Twitter @AshleyFulwood ashley@ocduk.org

OCD Jokes – Why It’s important to care

Over the weekend the American singer Katy Perry tweeted what she perhaps felt passed for humour in her part of the world.

Katy Perry Tweet about OCD
Katy Perry Tweet about OCD

I’m so OCD I prefer being called CDO…then the letters are in alphabetical order and all is right in the world again.

She also posted:

Katy Perry Tweet about OCD
Katy Perry Tweet about OCD

Now glossing over the fact it is not actually that funny, this kind of thing being posted by someone with over 88 million followers really does nothing positive  to change misconceptions about OCD.  In fact it adds to the false stereotype that OCD is about being quirky and needing things just right.

OCD-UK did politely reply to ask if we can send some information about OCD to the former Mrs Brand.  As you can imagine, various responses followed from her fans and our followers.  One person commented she is allowed to make such comments because she has OCD.   The justification for such a claim came from this quote from Elle magazine.

The 28-year-old singer openly admitted she suffers with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, which can cause her to freak out if things disturbed in her normal routine.  “I have OCD tendencies. I do strange things with buttoning everything up and colour coordinating it, hanging it in a certain way”.

Now it is not my place to say if she suffers with OCD or not, the quote above is not sufficient evidence there is significant disruption and impact on her life to form a basis for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, the key being the word ‘disorder’ of course.  But it actually does not matter if she suffers or not, the tweet was incredibly unhelpful for OCD awareness.

Sadly, until we have some kind of D-Day awareness campaign which emphasises the D in OCD, such crass jokes will continue. On a personal level I am not offended by such jokes but I am deeply saddened when someone of such stature chooses to mock OCD.

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