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JJay , 18 Jan 2011

Can I ever stop doing this, without knowing what's causing it?

As many people here, I pick my skin since i can remember. More precisely, my scalp. As most of us, i simply.. like it, is hard to explain, and i do know most of you understand exactly what i'm talking about. However, I don't know why. I don't have a very stressful life, I have excellent grades, i have never been through a traumatizing experience; actually, the only thing about me i am unhappy with is my weight: i could definitely lose some. I have never been to a therapist, and I don't want to. Absolutely no one knows about this condition. I have already managed to stop bitting my nails (about 3 years ago). It was hard, but I did it by myself, and managed a little deal between myself and i: i can only pick my scalp at weekends, when i'm alone at home (mostly because my hair gets oily and dirty when i do it). To me, it's a breakthrough, but i just can't stop it completely. So, the main question is, what can be causing this? And what do you recommend? Maybe some physical exercise, to keep my mind occupied? Thank you all so much :)
3 Answers
January 19, 2011
Hey JJay! As I child I struggled with scalp picking too, although I didn't find out it was an actual disorder until last week, which was a major break through for me. I've struggled with my weight all my life, in my pre-teens I had a long battle with anorexia, however once I over came it, I gained a lot of weight. Over the last five years I've gone through a lot of trauma, but through that I still got heavier. For me, and I can't speak for anyone else because I'm new here, I've found that once I started loosing the weight again, excercising and putting more focus on that than my picking, it did get much better. The trick for me is I hate working out, I dont' like gyms, I find them humiliating, and even when I moved to my new apartment with a private gym, the weight stayed on, stubborn and as despressing as ever. I used to be a dancer, but had to quit because the competitive nature and harsh critisim led to my anorexia. Now I'm back again, on my own terms, and I'm happy to report that the weight is starting to fall off. But I had to find something that I actually enjoy! That makes me happy. Not to work out for the sake of loosing weight, but to do something where I am actually smiling after wards. The only advise I can give is if you want to loose weight, and actually stay with it, find something you love to do. Once I started loosing weight, I actually liked my appearance, and wanted to stop picking so I could enjoy my whole appearance, not just the parts I could cover up. I know it sounds totally corny and I'm even rolling my eyes at what I just wrote, but I honestly believe in it. I just hope that I can keep it off this time. ~Anne
January 19, 2011

In reply to by saving_grace42

Anne, I totally agree. I'm not overweight, in fact I'm very slim, but i'm not fit or toned and recently have been feeling quite stiff from sitting at a computer all day at work. So, for the first time in my life I decided to join a gym. I've only being going for a couple of weeks, but I really enjoy it, and it's had the extra benefit of making me more aware of my appearance in general. This has made me more honest about my picking and how it makes me feel about myself. Like you I've started feeling that I want to make the best of all aspects of my appearance and that realisation motivates me to stop picking.
January 19, 2011

In reply to by rachel_e

Totally hear you rachel_e, I also have a job where I work behind a desk all day. The only thing thats' good about being in front of a computer all day is the typing keeps my hands busy and keeps me from picking because of constant typing! Haha! But more seriously, the perfect example for me would be when I started toning my arms, I thought "hey, I would look great in a sleevless tank top" but then I realized I couldn't because of the scars on my arms and the fact that the bleeding and redness and infections were still too glaringly obvious made me self concious. It was an unfortunate but eye opening realization. I've never been proud of my arms and now that I am starting to appreciate their shape, it motivates me to stop picking in the hope that someday I might be able to wear a short sleeve shirt. ~Anne

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