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jasmine , 27 May 2010

My experience

Hello all. I want to share my experience. I want everyone to know that I am not here to recommend anything to anyone. I have not received proper therapy for this behavior and I am not a physician. I have always had some compulsive behaviors beginning with nail biting, moving on to face picking once teen acne set in, scratching nails until they would hurt, and aggressively scratching other areas of the body. I really started recognizing my behavior as a problem when scarring developed as a result of my own actions. My focus went to my own behavior, and I really wanted to heal.Often I thought I was trying to "fix" or "help" an area but deep down I knew I would make it worse. Areas left alone always heal. Why do I do this? I realized that somewhere along the line I got sidetracked and began this, and therefore it was time to address it. I found kernels of strength to start modifying the behaviors. I had also begun a medication that curbed my general anxiety a lot. I started keeping the lighting in the bathroom low. I am not allowed to "examine" myself under bright light because for me it leads to self destruction. Sometimes I would even wash my face or shower in the near dark if I was feeling particularly anxious. Finally the right dermatolgist and medication stopped cystic acne and I have left my face alone since. Some body scars worsened during this time as I had moved on from the face.The behaviors continued but I regulated them with rules like absolutely no tools may be used whatsoever. I used to really go after ingrown hairs. I got laser hair removal. Ingrown hairs no longer plague me and that has helped so much - basically solved that portion of the problem. I should have done that earlier, but it was expensive. It was nothing short of a major life change that is finally changing my entire approach to how I view and treat myself. I became a massage therapist. Nail biting stopped immediately, not that I can have nails. I have felt the healing power contained in my own two hands when my mind is focused in that manner. The same hands that were cruel to myself are now loving, honoring, and respecting the bodies of others while I do meditative, relaxing work. How ironic, but how transformative. My hands are now forced to compulsively work for hours on end mindfully and carefully touching others, while I focus intently on the well being of that person. I cannot so much as scratch my nose while working. Part of me really enjoys the meditative, soothing effect of the work itself because it provides lots of tactile sensation. In fact I become tired of it and once finished usually want to rest my hands. This has begun to change the way I treat my own body - with respect. I have developed heightened sensation in my fingertips and my sense of touch is so different and much more precise. I have replaced aggressive touching behaviors with gentle touching and massage. Mederma happens to really help me with scarring and though it takes time, I am healing inside and out. I am not saying everyone should run out and do this, by any means. But just as my hands had the power to destroy, they have as much power to heal and nurture. I hope that each and every one of you finds success in your own journey. May you all love and appreciate yourselves today in some way. This last part, I do recommend:)
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