Living with OCD

Living with me and my OCD

By Charlotte Fantelli

Since I took part in 'Ruby Wax's Mad Confessions' I have been very blessed to hear about some fantastic work taking place in the area of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Among the discoveries, I came across the fantastic filmmaker and mental health advocate Claire Watkinson.

Claire is a freelance filmmaker who has experience of OCD, her project 'Living with me and my OCD', is both harrowingly realistic and also incredibly inspiring. Please see the clip below

*WARNING* some scenes may be triggering.

When I asked her about the reasons behind the film, Claire tells me "I was getting in trouble with missing work, avoiding social situations so I decided to do something about it. Work frustrated me, I tried to explain my problem and my OCD but they didn't understand.

"It was this that made me so furious. I thought where is the awareness for OCD? People don't know what it is, laugh and just think its a joke. So it was that day I turned the camera on myself and spoke, the project just developed from there"

OCD is different for different people

The project itself does not just focus on Claire, but on the condition. Claire is determined to give an acurate depiction of the condition and how it effects individuals across the globe. Claire says" The documentary is about raising awareness of OCD. I have so far interviewed several individuals, including my Dad and Twin sister who suffer from OCD.

"I have been lucky to have interviews with OCD UK and Conditional Publications (a specialist book publisher). I filmed the Bupa race that my sister and I ran in raising money for OCD UK and I have lots of filming events and individuals still planned. I want to show people the ins and outs of OCD and show them its more than just the stereotypical views."

Shedding light and giving understanding

It is indeed a condition much understood, with many varying symptoms, so by getting lots of different people to take part, Claire hopes it will help build a bigger picture of the issues faced by those with the disorder.

"I know there are lots and lots of people out there either unaware they have OCD or living with it and not coming out due to the stigma attatched. I want to create a campaign that will raise the awareness of OCD so everyone who suffers with it will feel confident, comfortable and most importantly not alone.

"Hopefully more services will be created and more attention will be given to OCD sufferers, a disorder that is certainly in need of more attention. The most amazing aspect of this experience so far is how the OCD community have come together, the amount of people I have spoken to is incredible, it has been so amazing."

Claire has many plans for the future of this project and hopes to interview a wide variety of sufferers. She believes this is just the start of a much bigger documentary and campaign, and we wish her every success with it. 

If you would like to get involved or know more please email Claire: clairewatkinson@hotmail.co.uk or follow on facebook: Living with me and my OCD or twitter: @ClaireWatkinso2

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