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Bert , 30 May 2018

High work stress and the sensation

Hi am 53 with a high demand job managing a 3 location law firm. For the first summer I am not going to be able to go out in shorts. Last year in the summer (about 11 months ago) I was bit by mosquitoes and chiggers chasing our greyhounds in the weeds and there are 8 now that are 3 times the size. I have realized that coming home and going into the bathroom has helped calm down and feel less anxious. Because I am picking and peroxiding. I do this nightly and now I'm just disgusted with myself and embarrassed to be seen with my husband in shorts. I can't find a way to stop. Because the scalp are so deep into the wound I have resorted to a sewing machine needle to get the edge. I have also started putting ambesol on to numb before I pick. I have never spoken about this. And I have to start by doing in this forum and then find a behavioral therapist. I'm an accountant with a few OCD issues as it relates to controlling activity around me. I guess I need to tell my family next. My mother is going to be in denial.

2 Answers
May 30, 2018

Hi Bert,

I am sorry you are going through this... It seems like you may be over worked from your high demanding job. Being over worked can unhealthy increases your stress--is it possible to one day soon lessen your professional responsibilities to allow you to pay better attention to your emotional and physical needs? Perhaps you are just in need of a vacation and some additional quite time to better listen to your body and soul.
I recommend throwing away your needle(s), all of them, or any potential tool you may likely use. This should start to make you feel like you have a choice again, and this empowering choice is only possible when you are aware of yourself. With a lack of awareness, you are choosing to pick by default. This autopilot sense of self has this short-term skin picking and stress reducing pleasure, but as you know, the long-term effects are exponentially stress inducing. You should seek to better understanding your feelings and gain a greater sense of self. I greatly encourage you to write down on a piece of paper the pros of picking, the cons of picking, the pros of not picking, and the cons of not picking. Types of exercises like these are professional methods to help you regain a better sense of yourself, and most importantly create a much greater sense of consciousness. It takes practice, actions, and most importantly consciousness to break usefulness habits, and over time the need to partake in this pastime will start to subside.

I also recommend purchasing reading about skin picking. Resources like these will start to make you more aware of yourself and behaviors. It is also important to write down information in a log of when you pick, where, the emotions you were feeling, and how long. This will start to identify the various reasons of why you pick. Again, the overall goal here is creating a greater sense of consciousness.

Be well,

June 03, 2018

Hi Bert,
I can definitely relate. I am a lawyer too, and have gotten into a similar routine. I usually pick at my face, though. I totally zone out and think about my files, my boss, and various other problems that I don't have time to think about during the day. Then, it being my face, I am very embarrassed and feel like my colleagues must think I have some sort of disease or drug issue. I am fairly good with makeup, though. I often find I am trying to 'fix' something on my face, including marks I've created myself, and I only ever make it worse.

At times I don't let my husband come close to me in case he notices that I have scabs all over my face that have been covered with makeup.

Anyway, just wanted to commiserate.

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