Belgian teen struggles with fear, anxiety

When I was age 7, my cousin died from cancer, and that has influenced me greatly. It gave me a great fear of death, and I constantly asked my parents if I or they themselves would die. In order to minimize the fear, I began to perform certain compulsions.

I had to stop at all the corners on the streets and touch walls and the ground. I also had mild tics such as eye blinking. But that bothered me the least. I also started to state some numbers as good or bad. Three, for example, is not a good number (my grandmother died when I was 3 years old). Also, 4 is not a good number as well. It was 4 p.m. when my cousin died from cancer). These numbers still have a huge influence in my Tourette’s today.

I’m 18 now, and was diagnosed with Tourette’s at 10. Now I notice my Tourette’s a lot more. I have a lot of scary thoughts. I am easily worried, anxious, and my OCD remains a major influence on my life. What is striking, though, is that I could not live without my Tourette’s. Without Tourette’s, I would not be myself anymore.

I have had some session cognitive behavioral therapy in a center specializing in OCD and fear disorders in The Netherlands. Since the center was a couple hours from my house, I was given some therapeutic tasks to do at home that helped with my tics and OCD. I’m also still taking medication.

But I still have some problems with fear. If my boyfriend is 10 minutes late, I think the worst happened. Also, my emotions come out very expressive. When I’m feeling happy I’ll be very happy; unfortunately, when I’m feeling sad, nothing could be darker. :(

When I’m feeling a bit dizzy or having a little pain in my arms, I’m always worried if something medical is wrong and I should go to a hospital. Luckily, my boyfriend helps me a lot with this! He can calm me down! :)

Before I go to sleep, the OCD is the worst. I need to flicker with the lights, touch my nose two times, hold my hands behind my back, make some funny movements and have other tics. Also, I need to touch the ground with my feet a couple of times when going to bed, until everything feels OK.

It helps a lot for me to write all these things down, and I look forward to talking with you all!




  1. I so know what you mean! Before I open a door,I must make this awkward leg movement. It’s creepy.

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