100 days !!
Posted June 4th, 2010 by wildflower
100 days ago i got serious about stopping my skin picking. i actually went 48 full days before i picked and since then i have picked a total of 7 times and those times were each picking only one whitehead or such at a time on a day, not a massive picking session. so i am considering my quitting as being a HUGE success !! considering that i would have numerous sores scattered over various locations on my body every day for better than 20 years !! many times i had 60 bandaged sores at one time! so yes, i was a serious picker and i will admit i was delusional in my attitude about it - believing that i HAD to approach it the way i did and to the extent i did and with the tools i did at times and that it NEEDED to be done. i also admit that i was in denial about the irresponsibility of my actions and believing that there must be some medication that would stop my pimples/whiteheads/bumps, etc. and if they wouldn't come i wouldn't pick. i've been on just about every treatment for acne there is. i've been seen by five dermatologists, four family doctors, and to treat my depression, four psychiatrists and one therapist (the latter two specialists dealing only with my depression and not my skin). none of these medical professionals ever advised me with anything more than "you shouldn't pick" or something similar regarding my behaviour. i could not leave my skin alone. if something was there, it had to go. i felt it was the right thing to do. i tried to leave things alone but felt i couldn't control myself. that it was beyond my capability to quit for more than a few hours let alone a day. i was obsessed about taking care of imperfections. at different times it included many different areas but mostly my skin. in the past year i had noticed i wasn't healing very quickly anymore. that concerned me. and then i picked at 6 tiny bumps on my legs which grew large and wouldn't heal for over a month and i got scared. i researched and questioned my sanity and intelligence about it and addressed my denial and delusional thinking. i got real serious. i saw a dr and got some serious antibiotics and steroids to address the mess i'd made of my leg and vowed to rise above this delusional obsessive compulsive disorder. i admitted that the only solution was for me to stop harming myself no matter how hard it would be. i feared losing my leg if not. i feared i was out of control. i didn't want to believe that !! i realized my behaviours could not be rational. i conceded that no medication could possibly make me stop my behaviour short of drugging me stupid such that i couldn't spoonfeed myself. i tried enough meds to know they weren't a match for my delusions and that my delusions were delusions. i have no business performing minor surgery on my body with tweezers or needles or the like. how arrogant i was in my delusions. anyway, that is behind me. i feel i conquered this (at least for the time being !!) i touch my skin differently. i'm gentle, i'm soothing. i'm loving it rather than being at war with it. i'm trying desperately to ignore imperfections and live with them. i'm learning to touch my skin less and less. i eat better. i use minimal products on my skin. i take my vitamins. i still sit on my hands. and i'm thrilled to not sleep covered in bandages anymore every night. i'm proud of myself. now and then i'll run my hand where one would have always been bandaged, and love the feel of my healed skin. my eyebrows are all grown back in. i feel that picking is now in my history !! but most of all, i want to believe that anyone can do this if they get serious enough about it !! i don't think i'm special. i don't think i got smarter in my old age (but maybe that is what it took - but i hope not). i believe i got scared enough to quit - to change my behaviour - to refuse to harm myself anymore. and i don't want anyone else to wait until they're in their 50s to get serious. i don't believe there's anything out there that'll work other than inner will and determination and commitment to make it happen. mind you i am on a low dose of antidepressant now and my thyroid is controlled but that's the extent of my meds now. oops - prescription strength fish oil. did it take me getting old(er) to achieve this? i truly hope not !! i am hoping with all my heart that you young'uns can get serious now, while your skin has so much time ahead to heal and the scars to fade. don't wait for a magic bullet, or a magic therapy, or someone else to help you along. make taking proper care of yourself your highest priority. yes, there are other important and stressful events going on in your life but you are the most important component of it. you have it within yourselves to do it. believe in yourselves. realize what you're doing is wrong and unhealthy and that you alone must stop it. sure, use what crutches you may, but don't depend on them to do the work. it must come from within. i wish the exhilaration i feel for my accomplishments for each of you and believe you can do it !! go for it !!! ♥♥♥