Other Ramblings...

Famous People With OCD

I have a feeling some people might think that this voyeuristic, but I find it quite comforting to think that there are people out there who live with OCD and have been really successful in what they've chosen to do.

And so I want to make a list of them, so that when I'm having a bad day, I can remind myself that just because I might appear, or feel, mad, it doesn't mean I'm automatically a failure!  

If you know about other people who have OCD and you think should be included in the list, please comment  so that I can include them!

 - Charles Darwin

Although Charles Darwin was alive way before OCD was a concept, lots of people now accept that he was a sufferer.  He wrote a letter to a friend which said, "I could not sleep and whatever I did in the day haunted me at night with vivid and most wearing repetition", which sounds very much like he's describe intrusive thoughts.  He also worried obsessively that his children would develop the same illnesses that he suffered from, and - apparently - he would shut his eyes very tightly in order to combat these thoughts.  As well as OCD, people suspect that he suffered from Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD), because he wrote a lot about how he thought that he was very ugly. 

- Jessica Alba 

The actress has obsessions with making sure that appliances are switched off, and that doors are locked.  Interestingly, she also says that she things that lots of actors have OCD because they are creative people and that it's part of a drive to be successful.

 - Cameron Diaz

Another actress who says that she has OCD.  Diaz cleans doorknobs until there is no paint left on them because she is obsessed with germs.  She is also a hand washer.  However, in a 2007 interview, she said that she has "made her peace" with OCD, showing that people can get better!

 - Leonardo DiCaprio

Another actor who is reputed to live with OCD.  DiCaprio walks on every chewing gum stain on the pavement and fights against the urge to walk through doorways several times in an attempt to regain control from his compulsions.

 - Michaelangelo

The artist definitely suffered from OCD although, like Charles Darwin, he was around far too early for it ever to be diagnosed.  He was well known for leaving conversations halfway through, and spent long periods of time alone because he could not tolerate other people.  He was also obsessed with his clothes, refusing to take his boots off for months at a time.

 - David Beckham

Perhaps the world's most famous OCD-er, it's a well known fact that he has to keep food in his fridge in even numbers, and that he will throw food away in order to stick to his obsession.  He also keeps everything in his house in pairs.

 - Justin Timberlake

Timberlake admitted to his OCD, saying that he is obsessed with arranging objects until they feel 'just right' and compulsively stocking certain types of food in his fridge.  He says that his OCD is made much more difficult because he has Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) as well.

 - Winston Churchill 

Winston Churchill famously described his depression and OCD as the 'black dog', and suffered from both conditions for the majority of his adult life.

 - Katy Perry

Katy Perry says that she suffers from OCD particularly when she is stressed, and finds the condition a bigger problem when she is on tour.  Her obsession surrounds making sure that things are perfect: she can't stand sunglasses with fingerprints on them, or broken make-up in her bag.

 - Jeremy Kyle

Jeremy Kyle announced that he has OCD on his TV show.  He says that he gets up in the middle of the night to clean, and will resort to licking things - like his mobile 'phone and golf balls - if he has no other way of washing them.

 - JK Rowling

In her post-Harry book, The Casual Vacancy, JK Rowling wrote about a character with OCD and, in the press interviews before the launch of the book, she admitted that she had also suffered when she was a teenager, although it was something she had 'grown out of' as she got older.


  1. I would recommend reading into the differences between ocd and ocpd (obsessive compulsive personality disorder). Two completely different disorders. The majority of the above are ocpd.