Molly Fishback, IOCDF Advocate and co-founder of Not Alone Notes, talks about her conference experience. Check out the full schedule and register for this weekend’s Online OCD Conference!
How many conferences have you attended, and what was your first conference experience like?
The first conference that I attended was in DC in 2018, and I have attended every conference since. It’s hard to explain the amazing feeling of being in a room with hundreds of people who think the same way that you do. It was an overwhelming feeling of understanding of one another and community. It was fun meeting online friends in person for the first time as well as introducing myself to people who I follow online and inspire me.
How does a virtual conference compare with an in-person one?
The virtual conference allows people from all over the world to attend easily. I do enjoy one-on-one time with people at the in-person conferences which is hard to achieve virtually. There are definitely pros and cons to both conferences.
Why is it important for us to still meet in a virtual space during this time?
I would prefer an online conference rather than no conference at all. We learned to adjust our lives to a virtual setting for jobs or school, so adding a virtual conference is just another adjustment to make. There are still ways that you can meet people at the virtual conference such as the virtual chat room. The IOCDF does its best to incorporate elements from the in-person conference into the virtual platform.
What would you say to someone who isn’t sure if they want to go this year?
I would suggest looking at the schedule and seeing what stands out to you. Do any of the talks relate to what you are struggling with? Would it be helpful for a friend or family member to attend a talk? Since the event is online there is no pressure to attend the conference for the full day. You can pick and choose what you get to attend with what works with your own schedule.
Is there any programming you’re excited about for this year’s conference?
Shameless plug … the first program I’m a speaker for is Creative Coping for Young Adults. The second talk is about Managing OCD in the Workplace. The last program is with my nonprofit Not Alone Notes, where we will be writing encouraging notes to either a friend, family member, or even someone you have met at the conference. I am of course excited to hear friends in the community talk on their panels as well!