Online Test

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

FoxPaula , 11 Mar 2014

Self Harm

Howdy all, I'm new here and have been a compulsive skin picker for 3 years now (I'm 19 and female). I was curious if any of you fellow skin pickers have self mutilated in other ways? From about 14 to 16 I would cut and burn my thighs until I came to a resolution that doing it was silly and effectively stopped. Little did I know that casting away that form self mutilation would result in compulsive skin picking (which for me is predominantly around the chest area as it's easy to hide). Out of the frying pan and into the flame it would appear. I've finally summed up the courage to go see a doctor next week for a referral to a therapist though so we shall see how that goes eh? Anywho, if there is anyone out there who has had a similar development or have overcome this sort of thing I'm very interested in hearing your story!
1 Answer
March 25, 2014
I have a very similar transition. I'm a 31 year old female and I was (and I guess technically still am) a cutter. I used to be really bad at cutting up until I was about 20-21 when I harmed myself so badly that I wound up hospitalized. Part of being in the hospital was mandatory counseling regarding self injury and my therapist was actually the one who brought skin picking to my attention. Skin picking was something that I had always done so absent-mindedly that it never occurred to me that it was any type of problem. Over the years, my transition between cutting and skin picking has evolved dramatically. I think that I'm probably using skin picking as a substitute for cutting. But in my mind it feels like skin picking isn't as bad as cutting because it's small, easily covered, and has believable excuses if anyone asks; where cutting is so severe and hard to explain if anyone asks and a lot of work to heal. I think that's what the appeal is for me. I haven't quite given up on the feelings of satisfaction that cutting and healing were for me, so skin picking is my way of getting that satisfaction in tiny doses. Obviously, it's kind of messed up to actually voice this, since both are such awful ways that people harm themselves, but I ABSOLUTELY understand the connection and in my mind, it's almost like choosing the 'lesser of 2 evils' when I'm skin picking instead of cutting. However, picking is now a compulsive thing that I'll find myself doing for no reason, which is just as harmful because I will pick until I have open wounds and I do it often. Wow... I've never actually articulated that to anyone before. :/

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