OCD: Phyllis

Surviving OCD

Phyllis wrote to Dr. Phil seven years ago about her battle with OCD. When she last appeared on the show, she admitted to cleaning her house 16 hours a day, which caused turmoil for her husband and children.


"My life right now is awesome," says Phyllis. "I don't obsess anymore about my house being cleaned. My family today is more relaxed. Dr. Phil, thank you so much for changing my life and changing my family's life."

[AD]Dr. Phil welcomes Phyllis back to the show. "It's so good to see you," he says with a broad grin. "What was the most meaningful thing that you did, that you used, that was a tool for you to achieve where you are?"

"I listened to you telling me that I needed to change my behavior. I started off with the music. It did start to get better," she replies. "I would just sit there staring at my daughter's [messy]room, wanting to get up and touch it, but not doing it and just leaving."

Phyllis offers some words of wisdom for Lisa. "It's the hardest thing, Lisa, you're ever going to have to do, but it was just worth it," she says. "I can't express to you enough how important it is to your children to just stop. You can clean your floor five times, but you know what? The germs are somewhere else. I was the same way you are. I wanted to put my children into bubbles. If they're going to get sick, they're going to get sick."

"Phyllis, how long did you suffer with this to the point where it controlled your life?" Dr. Phil asks.

[AD]"Forty-five years," she replies. "It's up to me. Now I have the tools. I know that I can just walk away. The anxiety is still there, but it's different. I can't tell you what a change there has been in my life and in my family's life."

"What do you think about what she's saying?" Dr. Phil asks Lisa.

"It gives me hope, I guess, to see somebody else had that, and they've changed, so I can do it too," she responds.