OCD: Living by the Rules: Numbers: Numbers I Fear (Topic#027)

Fun with numbers! (Part 1 of 4)



I’m being a little sarcastic. I’m going to discuss all of the NUMBER-RELATED RULES that have applied to me over my life. I’d like to break this down into even smaller pieces. It would go:

OCD > Living by the Rules > Numbers > Numbers I fear
OCD > Living by the Rules > Numbers > Counting in sets
OCD > Living by the Rules > Numbers > Tapping in sets

OCD > Living by the Rules > Numbers > Counting for safety

Numbers I fear

This is a pretty straight-forward, easy-to-explain one, I think. It seems like something a good number of people can relate with. There are certain numbers that cause me anxiety. It’s also something where OTHER people’s ‘bad’ numbers can rub off on me, so before I go any farther, let me place this caution! **Caution! May be triggering to those prone to number issues!** Okay.

So I think the most obvious are sixes. Triple sixes, to be precise. But a single six also brings up extreme anxiety. I was not raised with religion but growing up, I was extremely religious and spiritual in my own way. I used to have panic attacks when stepping foot into any church, because I was so afraid of God[]. So although it is not my own religion and in a way, this is not what I believe, I am scared of the number six, especially in triplicate. I am afraid of anything in the sixties, but to a lesser degree.

How does this pertain to my life? Well, when I worked in a mediset pharmacy for 2.5 years (is that right? that doesn’t seem right anymore), I had to count to seven a couple hundred times each day. Count to 7. Literally. 1-2-3-4-5-6-7. Over and over again all day long.

EVERY. TIME. I reached the number six, I had a flood of anxiety in my body. Every. time. Hundreds of times daily. Five days a week. So I tried work-arounds. I tried to break it up into 123 – 1234. It helped lessen the anxiety, but I was still always aware of placing the sixth pill into the box. I started to try and think of things found in Nature that are six-sided, six-leafed, six-petaled, etc, because for me, all things in Nature are Sacred. That helped, but I never completed it. I was too distracted with other things.

So what else does it mean? It means feeling a flood of anxiety every time I see the number six. It means never scheduling things for the sixth of the month. It means never setting an alarm clock for six a.m. It means never turning a volume knob to a six.

So what other numbers affect me? I am affecting to a lesser degree by the number thirteen. I do not personally believe in this one. I have no attachment to it myself, no inherent fear, no belief in it superstitiously. However, I do avoid it in a gentler way. I can use the number thirteen, be okay seeing the date, etc. But yet I still avoid it when I have an easy choice to avoid it, such as volume controls.

Then there is a streak of numbers in the twenties that I avoid. It started with the number twenty-three but spread. It’s now 23-26, and I force myself to use 22 and 27+. I force myself to use ALL of these numbers (except six), actually. But there were periods in time when I avoided them strongly. I used to be extremely scared on the twenty-third of each month. I still get apprehensive. I don’t like scheduling for that date. I’m not going to go into the details of how this one started, because it would take too long, but it was a hand-me-down number from someone else. Let’s move on!


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