I was diagnosed at the age of 21 with OCD, after spending most of my teenage and young adult years suffering immense pain and shame from unwanted and intrusive thoughts.
The most persistent manifestation of this experience was intrusive and repetitive thoughts about my sexuality. In short, I would constantly think I was gay. In reality, if I was gay, it would’ve been fine, and I would’ve gone about my business; but it wasn’t that at all - it was an all consuming doubt that would never let me be.
All day long my mind would say, “remember when you noticed that guy was handsome?” or “if you weren’t gay, why would you always think about it? Normal straight people don’t think about this so much.”
It was insatiable. I would say to myself, “Okay. Fine I’ll be gay” just to stop the suffering. But nothing would silence the persistent unpleasant questions and ruminations.
Now - am I saying this is your issue? Not at all. But I believe the cure I discovered for myself will also serve you.
What I discovered was that the more I engaged with this voice, the more power it had, and the more damaging it would become. I was completely sexually attracted to women and had off and on girlfriends most of my teen years and later. But none of that assuaged my doubt. Nothing I told myself could quell the never ending questioning and suffering.
Until one day, I just started to observe the incessant stream of thoughts without trying to suppress or intervene in any way . I watched the screaming repetitive questions pass by without trying to fix or change them. Then I would say, “Thanks for sharing”.
Over time I discovered that the only thing that was keeping this suffering around was my insistence that “it shouldn’t be” and my trying to fix it. Once I decided to let it be, it let me be.
This a lot of what is at the heart of meditation in Buddhist practice. Particularly in Vipassana or “insight” meditation. You observe - bring awareness to - the experience or sensation exactly as it is without trying to alter the sensation - without trying to fix your thoughts - and you let the sensation or experience be exactly as it is and exactly as it isn’t.
We find that we are the source of our own suffering in a very tangible way. The more we try and fix ourselves the more broken we become.
Anyway - I know that your experience is different than mine - but try bringing “no change” to your sensations. Try and be with that experience exactly as it is without following the feelings of shame or lust that arise. Notice it and experience it fully without resisting or submitting to the experience, but rather, simply seeing it. Sometimes you don’t even notice when you have “dropped some baggage”, but you definitely walk lighter without it.