Intended for healthcare professionals


The “OCD bully”

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: (Published 06 October 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c2596
  1. David Veale, consultant psychiatrist, NIHR Specialist Biomedical Research Centre for Mental Health at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London,
  2. Steve Caplin
  1. david.veale{at}

This installation is displayed in the entrance to the Anxiety Disorders Residential Unit at the Bethlem Royal Hospital. The unit provides a national service for the treatment of severe obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).

People with OCD often consider their OCD to be like a bully or a demon that has to be obeyed. During cognitive behaviour therapy, they may be encouraged to “externalise” their bully and to act against it by doing the opposite to …

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