The Thought that Counts

A Firsthand Account of One Teenager's Experience with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

by Jared Kant, Martin Franklin,

For the more than 2 million Americans with obsessive-compulsive disorder, the intrusive thoughts and uncontrollable behaviors can take a harsh toll, as author Jared Douglas Kant knows all too well. Diagnosed with OCD at age 11, Jared became ruled by dread of deadly germs and diseases, the unrelenting need to count and check things, and a persistent, nagging doubt that overshadowed his life.In The Thought that Counts, Jared shares his deeply personal account of trial, tribulation, and ultimately triumph. Using anecdotes, narratives and sidebars, this book adds a human face to a complex disorder. Jared's funny, often touching, sometimes harrowing tale makes for compelling reading. Yet his memoir is only half the story. With the help of psychologist Martin Franklin, Ph.D., and veteran science writer Linda Wasmer Andrews, Jared paints the big picture for other teens with OCD. Drawing on the latest scientific and medical evidence, he explains how to recognize warning signs, where to find help, and what treatments have proved effective. Jared also offers practical suggestions on managing the symptoms of OCD at home, at school, and in relationships with family and friends. The result is both an absorbing memoir and a useful guide that will help to ease the isolation caused by OCD, assuring anyone recently diagnosed with the disease that, with commitment and hard work, they can overcome this illness.Part of the Adolescent Mental Health Initiative series of books written specifically for teens and young adults, this volume offers hope to young people who are struggling with obsessive-compulsive disorder, helping them to overcome the challenges of this illness and go on to lead healthy, productive lives.
  • Oxford University Press; March 2008
  • ISBN 9780199724215
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF format
  • Title: The Thought that Counts
  • Author: Jared Kant; Martin Franklin; Linda Wasmer Andrews
  • Imprint: Oxford University Press

In The Press

"As inspiring as it is instructive, Jared Kant's unflinching account of his battles with teen OCD should be required reading for anyone whose life has been touched by the disorder. Through both its candor and its scope, this book has the potential to change countless lives."--Jeff Bell, author of Rewind, Replay, Repeat: A Memoir of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
"What a remarkable book! Jared Kant and his co-authors have produced a revealing, first-hand look at OCD that manages to be brutally honest, yet at the same time tremendously supportive and reassuring. I admire Jared's bravery and his willingness to let the world see his descent into this terrible illness as well as his eventual recovery. Young people with OCD will find the insights in this book to be informative, frightening, humorous, and hopeful--sometimes all at once. If you are a teenager or young adult with OCD, this book is a "must-read."--David F. Tolin, Ph.D., Director, Anxiety Disorders Center, The Institute of Living; Adjunct Associate Professor, Yale University School of Medicine, and author of Buried in Treasures: Help for Compulsive Acquiring, Saving, and Hoarding
"The Thought That Counts is The Catcher in the Rye for adolescents and young adults with OCD. It tells the reader's story as well as the author's. After reading this book, the OCD sufferer is no longer alone and has information about ways to manage his or her OCD."--Patricia B. Perkins, J.D., former Executive Director of the OC Foundation
"Finally, an articulate and intelligent OCD book for teens that tells it as only someone who has been there and back can tell it. It is a much-needed addition that fills a gap in the ever-growing body of OCD resources for those who suffer from this life-disrupting problem. It is a practical combination of a well-written narrative of one young person's struggle to find himself and establish a meaningful life in the face of a serious mental illness, together with accurate and professionally guided information."--Fred Penzel, Ph.D., author of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders: A Complete Guide to Getting Well and Staying Well
"As inspiring as it is instructive, Jared Kant's unflinching account of his battles with teen OCD should be required reading for anyone whose life has been touched by the disorder. Through both its candor and its scope, this book has the potential to change countless lives."--Jeff Bell, author of Rewind, Replay, Repeat: A Memoir of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
"What a remarkable book! Jared Kant and his co-authors have produced a revealing, first-hand look at OCD that manages to be brutally honest, yet at the same time tremendously supportive and reassuring. I admire Jared's bravery and his willingness to let the world see his descent into this terrible illness as well as his eventual recovery. Young people with OCD will find the insights in this book to be informative, frightening, humorous, and hopeful--sometimes all at once. If you are a teenager or young adult with OCD, this book is a "must-read."--David F. Tolin, Ph.D., Director, Anxiety Disorders Center, The Institute of Living; Adjunct Associate Professor, Yale University School of Medicine, and author of Buried in Treasures: Help for Compulsive Acquiring, Saving, and Hoarding
"The Thought That Counts is The Catcher in the Rye for adolescents and young adults with OCD. It tells the reader's story as well as the author's. After reading this book, the OCD sufferer is no longer alone and has information about ways to manage his or her OCD."--Patricia B. Perkins, J.D., former Executive Director of the OC Foundation
"Finally, an articulate and intelligent OCD book for teens that tells it as only someone who has been there and back can tell it. It is a much-needed addition that fills a gap in the ever-growing body of OCD resources for those who suffer from this life-disrupting problem. It is a practical combination of a well-written narrative of one young person's struggle to find himself and establish a meaningful life in the face of a serious mental illness, together with accurate and professionally guided information."--Fred Penzel, Ph.D., author of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders: A Complete Guide to Getting Well and Staying Well
"Part memoir, part educational self-help tool, this book lives up to the double entendre embodied in the title... . Although still in his early 20s, Kant has learned to identify his own strengths and weaknesses and adjust his approach to life to make the most of his individual gifts. This book would be helpful for those who are diagnosed with OCD at a young age. The personal voice is strong; Kant tells his story with humor and in a self-deprecating style."--School Library Journal

About The Author

help...These resources add to the educative function of the book.... Reading the book will certainly inform and answer questions. I suspect, however, that Kant's purpose is to inspire young people who are confused about their condition and want to find a better life. He does just that in a book filled with courage, optimism, and hope."--James K. Luiselli, Ed. D. ABPP, BCPA, the May Institute. | k yes Foundation's website for teens and young adults.Martin Franklin is Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology in Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, & Clinical Director, Center for the Treatment and Study of Anxiety. Linda Wasmer Andrews is a freelance health and psychology writer based in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She is the coauthor of If Your Adolescent Has an Anxiety Disorder: An Essential Resource for Parents as well as the author and co-author of numerous other books, including Stress Control for Peace of Mind. Her writing has appeared in magazines such as Self, Parenting, and Psychology Today.