At the Cognitive Behavior Therapy Center of Silicon Valley, we offer cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) for Sexual Orientation OCD/Gay OCD/HOCD. Our approach is practical, goal-oriented, compassionate, and scientifically-based while focusing on your individual needs. We are located on the border of San Jose and Saratoga by Westgate Mall and serve the Silicon Valley communities of San Jose, Saratoga, Mountain View, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, Los Gatos, Palo Alto, Los Altos, Cupertino, Campbell.
What is Sexual Orientation OCD/Gay OCD/HOCD?
Sexual Orientation OCD, also known as Gay OCD or Homosexual OCD (HOCD), is a condition in which an individual, straight or gay, obsessively doubts their sexual orientation. Obsessions about sexual orientation differ from an individual who is actually gay because the person with OCD does not generally feel attraction or sexual arousal to members of the same sex. The individual with sexual orientation OCD fears becoming gay or discovering that he or she was unknowingly gay all along.
Symptoms of Sexual Orientation OCD/Gay OCD
The obsessions in Sexual Orientation/Gay OCD take the form of worry about becoming or being gay, engaging in same-sex sexual behavior, and being ridiculed by others for being gay. Common symptoms in Sexual Orientation/Gay OCD involve:
- Avoidance of sexual orientation-related triggers such as gay people, gay films and TV shows and gay neighborhoods
- Physical rituals designed to “prove” one’s sexuality such checking one’s genitals for signs of arousal, increased sexual activity in an effort to prove to one’s self that they are straight, or compulsive masturbation to straight pornography
- Mental rituals aimed at forcing unwanted gay thoughts away such over-analysis of gay thoughts, trying to force straight thoughts into consciousness or mentally reviewing past sexual encounters, etc.
Cognitive Behavioral Model of Sexual Orientation OCD/Gay OCD
Gay OCD is often characterized by excessive doubt. The individual may first experience sexual orientation fears when noticing that a member of the same sex is attractive. The individual then questions why they had the thought and mentally panics, leading to more questioning. These fears are more than just fleeting thoughts; they become powerful obsessions that keep coming back. In an effort to make the thoughts stop, the individual performs compulsions, which may present as checking for indications of physical arousal when around attractive members of the same sex.
Cognitive Behavior Treatment of Sexual Orientation OCD/Gay OCD
The goal of CBT for Sexual Orientation/Gay OCD is to teach you that you can manage the anxiety associated with obsessive thoughts about your sexual orientation without performing mental compulsions or rituals to “test” your sexuality. You will learn a type of CBT called Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP). Treatment will include education about Gay OCD and how it is maintained, cognitive strategies that will help you respond differently to anxiety and intrusive thoughts, and behavioral strategies to help you delay and/or eliminate compulsive behaviors. ERP/CBT will help you face your anxiety and discomfort about having doubts about your sexual orientation and practice new ways of responding to anxiety. With practice and experience facing your discomfort, you will find yourself less disturbed by these doubts and more able to cope with anxiety and bothersome images.
How to Get Help for Sexual Orientation OCD/Gay OCD
The Cognitive Behavior Therapy Center of Silicon Valley is located at 1475 Saratoga Avenue on the border of San Jose and Saratoga by Westgate Mall. With our convenient location between highways 85 and 280, we serve the Silicon Valley communities of San Jose, Saratoga, Mountain View, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, Los Gatos, Los Altos, Palo Alto, Cupertino and Campbell, CA. Contact us at (408) 384-8404 for more information on how we can help you manage your Sexual Orientation OCD/Gay OCD.
Serving the Silicon Valley communities of San Jose, Saratoga, Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Los Altos, Sunnyvale, Palo Alto and Santa Clara, CA
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