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First of all, I never knew there were so many people with this. I'm not sure when mine started. In first grade, my best friend and I would stick safety pins through the calluses on our thumbs until she had to get sent to the nurse because it bled so much. I bit my nails and peeled off sunburns. I'd put glue all over my hand just to peel it off (now that I think of it, that might be good therapy). I guess the first time I really realized I had a problem was in high school. I had bad acne on my face and would spend over an hour poring over it, finding those little spots. I did it whenever I could. Soon I started noticing acne on my back and arms, so they got the same treatment. Then came the day I realized that blackheads could be squeezed out. I was done. I had scratches all over my arms, which I didn't realize was connected to my behavior at first. From there I added my chest and breasts and now I've even started doing it with my labia. I have a husband who somehow thinks I'm beautiful, so that's one incentive, is keeping my skin smooth for him. If he compliments me on how smooth my shoulders are getting, I think, "How long until I pick again?" I have gotten better; I'm not really sure what changed except that I've gotten busier. I still pick at my arms and shoulders but have learned to leave my face alone unless I get a huge pimple. I pull at my leg and arm hairs. Search for ingrown hairs and dig them out with a safety pin. What helps me personally? Let's see: --Video games and smartphone games. I have trouble with cutscenes but am going to put a fidget toy on my desk --Crochet (also makes awesome gifts) --Picking at my nails instead of my skin. I work with preschoolers, so I keep them short anyway. --Most of all, I think just being conscious of when I do it and what triggers it. I picked a lot the day I decided to tell my doctor about it because not only was I anxious, but I gave myself permission. She was going to see it anyway, so why not? If I see a spot, sometimes I remember to take a deep breath and that helps a little. --Nail polish and manicures work the first day. I'm really glad a community like this exists; I haven't talked about it this much to anyone, not even my husband. I love him and share everything else with him, but it's hard for someone who doesn't suffer to really understand how hard it is on a daily basis. I think this will give me the courage to help him see. Thank you all for your support and stories!