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Author Topic: How do I overcome my obsessive fear of becoming pregnant?
maria2468
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I am 15 years old and a pregnancy is absolutely unwanted in my life.I don't mean I don't want to get pregnant now, I am sure that I would never want to become a mother. Pregnancy is the most shocking, scary and disgusting thing to me.Since December 2012, I have been having pregnancy scares almost all of the time. I have read your "Pregnancy Scared?" article and it helped me understand what has a pregnancy risk and what doesn't, but it hasn't helped me control my anxiety. I get scared that i might be pregnant every time I shake hands with a guy (because I fear that he might have been masturbating and I might get some sperm on my hands), I wash my hands for at least ten minutes before I use the bathroom/wash my vagina and so on. My last pregnancy scare was when I dried myself with my father's towel by accident. Also, when I am not scared that I might be pregnant, I can't stop imagining all of the horrifying things that might happen if I do get pregnant somehow without having intercourse. I talk about this fear with my mother 3 to 5 times a week, she thinks I will overcome it by myself and refuses to seek professional help for me. But I just can't deal with thins by myself. Because of this fear I am suffering from many health problems caused by stress and it is really ruining my life.

I have another problem, me and my boyfriend have been dating for almost a year, and when we "fool around" we usually just kiss, give each other back rubs and sometimes I let him play with my breasts. But every time he asks me to give him a handjob or he wants to finger me, I get repulsed and scared. Not only do I have a major fear of pregnancy, but I also get disgusted by most kinds of sexual activity. This has played a bad role in my relationship and I really want to enjoy the time I spend with my boyfriend, and my life itself, without being scared all the time.

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Allie R
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Hello maria, and welcome to Scarleteen!

First, I'm really sorry to hear that this fear of yours has been troubling you.

Is there a particular reason, that you're aware of, why the scares began around December last year?

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AAR

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Maria: I am also curious if you think that if you need your mother in order to get professional help for this, if you think more information on these kinds of phobias might help her to understand the need for that help.

If so, I'd be happy to give you some things you could share with her.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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maria2468
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quote:
Originally posted by Allie R:
Hello maria, and welcome to Scarleteen!

First, I'm really sorry to hear that this fear of yours has been troubling you.

Is there a particular reason, that you're aware of, why the scares began around December last year?

December last year was when I experienced my first pregnancy scare. I allowed my boyfriend to finger me and after that I couldn't stop thinking that I have gotten pregnant from possible sperm on his fingers. After a doctor's check-up I found out that I wasn't pregnant, but I have been having anxiety about somehow becoming pregnant ever since.

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Consume your fears before they consume you.

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maria2468
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quote:
Originally posted by Heather:
Maria: I am also curious if you think that if you need your mother in order to get professional help for this, if you think more information on these kinds of phobias might help her to understand the need for that help.

If so, I'd be happy to give you some things you could share with her.

I would be happy if you do so. A single "cheer up, you won't get pregnant if you don't have sex, stop worrying" is not enough for me to overcome this fear.

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Consume your fears before they consume you.

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Heather
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No, I can't imagine it is. It sounds like you're expressing some pretty profound phobias here, and getting over those usually requires qualified mental healthcare for people.

So, you can't seek out that care on your own?

(I'll gather up some informational links for you on this kind of phobia -- and also on OCD, which this might be, as it often is, part of -- for you to share with your Mom regardless.)

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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maria2468
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quote:
Originally posted by Heather:
No, I can't imagine it is. It sounds like you're expressing some pretty profound phobias here, and getting over those usually requires qualified mental healthcare for people.

So, you can't seek out that care on your own?

(I'll gather up some informational links for you on this kind of phobia -- and also on OCD, which this might be, as it often is, part of -- for you to share with your Mom regardless.)

I cannot seek out this care on my own. Thank you very much for your help.

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Consume your fears before they consume you.

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Okay. I'll have a list for you before the end of the day, no trouble.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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maria2468
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quote:
Originally posted by Heather:
Okay. I'll have a list for you before the end of the day, no trouble.

Thank you again.

--------------------
Consume your fears before they consume you.

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Hopefully these can help:
• http://rhrealitycheck.org/article/2010/09/03/real-cantstop-being-afraid-pregnancy/
• http://www.standard.co.uk/news/health/one-in-10-women-suffer-tocophobia--fear-of-child-birth-8316493.html
• http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001926/
• http://psychcentral.com/lib/2012/ocd-treatment-for-contamination-fears/all/1/ (It sounds like some of what you're describing may be a fear of "contamination" by semen or sperm, not just a fear of pregnancy)

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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maria2468
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quote:
Originally posted by Heather:
Hopefully these can help:
• http://rhrealitycheck.org/article/2010/09/03/real-cantstop-being-afraid-pregnancy/
• http://www.standard.co.uk/news/health/one-in-10-women-suffer-tocophobia--fear-of-child-birth-8316493.html
• http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001926/
• http://psychcentral.com/lib/2012/ocd-treatment-for-contamination-fears/all/1/ (It sounds like some of what you're describing may be a fear of "contamination" by semen or sperm, not just a fear of pregnancy)

Excuse me for the late reply, but I have not been able to access Scarleteen due to privacy issues. Thank you very much for the links, but I still have some more questions:

1.When should I approach my mother about seeking professional treatment for me? I usually talk about this fear of mine with her when I am experiencing a pregnancy scare, but I have not had any this week. Should I talk to her about the treatment when I get a new pregnancy scare, or should I do it before I get one to prevent it from coming?

2.I know my fear is irrational, I have even asked my gynecologist stupid questions like "can you get pregnant from a towel, a handshake, touching semen etc.". Everybody, including her, had told me that it is impossible to become pregnant this way, as long as I don't shove something covered with fresh semen inside my vagina, but I still can't convince myself that pregnancy will not occur this way. If my mother still refuses to let me consult a specialist about this fear, what should I do do convince myself that I will not get pregnant by the ways I mentioned above?

3.How should I react if my boyfriend asks me again to give him a handjob or to let him finger me? Would it be better to react as calm as possible, or should I express all of the fear and disgust I would be feeling?

--------------------
Consume your fears before they consume you.

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Hey, maria: since it sounds like this has been ongoing for you, and you need help, I'd talk to her soon. I'd also suggest that it'll probably go better if you talk to her at a time when you are NOT in the thick of a panic. It's hard, as you know, to have productive conversations when you're in the midst of that.

For now, let's not go to what you should do if she doesn't respond better after seeing more of this information, okay? Let's cross that bridge if and when we get there. One step at a time is generally my motto in helping people manage things.

Given the panics you're having, and the fact that you don't yet have any evaluation or treatment of them, I'd personally advise not engaging in any kind of sexual activity you know triggers these fears, or you suspect will. In other words, I'd say that, for now, your best bet would be to explain to your boyfriend that this isn't a right time for you for any of these activities. And you can do that without him asking: that's a conversation you can have anytime.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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