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Til , 16 Jan 2012

This is a bit difficult, but...

I am a 21 year old female, currently enduring my own.. I guess "skin picking" problem. Skin picking felt like a strange term for it, even if it is accurate. As a child, and up until now I bite my nails and the surrounding skin, consuming whatever I do manage to bite off from myself. I used to let it get pretty bad, but slowly managed to at least stop myself from biting my fingers until they were too painful to use. I also had this spitting habit, I know what caused it and I don't think I am ready to go into that, but I eventually stopped that particular habit. The nail biting issue remained. A bit later, as a teenager.. I had started pulling out my own hair, however, at the same time I was told I was suffering from alopecia areta. I was losing hair myself, not just on my head, but on my body. I was told it would not grow back, but I sought treatment anyway. After about 3 years, when I was 17, I managed to stop all hair pulling. I didn't start the hair pulling until after I started to lose some of my hair, but I am sure I aggravated the hair loss and delayed regrowth. Feeling the urge to pull strands of hair that felt as if they were causing me pain, became a habit I'd spend hours on. I'm very thankful my hair did grow back, I was very emotional during my first haircut since the hair loss. Anyway.. My current issue is that I now pick at my chest. I go into a trance, of sorts. This first started a bit over a year ago, and I kept it a secret until my mother found one of my shirts, which was heavily stained with spots of my blood. When I started, I'd pick at my skin on my breasts. There was nothing abnormal about them prior to my picking. I'd throw the skin away and just endure the wounds that formed. After a while, and since I've not been fully aware of my picking as it has happened, I'm not sure when... I started to consume the flesh I pulled from myself. I would sometimes pull too much skin and cause heavy bleeding from the wounds, which I'd drink until I stopped bleeding. I feel a bit like I need to keep the wounds from healing. The second any skin forms in the healing process, I remove it.Leaving fairly large open wounds and scars on the few areas I've allowed to heal. I did seek help, the doctor literally jumped back and cringed when she saw my wounds. I asked for a referral to a psych but she ignored the request and just demanded I stop doing this to myself. That was disappointing. I understand the need to treat my physical wounds but I do believe there is emotional and mental issues behind my habit and stopping the habit without having someone to talk to, is/was very difficult... It feels impossible. I did stop, for 3 days. My habit is almost constant, infact I've bitten my nails and ripped at my skin a few times while writing this. So 3 days was a milestone for me. I am not sure if it was in my sleep, or in a bit of a heavier form of trance, but I reopened all of my wounds. Worse than they were before. My family has a history of anxiety and depression, and I have hormone issues related to an ovary condition. I'm not self diagnosing, just commenting on what I know. I'm working on changing doctors, because I was very unsatisfied with how that doctor reacted to this condition.. It did seem unprofessional, but right now, I cannot stop. I try to occupy myself in many different ways, but even talking to my family doesn't help now. I'll sneak my hand and search for the skin I long to remove. I do sometimes have this carnal reaction to any flesh consumption. I don't know why making myself feel like I'm not human justifies this appetite. Anyway, I'm very tired now, so going to sleep.. I had to type it, and get this much vented out.

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