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Albhs15543 , 14 Apr 2020

Scarred arms and legs

Hi everyone. Im 18 and i have been picking my skin since forever (i think i started at about 10 years old). I only knew of dermatillomania when i googled it last week as i was feeling very depressed that my skin looks so bad and started hating myself for that. I thought i was the only one with this kind of obsession and i haven’t gotten any support from anyone so i decided to write on this forum.
As some of you have experienced, i have a strong urge to pick my skin over and over again in my legs, arms, chest and pubic area. I feel ashamed of myself and every year in the summer i hesitate to wear clothes that expose my skin, i would never have sex with the lights on and i skip social activities very often.
I have damaged my skin so badly over the years that even my hairs can’t penetrate the skin to grow up, so i start scarring my skin again to get them out... i don’t think that my skin will ever recover no matter how hard i try to soften my picking habits.
I have tried many remedies: using oil to make my skin more slippery to not be able to pick it, wearing gloves, cutting my nails very short, applying crazy amounts of sudo cream so i can’t see what’s under there, watching blackhead popping videos on youtube to take off the urge, sitting for hours in the sun to fade the scars away etc. Some of these methods really worked at the time but no matter what i always start again, especially on stressful times. I really feel sorry for myself for doing this but i can’t seem to beat the urge. I even thought of hurting myself because i couldn’t stand in front of a mirror.
I really wish i could show you guys here pics of my skin. Anyways, i really needed to share my story with people who would understand me. Love and support for all of you❤️

4 Answers
April 14, 2020

Please don't be depressed or upset about your skin picking habit. I too have suffered from dermatillomania most of my life and it's important to remember that our skin picking does not define us. Our brain is wired to pick when we get feelings of depression, anxiety, etc. I recently began reading "Skin Picking: The Freedom to Finally Stop" by Annette Pasternak, and I highly recommend it. I truly wish I had picked up this book much sooner, as I already feel a sense of hope that I can cope with this habit and eliminate it to the best of my ability. One of the thing the author mentions is the idea that positive thoughts foster positive outcomes. I totally get it, after we pick, we feel ashamed and embarrassed. But those negative emotions fuel our urge to continue picking. Another thing I found to be extremely helpful during this process is manipulating some type of toy when you have the urge to pick. I LOVE playing with Crayola's Globbles, and I keep them in the locations that I am most likely to have the urge to pick. I know how hard this disorder can be, but keep your chin up! We can be our own worst enemies at times. You can and will get through this!

Satanic Butterfly
June 02, 2020

Hi, if you want we can exchange social media. I think we could both use some support ❤️

June 12, 2020

Wow. I can’t believe how much I can relate to you. I am 20, but every other word you wrote is 100% me. Mine is so bad right now, and I finally started doing some research, not even realizing there was a term for it, and realized I am not the only one. I grew up thinking I was disgusting for doing it, and was always told to “just stop.” But it’s so much more than that and I realize that now. I pick at every single spot on my body, and I am miserable. I don’t wear swimsuits, or shorts. Summer is the worst for me. Winter is my favorite season because I have an excuse to cover every part of my body. I just scheduled a doctors appointment and I am hoping to discover some ways to help my urge to to pick.
anyways this point in this response is, I’m sorry you’re feeling so down, but know you’re not alone. ❤️

June 12, 2020

Thanks guys. And yes i would love to share social media.☺️

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