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Hello Everyone, Can I just say that I'm extremely anxious posting on here..as if a picture of my bare face is going to upload with my post.. I'm a 22 year old female student at a big state university, and I'm a skin picker - a face picker. I've done it for years, for as long as I can remember of my teenage years, long before I was ever diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Well, the cats out of the bag there. I'm actually MUCH more comfortable at this point, discussing my bipolar disorder than my dematillomania. I know all about the harmful effects that picking at my face has physically/dermatologically/mentally in terms of stress/anxiety. But as I'm sure many of you will attest, the absolute HARDEST part of picking is LIVING with it. And I don't mean crawling back in bed, calling off work, skipping class and blowing off your friends. I mean waking up with the resolve in the morning to go outside and DO something, FACE people, ANYTHING really. The degree to which this condition is debilitating is tantamount to an honest to god physical handicap, and then some. I'm sorry if that offends anyone here, but the extent of paralysis I've experienced due to the shame/pain of my face is frightening really. Anyway, I feel like I'm preaching to the choir here..but man does it feel good to have a choir to preach to! My situation right now is that I have a huge, swollen, open sore on my chin that's not make-up ready and it's the Friday of Halloween weekend. Now you may or may not know that Halloween is kind of a big deal in this college town - friends are coming to visit from out of town, it's a big game day tomorrow, etc. Basically, there's no way I can hibernate all weekend and get away with it. But I was planning on being Goose from TopGun tonight (I've got a flight suit and everything) but this was before my chin exploded and I didn't really want to go as post-mortem Goose but I'm so afraid that the giant gross chin will be the only thing people see. That's just it, I'm afraid. Let's face it - kids around these parts are young and lusty, boozed up and somewhat shallow because of it. I've gone out before at parties, and even though I'm wearing ungodly amounts of make up, I can still hear people whispering, or bluntly talking, about "what happened to her face?" Even my close friends try to be discrete but I can see it on THEIR faces when they look at me - the pity, the compassionate embarassment. It's enough to send a girl diving under the covers. I've only got a few hours before I'm expected to be at the festivities, excited and willing, but I couldn't feel anything but. I'm SO incredibly ashamed and I feel SO incredibly ugly that I just wanna climb into a time capsule and get jammed inside a tree. This all sounds very vain and superficial, but I hope you understand how deep this anxiety and shame goes, much much deeper than skin deep. If anyone has any words of encouragement or advice that'll get me through this weekend, please share. Thanks so much for listening, and thanks for this forum. It's helping me not feel so alone. Lots of love to all of you.