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mathersmyhero , 06 Jul 2010

All my life..,

For just about as long as I can remember, I have been picking. I am 17 years old. I will squeeze anything that I think will yield an excretion. For so many years I have been stuck in this. I pick my face, arms, legs, and chest. There are only 2 people who know about this, one I told because he's one of my closest friends and the other is a friend I met through To Write Love On Her Arms and he has CSP too. I am bipolar and have dealt with this since I was 13 or 14. There have been times when I have been so desperate for help but too ashamed to admit to my picking because it's such a weird thing, I thought, that whomever I told would never think of me the same again. In these situations I will say I am a self mutilator, and let them assume what they want about the details of my mutilation. I guess they just assume I cut, which I have never actually done. I have spent my entire life practically being ashamed of my CSP. I wear tons of coverup, and only recently started to wear shorts because I don't want anyone to notice the scars on my legs. I will go into the bathroom to simply use the toilet and end up staying there for dreadfully long, either sitting there and picking my arms and legs or standing in the mirror picking my face. I've been walked in on and scared out of my mind because I'm in such a trance when I'm picking. I pick when I am very upset or right before bed because it calms me down. I spend at least an hour a day picking. I just want help. Comfort. If anyone has msn/windows live messenger, please let me know? I need someone to talk to you know? :) I'm a 17 yo female by the way.
1 Answer
July 15, 2010
Hi, you sound really desperate. Being a teen is tough and it can be scary when you feel like this. An excellent help line is "Young Minds" who specialise in teen mental health. They are based in London and offer a consultation with a psychologist who will call you at a pre-arranged time. She is excellent, kind and very reassuring and will signpost you to further help. They understand bi-polar. picking disorders and self harm and have literature you can request. Call them in confidence and talk over your problems. I do not have their number to hand but you can get it from directory enquiries. I think they would help you to start tackling this problem. Not all of us pick because of a need to cause harm / hurt. I know I do it for no obvious reason other than feeling compelled to deal with the rough skin / spot / scab. The pain / scarring I cause myself is an annoyance and source of regret rather than my objective. I hate to admit that the picking itself brings me pleasure and satisfaction. I have no idea why.. You may pick however for other reasons. You mention "comfort" and "calming" and "feeling out of control." These are all feelings you need to discuss with a professional. Go easy on yourself and believe that you will get through this with the right help.This is the hardest part - asking for help - things will get better! - but please pluck up the courage to ask for some help as soon as you can. Your bi-polar condition probably puts you at further risk, so you must recognise that feeling this desperate is potentially dangerous and indicates that you need some help.

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