The OCD Workbook by Hyman and Pedrick indicates that obsessive compulsive disorder is a neurobiological disorder. This definition jives with my psychiatrist's stance that OCD is organic in nature and, most likely, inherited.
The theory that OCD is inherited can be no better proven than to sit at my Mom's and Dad's dining room table during a mealtime chat. My Mom is a checker (like me) and my youngest brother is a checker (like me) and a hoarder (not like me). OK! OK! My Mom says that I'm a hoarder, too, but I disagree. Unlike my brother, I really do need all of the junk I collect. Just kidding!
My brother is 12 years younger than I am which puts him at 23 years of age right now. Like me, he is also an engineer....so he has that working against him...eh...I mean going for him. He purchased a house a few months ago and Mom is pressuring him to move all of his hoarded belongings to his new home. If the move ever actually occurs, I think it may require several moving vans. My brother still has every toy, trading card, screw and fastener that he ever owned at any one time in his life. He has even purchased bags of smashed model car parts to store with his other toys and gadgets.
My family teases him a little about clutching all of these trinkets, but I feel sorry for him as well. I've finally entered a time in my life where I'm trying to unload some baggage (that at one time made me feel secure) and I hope he will be able to do the same in the future.
As far as inherited traits are concerned, this past week I found an uncanny resemblance in my family's obsession with checking locks. I had never personally witnessed my brother or my mother checking locks, but I'll be buggered if they don't report almost the same lock checking litany that I have performed in the past.
In my immediate family, I am the only one who has sought therapy. I am encouraging my family to encourage my brother to seek professional help now before his OCD becomes something worse than a nuisance.