We all have a few Obsessive Compulsive Disorder tendencies. My husband is actually infamous on our street for checking he has locked the house at least 10 times before we leave. This normally involves getting out of the car to check and has also seen him reverse back on the driveway approximately 30 seconds after departure to check again. It’s a running joke that we will get a text from our neighbour just after we have finally left the house saying, “Are you sure you locked the door?”
Most of these personality ‘quirks’ we are able to keep in check. But when we become parents these OCD tendencies can be somewhat amplified by our frazzled nerves, lack of sleep, and high caffeine intake.
If you have interrupted your shower 5 times to stick your head out the door because you thought you heard a small person in need, you might be an OCD parent.
Other areas where OCD parenting comes into full swing include:
Those first anxious weeks with a newborn baby and an overwhelming feeling of ‘what do I do with this little creature’ sees new mums and dads checking their precious little bundle is breathing approximately every 45 seconds. It does ease over time, although parents can still be known to lean over their 5 year olds sleeping body just to double check. It’s all good until the 5 year old wakes up With Mummy’s ear in his face and screams, which makes you scream, which makes him scream some more, and, well you get the picture. There’s a lot of screaming. Not that this has ever happened to me. Ahem.
Normally parents can smell a dirty nappy anywhere within a 100 yard radius. We are pretty nifty at getting to that smelly bottom before the culprit has a chance to bum shuffle their way to the toy box and squish that bad-boy down. However, if your small person has not had their regular movement for a little while you can become prone to the OCD disorder of bottom sniffing. I know you swore that when you had kids you would never sniff their bottoms, but that intention has as much chance as surviving as the no wine on a school night rule.
Small people are social butterflies and have a very active social life. They sometimes attend two parties on the same day. Now that’s an enjoyable sugar come down to experience. But as parents we have to be their PA’s and keep on top of these events. Homework deadlines, discos, play-dates and world book day. No one wants to be the parent that sends their small person to school in uniform on non-uniform day. All this social activity leads to compulsive calendar checking.
4 Mr Men Books
They have to be in the correct order, right?
5 Days of The Week Pants
Never buy your small person pants with the days of the week emblazoned on them. Firstly, what does your small person care. Secondly, you run the risk of being highly obsessed with ensuring your child is wearing the right pants on the right day. This can lead to you having to do a dark load on a Tuesday when Tuesday is white wash day. And if your kid wears Sunday pants on a Thursday you could disrupt the entire world order.
NEVER try to organise the Lego. It’s a minefield you are unlikely to survive. Do you do it by play-set? By colour? By brick type? Do you go out and by special storage containers and painstakingly label them? Will the small people understand the rules? NO! Will they mix up the wheels with the figures? YES! Will they use their imaginations you have worked so hard to nurture against you by building a robot from the fire engine pieces? YES! Step away from the Lego people. It’s a lost cause.
7 Chicken Pots / Nits
You have received the letter from playgroup informing you of the chicken pots outbreak or the nits infestation. Get ready for an onset of OCD spot watch and itch check. If you do notice a spot you will be googling what ‘chicken pots’ looks like (by the way there are some really gross pictures online), and if they start itching get ready for panic stations.
8 Pick Up Time
It’s the last hour before school pick up time. How many times do you check the clock in that hour?
9 Colouring In
Most small people love a bit of colouring in time. They love it even more when mummy and daddy join in. However they have zero respect for the colouring in boundaries. Everyone is happy when they are colouring in their own pictures. But. Small people often like to ‘help’ with your picture. Do you know what this means people? It means they will colour outside of the actual lines. And not only that but they are brazen enough to colour the sand in purple. You heard me, PURPLE! If you have felt your anxiety levels rise during a colouring in session then you have ‘creative OCD’.
Personally I find a nice glass of wine on a Friday evening soothes the OCD tendencies.
Do you have any others to add?
Disclaimer: I fully appreciate that OCD is a serious and debilitating condition. This post is intended to amuse and not offend.