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The Obsessed Patient

A patient who is suffering from obsessions must carry out certain
abnormal actions, or be wretched. She cannot do otherwise. It is as
though she were forced by some outside agent, though the forcing is
actually from within. When the nurse realizes this, and the more
essential fact--that many patients, who have not true obsessions, yet
have a tendency toward obsessed ways of thinking and doing--when she
comprehends it almost as she would if she were the victim, then she is
ready to help the patient by gently making the action impossible, and at
the same time diverting attention.

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