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Flaweddesign89 , 14 Apr 2013


Just today I stumbled across this site. I'm so relieved to find that I'm not alone, and It's comforting to know that others experience the same feelings, thoughts and actions I do day to day. Allow me to introduce myself and explain a bit. I am 23, overweight, a mom of 2 and married to a wonderful man. For as long as I can remember I've been picking. It doesn't matter when, where or why, I just do. My face, scalp, ears, arms, chest, back, cuticles, legs and even genital area are all fair game to me. I've always had an obsession with picking scabs ever since I was little, and yes... I eat them :(. I would get a sense of delight when I would get a cut or even a mosquito bite just so I could pick it. Fast forwarding to my teen years; puberty was rough, as my skin on my face and back broke out. I would and still do have sessions parked in front of the bathroom mirror. Sometimes I'm there for hours targeting blackheads and whiteheads. I always thought this was normal behaviour but couldn't understand why my skin always looked so much worse then others. I think it stems from my childhood and watching my mom pluck her dark facial hairs and/or ask me to pop a zit on her arm, back, etc. I assumed this was normal for all people to do, so I began to obsess over getting dark hairs on my face. I wouldn't find any, but I'd find blackheads, zits, etc. and go after them. Sometimes til they were swollen and bleeding. At first, I would just target my forehead, chin area, and back as those where pretty hidden places, but as time has gone on I've been attacking any piece of skin with a blemish, ingrown hair, etc. I'll even just run my hands over my skin to find a bump and start scratching it, trying to rid myself of this "imperfection" all the while causing worse and worse damage. I never realized how big of a problem I was causing myself by engaging in this behaviour. As of today, my "grooming" sessions have scaled back in duration though unconsciously throughout the day I am still picking. Some wounds get picked 2-4 times per day depending on the scab attached or how it feels under my fingers. The pain can be exceptional but I can never bring myself to stop, even when it hurts. I've thankfully never had an infection or any serious life threatening problems from my ministrations but I have had quarter sized ulcers on my arms and chest from the popping and picking routine. Even to this day I struggle with picking. I pick on average an hour or two per day, every day of my life. My body is covered with scars from my "attentions" and I don't know how to stop. Mainly I pick out of boredom, stress and my feelings of self loathing. I am not comfortable in my own skin, or how my body looks and I don't know if I ever will be. My family knows I pick, yet they aren't really supportive; They say things like "you need to stop." "Look at how gross your arms are!" Or "Your poor back!! My god!" And that adds to my feelings of inadequacy and lowers my self esteem even more. I suppose though, they really don't know the whole scope of my problem. My husband generally ignores the problem, as I am a "closet picker" and I usually undertake my sessions late at night or in the bathroom so no one will notice. Though He sees the scars and will comment from time to time. I find that Wintertime is the worst for my compulsions as I can wear long sleeves to hide what I've done, and come summer my feelings of shame and disgust quadruple as I almost HAVE to wear short sleeves. I haven't wore shorts for years due to my weight issues (240 on a 5'7" frame) and stretch marks on the backs of my knees. It's my thighs that get the most of my attentions when it comes to the legs area of my body, and I think it's because I hate my "thunder thighs" and want to change them. Though I admit, scarring isn't the way to do that. I have come to the point where now I crave picking other people's blemishes. If I see a blackhead on my husband or various other CLOSE family members I unconsciously, sometimes even deliberately scratch it and try to pop it, just to get relief for myself and my personal demon. It horrifies me, yet I can't help myself. I hold back most of the time, but sometimes I just need that release of my anxiety. It sounds so ridiculous as I type this out, but in my mind it just somehow seems to make sense at the time. I realized I had a serious problem when my Aunt was diagnosed with Cancer and lost her hair. I wanted to shave my head in support of her and her 6 other siblings (aunts and uncles) we've lost to cancer (my father included), then realized I can't because I don't know how many scars I have on my scalp or if my current wounds would show. It breaks my heart that because of this problem I can't even support her through this dark time in her life. I am disgusted with myself and what I have done. I'm lost trying to find the strength to overcome this. I have quit in the past, but it never lasts long. I'm always compelled to start picking again. I am so terrified my children will grow up to be like me and suffer in the same ways. I'm terrified my kids will one day see what I've done and think less of me for it; judge me like others do. I don't want to be a source of ridicule for them once they get older. I'm scared my husband will reject me. He sees the scars and I know he thinks they are ugly. I fear one day he'll tell me that I'm ugly or that my scars are too much for him to take. I know he is a good man, but my own insecurities tell me that I'm not worthy because of my appearance. I am trying to get better, but I don't even know where to start. I want to be a better person and start to love myself for who I am, yet I don't know where to turn to start that process. I guess i am just looking for a friend; someone who understands what this is all about and isn't going to judge. Any advice from anyone out there?
1 Answer
April 16, 2013
I have a similar situation, though less intense. I'm 21 and have picked since I was little. I'm slightly overweight and sometimes hate the way I look. but I've been blessed with a wonderful boyfriend that loves everything about me, even though he's seen me at my worst..attacking my face. he runs about 10 miles he supports me in learning to be healthy. I am a Christian..when I choose a relationship with God over my own sins, I feel the healing process begin. I learn to look at myself as a child of God. I know some people think I'm crazy..but I wanted to share what gives me hope. and also, I'll be your friend :) email me anytime, or add me on facebook?..

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