How Coming to University Made My OCD Better

Anxious that OCD will get in the way of your degree? Don’t be. Read Kallie Worsfold’s story on how university helped her ‘Obsessive Compulsive Disorder‘.


I remember my cousin telling me:

‘’How are you going to cope at university? Your communal space is most likely going to be a mess and you’re not going to be able to clean your bedroom all the time because you’re going to have so much work to do…’’

I didn’t know what to say back, because I knew it was true.

OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) has been the bane of my life since my early teens.

I was (and still a little) fixated with cleaning. If my personal space wasn’t spotless, I’d feel agitated and unhappy. I used to come home from school whilst studying for my GCSE’s and clean my house from top to bottom, even though my mum had already tidied up. I’d sometimes move furniture around; disinfect everywhere, hoover and mop every night. It became a serious issue. It wasn’t just affecting me, but my parents, sister and others around me.

‘’If my personal space wasn’t spotless, I’d feel agitated and unhappy.’’

When applying to university, I was adamant that I wanted to live in university halls. I knew that mess was bound to be created when sharing communal areas with several other people, and I knew that I would be bombarded with work, so I wouldn’t be able to tidy my bedroom as often as I would like to.

But I was hoping that coming to university would better my OCD, and it did.

Piles of dirty dishes, bins full to the brim, crumbs and pasta sauce stains all over the floor – the rumours are true. University accommodation isn’t the most hygienic of places. However, I had to deal with it. I didn’t have the time to clean the flat from top to bottom every night, and other people had to live there as well. Plus, the workload was real. I couldn’t focus on cleaning, as I had more important priorities to think about, although I still liked to make sure that my personal space was fairly tidy.


Living in university accommodation for my first year was the best decision I made. I found that putting myself in a difficult situation and challenging my obsessive thoughts and actions worked wonders, I knew I had to do it. Self-help, in my opinion, is the best cure for any types of OCD and would be my advice to anyone struggling with it or worrying whether to live in halls.


Do you have OCD and need advice or help? Or want to learn more about the condition? Check out the websites listed below.



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