Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder that can affect anybody. and there are so many famous people with OCD in the world today. The word OCD came into use in 1941 but the disorder itself predates the name as famous people like Albert Einstein, Charles Darwin, Michelangelo, Ludwig Van Beethoven were posthumously diagnosed with the illness.
Experts describe OCD as an anxiety disorder that is characterized by recurrent compulsion or obsession that is time-consuming and causes significant distress. These actions are recognized by the individual affected as unreasonable or excessive. The obsession can range from contamination fears, sexual orientation and obsessions, causing harm on purpose or by accident to oneself and others, symmetry and exactness, religion, pedophilia, and so on.
The compulsion can also range from counting, repeating, checking, cleaning and washing, mental rituals, ordering, and arranging, etc.
Generally, someone suffering from this disorder has deep-rooted anxiety which prompts thoughts that upset them which are called obsessions. Some of them find relief by repeating particular rituals which are called compulsions. This disorder has a serious impact on their lives but there are different ways of managing the illness and still leading a successful life. Famous people living with OCD can testify to this.
OCD has been listed by the World Health Organization (WHO) as one of the biggest causes of disability. There is a lot of stigmatization in the public so sufferers mostly keep their illness hidden. Some celebrities suffering from the disorder have been brave enough to open up about it. Here is a list of 10 famous people with OCD.
Famous People Living With OCD
1. David Beckham
The former football star, David Beckham is one of the famous people with OCD. He opened up about his illness in the year 2006 during a television interview with ITV1. He admitted that he has the compulsion to have everything in pairs or on a straight line. He sometimes rearranges the books and leaflets in a hotel room before he can relax. Everything just has to be perfect. He confesses that he has tried to break the cycle of this repetitive behavior but can not seem to stop.
His wife, Victoria Beckham calls him a ‘weirdo’. In an interview, she admits that their refrigerator is coordinated and symmetrically arranged. If there are 3 drink cans in the fridge, he throws one away because they have to be in pairs and even numbers.
2. Jessica Alba
Jessica Alba is a famous American actress who has featured in lots of movies and television series. Her first appearance on television was at the age of 13 although she became prominent at the age of 19 with her lead actor in “Dark Angel” and her Golden Globe nomination.
She reveals that she has struggled with OCD since she was 10. Her rise to stardom has helped her manage the illness better but she isn’t shy to talk about it. Jessica has struggled with her condition while growing up but has chosen to look at the positive aspect of her illness. She claims that her compulsion to do things right helps her put in her best in all that she does.
She shares an incident where Cash Warren (her then-boyfriend now-husband) filled her hotel room with 200 balloons as a surprise for her birthday. She was thrilled at first and loved it, but she soon began to feel anxious and they had to call housekeeping to clean it up.
Alba seems to have gotten over most of her anxiety issues although she still has the compulsion of unplugging all home appliances every time she leaves the house or double-checking all the doors to make sure they are locked. She describes the feeling as that of panic which compels her to do or control something.
3. Leonardo DiCaprio
The savvy and sharp-witted American actor and producer, Leonardo DiCaprio is never the type to do anything halfway. He is known for the true-to-life manner in which he portrays any character he takes up. He has been nominated severally and has won three Golden Globe Awards, a British Academy Film Awards, an Academy Awards, and a Screen Actors Guild Awards. He rose to the international limelight with his performance in Titanic (1997) which was the first film with the highest gross at that time.
After playing an OCD character (Howard Hughes) in Aviator, Leonardo DiCaprio admitted that his struggle with OCD returned and he had to keep telling himself how ridiculous he was for stepping on every chewing gum stain or going back 20 feet to step on something. He played the role so well that he began giving in to his own compulsions and maybe inducing a severe form of OCD in himself.
4. Donald Trump
The 45th President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, is one of the few popular people that has openly spoken openly about their OCD. Before he became president, he has admitted to having a phobia for germs which makes it very difficult for him to shake hands with people. He also admits to washing his hands as frequently as he can and drinking from a straw to avoid contamination.
Jimmy Kimmel put together a video recently to show the President’s OCD tendencies. As observed from the video, President Trump obsessively moves things around once he sits at a table or desk. It might be a notebook, coffee cup, glass, paper, or pen.
5. Megan Fox
Megan Fox is a well-known model and actress who has been vocal about her different insecurities with her self-image, self-esteem, and OCD tendencies. She admits to having a sane and balanced childhood at home but was bullied a lot in school because of her aggressive personality and making friends with boys.
Her anxiety peculiarities involve the use of a public toilet which she believes releases lots of germs when flushed and the use of cutlery in a restaurant. She finds it difficult to put her mouth where over a million mouths might have been especially considering the number of bacteria present in the mouth.
6. Billy Bob Thornton
The eccentric and multi-talented actor, musician, filmmaker, songwriter, and singer has revealed that his OCD stems from his difficult childhood. In an interview with The Independent in 2004, Billy Thornton admits to having a phobia for antiques especially french silverware which are big and old. He also has the compulsion to constantly calculate mathematics. Some certain numbers symbolize certain people to him so he can’t use them in some circumstances. Thornton admits that his condition can be very exhausting.
7. Cameron Diaz
Cameron Diaz is a retired American actress who is known mostly for her appearances in movies in the comedy genre. She was ranked as the richest female celebrity by Forbes in 2010 and number 60 of the wealthiest 100 but irrespective of her wealth and fame, Cameron Diaz still suffers from OCD.
She has a peculiar obsession with doorknobs which she believes are germ-infested. She sometimes opens doors with her elbow to avoid touching them. Cameron admits to cleaning the doorknobs in her house so much that the original paint on them has faded. She also washes her hands many times a day.
In other to cope with her OCD and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Diaz uses the “Transcendental Meditation Technique” which makes everything easier for her.
8. Justin Timberlake
Justin Timberlake is also one of the famous people with OCD and the versatile actor, singer-songwriter, and record producer has been vocal about his struggle with the condition. He has a condition similar to David Beckham with his obsession with lining things in pairs. He also wants his refrigerator stocked up with certain things. Justin says he is obsessed with neatness generally and can spend hours lining objects perfectly.
9. Charlize Theron
The South African and American actress has received several awards for her outstanding performances. She retained her South African citizenship when she became an American citizen in 2007 and has been named as one of the world’s most influential people.
Charlize Theron is one of the famous people with OCD. She has an obsession with neatness. Her surroundings have to be organized and tidy or else it messes with her mind. She sometimes lay awake worrying about messy cabinets or things not being in their right place.
In her appearance on The Ellen Show with Ellen Degeneres, she admits that being a mother, especially sharing her home with her son and daughter, has eased her symptoms. She reveals that she has given up on some rooms but her kids are allowed everywhere in their house. She has just learned to be less anxious about unimportant things and remain happy.
10. Howie Mandel
The comedian and actor, Howie Mandel, is one of the few celebrities that has spoken openly about mental health. He believes that stigmatization will continue to prevent people from getting help and talking about OCD. Howard suffers from different obsessions ranging from his pathological fear of being contaminated by germs and cannot shake hands with anyone unless he is wearing a latex glove. He has poked fun at himself severally about his illness and reveals that his shaved head isn’t a result of hair loss but because it makes him feel cleaner. He has a smaller house built behind his main house where he goes for solitude especially when a family member is sick.
He has admitted to being afraid of public bathrooms and can’t use any besides his own. Howard also admits to having struggled with OCD since childhood but didn’t know to seek help until he became an adult.