parents. And I know i neve would. But its still scary. Im glad to see that Im not the only person who feels this way and im happy to discover that I might mot be a killer. I'm only 17 and Im terrified. I feel much better... thank you all for sharing your thoughts.

  • Anonymous-6

    It brought me to tears to see how many people suffer the same thing I do. I'm a 20 year old female and diagnosed with anxiety OCD and depression. It all happened when I began college and was on my own for the first time. Everything was fine until out of no where I would freak out and cry. Then that snow balled into anxiety and panic attacks. Im also a lover of thriller movies and watched one and got the idea I to my head I was going to hurt my family whom I love dearly. The images and thoughts in my head were so disturbing I couldn't function and tried to avoid the people I love the most because I was scared I would hurt them or myself. The obsessive thoughts where driving me crazy and I still feel like my life has spun out of control. I would never hurt a single person in my life but these scary thoughts make me question myself and who I am. I was shaking and sweating and my heart was racing 24/7 because i was obsessing on my biggest fears because they felt so real. I went to see a psychiatrist and he gave me lexapro which has calmed down my obsessive thinking. I've only been on it a week or so but it helps. In still worried but no where near as much as I used to be. There is still hope. I wish the best for everyone.

  • Belle

    A simple phrase that sums everything up...''You only sink aslow as you want to'' Why do I say this? because its so very true I had and still have these thoughts. The exact thoughts I have are that Iwould literally murder my kids. Or my husband. They were soscary in the beginning that all I could do was cry and tell my family to lock me up into a mental hospital. I would not eat I would cry all day would stay away from my kids day and night. I would stay as far away fromknives as I could I wouldnt take a shower by my self. I would freak out just thethought of ppl knowing what went through my head. But you know what made my change and motivated me..My kids. How? whn my 5 year old told my momwjy do you cry all day? and when she over heard me telling my dad I dont want my kids taken away shesaid mommy I dont want us toget separated. I chose to get through this. I chose to be happy to be strong and most importantly patient. because this wont go away right when I want to i know that ..But i also know taht its NOT REAL. and that I love my kids to the point where I WILL DO ANYTHING TO MAKE THEM HAPPY. And most importantlly I love my self. Anxiety makes yoru worst fears pop in your head and makes them stay .You know what i have to say to anxiety?? F**K YOU ANXIETY im strong and a happy mommy and now all the things I couldnt do I now DO!!! I take care of my kids sleep withthemshower alone I can hug them!!! I can have aperfectlly normalday. And i know all you can to! YOU ARE STRONG AND BEAUTIFUL HUMAN BEINGS!LIFE IS SOO EASY BUT US HUMANS INSIST ON MAKING LIFE HARD! BE HAPPY AND ENJOY LIFE! Thoughts are just thoughts! Stop being afraid! Easier said than done i know believe me! But It depends onus you can go to amillion therapist and pop a billion pills but nothing will helpyou unless you help your selves! hope this helped =) We are all humans and have a disease that only exist in our head people. Be happy fart rainbows!! Hug the people you love! Focus onthe goood!! most importantly BELIEVE thats this will go away! theres a difference between knowing and BELIEVING!! xoxo kisses and hugs! =D

  • Paul Berglund

    That usually are the center of our "intrusive thoughts". They hold such control over us in that if somethine were to happen to them we would "die" from anguish that our subconcious resents them and wishes to do away with them. That's how I rationalize them - and understanding them is the start too diminishing them.


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