Just found this - thank god - I NEED HELP


Online Test For Skin Picking Disorder

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March 20, 2011

I completely empathise! my other half yells 'stop picking' almost as soon as i go into the toilet. I've told him a million times that it doesn't help, but I suppose he doesn't know that. I'm 34 and only this week did i find this site and realise i was not the only person to pick themselves raw. I want to stop too, and i don't know how too, but if you want we could try to do this together?
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March 22, 2011

yes, please!! i tried not to pick yesterday and almost made it... then picked for two hours last night. tried again today but then an hour ago i suddenly found myself leaning over the bathroom sink :( it is so hard when you have picked, to let it get back to normal. i will start over tomorrow... GOOD LUCK! keep me updated!
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March 22, 2011

I've been quite good the past couple of days - i've picked at a couple of proper spots on my face adn legs, but apart from peeling the dry skin off the healing ones i havne't picked at the lumps and bumps. I put a towel over the mirror i usually pick at, and i'm allowing myself to pick at anything that is a 'proper' spot, ie has a head on it or something, but NO BUMPS. I know exactly what you mean about leaving it after you've started picking! what areas are your worst areas? i tend to pick anything i can see - face, chest, boobs, bum, legs, and back if i can get to it - do you have particular favourites? I have a bit of an advantage in that i don't use make-up, so potentially don't need to look in a mirror all day if i can avoid it. I'm also trying not to touch my face if i can, so i can't 'feel' any spots there - if i know there's one there i tend to obsess about it! don't feel bad about losing yourself in the picking,I do exactly the same, kind of day-dreamy. what's done is done, we can stop today instead!! good luck today!
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March 28, 2011

Hello everyone on this post. I've just discovered this site and it's a bit of a revelation to me. I've been picking at my skin for over 20 years (I'm 35) - I can't really remember not doing it. My mum used to kill me when she caught me - but then you just get sneakier about where on your body you pick, or get better at concealer.. I didn't realise until a few years ago that this was an addictive condition rather than a 'bad habit' - crazy really when you think about the damage you do to yourself and how long it goes on. I don't feel I pick when I'm stressed (maybe it started that way) - I do it for the satisfaction of the 'pop', or the inability to leave the spots (that you'd probably never see if I left alone) that I know are there. I get in front of the mirror at night and go for it, especially tonight as my husband is travelling. I've really ruined my chest and back tonight. I really want to stop and I'm encouraged by what I read here, but also saddened in that I recognise so many of the ways I've tried to stop before (notes on mirrors, etc). I have a wonderful husband who knows I "fiddle with my skin sometimes" but has no idea how bad it gets. I've got good at hiding it from him and dare not tell him as it's such an unattractive thing and I don't know if I can admit to him that I do it because I enjoy it (at least in the moment). That just sounds weird - but it's true. Anyway, I think you're all inspiring with how hard you're trying, so I wanted to say good luck and I might try using this forum as a reason to come back on in a few days and be able to say that I haven't picked. Thanks - and I hope perhaps you can do the same! Don't get to 35 like me and still be doing it!
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March 30, 2011

Hi Brit_mum and welcome! I'm 35 in a month, and i recognise a lot of the things you say. i too enjoy picking, and only recently have realised its a bad thing and that i want to stop. I'm working on it... ! Hope you're all doing great today x
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April 14, 2011

Hello and thanks for your kind message. Hello everyone! Hope you've had a successful few weeks. I've been up and down - I'm trying to do a lot more exercise at the moment, as when I feel fitter I tend to eat better and want to 'look better' (especially as summer looms and sleeveless tops!) - I also think exercising gives you that little buzz that makes you feel generally stronger about yourself. I wondered whether anyone has experience of telling someone in their life about this as a kind of 'support partner' - a member of the family or a friend - and whether that was a help? I feel terrified about the idea of admitting this, but equally feel someone who agrees to take this on as a bit of a mission/favour to me might just kick me into getting over this more definitively. I don't think my husband's the right person... Thanks thanks.
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March 30, 2011

I'm 28 and for years I've destroyed my legs..much like you I can't remember not doing it. Last night I started on my chest and I've disgusted myself with the way I've made it look. I've had enough I want to wear skirts without tights! I'm going to try and log in to this every day as a way of encouraging me to stop! good luck people! x
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March 23, 2011

Have you tried taking down the mirrors? It was a last resort at my house. I tried locking myself out of all but one bathroom. I tried going to the bathroom in the dark. I tried washing my hands in the kitchen only (because it was just too easy to look up while washing them in the bathroom) and as a last resort we took the mirrors down. It hasn't cured me. I still find other mirrors when the compulsion is strong. BUT it does prevent some picking by making it less convenient. I'd recommend it. Although, my husband is sort of annoyed with there being no mirrors in the bathrooms:-(
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March 23, 2011

ok waylander & needhelpnow, how are you doing? I picked today but not severly. I'd like to say I found some willpower but the reason it was a pretty good day probably has more to do with the fact that my baby hardly napped. I used her crib mirror to 'look' and ended up picking a little but then she started climbing my legs and I had to stop. I picked a little more at my mom's house in her bathroom- but I couldn't be in there too long. Maybe I should be happy that my baby's getting older and her naptime is shortening . .and maybe I should be more grateful that she hardly plays independently and requires so much of my attention:-) My motivating thoughts (largely borrowed from other posts- I take no credit:-): Those compulsive thoughts are temporary- much more so than the marks you'll leave on your face if you give in! What's the worst that can happen if you don't check on your face & you leave it alone? you might have some active pimples and clogged pores. It might even be noticeable to some people. The worst that can happen if you do check on your face & don't leave it alone? You'll have scabs that could lead to scars. You'll have more noticeable bumps & blemishes. Everyone will see these marks.
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March 22, 2011

I'm with you both! I'm 27 and have been picking for just over 10yrs. I actually think it affected me worst emotionally when I was in HS & college. There's slightly less self-loathing now but not because I've gotten any better. I think I just got tired of beating myself up, and, since I'm not in school, there's a bit less social shame. Less self-loathing, however, has resulted in less resistance for me. I still try to stop, of course, but not as hard as I used to. I don't think I've made it more than a day for 6+mos. My husband knows all about it and all the mirrors in our house have been taken down. This helped at first because it made picking so darn inconvenient. I still managed, though. Now it's easy to use a mirror on a toy or a taken down one on the floor. The worst instances for me are bumps on the face that I feel long before I could hope to pop them. I can't leave them alone. I can't stand the thought of that bump getting worse instead of better. I have to 'put it behind me'. I can't wait to be able to drain it. I don't stress about the scab (unless it's not flat and the bump isn't 'done') but in the days that I keep going back to squeeze it & take a needle to it- in short, obsess over that bump, it can become quite a monstrosity. The latest one on my cheek was never popped and this isn't uncommon. It was a bump I convinced myself needed my attention but it was likely not a real pimple at all. I just squeezed it until I rubbed the skin around it off and I took needles to and squeezed the center until a fairly deep scab formed. Now that innocent little bump is an impossible to miss scab on my cheek. I hate that it's there, but it's less anxiety provoking than it was before it became a scab. At least now I can leave it alone and feel confident that it's on the mend. I'm scared about the next bump, though. I don't want to go through this ever again . . .and I've been saying that for yrs . . .
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March 23, 2011

Hi both of you, hope you've had a good day! i was NEARLY very good today, a couple of resolving bumps on my chin (you know those really deep spots that no amount of skin or squeezing ever pops? now the skin is peeling off so the lump bit is sloooowwwly coming to the surface...) I'd just been to lunch, and my other half commented on how good my skin was doing, and well done for not picking, and no, he thought the lumps were much less noticable than they felt - as soon as i got home i was so please with myself that i went and picked them. why do i do it? maybe i'd just let my quard down enough to think i was safe to look at mtyself in a mirror and not expect anything to happen. Anyhoo, i didn't pick for long, and my skin is still better than it has been lately. Its strange, in a way i don't care how i look, and in another way i'm really vain - the thing i get out of picking spots is the picking of them, getting one to 'go'! i've caught myself dreaming about a juicy spot before now.. how ridiculous! hope you're both doing well!
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March 24, 2011

I've actually gone back and forth on whether or not 'productive' squeezing should be ok. On one had, it might help a little. On the other hand, it usually leads to less productive sqeezing and just feeds the obsession. I've tried things such as allowing myself a couple picks a day or a small amount of time, like 30sec. That way, I figure I can take care of the more noticeable (more 'real') stuff but stop before I find myself in that almost trance like state where I'll just keep picking until something stops me or there is just nothing left (and I'm often sore from holding a position). Anyway, I've decided that in order to really 'cure' myself, I can't make any allowances (even though the very idea of not picking at something 'real' is very unsettling to me and I'm positive I'll fail as soon as there's a white head, noticeably larger blackhead or an 'under pressure' spot). I've got to get over it, you know? I have to not care & not obsess. Today wasn't terrible but it's nothing to be proud of either. I picked a couple scabs prematurely. One bled quite a bit. I usually don't do that but they were larger scabs, starting to peel around the edges and I was having someone over and wanted to look more normal. I also picked at a number of spots that I should have been able to leave alone. They weren't red or hard and wouldn't have been noticeable to anyone had I just left them. I didn't 'dig in' so the spots should be fairly forgiving. I didn't get a large session in. There were, though, about 5 times throughout the day that I picked for a short while. I feel discouraged because it should have been easy for me to lay off my face today. Today required 'low resistance' and yet, I didn't have it in me. I need more motivation, more self-discipline, more impulse control. I'm telling myself I'll try harder tomorrow, but I'm already feeling that hopeless, upsetting, pulling sensation in my stomach because I don't know how/what I can change. I suppose I'll start with removing my baby's crib mirror. Good luck Walander! If you're feeling pretty good about how you appear now, just don't slip up big! Forgive small mistakes and just forge ahead. Don't make the mistake of thinking 'I alread messed up I might as well keep going'. Dress extra nice and spend extra time on your hair or something. Find ways to feel extra good about how you look. When I feel extra cared for (when I've shaved, done my nails, things like that that I often neglect) I think it's easier for me to 'be nice' to my face too. Let's keep doing these updates!
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March 24, 2011

NeedHelpNow- I hope you will update us! Best wishes!
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March 25, 2011

I had a pick-free afternoon and evening! I did pick this morning- but not at anything new. I had thin scabs from yesterday and I convinced myself after showering that there was stuff I had to release from behind that healing scab. All I did was take off the thin scab and delay the healing process. Still, I'm happy about not finding anything new to obsess over. This should make tomorrow go easier. I'm feeling quite optimistic in this moment. I hope you ladies are giving it your best shot! Don't get lazy! Dig deep and find that resolve!
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March 26, 2011

How are you both doing? all ok-ish here, only picking at a couple of on-going ones, not 'made' anything for a few days. I've stopped drinking caffienated drinks, and i think that has helped my anxiety levels, which has helped with the picking. hope you're both having a good day!
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March 26, 2011

For me the problem with quitting is finding the right motivation, picking for me is so easy and something that I almost do subconsciously and when I pop my acne it feels so good, so for me just the knowledge of how bad it was and that i was feeding a vicious cycle wasn't enough. I've been trying to quit for a while and one day i just happened to hit a point where I didn't have any really tempting "gateway pimples" (the ones you tell yourself "i'm just going to get that one" and then it leads to a 2 hr picking session) and my face was pretty clear so I was able to resist touching my face. I woke up the next day with my face almost completely clear and I felt great; I didn't have to constantly mess with my hair to have my bangs cover up red spots, scabs, or swollen cysts I could just walk around all day long and not feel self conscious about myself and I wasn't paranoid about people looking at my forehead when they talked to me. I was able to keep it up for a little while and then ended up with a large easy to pop pimple right in the middle of my face and so the vicious cycle continues but for me the way I felt about myself that day was the motivation I needed to really get serious about stoping instead of going into it half heartedly the way I had for years. So my advice is to pick a day (no pun intended) and do whatever it takes to not pick anything at all, cover up all your mirrors, wear kitchen mits all day, whatever it takes and then see how you feel about yourself the next day. Picking gets worse when you have low self esteem so focusing on how bad you feel when you do it (making you feel even worse about yourself) isn't as helpful as focusing on the positives and how good you feel when you don't have to worry about your skin looks
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March 28, 2011

Thanks for that advice! I know I've tried to use self-loathing as motivation in the past and no, it hasn't worked. I do feel really good about myself on days I don't pick. Sometimes, it's not even because I look better. For example, I'll feel worse about myself on a day that I had a picking session after not having one for awhile even if I don't look terrible. I'll feel better on a day that I may have a number of scabs but I've left my face alone for some time. I feel good when I can feel in control and hopeful. I wish everyone positive feelings! Keep posting!
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March 28, 2011

Thanks for that advice! I know I've tried to use self-loathing as motivation in the past and no, it hasn't worked. I do feel really good about myself on days I don't pick. Sometimes, it's not even because I look better. For example, I'll feel worse about myself on a day that I had a picking session after not having one for awhile even if I don't look terrible. I'll feel better on a day that I may have a number of scabs but I've left my face alone for some time. I feel good when I can feel in control and hopeful. I wish everyone positive feelings! Keep posting!
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March 27, 2011

Just found this too.. I do the same thing and go through the same emotions hating to hide my scabs and sores behind makeup trying to look decent. My boyfriend knows of my habit as well and tonight I refused to go out with our friends because of what I did to my face just a few hours before. I'm desperate to stop as well I do it about once or twice a week when I feel idle I move to the makeup mirror where I can sit for over an hour planning to just do a few and then creating a disaster every time. I am a perfectionist, good at blocking out things and tend to ignore the reality of the outcome of things which all support this behavior. I know when I am occupied I can resist the urge I only do it when I am alone. I need a plan I want to stop this habit now :(
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March 28, 2011

I was pretty good this weekend. I put on lotion and followed it immediately with makeup on Friday which gave me a couple itchy patches where there was superficial break-out. I picked a little even though I knew it wouldn't be productive. I was simply anxious about the new development. I currently don't have any large scabs or tempting bumps on my face so I'm feeling like I might be able to make it today with no picking. I thought I might get to day 1 this weekend but never quite made it. I still haven't removed the crib mirror (all others are down) and I justify that I need it for putting on make-up, making sure I've removed yesterdays make-up, etc., but I'm hoping that if I can have a couple pick-free days, I'll be able to forego make-up for some time and remove that last mirror. Thanks for the support and for your postings! Keep it up and good luck!
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April 08, 2011

Hey I'm only 14 years old and I have had this picking problem since I was little. I don't know what causes it. My doctor has gave me things to help. But it did not. I pray to God everyday and ask for help. I feel relieved now that I know that I am not the only one with this problem. But I believe that we can get through this together...do you believe that to..??
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May 17, 2011

I'm 25 and I started picking when I was about 9, but it only really took control of me when I was 12 or 13. When I was 20 I tried looking for help on the internet and all I found were websites telling me I was self-harming, which made me even more depressed! A year ago I decided to have a go at it once and for all and there are so many good and informing websites out there now to help. I think if you are really suffering with anxiety, the best thing is to see your doctor and start a course of CBT etc. I have found that making lots of little changes has helped me gradually improve: I keep a diary of my picking which helped me identify times I am most likely to pick. For me this is straight after work or before bed, so I turn the lights out during those times, and maybe light a couple of candles. Without being able to see I can't have a picking session. Also, using E45 cream helps smooth my skin so there is less to pick. I pick a lot of ingrown hairs too, so I'm looking at getting electrolysis. It's expensive but it's permanent, and if I remove the temptation to pick, my problem can only improve! I already have a good diet and do regular exercise, which are supposed to improve your mood, but actually I recently have taken up a team sport which I didn't do before, and it's given me a purpose to keep fit for, as well as a chance to spend time with a group of really friendly girls! Doing this sport I've noticed my mood swings that I get around my period have disappeared! I hope some of my suggestions can help, and I understand what you say about your husband, as my boyfriend has taken to slapping my hand away when I pick. I've explained but he doesn't take the time to understand. What he does only frustrates me, as I have to finish what I start!