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Safari Street , 17 Jun 2012

New member - lifelong addict

I am 36 years old. I have suffered from a major depressive disorder and anxiety since I was a kid - the first time I ever was seen at the doctor's for anxiety was when I was 7, but I had full blown symptoms long before that. As it was, I was an extremely sickly baby - two weeks after I was born until I was 12, I was at the doctor's office AT LEAST once a month, I had lousy lungs, asthma and chronic bronchitis. Above all things in this world I was terrified of shots, so I wouldn't go to my parents over ANYTHING that might require me to have to go to the doctor where I might get a shot. When I was five I literally hid pneumonia from my mom and by the time I finally cracked I was only a matter of 24 hours from being required to be hospitalized. So, being chronically sad and having anxiety attacks was not something I was willing to bring up to my mom. Actually, I did once go to my mom when I was very little - maybe 5 or 6 - to try to tell her that I was so sad all the time, but she told me that she had enough problems already without me having a problem. Mostly, my anxiety was overlooked because I was admittedly terrified of the doctors office - and it wasn't like I was about to admit that I had it away from the office - one time my pulse and heart beat was so high in the office that they sent me to a Cardiologist...wasn't going to mention it anymore. I was the only kid I knew who had given up playing any sort of video game because it sent me into massive anxiety attacks. Yes, there was a cause for my depression and father is, was, and will forever be a tyrant. Reading the description of "narcissist" is so perfect I keep expecting to see his picture. I suffered from years of mental and emotional abuse from him. So I, who was almost glued to my mom because I had no one else, didn't want to cause her any more problems. Not that anyone back in those days would have thought it possible for a KID to be suffering from severe depression and anxiety. Picking scabs was one of my many self destructive tendencies that I honestly believed were my "escape". Hitting myself, hurting myself was a daily "game" for me - I don't know what it's like for everyone else, but I developed this belief that if I could hurt myself worse than he hurt me then I was in control. I believed for the majority of my life that picking scabs was just "gross" and not something serious - like I was going to admit I did something as gross as that. My theory was that if I admitted it someone was just going to tell me to stop and as I realized back then I didn't have any control over it, the best thing for me to do was not tell anyone. By the time I was 12, I had already tried to commit suicide and my anxiety was so bad that my hands shook like an 80 year old's and my mom said that I was "weak", "thin-skinned", and just needed to "get tough." If you can write off that sort of anxiety then there was no way I was going to admit I picked my scabs obsessively. If and when my parents - well, my mom - noticed it I just let them come up with their own reasons for it. My Mom has spent my entire life believing that I just have a weak immune system and that my cuts and scrapes were infected, which was fine because she didn't think I could help it. When I was younger I would just move to a different spot if I thought something serious was coming - like when Neosporin wasn't healing my scabs and I might have to go to the doctor. I have deep pits all over my body from this habit. Then, to make matters worse, when I was 13 or 14 I think my doctors realized that there was something wrong with me - whether they knew how bad it was I will never know - but they tried to put me on medication, which might have helped some but my father took it away from me before I was even on it a week. As my mom was always in the room with me, there was no further discussion of it. Not long after that, I discovered cutting - and I was obsessed with picking the scabs and it was almost therapeutic to me to be able to continue the cutting by picking the scabs. When I was in my 20's I discovered the "beauty" of adding salt and lemon juice to my cuts each and every time I cut or picked. It's only been in the last couple of years that I realized that this was a disorder. My family physician tells me that I need to see a psychiatrist, which I am in FULL agreement with, but as I don't have insurance, as my depression and anxiety are crippling to me "working" is on the internet or on ebay, no psychiatrist will take me - despite the fact I recently sold just about anything I owned worth something so I could save up to be seen by a psychiatrist. It's sort of a vicious circle in itself. I know that I'm addicted to this self destructive behavior but I hate it. I barely look in the mirror, in the hottest part of summer I wear sweat pants or jeans, I can't stand to see what I do to myself and yet, I can't stop myself. If I can restrain myself while I'm awake while I'm asleep I tear myself apart - I wake up with blood spots all over my body. This is the first time that I've ever been able to talk about this with anyone. I'm no success case, obviously, but if there is anyone who wants to talk - I apparently am an "unusual" case from what I've read because I started picking scabs before I even started school - I would love to talk. Sorry for such a long intro, but all my problems sort of revolve around themselves. ~Jaeden
1 Answer
June 21, 2012
Jaeden, please know, despite how it seems and feels, deep down there is nothing wrong with you! Even if you can't get to a psychiatrist, there are better things you can do for yourself, for free. Look at Dr. Andrew Weil's website for a breathing technique. He helps a lot of "psychiatric" disorders just with this easy breathing. Get the free EFT manual (emotional freedom technique) online (and if you can't find it let me know and I'll email it to you). Learn yoga (even from a book) or get a book, like the Habit Change Workbook to help you reduce your picking. Love and support, Arati

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