This paper arose out of my listening to a talking book of Margaret Atwood's novel ‘The Robber Bride’. As I listened I began to wonder if one of the characters, Tony, was suffering from obsessional neurosis and this paper is an exploration of that neurosis. I hope to show that the title of the paper ‘The personal is not political ... the personal is military’, a phrase of Tony's, is a true reflection of the obsessional response to life. Obsessional neurosis as a nosographical category was first described by Freud, who brought together a series of symptoms not previously linked, and it is his work, particularly as evidenced in the case of the Rat Man, his most sustained exposition of obsessional neurosis, which will be used as the basis for the first half of this study. The theme will be augmented by some insights on obsessional neurosis from Jacques Lacan. Lacan's contribution has been to approach the neurosis from a structural point of view (as opposed to Freud's more symptom based approach), by focusing on what is the question which constitutes the obsessional neurotic. These findings will then be applied to the character of Tony to test the validity of my original conjecture.