The first time I broke my hand I lied about how it happened. Soccer injury, I told friends who responded with praise instead of concern. My family didn’t even notice. No one thought to stop and question my crooked fingers and out-of-place knuckles.
But I had really punched my bathroom sink out of frustration. I was in high school, and didn’t know how to communicate my compulsions: relentless blinking, retracing footsteps, excessive checking for unlocked doors, uncontrollable hoarding, speaking to inanimate objects, and much more. I knew my thoughts and behaviors were irrational, but I just couldn’t help myself.
Read the rest of my personal essay, originally published at www.zocalopublicsquare.org.