Hi, I'm new here on this website, I think it goes without saying why I joined and how I ended up at this corner of the internet. Since I'm new, I thought I'd share a little bit of my story - which is probably a lot like all of your stories - in hopes to relate to people or on the off chance that someone might benefit from reading this.
I started getting acne when I was about 10. I didn't know you could pop zits. I really didn't. My dad, I remember, tried to extract a few of blackheads of mine (not as creepy as it sounds), and that's how I first learned you could pop them. I was 11. From then on began my journey with skin picking. It wasn't an obsession at this point. It was just, when I saw a zit that was particularly obnoxious, I would pick at it. My acne got pretty bad until I was 13, finally started using the right products, and cleared it up. For the next year or so my skin was really good, but I started picking at the skin on my shoulders and back. The summer of my sophomore year in high school is when skin picking got really bad for me. It became a straight up obsession. I would spend hours upon hours picking, using a magnifying mirror that my parents had in the bathroom. I don't know how it started, I just know that once I started I couldn't stop. From then on, my skin was horrendous. That was probably the worst it's ever been on my face. Meanwhile, I was still picking on my body too. Although my face has not always looked as horrible as it did back then, I've struggled to stop picking. The compulsion has gotten worse and worse. My shoulders, upper back, lower back, neck, jawline, chin, ears... Everywhere. I started using Manuka honey to heal wounds faster on my face, but I feel like it's really enabled my habit because there's always this belief that I can just put some honey on it and I'll be fine. After one of my millionth relapses, I'll be covered in honey, and refuse to see my friends or go out until the swelling and redness has subsided. I pick at my skin pretty much everywhere I am. When I'm out, at work, in class, talking to people, it doesn't matter. I don't even noticed it anymore. All of my close friends and family members now yell at me to stop picking, because everyone's noticed how bad it is. I guess I just really don't know what to do anymore. That's pretty much my story and where I'm at now.