I have OCD, it means for the most part, that I get awful, intrusive thoughts that result in compulsions that I feel like I have to do, and my brain will enter survival mode, so these actions will be deemed as “needed” and repeat the thoughts and actions forever.
These thoughts arent of logical nature, they dont get created on purpose either, arguing with them creates more of them. For example, during prayer, I get thoughts that I will sexually assault my fellow female friends and rape or grope them. Specifically during prayer because I know you arent allowed to think certain thoughts then. After the thought Ill try to apologize to god and swear Ill never do it and that I love god and will never sin this way – the mental compulsions that follow. In time these get more powerful and more agressive in their content, like being sure thinking about sexual assault during prayer is a sign of me being some awful lowlife that will hurt everyone, etc.
I heard two opinions at my religious schools I went to, here in Israel:
One I heard at a haredi-run school I went to during childhood – “there are thoughts you will be punished for thinking, some thoughts are sins in and of themselves, it doesnt matter who you are, you are not allowed to think them at all, because all people can control their thoughts with enough effort”.
One I heard at my new school – “There are thoughts that are sinful to have, that you will be punished for in the afterlife, though, if you are mentally ill, and these thoughts truly arent of your own will, you will not, but if you refuse to change and try to get help for these thoughts and learn to control them, then I believe there is some of your fault there that you would be punished for”.
Is it my fault then for not getting “enough” help? Or am I exempt from punishment because I was born mentally ill? OCD brains have different structures than normal brains (circuits built different), as well as different chemical balances that need fixing (serotonin gets reabsorbed more, making the person very obsessive and lack serotonin at a wellbeing level, some have b vitamin intolorence that makes their serotonin low, contributing to OCD), alongside hardwire problems, which means you were born to predisposition for your thoughts and behaviors to OCD, that need specific CBT and exposures to retrain the hardwire.
What is the halacha stance on this?