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In order to avoid symptom triggers, it’s not uncommon for people with homosexual OCD to become depressed and drop out of school, quit their jobs, end relationships, or make other life-altering decisions that paradoxically make their symptoms worse.In some cases, individuals with HOCD experiment with homosexual relationships or adopt gay lifestyles because of doubt about their heterosexuality.Homosexual OCD (“HOCD”) is a specific subtype of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) that involves recurrent sexual obsessions and intrusive doubts about one’s sexual orientation.

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Many people with homosexual OCD also have a history of having enjoyed heterosexual relationships in the past.

It was only after the first unwanted thought “popped” that they became overly concerned about the prospect of being gay.

Faulty beliefs about sexuality and sexual orientation perpetuate fear about the possible consequences of resisting OCD-related compulsions.

This is harmful because every time an unwanted thought is avoided or neutralized, it is reinforced and becomes more likely to become activated again in the future.

Sexual obsessions can also affect gay men, lesbians, or bisexual individuals with OCD, who may become fearful about the possibility of becoming straight (“Straight OCD”).

The common element that unites these seemingly opposite sexual obsessions is the fear of being attracted to something unwanted, taboo, or “unacceptable” based on one’s particular worldview.

Other people with homosexual obsessions have a contamination-related variant of HOCD and worry that contact with gay men, lesbians, bisexual individuals, or effeminate/androgynous people is “contagious” or may somehow “activate” their latent homosexuality.

Still others worry about acting on unwanted sexual impulses.

Some individuals with HOCD have a predominantly checking-related variant of OCD.

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