An attraction to another person can be fun and exciting, especially early on. It is a natural human desire to share a sense of mutual love. However, it can sometimes go too far. In fact, intense infatuation can be a sign of obsessive love disorder, a condition that can be addressed with a bipolar disorder treatment program. If you or someone you know has an unhealthy or dangerous obsession with another person, reach out to Bayview Recovery at 855.478.3650 to discuss treatment options.
What Are the Signs of OLD?
There is no medical or psychological classification for obsessive love disorder. However, obsessive love disorder, or OLD, is recognized as an unhealthy fixation on a particular person. It is often accompanied by mental health conditions that may or may not be at the root of the obsessive behavior.
How do you know if you or someone you know has obsessive love disorder? Here are some common signs of OLD:
- Thinking about and talking about the other person all the time
- Trying to control where the other person goes
- Trying to control the other person’s social life
- Monitoring the other person’s social interactions, such as listening in on their conversations in person or over the phone and reading their text messages
- Wanting the person to stay within your sight at all times
- Unwarranted jealous behavior
- Over-the-top protective behavior
You have likely witnessed someone exhibiting one or more of the above behaviors, and you may have even done this yourself sometimes. That does not necessarily indicate OLD, although expressing multiple obsessive love disorder traits may signify you need help.
Are You Showing Obsessive Love Disorder Traits?
If you believe that your behavior is simply an act of love, you may not feel there is a problem and will not seek treatment. If you are unsure if you have obsessive love disorder, ask yourself the following:
- Are your obsessive behaviors negatively impacting your relationship with your object of affection or others in your life?
- Do you feel the need to constantly call or text the other person throughout the day to keep tabs on them?
- Do you need constant reassurance from the other person?
- Are you upset if the other person engages in social activities without you?
- Is your work or school performance suffering because you spend all your time focused on the other person?
- Do you go through the other person’s phone or laptop?
- Have you or would you consider violence or self-harm if the other person rejects you?
If you can relate to the above OLD symptoms and behaviors, you should consider getting help before the obsession further deteriorates your self-esteem and relationships.
Treatment for Obsessive Love Disorder
Obsessive love disorder is believed to result from or contribute to mental health conditions. Therefore, some of the same protocol used in mental health treatment is the best option for overcoming OLD. Treatment for excessive love disorder typically includes:
- Psychotherapy – During these sessions, you may explore events from childhood that could have led to your obsessive love disorder. Many people with OLD have a fear of abandonment based on childhood trauma.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) – A therapist will help you identify unhealthy thoughts and behaviors that contribute to OLD. You will work together to restructure your thoughts and consider healthier behaviors to reduce your symptoms and improve your relationships.
- Medication – Since OLD is typically an indicator of mental illness, a psychiatrist or doctor will evaluate you to pinpoint any mental health disorders and prescribe the appropriate medication.
A combination of therapy and anti-anxiety medications or antidepressants can help you get back to feeling more emotionally balanced. As a result, you will see improvements in your overall outlook and relationships with your partner, friends, and family.
End Obsessive Love Disorder with Help from Bayview Recovery
Bayview Recovery can help you get to the root of obsessive love disorder. Our bipolar disorder treatment programs allow you to get back in control of powerful emotions that have led you to engage in harmful obsessive behaviors. Reach out to us today at 855.478.3650 to learn how we can help you overcome OLD symptoms and find emotional peace and balance.