Online Test

Find out the severity of your symptoms with this free online test

RuthyPegs , 13 Jan 2013

It's Been a Long Time...

I am 28 years old and have been picking at my skin for a long time. Until today I thought I was relatively alone and too ashamed to talk to anyone about it. But today I googled "skin picking habit" after opening up to my husband... This week I have begun a crusade to improve who I am, and I know where to begin. I have been picking my skin for a long as I can remember. It started in my early adolescence, my face wore the brunt of it. I remember picking a scab on my forehead until it bled and was about the size of an Australian 10c piece. I also remember another time where I had an issue with making sure my shampoo was completely rinsed my shampoo and conditioner out of my hair, acne ensued, and so I went on a picking frenzy. Later on in my youth I started with my neck, my chest, my belly... And by the time I went to university, I had started on my shoulders. My shoulders got really bad. In second year, I was diagnosed with depression and that was probably the worst they got. I picked at them until I had great scratches, sores, some pussy, and I would pick them too. I honestly don't ever remember feeling too much pain from it. I suppose in my case, it was a little self-harm tendency manifesting itself. When I was about 24 I started on my areolas. One night in the shower, I gave my nipple a little squeeze and I got a 'really good one'. Having been given the encouragement I needed, I couldn't stop. I kept squeezing that one little gland, but eventually tried the next one, and the next. And now I'm a mother to a 9 month old baby and I'm breastfeeding. Breastfeeding has not been my friend. Having my boobs in my face all day and having little to do while I'm feeding means I'm at them all the time. They are pretty bad. My right nipple isn't so bad, but my left is terrible. I have sores all over them, and as soon as I see a little white or black head, I'm at it again. I can't stop. I understand I'm not doing myself any favours, and in my quest to have my skin completely clean, I'm actually doing the opposite. I'm encouraged to know I'm not alone, so please, let's talk and try to get over this, because I don't know about you, but I don't want this to rule me anymore than it already has.
3 Answers
January 13, 2013
Hi, I'm one hundred percent up for talking and stopping this, I'm also in my twenties and I pick my lips really badly until they're red raw. It's just so easy to reach up and pick, when I'm bored, anxious, at any point really. I've been thinking about regularly posting on here, talking of how I'm doing will help, I'll post of this thread, others should too then we can break this habit and finally be free of this thing. I've realised I don't have to live with this so I'm determined not to, no matter how long it takes, how do you intend to stop?
January 14, 2013

In reply to by Runaway_1

Hi Runaway. Today I'm going to the doctor (in about an hour and a half). This morning I have also spoken to my parents, tried to suss out some family members who have had trichotillomania in the past, called some services in my area for some domestic support, called my real estate agent to gain some understanding that my house won't be ready for an inspection tomorrow. For me, I think this has been a long personal battle, and I don't think the answer is clear, but having had depression in the past has made me able to express what it is I feel quite clearly and I see that as a strength. It probably has roots in my childhood - a spate of playground bullying, a difficult relationship with my father, and body image issues that I've had for as long as I can remember. Once upon a time, the issue just didn't matter so much, but as I grow older and saggier and 'less perfect', it becomes a large one. I am a bit fearful of SSRI's...I've read the horror stories. I just want to get better though, so maybe I'll have to just wear it and take them. I have a long genetic line of OCD in my family, and I think, instead of manifesting itself in my cleaning my house this way, that way, upside down and inside out, my OCD relates to my skin alone. I've read somewhere that in cases where trauma has occurred in the past, we can become very inward after feeling like we've lost control of self in those situations. This makes sense to me. For example, I had an episode in my childhood where my bully put me up against a portable classroom wall and threw basketballs at my head over and over again. Kids can be cruel... The experience has stayed with me my whole life, though I have always said I'm over it. My husband has been wonderful for my sense of self, my sense of control, and I think my doing something about it was just a matter of time. By no means do I think this is the only core reason I do this though. I probably have deep-seeded issues with sexuality, body dysmorphia and anxiety. I've probably gotten to a time in my life where my issues mean I tend to push people away rather than dealing with my problems, and I DON'T WANT TO BE THIS PERSON. How do you plan to go tackling your habit?
January 15, 2013

In reply to by RuthyPegs

How did it go at the doctors? Thats the one thing Im not sure about, I dont know how they'll react or even if they've heard of it. The only connection in my family with this is my sister also picks but not to the same extent I do. I've previously tried wearing false nails and it works for a while but I start to get frustrated with them, take them off and begin picking again. I want to deal with this too, I've told a couple of friends but apart from that keep it to myself, I've had enough of feeling like everyone is staring at my lips you know?

Start your journey with SkinPick

Take control of your life and find freedom from skin picking through professional therapy and evidence-based behavioral techniques.

Start Now