ob·​ses·​sive | \ äb-ˈse-siv How to pronounce obsessive (audio) , əb- \

Definition of obsessive

1a : tending to cause obsession
b : excessive often to an unreasonable degree
2 : of, relating to, or characterized by obsession : deriving from obsession

Other Words from obsessive

obsessive noun
obsessively adverb
obsessiveness noun

Examples of obsessive in a Sentence

Many dancers are obsessive about their weight. He is an obsessive workaholic who never stops thinking about his job. an obsessive interest in space travel The new therapy is supposed to help people control their obsessive thoughts.
Recent Examples on the Web One simple answer: an obsessive focus on student-centricity. Brandon Busteed, Forbes, 7 May 2022 Much of this has to do with the film’s obsessive focus on delivering for its hardest-core fan base. Washington Post, 3 May 2022 Morrill and Karlsson are especially interested in the relationship between compulsive disorders in dogs and obsessive compulsive disorder in people. NBC News, 28 Apr. 2022 Kaspernick, 56, had worked as a teacher and in warehouses and restaurants, but said his bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder made holding the jobs difficult. Gary Warth, San Diego Union-Tribune, 11 Apr. 2022 There are elements of obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (different from OCD) and narcissistic personality disorder. Annie Lane, oregonlive, 9 Apr. 2022 There are elements of obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (different from OCD) and narcissistic personality disorder. cleveland, 9 Apr. 2022 Visits also doubled for eating disorders, and there were increases related to anxiety, trauma and stress and obsessive-compulsive disorders. New York Times, 23 Mar. 2022 Our mission is to imitate not God’s anger, but God’s chesed and almost obsessive thirst for justice. The Salt Lake Tribune, 19 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'obsessive.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of obsessive

1897, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for obsessive

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The first known use of obsessive was in 1897

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Last Updated

17 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Obsessive.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/obsessive. Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for obsessive


ob·​ses·​sive | \ äb-ˈses-iv, əb- How to pronounce obsessive (audio) \

Medical Definition of obsessive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of, relating to, causing, or characterized by obsession : deriving from obsession obsessive behavior

Other Words from obsessive

obsessively adverb
obsessiveness noun



Medical Definition of obsessive (Entry 2 of 2)

: an obsessive individual

More from Merriam-Webster on obsessive

Nglish: Translation of obsessive for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of obsessive for Arabic Speakers


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