Segments in this Video

Springfield Hospital, London Winter 1985 (02:33)


For 13 years Jean has been obsessed with a set of rules that involves touching things. Her life is ruled by this disabling compulsion. Many people with OCD become house bound trying to hide their condition.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (03:01)

When Jean's family leaves the house her OCD takes over. Hand washing is her most frequent compulsion. Fighting her obsessive rituals results in uncontrollable anxiety. She talks herself through one action only to move on to another.

Living with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (02:44)

When Jean leaves the house she tries to conceal her OCD. Her 13 year old daughter describes the toll her mother's disorder has taken. Jean's ability to touch her family is severely impaired by her rules.

Family Life with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (03:00)

Jean has attempted suicide on several occasions. Her husband leaves work throughout the day to take care of the children and clean the house because his wife's OCD prevents her from getting things done in a reasonable amount of time.

Voluntary In-Patient Treatment for OCD (02:55)

Springfield Psychiatric Hospital is known for its work with obsessive compulsive disorder. Jean's anxiety to obey her rituals is combined with guilt about her destructive influence on her family. Hospital staff will focus on her symptoms.

Practice Defying Compulsions (04:28)

The first exercise in confronting Jean's obsession involves concentrating on doors. Her OCD causes her to wash her hands immediately after touching door handles. She experiences anxiety but manages to come through a door and shake hands.

Talking Through Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (05:33)

Jean experiences anxiety from moving a bag from her bed to the floor because she can't wash her hands. The next day Jean is able to take her knitting out of the bag even though her OCD makes her feel that it is contaminated.

Treatment for OCD Continues (01:53)

Jean has been in treatment for one week doing exercises to defy her obsessive rituals. She must identify each compulsion then continually refuse to obey. She stays with her anxiety rather than giving in to her desire to organize things.

OCD Treatment Involves Family (04:45)

Jean's family is admitted to take part in treatment exercises and learn about the techniques they can apply when she returns home. She is still resistant to touching people without washing her hands. Deep breathing helps with her anxiety.

Family Practice Continues (02:43)

Jean continues working to defy her obsessive compulsive disorder. She lets her son touch her face and gives her daughter a hug.

Effects of OCD on Marriage (02:27)

In a few weeks Jean and her family may have enough confidence in the techniques to continue them at home without the therapist's support. Jean and her husband talk with the therapists about her treatment.

Success Conquering Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. (03:17)

Jean is back home after two months in treatment. She is still an outpatient, but has adjusted to a life free of daily rituals. She spends more time with her children and started a part time job. Two years later she is no longer disable by her OCD.

Credits: Jean: A Battle with Obsession (00:33)

Credits: Jean: A Battle with Obsession

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Jean: A Battle with Obsession

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Jean Dobbie-Cunningham is a victim of obsessive behavior; she suffers from a touch obsession that dominates life for her and her family. The touch obsession is one of many symptoms of OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder), a common condition that can have serious consequences. Some victims of OCD have such time-consuming compulsions that it is difficult for them to hold a job or manage their families. Common compulsions are the continuous washing of hands or the checking and rechecking of ordinary actions like locking front doors. Some victims learn to control their compulsions, while others require professional attention. This film traces Jean’s treatment at a psychiatric hospital and reports on its success two years later. A BBC Production. (40 minutes)

Length: 40 minutes

Item#: BVL48743

ISBN: 978-1-62290-141-8

Copyright date: ©1987

Closed Captioned

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