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Cloudy Days , 16 Apr 2013

How do you stop picking without treatment

I am new here and I never really thought my face picking was a problem. I thought I just had really bad skin. I finally found something that seems to be helping my skin clear up a little but I pick and it makes it seem like it's not working. I have a sit down job that I basically don't do much all day. I tend to touch and feel my face a lot if I feel something that feels like a pimple I will pick at it. I don't even realize I do it most of the time, I just touched my face writing this!!! I know that touching my face without picking causes problems too, but I always do it. I think I have been in denial for a long time or something. I married a man with a lot of mental problems, after 8 years of being in a very emotionally abusive relationship I have figured out that I need to do some work on myself. Because a healthy person would not be in an emotionally abusive relationship for 8 years. I had great parents emotionally, they had their problems with each other though but I always felt very loved. I think my friends were a different story. I deffinalty have trauma related to them and how they treated me. I was also extremely shy as a child. I started picking as soon as I started getting acne, and I also remember that it was pointed out by people but I just thought I had bad acne again. While doing my soul searching I have found out I am very codependent with my husband and probably other people too. But today I know that my face picking is a big problem that i have had since a child. I do have a lot of Anxiety and I have very low self esteem. My husband refers to me as fidge. Because I do fidget a lot, I even realized that I pick at my scalp and arms and even my chest but nothing compares to what I do to my face. So, how do I stop this? I think I am going to cut all my nails short tonight. How do I deal with high anxiety. I'm still with my husband and yes he causes a lot of Anxiety and Stress, but he is working on him and getting better too. It's what I asked for, for us to continue the relationship. Knowing now that I need treatment for my issues, It scares me because all our money is going towards getting him treatment. And trust me, it's better this way, he really needed treatment.....
5 Answers
April 16, 2013
Visiting this forum regularly is really helping me and giving me a real push to stop picking at myself. Like you I concentrate on my face and also upper back at the moment but have had huge problems also with my chest and shoulder areas in the past. Since visiting this site I am trying loads of new ideas to try and stop doing this as it has been going on for about 15 years. There are also loads of youtube videos from people who do the same thing, all of these things for me have been so helpful and reassuring that other people do this too and I can stop. At the moment i am trying a 21 day challenge to stop picking at my skin. I have put a pile of 21 numbered postits at the bathroom mirror (my worst place for picking) as a reminder, i have also placed a postit on my two mirrors at my face height so i have to conciously move around it, hopefully giving my enough time to stop. I am washing my face without the light on too and desperatly trying to keep my hands busy while i'm at work, when I realise im doing it i pick up a pen or something else to fidget with. Lots of face rubbing so far but im proud i have avoided the scratching. Also keeping my nails really short to avoid badly damaging the skin helps. I hope some of these things can help you or you can find something from all the suggestions out there that does.
Cloudy Days
April 17, 2013

In reply to by sm123

Thanks for the support. I don't think I will be joining a 12 step program but I am deffinatly going to try and be more aware of what I am doing. I cut all my nails short last night and it's deffinatly driving me nuts not to be able to pick. I can't pick without my nails. I can't leave a white head alone though, no way in I think finding something that works for my acne will help a lot too. For anyone who is still having a hard time finding something that works. I used to wash my face every day with cleansers, neutrogena, skin ID, Proactive, you name it I tried it and now I have switched to plain Baking soda and water followed by an Oil wash with Coconut Oil. My skin has never been clearer! I noticed that the main places I would get the worst of my pimples would be where I had started picking at. I should have cut my nails long ago. I'm glad that I am not alone it this and I'm sure awareness of why I do it will help me a lot. I am an artist and I'm going to try and draw instead of pick. It's a very emotional process for me so it should help :)
April 17, 2013

In reply to by Cloudy Days

Thanks for sharing face wash tips. I may try it. Have always struggled to find something that works to clear up my face and until recently, would punish myself by not getting nice face wash because I "didn't deserve it" since I was picking so much. Not thinking that way anymore, and starting to be more honest about my compulsive behaviors and trying to be kind to myself. I've been using Neutrogena naturals for about a week which is very gentle on my skin and has a delicious scent. I even smiled washing my face this morning. Can't remember the last time that has happened. 12 step is not for everyone. For a person like me who tends to avoid people, it's definitely the right place to be right now. I'm on Day 3 of the 21 day challenge. Abstinent and haven't even had any urges today. So what i'm doing today (writing, keeping busy, planning meals and activities with other people, reading in public places, and reading/posting on this forum) must be helping. It's been a good day. Good luck and please share links to skin-picking inspired art! Rosa
April 17, 2013

In reply to by rosa111

I'm using avene cleanance facewash gel and the avene triacneal treatment. Like you I've tried everything under the sun and both are working really well. The only thing that has ever worked this well for me is the contraceptive pill dianette. There is a purging period with the triacneal where all of the bad stuff comes out, which i found really difficult but it has now cleared after about 2-3 weeks and my skin looks better than ever with almost no under the skin spots that i am tempted to pick at. Before i could feel bumps on my cheeks i wanted out even though they were really deep. Day 2 has gone well, almost picked at some spots on my shoulders, theres a big whitehead that im trying desperately to avoid! I feel really confident that I can do this, even after 2 days of not picking my skin looks SO much better :) No giant red spots on my face, only flaky parts where the scabs are healing. I didnt think it would make a big difference over only a few days. I can't help but imagine what it could be like in 21 days, which it really spurring me on. I feel like i might be able to accept the small imperfections in exchange for no red scabs from picking. i'll be really disapointed if i let myself down so trying really hard, fingers crossed for all of us!!
April 17, 2013
I'm on Day 2 of the 21 day challenge. I started about a month ago and got as far as 7 days. I'm starting over and feeling brave again today. I journal every time I have a lapse so that I can get at the feelings or thoughts I was having prior or right after I started to pick. It's allowing me to become more aware of my patterns. I am trying to replace the picking habit with other habits, such as making my bed in the morning and putting clothes away where it goes rather than letting it pile up around my room. I'm going to 12 step meetings to share about my compulsion. It was embarrassing at first and now it's liberating. I have nothing to lose except this terrible self-defeating habit that has kept me from doing SO much in my life. And it's not about willpower at all for me. I have willpower for a lot of other things, and yet I cannot stop picking once I start. For me, it's an addiction. People in 12 step meetings have welcomed me with open arms and already a few have made themselves available for me to reach out via phone, which helps a lot when the thoughts/feelings start and I just can't keep from hurting myself. Reaching out to other addicts/sufferers of compulsive behavior disorders and journaling about my self-discovery is keeping me from picking. If you have the option of a 12 step group for addiction near you, you may want to check it out. I have benefited from calling another person who understands my compulsive behaviors. I'm losing my fear of starting over and of asking for help. I'm on Day 2 and I'm abstinent from picking my skin. It's been a very good day so far.

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