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24 y/o Wife, Mother of 2, and a CSP
First of all, Thank God! I thought I was the only one in the world that did something as crazy as pick the skin off my heels. I'm relieved to know that I'm not the only person struggling with this. I've been picking for a long time. In junior high and highschool, I had acne, so I constantly had to "pop" my zits. I just LOVED that. I still do. Then they would bleed and develop scabs, so I would have to pick the scabs all the time. My face was always bleeding and covered with sore, red, unsightly marks. When I was about 12 yrs old, I developed anorexia. I struggled on and off with that up until I got pregnant with my first daughter. I would also pick at food. I would trim it, cut it, shave it, you name it. I still do that. I also grew up picking my finger nails, the cuticles, and the skin around my nails. I would have big sore red spots on the tops of my fingers where I had taken the top layer of skin off, or my fingers would be bleeding. I played the piano and organ, so practicing could be rather painful at times. I was probably around 15 or 16 when I started picking the dry skin off my heels and toes. I didn't eat the skin, but I would always have a pile of it to sweep off the floor. I felt so pathetic and ridiculous, yet I HAD to pick. I couldn't stop. I didn't want to do it, but I couldn't stop myself. I was alone a lot. I was homeschooled from 5th grade on, so I would do all the picking while I was studying. I would also stay up late, sitting in the bathroom by myself, picking away for an hour or two. I had no social life in my teen years. When other kids were out having fun, I was at home doing house work, binge eating, skin picking, and just being depressed. About a year and half ago, I had a major panic attack at church while I was playing the organ. I have always had anxiety, but after that my anxiety really increased. I became rather agoraphobic for awhile. Meds are helping with that. I was doing pretty good not picking skin, until just recently where I started another bout of the heel picking. It makes me feel so pathetic, useless, ugly, and unsexy. I try to hide it from my husband. I don't want him to see it and be totally grossed out. I just want to feel normal, and have confidence in myself and my appearance. My heart goes out to every one of you who struggle with this. I understand.
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