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Freyja , 20 Apr 2012

Can you beat it on your own?

I finally decided to bite the bullet and join up here. I have been a skin picker as long as I can remember, as young as 10. I think my mother was one too. It started with just my face, but I'm now 22 and my most badly affected areas are face, shoulders and breasts. I will pick any part of my body I can squeeze something out of :( I also had trichitillomania for a year or so when I was about 13, but told my mum who was so disgusted by it I just stopped straight away (not the best way, but it worked!). I haven't told anyone about my problem, but my boyfriend notices and comments on it and I just want the ground to swallow me up, I'm so embarrassed by it. I can't afford a counsellor, I had one a few years ago which cost me £40 a session, paid for by my family but it didn't help me at all and now I have no job so it's out of the question. I will try to stop picking my face by moving the mirror away from my desk where I sit most of the time, but everytime I get a spot I can feel it come up and it itches and I just have to claw at it. I hate it. I don't even realise I'm doing it, but it's ruining my life and I just have to stop somehow. Can anyone help me? I don't think I will ever be able to stop it :(
8 Answers
April 21, 2012
Hey....I'm trying to beat this on my own right now. I'm too embarrassed to go to a counseler. Ipicked my arms so bad during high school I always wear long sleeves or at least 1/2 sleeves even in the dead of summer. I started picking my face about two years ago and finally have stopped just recently like the past 2 weeks. I excercise whenever I feel like picking. Also, make-up is very expensive and the more I pick the more I have to layer it on. Without it I won't leave the house and I sometimes miss classes because I'm just embarrassed- I'm in college (undergrad) btw. Maybe we can help eachother get through this. I'm 21 and am hiding in my room waiting for these scars to fade we should be living life.
April 30, 2012

In reply to by destroyx

dude you sound exactly like me. ive missed class at least 3 to 4 times for the past 3 semesters because I was late trying to cover everything up with make up. Ive been picking at my back ever since i was 10, but stopped picking at that about 2 months ago. when I was 18 i started picking at my face and just recently stopped about a week ago (im 22 now). I never knew there was an official name for this sort of condition. I have to wake up really early every morning just so i can put on make up before everyone gets up. I'm trying to be in a relationship right now and this skin picking thing isnt allowing me to be myself. its SO frustrating, but most of all its exhausting.
May 02, 2012

In reply to by ray

I have been picking for 30 years and I don't think you can stop on your own. I tried dozens of times if not hundreds. I succeeded 4 years ago with the help of a therapist and was picking free for over 3 years. I recently relapsed so I am going back to the therapist. I am on a waiting list and hope to see one soon. You need somoene to open up to. Somoene nutral that won't judge you or make you feel like a freak. Somone you trust!!! Healing from this problem takes time, energy and a lot of control. You also need to love yourself, not just love others. You need to do it for you, not for your boybriend, familly or friends. It is a commitment and a fight that your take one day at a time. But you can beat it. I will again:)
April 24, 2012
I can relate to this, however I don't think it is wise to try and stop this on your own. I have found that having a support system has been a critical way in helping me kick this habit. To the other comment, I picked my legs so instead of long sleeves, I wear pants all the time. My boyfriend tries to never leave me alone and when i'm in a different room then him, he yells at me and keeps me busy. I am 24 and Suffering as well however a support system of trusted people can be a big help. I hope my comment helps you.
April 24, 2012
Hi Freyja, I am doing alright at the moment on my own - just like you I got too fed up and took a stand. Im 27, and since I was 17 I have considered therapy and counselling. I never did, but if I had saved for a year and invested in therapy perhaps I would have been cured five years ago. My advice to you is if you cant afford a counsellor or therapy, you need a close person who can support you - someone from your family, or are you able to trust your boyfriend with this? decide how much you want them to be involved, sit down and figure out a plan. Perhaps you can choose someone from your family to help out and support you, come up with some mechanisms, and maybe also have it as a goal to save some money from your next job to go towards therapy. That way, if you save up for therapy but you can kick it on your own with support of family, youll have a nice wad of cash to reward yourself at the end of it! slightly random advice, but it would be what I would tell my 22 year old self.
April 29, 2012
From the posts that I have read from other people, there are some wonderful people on here who are more than willing to give you all the advice that you need on how to at least, at bare minimum, control your behaviour. However, I have been trying to stop on my own for many, many years to no avail - but that doesn't mean that you can't!! I think a support system is one of the most important things for you to have - as well as an alternate outlet. I do the same thing that you do, even sitting at a desk... so I'm thinking I might start writing a blog to keep my fingers busy. I find sitting at a desk the hardest time to control myself other than when I'm standing in front of a mirror... I find the only way to stop myself is to even just get up and walk around. I believe in you - we're all here to help you!! :)
April 30, 2012
Thankyou so much for the support everyone. I have not managed to kick it yet, but I believe I am getting better. The skin on my chest is looking a lot clearer. I had impetigo last week, which spread all over my bum, back and armpit, but not to my face, so I guess that means I didn't touch my face too much. I'm going to stick some false nails on sometime this week and see if that helps me!
April 30, 2012
10 days clean! and feelin good. come read my thread, there's some good advice (in my opinion) in there. good luck! i know that you can do it

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