Anyone Have a Spouse That Is OCPD? Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder

Updated on November 03, 2011
L.W. asks from Los Angeles, CA
7 answers

my husband can be paying bills and just lose it over something small or afraid to make a wrong decision like which street to take home after church (one might be faster and save us time ect.. also always sees cup half empty). How will this relationship effect my daughter. I have been married to my husband for 11 years and we have a 7 year old (i just discovered he has this and now understand him alot more and can sympathize but he doesnt know it) . I sometimes wonder how raising her in this situation will effect her future and if the problems I'm seeing now with her socially in school ect. is an inherited personality disorder or if she has learned this. She is very much like her dad and can obsess easily over some issues.. She is very black and white and has no filters and little empathy and can easily slams doors on relationships that could of husband has no friends(doent seem to bother him) and works constantly because he gets his needs met their and stroked for all of his OCD ways.. He is fufilled but daughter is struggling because she sticks out like a sore thumb. Everything for her is right and wrong.. If a child is running she is the policeman and tells them what they are doing wrong.. Hence the no friends..She is blunt but also cannot understand when things arent fair and refers to herself as a teenager.. I think most of the time she is not on most children's age level or just easily bored with their" talk". She is different from dad as he has accepted he is different(not aware of OCPD) and makes the most of who he is but daughter struggles dailey wondering why she has no friends and says she wants them..(I notice she can get caught up in the victim poor thing role and i have to be careful not to feed into that) She also seems to border on line of narsasistic....friends are kinda disposable to her when she doesn"t need them or when they are too demanding of her time or they want to play their own games. I enjoy her but the neediness for me to entertain all day gets old. No matter how mauch time I give her its never enough.. You cant fill this kid up...Teacher sees same behavior at school and we talk.. They had the Halloween parade and my kid was the one walking beside the teacher laying her head on her or trying to put her hands in the teachers pockets because it was chilly...Or when she wasnt doing that she had a scowl on her face cause the kid in back of her passed her up by running and then my child of course had to go up to her and tell her your suppose to walk..A good reason the kids dont want to play with her..

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answers from Lansing on

My husband has OCD. He is very blunt, and can over analyze things. It doesn't help that he has been diagnosed with ADD. With his ADD meds though he seems to be able to focus a little. He will get himself all worked up, and he even keeps his clothing and everything in a seperate room so he can have it organized a certain way and nobody will touch it!

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answers from Washington DC on

I do not know what OCPD is, maybe obsessive compulsive type, but more so.

What you describe is my 16 yo daughter. She is very bright, seems to want friends but can't stand talking about nails and makeup and will actually let girls know, "this is not a topic worth discussing".

She has to have rules, black and white.
So teacher has to be more firm, No you may not put your hands in my pocket. You will stand here.
She will tattle. This one is big for my daughter, she needs to see a consequence for breaking the rules. It could be that teacher says something to the whole class about running. Once, for my daughter, it was seeing a classmate get his test taken away. He was cheating, she caught him and told. This was a Freshman History class.
Mine has to be with me always. MY family jokes that the umbilical chord is maybe three feet long.
She has to control everything around her and if she is not in control she is pretty much freaked out.

Start giving her chores she can do that make a difference. Have her make dinner, with your help, or without your help have her make the brownies.

Give her part of a list or coupons and tell her to go get______________. Stand in the aisle where the certain food is and let her get it.

Have only one on one playdates with older children. We actually skipped our daughter from 1st to 3rd. She still finds people who are 2 years to 3 years older than her better companions.

Let her do things where you can praise her ability, at 12 mine changed all the light fixtures in the house. She even turned off the power at different times to the different lights.

Assume she can do whatever you ask her to. Mary, I need brownies, will you make thim? Here's the box.
Can you cut out the coupons from the paper for grocery shopping?

Get the book The Five Love Languages. MIne is a spend time with me/words of affirmation child. In other words don't ever leave me and tell me how wonderful I am all the time.

When asked do you want to go here or there or do this or that, "No, there'll be people there." Translation, No there will be people there who have nothing to talk about but superficialities.

And my husband, hates big crowds, is always right, is a workaholic, needs to be the spotlight in a room, likes to be in control. Very Type A, military officer kind of guy. I am pretty much a control freak. THe kids come by it naturally.

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answers from Dover on

My husband is OCPD. He isn't what people would typically thing of as one. He isn't a hand washer or a door locker. He does do repetative behaviors, but they are more random (with the exception of coming in and out of doorways or up and down stairs - he does those all the time) like when he sets his cup down, picks it up, sets it down again, picks it up, sets it down until he does it "just right". He will not step on a crack, he will count the tiles between his steps, he can't handle changes, freaks out if he makes a wrong turn or gets slightly disoriented. I won't let him drive with us in the car anymore after too many "We're all gonna die!" statements while we were in the car. So, I feel ya.

He does have friends, but it might be easier because he is in the military and trust me when I tell you they appreciate his attention to detail and following regulations to the letter. Who you work with is who you hang with so he is well loved.

Since you just figured all this out, let me help you with some things I do to help him:

I set up social things for us, so that he does get out and do things. He is almost always initially resistent, but then he ends up enjoying himself in the end. Staying in the place he is most comfortable isn't necessarily the best thing and he needs to regularly be reminded of the rewards of relaxing.

I have talked to him about what I see and I have told him what I think it is and I have shown him documentation to support that. It was a relief to him to know the why of what he was doing, and he was much more willing to have me "help him" when his issues are controlling him instead of the other way around. Before he would just get embarassed and defensive, and now he lets me say, "it's ok, put the cup down."

We do our best to work around situations that set him off or make him overly anxious, because OCD is an anxiety disorder, so the more anxious he becomes, the more rigid he becomes, the more repetative his behavior becomes and the more miserable we all are. For example, transition times are hard for him, so if when we went to the beach for the day, I sent him out to get cups, sunblock and a couple of other things. I stayed up the night before and packed the bags, and made the sandwiches and while he was gone we completely packed the car got the little kids dressed in their bathing suits and clothes, the big kids got dressed, I got dressed and when he got back we were all ready to go. Crisis averted. Then I drove and he just rode along. I get directions to where we are going, I set the navigator, I make the phone calls, I do all the planning because he gets lost in the details and if the plan changes he wigs out.

As to your daughter, have you had her evaluated? If not, then you should. You are in an excellent position to help her aquire skills to deal with others and cope with her anxiety. She would benefit very much from therapy to help her understand why she feels how she feels, how to cope, how to make friends, how to keep friends. That's what I would do to help her, if I were you. It looks like our son is very similar so I will be doing that before long as well.


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answers from Redding on

Your husband survived it and found a great wife. My guess is that your daughter will also find her nitch. Good for you for being intuitive enough to realize it and try to make things work for both of them. That's a great mom and wife quality in my book. Guiding slyly from the sidelines is what it's all about.
The disorder (if you want to call it that) can be genetic but also can be "learned" just from living in the environment as well. Hard to say which your daughter is experiencing. Sounds genetic tho.

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answers from Chicago on

My ex husband was OCD and I believe now in addition to other problems that my one son has some of those traits. It could have been very nice. We went to counseling, we had friends, we were on a radio show for it, we went through more therapy. He took meds and it was wonderful. He decided the meds weren't necessary. He stopped taking them and I never felt so alone in my life. I went out by myself with my children, he couldn't handle restaurant germs. I did so much by myself I knew I better not remain married. To this day I know how much I had loved him and would have wished he remained on meds. He did beautifully. Now my son was recently hospitalized for depression and it seems some of these things surfaced. He however is on meds and has a girlfriend now and seems to do well. It is all about how you deal with it. Now there are behavior problems and some that can be blamed on this disorder. You will tell as time goes on. Good luck! I want to add one more thing. You are lucky in this day and age they are able to identify this and help your child perhaps. It was a long haul to figure out what was wrong with my ex husband and we had so many terrible problems. I hope this all works out.

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answers from Los Angeles on

Dear L., you mention several psychological terms but have either your husband or daughter been diagnosed by either a psychologist or a psychiatrist? How did you "discover" that your husband has OCPD? To be perfectly honest, what you describe does not sound like OCPD nor does it sound as if your daughter is narcisistic! I've read through your post several times and can't really figure out what you're really trying to ask! My "two cents worth" is to not try and "self diagnose". If you suspect either your hubby, daughter or both are suffering from a psychological disorder, have them assessed by a professional and follow their advice. Just from your post it seems as if you have a "workaholic" hubby with a "short fuse" and a very demanding only child - both things are quite normal, even if super frustrating for the mom/spouse. My suggestion is that you take the time to make friends of your own, maybe join a book club or something, just make sure that you make time for yourself to do something which "recharges" you. I feel you are stressed and depleted by the demands of your hubby and daughter. Take time out for yourself and you'll feel better able to cope. Best wishes to you all.


answers from San Diego on

Your post very much reminds me of my own husband and child. It also made me look up OCPD and made me realize that it is different from OCD. I am making this statement here because so many responders are replying to you from the standpoint of OCD - it is different and is more manageable. And, I can see how easy it might be to try to self diagnose this disease, but I imagine a lot more people (controlling) type people could be self-diagnosed by their spouses;)

To provide a little education to those who don't know the difference (I didn't), here is what I found and where I found it:

Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) is a condition in which a person is preoccupied with rules, orderliness, and control.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors
Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder tends to occur in families, so genes may be involved. A person's childhood and environment may also play roles.

This condition can affect both men and women, but it most often occurs in men.

OCPD has some of the same symptoms as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). However, people with OCD have unwanted thoughts, while people with OCPD believe that their thoughts are correct.

People with both OCPD and OCD tend to be high achievers and feel a sense of urgency about their actions. They may become very upset if other people interfere with their rigid routines. They may not be able to express their anger directly. Instead, people with OCPD experience feelings that they consider more appropriate, like anxiety or frustration.

A person with this personality disorder has symptoms of perfectionism that usually begin in early adulthood. This perfectionism may interfere with the person's ability to complete tasks, because their standards are so rigid.

People with this disorder may emotionally withdraw when they are not able to control a situation. This can interfere with their ability to solve problems and form close relationships.

Some of the other signs of obsessive-compulsive personality disorder include:

•Excess devotion to work

•Inability to throw things away, even when the objects have no value

•Lack of flexibility

•Lack of generosity

•Not wanting to allow other people to do things

•Not willing to show affection

•Preoccupation with details, rules, and lists

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