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Mama_J , 25 Jun 2009

I hate myself

I'm a 54yr.-old woman & my horrible face & body-picking is the result of several mood disorders AND my tendency to over-medicate & totally mis-manage prescribed amphetamines. I just spent !2 HOURS in front of my super-magnifing mirror (I usually do it from late evening until the next day w/showers in between. I will now have to "hide" for the next 4 days at least. I recently started going to a tanning salon which somewhat lessens the horrific sores & scabs & seems to help them heals faster. All so i can go back out in public, buzz about like the carefree single woman I portray myself as, only to come home, deliberately react to one of my many KNOWN triggers, & repeat the whole disgusting, hateful but uncontrollable ritual all over again. I have so much going for me & yet I can not seem to stop disfiguring myself OR get off the drug (without it I would eat & sleep my life away). Right now it's a beautiful summer day & I'm in a "blackout" in my apt. in my self-imposed exile from the world. Just wanted to share this depressing bit of truth. Anyone else out there hating themself as much as I do??
10 Answers
June 25, 2009
Hey, MamaJ, hang in there. I totally know what you are talking about-- sunny days are the worst! Show yourself a bit of kindness; despite the sores, you are WORTH IT! And the compulsion to pick is not YOU, it's a disorder in your mind. Is there something you enjoy inside that you can do during your "exile"? What do you do to make the despair not so bad? I'm trying to be helpful (not bitchy) when I ask: Why are you punishing yourself? Take care and take it easy on yourself (I know that's often impossible after a pick.) We're here for you!
June 27, 2009
I don't pick my skin as much anymore, but last week I had a total relapse and went crazy in front of my bathroom mirror. Then I was so ashamed, I covered up my face in makeup but refused to leave my room. A few hours later, I was back in front of the mirror, at it again. I finished with a big red nose, a scabby forehead, and little red scabs all around my mouth. Then I finally decided to just go to bed and hope it looked better in the morning. When I layed down, I began picking at my back as well. By the time I was done, a good rectangle of my back was covered in red bumps that never existed before. This was one week ago. I've picked a little bit at those places since last week, which has slowed the healing process, but my skin is almost back to normal. I don't know how to prevent a pickfest, but I do know the best recovery methods. DO NOT go to the tanning salon, I've gotten tiny white scars from trying to tan over a scab. THROW AWAY or give away or sell your super magnifying mirror. Seriously. No one needs to see their pores that clearly. I have noticed that I tend to pick more after a big picking session because I don't want to go out (no one should see me like this) so I'm left home alone with nothing to do and skin that seems hopeless. So I pick more. And more. And the next morning I wake up and see with clarity what I've done to myself, and I hate myself. My method is, instead of focusing my postpick energies into self loathing, I focus it on trying to fix my newly destroyed face. Directly afterward, I hold and ice pack on the areas that I've picked to take down the swelling. I do this on and off for a long time. I don't know how much it actually works, but it keeps me from returning to my bathroom mirror. One I get tired of doing that, I get on google and start trying to find ways to make a scab heal faster. This takes up about an hour or so. By this point, most of them have scabbed up. Then I apply a ton of face lotion to the heavily picked areas. I don't know if this does anything either, but it does keep me from having to look at the torn up skin. Then I sleep. The next day I basically use the same methods. By day three I can usually wash my face without worrying about tearing off the scabs. I use face cleanser, toner, and lotion, and I typically do this three step system every time I get the urge to mess with my face. Sometimes it's several times a day, but hey, it's better than picking! The real trick is to think positively about your face. It only took my skin about five or six days to return to normal. If I didn't mess with it at all it probably would have only taken three or four. If you can make it just that one week without picking, you might pleasantly surprise yourself with how beautiful your skin can be.
July 05, 2009
Hi, Try cutting your nails as short as possible so that you won't be able to take your scabs off. If you have the urge episodes during the day, push your self getting out of the house and go for a long walk by yourself. You need to push your self to do this, because it's the only way out. But remember cut your nails as short as possible and throw your magnifying glass away. Also another thing that works for me is putting band-aids with antibiotic because it covers the open skin and will heal it so quick your will be surprise how fast it will disapear. This is what I do for my self and it seems to help. But remember you have to push your self to go out during the day or evening for long walks to get your mind away from thinking about an epidsode of scab picking. For my self my back is so bad It looks like I was shot all over my back that it's enberrasing if anyone see's my back. I never show my back even when i take my kids to the pool. I am 42 years old and I've had this problem ever since I was a little girl. Tonight when I found this website and have seen many of us with this same issue of OCD I feel that I am going to mention this to my doctor and seek help through therapy and possibly medication for my problem. But one thing I know it works for me is getting out of the house for a walk or mall even if I don't buy anything. You need to help your self and talk to a doctor. So PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE seek help with your doctor! We are all worth it and try to be positive,
August 05, 2009

In reply to by Trini

I cut my fingernails as short as I possibly can also to keep myself from picking my cuticles until they bleed so I understand why you do that. I've cut my nails so short sometimes that I've cut them too short and they bleed and I get horrible hangnails and then I end up picking my cuticles anyways, it's a terrible cycle. Matter of fact I just cut all of my fingernails as short as I could just a few minutes ago because I picked the cuticle on my thumb and now it's bleeding and infected. I use the antibiotic bandaids too for my cuticles to keep them from getting infected. I look like a freak because I'll have four or five bandaides on my fingers at one time because my cuticles are bleeding and infected and it's embarassing. I try to stay positive. I've been doing this since I can remember and I can't remember when it started. I'm afraid to talk to a doctor about it because I've never been on any type of prescription medication in my whole life. I don't know if I ever will but I guess if it gets bad enough I'll talk to them about it. I'm just scared is all. I found this website today and it's great to know I'm not the only one.
July 05, 2009
i know exactly how you feel my picking is usually done on the weekend when i use speed i try not to use during the week so i won't pick and look like a walking sore. But my picking session on the weekend usually heals during the week so i can do it again the next weekend. It's so weird i actually want to pick because i think if i can just get that one hair follicle my face won't break out again. Then when i finally start looking normal again i pick a hole in my face or back of my hand or my stomach,thigh,knees whatever i can reach this sucks and i can seem to stop
July 31, 2009
I am SOOOO there with you! Im in exile at the moment too..and I'm freaking out because I have to see people I haven't seen in a while.(the last time i saw them my skin was looking good and im scared what their reaction will be).I feel for you. I can absolutely relate to the whole outter facade, inner hell thing. Lately picking has been making me feel like I've got split personality disorder. On one hand Im this outgoing, fun person who comes off as super strong, or tries to. And then theres the side of me thats falling apart that I dont feel i can show anyone. Thankyou for sharing where you're at, its helping me feel less alone.
August 04, 2009
I know how you feel and I completely understand picking at your face until it's red and blotchy and you just feel disgusting. I hide in my room all day and cover my face in tons of makeup. When I wake up the next morning my face is usually back to normal but I know I'll just do it again. I just wanted to let you know you're not alone.
August 04, 2009
YOU JUST TOLD MY STORY!!!! this is incredible, we REALLY aren't alone!!! my mind is crazy overwhelmed so I will comment later when i process all this. Thank you for telling my story! I am soooo hopeful because of your blog!
August 06, 2009
I too am an avid picker. I used to pick when I was a child on my legs and arms, then in my teens on my right with my left hand. I am right handed. I would do this 3 times a year lasting each time 2 to 4 weeks. Now I am 40 and recently separated after 22 years of marriage I have began picking at my face at first it was the chin area where you start growing those little dark hairs. Then it would be edge of the jaw line. I am not sure how I ended up picking all areas of my face. But I did and I too find myself sitting in the bathroom from 30 to an hours picking, I bit my nails down to the quick thinking that would stop me from picking, But I began to I use tweezers and a safety pin. I hate the way my face looks. I have scars and bumps and scabs. I do this on a daily basis. I too put alot of makeup on only to look like a monster. I just wanted to heal the wounds because it is so embarrassing. Everyone says what happened to your face? I just tell them my makeup got contaminated and broke my face out. Or that I have ecesma. I researched how to heal the open wounds quickly by putting honey on open sores. It kills the bacteria and works really quick. Always cleanse face first then apply the honey. It's gonna be messy so pull your hair back . I do mine at night, When you wake up just rinse off your face and by morning the redness is gone and the open sores have closed and began to heal. It is the quickest and most natural solution I have found. As far as picking, I still do that and hope one day to stop. It doesn't matter who you are whether you are beautiful or thin rich or poor, this can happen to anyone. It does not help not having any social interaction or secluding yourself in your house for days. Good Luck to everyone and thanks for sharing, It makes me feel better knowing I am not alone in this battle.
August 08, 2009
I can relate to what everyone has shared. I'm a skin picker (and hair puller) who picks at every part of my body. I found a 12 step group for skin pickers that has SAVED MY LIFE. People in the program have solid abstinence from skin picking. They GET IT. Finally, I have found my people and am not alone. There are people who I can call during the week, they get me, and there is a weekly phone meeting. I'm not facing this devistating illness alone anymore and I no longer have to "figure it out." THERE IS A SOLUTION. Please call in if you need support. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. SKIN PICKER'S ANONYMOUS PHONE MEETING - Sundays at 7PM EST. Call in #: 1-270-696-2525 / Access Code: 12128

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