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I just realized this is a disorder and I have it!
I am turning 26 next week and just realized, or was just honest enough with myself finally, to realize that I am addicted to picking my skin. I use tweezers and needles to pick, and cuticle clippers to cut the skin that is raised from picking so that the skin is smooth around the edges when I am finished, which in my mind means it will heal easier, but in actuality it does MUCH more damage. I have never admitted to anyone this is a problem, but it has been sine I was 13. I also bite/cut/pick my finger nails off until they are bloody. I pick at my legs and chest anytime there is an ingrown hair or a bump. I have got to stop! I just began my first "big girl" job as a psychologist, so you would think I would know how to NOT do this or how to quit it, but I don't. I have been doing it so long now that I cannot even believe I will be able to quit. I have to try. I used to think it was my "acne" that spurned this condition. So...I used antibiotics, topicals, and even was on Accutane for 10 months. My skin was flawless, but I kept picking it. I thought it was due to a lack of Serotonin/depression, so I underwent 6 months of therapy and am now on antidepressants (multiple). I STILL PICK!!!!! They cannot do anything else to help me medically. My acne is GONE and I am loaded with Effexor and Wellbutrin. I am also loaded with shame, guilt, and a newfound desire to quit. I do not want to suffer this, along with my anxiety and depression, forever. On most days, now that I have undergone therapy and am medicated, the only thing still difficult for me is the picking habit. The depression and anxiety are minor comparatively. Not only do I pick ANY tiny bump or dry skin, now I have moved onto picking the tiny, minuscule hairs, or hair follicles/pulps on my face. Even if there is not a hair there, I am now digging so deep I am pulling the part of the skin that grows the hairs out. I focus on my chin and between my eyes mainly, and even now I have a huge scab there. I am in a relationship with someone who doesn't say anything about it, but I know he notices and is probably disgusted with me. I am "beautiful" with makeup on, but I cannot even stand to look at myself without it. If I could post a picture you would be amazed because I have learned how to cover it up brilliantly. I know exactly which creams do what, and I have an over the counter/prescription arsenal, and I know how to use make up so that even the biggest wounds are nearly impossible to see. When it all comes off...that is another story. I am scarred all over. I am ugly. The spots are kind of like me...raw and open...wanting to heal. I am starting today. I am not going to pick for 30 days. Please please help me community of fellow pickers. I am a licensed psychologist and cannot turn to anyone in my area for therapy because I work with them all. This is my last ditch effort. I have already picked this morning and tore a 1/2 inch gap into the skin between my eyes. This has to stop. Day 1: Embarrassed but Optimistic- Here we go. I am severely addicted. I will post tomorrow to let you know how the night goes. It is Friday the 13th. I am going to hide my tweezers (weapon of choice) and begin taking fish oil, biotin, vitamin E, and beta-carotine to help with the healing process. If anyone has any comments or suggestions please share. I am going to OVERCOME this! I just need help and encouragement.
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