FOR THE WEEK OF JANUARY 8, 2007
Our latest Monk Fan of the Week, Marikia, is an OCD sufferer who is grateful that the show's humor helps others understand her condition. One phobia she has in common with Adrian Monk is the need to use wipes after touching someone. Here is her entry...
For the most part OCD has not been funny or fun to have. However, I did find ways to laugh at my rituals, and that ability to find humour has saved my life and kept me sane.
One time, in the emergency room because of a terrible fall, the triage nurse asked me about my health, that is, did I have any illnesses she should know about.
I said,"Fibromyalgia and OCD."
"Really??" she exclaimed.
I said, "Yes, Do you know what OCD is? Most people, even health care workers, don't."
She said she did know about it and wondered if I had ever seen "Monk."
"Absolutely, my favorite show!" I replied.
She then asked if I was offended by the show's humorizing OCD; making it something to laugh at/about...not really presenting OCD as the terrible disease it is.
I told her I was not in the least offended and that I was supremely happy such a show existed. I told her I didn't care how they presented OCD as long as people would finally learn something about it, and as far as I was concerned, learning through humour was the best way to learn anything.
I am so grateful for the Monk show because I can now say to someone, "Have you ever seen this sitcom called Monk? Well, I'm like him. We both have OCD." Since people love the show, they aren't threatened by me and don't think I'm some scary freak which is how I was treated until Mr. Monk came along.
The phobia of his I most relate to is the towelettes he needs every time he touches something or someone. Personally, I wear gloves 8 months of the year. I try to be stylish in the spring and fall, yet one day a grocery clerk asked me why I was wearing gloves when it was so hot outside. I knew if I said it was OCD, she wouldn't understand and I was annoyed she would ask me such a question, so I answered, "I have leprosy." She dropped the receipt into my hands and the "Oh my God" look never left her face. I laughed all the way to my car.
Thanks so much for this series. It helps me to laugh at myself, and not take the OCD so seriously.
I love you, Tony!
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