Our third annual Online OCD Camp (held February 4-5, 2023) brought together 249 families for a virtual weekend filled with inspiring talks, lectures, and activities for youth and families who battle OCD and related disorders. These two days offered a chance to connect not only with therapists, counselors, and experts, but also other kids who share similar courageous journeys — something that is often difficult in school and daily life.
Activities of all kinds helped make this OCD Camp especially memorable for attendees from eight countries and 44 US states. Elementary Schoolers bonded over storytelling, skill-building, and yoga. Middle Schoolers learned new approaches for tackling OCD and got a chance to shine during “IOCDF’s Got Talent.” High Schoolers explored strategies and motivations to give them a better fighting chance. And parents and guardians received new skills for how to help their children understand therapy and not accommodate their symptoms.
At the Camp Closing on Sunday, the Zoom room was beaming with smiles and hope. One attendee in the Parent/Guardian track wrote:
What an excellent conference. Thank you so very much! Our teens were reluctant to join but once they started, they have been participating willingly and enjoying this conference very much. Hope to be there live in July. Thank you experts!
An enthusiastic young camper added:
Thank you EVERYONE! I learned so much that will help me continue on my OCD journey. I learned that I wasn’t alone and to roll with my anxiety. I’m DEFINITELY coming back next year. OCD camp ROCKS!!!
And, finally, the words of another young camper left an especially powerful mark on all attendees:
To everyone that came to this camp: parents, caregivers, highschoolers, middle schoolers, etc. Whatever theme of OCD you have, the severity, whatever, remember you are strong. Even if the intrusive thoughts squish you until you are as flat as a pancake, even if it feels like your parenting methods aren’t helping. Remember that you aren’t your thoughts, you’re stronger than the OCD, and work with the evidence you do have, not evidence you don’t have. Wherever, and whoever you are, you are strong. You will do great things. Despite how annoying, scary, or humiliating OCD is, you are better and stronger than it. OCD may be chronic, but we can learn to live with it. I hope to see you all again next year, and I hope that your OCD becomes manageable or micro like. You are all awesome and super cool.
We hope to see you at next year’s Online OCD Camp as well — as well as the other Events (both virtual and in-person) we’ll hold this year!