40 Day Challenge! Count me in!


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April 27, 2010

any time is ok. and great you're aboard! yes, we can beat this !
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April 28, 2010

Almost done day three in this forty day challenge and feeling good. My skin is already clearing. It clears pretty fast for how much damage I have caused it. However, I am getting a lot more white heads then I am used to having. I need to get better skin care products and get my prescription cream ASAP. Having less white heads to pick at would make this a lot easier. I’m sure most of them are caused from scaring though, since past acne scars always come back as big white heads for me. I just need to try to stay optimistic about this challenge because three days is really not a lot of time for a destroyed face to heal. It’s just enough time to be extremely proud that I could last this long (especially with the immense amount of stress that I have been under). I’ve been looking at pictures of me when I randomly had flawless skin, and I think I looked so beautiful then. I don’t know how I even got there. It was only a year or two ago and I was picking often at that time. I guess I had moments of stresslessness. I never get those now; I’m always under stress (which makes not picking a lot harder). I’d love to look the way I did in those pictures again. Seeing them gives me hope that I can.
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April 28, 2010

congratulations !! for not only making it 3 days but for your skin clearing and feeling optimistic. it's great you're seeing healing. the white heads are annoying, yes, but they will leave on their own accord and without leaving a mark !!!! grit your teeth and ignore them as best you can. i promise you, they will go on their own in an annoyingly long time, but they will go. you will notice them more than anyone else. you will also be so proud of yourself for not going at them. trust me, messing with them is worse than leaving them be. see ... home-remedies-for-you.com/blog/how-to-prevent-whiteheads.html .... keep up the vigilance and you "will" see yourself with the complexion you had in those pictures !! <3 <3 <3
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April 28, 2010

Thank you. Your story has really inspired me. I can only imagine how hard it would be to stop after twenty years of picking. The fact that you not only stopped but lasted 48 days is amazing. I just think if you could do it (which would have been a lot more difficult for you) why can’t I? At first I thought that the amount that you were posting on this site was ridiculous but now I find it very helpful. I’m grateful you take the time to support everyone on this site and not just yourself. If I had more time, I’d love to show my support to others like you do.
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April 29, 2010

i'm 55 in july and i've actually picked for as long as i remember. except for moles which i was told would not stop bleeding or cause cancer. so i've picked every thing else at one time or another to various unhealthy degrees for more like 50 years, but worse when when in my early 30s and maybe even before that. i just remember around the time of my daughter's birth 23 yrs ago people making remarks to me out loud and often. that's why i probably said 20 yrs at first. so i've actually had the problem for really much longer.i cringe when i read about 20 yr olds picking as bad as they are. anyone actually, but especially the youngest. i know from experience that it just won't go away on its own. i hate to think of their having this habit for as long as i have. that's why i've been so active here. who knows, maybe what i've done in the past 9 weeks is changed my obsession from picking to typing. all in the name of care, though, care for my skin, and care for others. what can i say? maybe i have been a bit ridiculous about my posting .......................
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April 28, 2010

Ahhhhh ........... I PICKED!!!! sigh.......................not nearly as badly as i usually do though...........only for 10 minutes or so. DAY 3 = FAILURE. Gonna get back on the horse now.............................so, if by FRIDAY i don't pick ........ i am going to treat myself ...... by allowing myself to put on BIORE face and nose strips to clean my face. Maybe that is not the best way to treat myself ........should i just embrace the natural dirt and oil in my skin and just wash my face???? putting on the BIORE strips will ease my thoughts of having dirt in my face.......... which honestly really just disgusts me. .................... i think i really need to keep posting on this thing whenever i can ......... that really helps make me aware of WHY i am trying/want to stop picking ........ ♥♥♥ stay strong everyone ...... i picked ...... and it is sooooooo OVERRATED ♥♥♥
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April 28, 2010

"i picked ...... and it is sooooooo OVERRATED" .... lol ... i love that comment !! ..... it's so true, especially after getting away from it for a while .... ya realize how distorted the rationale around it is .... treating yourself for good behaviour is so much better ... and the reward of healed skin is hard to beat .... yeah, get used to just washing and moisturizing ... i never realized that my skin was actually dry and that dryness contributed to my feeling sensations that urged me to be at my skin ... now with washing and perhaps the addition of the cold rinse following it, before the moisturizing, my skin is much more comfortable ... i'm much more comfortable in my skin !!! ... lol .... yes, keep up with the posting ... i do believe that's therapeutic too ... all the best to ya !! ... <3<3<3 or rather ♥♥♥ as you'd say ... keep posting them !!
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April 28, 2010

I picked too :( But only once or twice. Which for me is a HUGE thing. So im taking that as a positive. Back to day one tomorrow. Lol so far Im just having lots of 'day one's haha. My back is still covered in bandages (haha i exchanged the tweeties for plain ones) and i have the round ones on my face now to deter me. BUT i have not picked my back today. Well the bandages were itchy as and when i itched i accidently scratched a tiny scab off but i dont count it. Im really so proud of myself. My back was looking soooo bad that when i showed my dr even she was shocked. So im hoping by keeping them totally covered until they are gone i can beat this. I hope everyone else is going well. xx
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April 28, 2010

the bandages will help with the itching ... it's the dryness that makes the scabs itch so it should get better ... hang in there ... yes you can beat it ... if you want it, you can do it ... there's precious little you can't do if you put your mind to it ... it IS huge ... your attitude is changing ... you want something different of your self ... and it's the right thing !!! ... ♥♥♥ ... and maybe an antihistamine will help with the itching in the meantime ... ☺
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April 29, 2010

As long as we all maintain a positive outlook and attitude about our picking we will all get through this! I have noticed a decrease in the urge to pick since I have joined this site. I probably haven't gone more than a day without picking but the amount that I have sat and picked has substantially decreased and I would like to thank you all! Tia, I used to wear bandages to cover up but found that they started to itch me and I ended up picking worse when I would take them off. I would find bumps formed under the sticky part of the bandage and I wanted to get rid of them so I picked. I am just full of bad habits. I used to bit my nails which then turned into biting the skin around my nails. I have recently been able to conquer that habit with the help of a strong ointment called Aquaphor. I would put some on my fingers every night before going to bed and would automatically notice a difference. I continue putting this ointment on every night so I do not revert back to picking the skin around my nails. About a week ago I had the realization to put this ointment on my arms and back where I find myself picking at my bumps and scabs. It's a thick ointment so I use quite a bit but I found that my scabs started to heal and because my arms were so slippery that it made it next to impossible to even try to pick at a bump. Aquaphor is also used for babies so it is completely safe. Because it's so thick you may feel as though you can't wear clothes once you put it on your skin but I have not noticed any staining of my shirts and I put this stuff on multiple times a day to curb to urge. Stay strong and we can beat this!!!
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April 28, 2010

Hi Rosie, I was just checking on the internet as I often do about skin picking,BDD etc..(after a bad picking session) I have been skin picking since I was a teen,Im now 38,its driving me mad!I remember some years ago my Doctor sent me to talk with someone, but she wrote on her notes nothing wrong with me,which left me frustrated.Some years later my beautician said to me I think you have BDD ,so I read the book broken mirror,its only since then that I have realised I have a problem.For years I was a housekeeper and I too would be in homes alone,often finding myself picking at my skin.At present Im living in a foreign country,not working,so I spend alot of time home alone,constantly at the mirror,even watching tv I pick at my arms and scalp.I have had many people tell me over the years that I have lovely skin,of course I disagree but I think people say that because I try soooo hard to make my skin glow.I look at my nana,mum and sister and we all have very grey congested skin,so over the years I have tried to look after my skin,yet I still carry on damaging it by skin pciking,sometimes I feel its the only way I can feel it is clean. While I have been here abroad not working I have had time to change alot of things,I eat alot better now,not that I ate badly before but the open markets here are wonderful.I exercise,stopped smoking ,hardly drink anymore and try and stay calm(now my teenage son is not living with us :O)).So after reading your post,I got to thinking .....if I can change my thoughts about smoking,eating,relaxing,then I can change my thoughts/behaviour on this....I need to try harder!!!Im glad I have fallen across this website too! Hope its going well for you and everyone else who is trying to work on changing things! Jo
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April 28, 2010

Ohhh im so glad you found the site also Jo! You can do this and you now have all of our support to do so! I think just admitting it to people is a great first step. It certainly was for me. Because in the process your admitting it to yourself and you realise what your doing and how unhealthy it really is. Well I STILL havent picked at my back which is the longest time i havent in years. And only had one or two slip ups yesterday on my face. But today is my new day one and my face is already looking soooo much better. I think the bandages on when im at home (im a stay at home mum so i can do it a bit) are helping heal them alot faster. I also find that when my fingers wander subconciously, i am now enjoying the smooth feeling the bandage is giving. Yeah my face is still all bumpy underneath but its like my fingers are satisfied and give up. =) My back is still itchy. I think im a little alergic to the bandages. Lol i have had a mild reaction from bandages since i was young. The face ones are fine, but the back ones are a bit itchy. But not to worry, i still havent picked and im super excited to see how they have healed up when i take them off tomorrow. (i have a girls night out on the town and cant wear them then lol). Not sure i can go uncovered :( but ill find something to wear.
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April 29, 2010

Hi Tia, Well after my pick yesterday and finding this website,I did myself a honey and aspirin mask last night and went to bed telling myself to be kinder to my skin today.Today my first day has been really weird,I havent picked but I have found myself saying ''your looking again'' and ''dont touch'' haha.Ive just been working out,which is my sanity for lots of things and as I laid there gasping for breath,I saw afew bumps on my arms(which are itchy too) and neally went for them but stopped myself!lol!! Even tonight ,while Im watching tv with my partner,I will have to really think about not letting my hands wander to my back or arms!Sure Ill just keep telling myself ..Im on the 40 day challenge dont you dare!!lol I lost alot of confidence in medical people over in the uk,I even remember going to see a dermatologist regarding two problems,I actually had three people in the room ,the dermatologist,nurse and student.I actually said I think I have BDD and that I have picked at my skin since I was a teen,I wasn't taken serioulsy at all and again with the counsellor I saw,I just thought Im on my own here no-one takes me seriously!My brother once said,while we were having a meal out with family,that I must stop picking at things that arent there,I dont remember how the conversation got on to that topic,but I felt very hurt because he hadnt said it in a sensitive way.I felt it was like saying to someone with an eating disorder,you need afew pies down your neck,or someone with depression ,telling them to get a grip of themselves!So finding this website is just amazing,I finally dont feel alone anymore with this ,theres people out there that understand eachother!! Enjoy your night out with the girls and good luck!x Jo
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April 30, 2010

KEEP ON KEEPIN ON EVERYONE!! Said a lil prayer for everyone in this forum this morning .... we got this!!! Shine on ...
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April 30, 2010

I picked. Fifth day in this stupid challenge and I failed already. I just feel like I can’t commit myself to this. I got locked out of my first period class, calculus, because I was late because of my mother. Calculus is the only reason I ever go to school so I just didn’t go to school all day. I went to see my boyfriend all day instead. I was so angry with my mother that I was missing class but I couldn’t express my anger to my boyfriend because he was in a bad mood and I knew that would only distress him further. I found out from my boyfriend that my mother decided to sign me out instead of letting me get truant and get detention. I asked her why she signed me out when she came home today and she said because she didn’t want me to get in trouble and she saw my mirror. Since I do most of my picking in my mirror I covered the entire thing with paper and wrote things that I should be proud of on it and wrote everyday that I went without picking. I was so mad at her for going in my room (which was locked) and invading my privacy, but I didn’t bother telling her this because I knew she wouldn’t understand. This mirror was supposed to be secret. I didn’t want anyone to read it until I finished this challenge. Now I can’t write certain things on it because I’m going to have to worry that she’ll read it. It was supposed to be like a diary just for my viewing.
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May 01, 2010

Im sorry you slipped up timeforchange. I often slip when stressful things like that happen, especially if they involve family members. My mother often triggers a lot of anxiety and can set me off picking. I think your idea for the mirror is great btw. Dont give up or get down on yourself. Ive found that if I can acknowledge I messed up, look at why, and move on quickly (the key word being quuuickkly) the better things are. If I get too depressed and angry at myself, rather than recognizing Im just struggling with addiction, I pick more. I dont know if its the same for you, but I thought Id share what I've learned. Im also starting again. Ive been picking much less, but havent completely stopped (which I really want to do). Ive come to recognize though that wanting to stop desperately wont necessarily stop me. This thing has to run its course. Not to say Im not actively trying HARD to beat it, Im just starting to realize that its going to take however long it takes and when the urge finally lifts isnt something I can determine. Anyway tomorrow will be day 1 again. Im actually looking forward to it. Often starting over I feel depressed and think to myself "whats the point Ive already messed up so many times". But I cant let depression/fear/negativity keep me from trying. Good luck to you
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May 01, 2010

i hope with all my heart that it isn't true, that is, that you think it has to run its course. any of you. if that's true, if i were you, i'd be very afraid. you just might be me a couple decades down the road from the age you are now before you're finally able to stop picking. maybe! i desperately hope that's not the case. yes, this cpd, dermatillomania, what ever you wish to call it, has a nasty grip. so does nicotine, so does alcohol. it's not easy, but i believe they're in the same category as being something that can be overcome. it might take the help of a medical team, it might take the help of medications, it might take the use of many tools and tactics, it might take the assistance of a support system, but ultimately, and not without determination and commitment and a plan, i believe it can be overcome. i hope with all the information and knowledge and it coming out of the closet, that this is the time for all of you that are suffering with this, that this is the time for you to do what is necessary to conquer this once and for all. right up until the day before i quit picking just over 9 weeks ago, i was a die hard, hard nosed, self righteous, indignant, delusional skin picker in denial about my responsibility and my part in my self harming practices. i could type out horrid tales of picking episodes too along with any one of you, and i did it longer than many of you have been alive. and yet i woke up and smelled the coffee and got serious. i've had my setbacks, i'm not perfect, but i've not allowed myself to slip into a pickfest and will continue to not let myself do that. one day at a time. one hour at a time if necessary. and if i can do it, so can you. believe it. believe in yourself. but i suppose, you have to want to. the alcoholic that truly doesn't want to quit drinking will continue to fail. the person who doesn't want to quit smoking will continue. the want has to be there. you have to want to quit picking. want healthy skin, want it deeply and sincerely. no, i don't believe that it was coincidental that i happened upon the moment my picking ran its course. the urges are still there. lessening now, thank goodness, but they're still there from time to time. i just won't let "it" win. "i" am in control now. not "it". and you can be too. and i sincerely hope so. i believe it, now that i've made it this far with the few "minor" setbacks i had. i consider my success now really as 66 days less 3 days that i picked at myself - one spot each time only. that's 9 weeks and 3 days less 3 days !! that's huge, and if you get real serious about it you can have that success too. stress and anxiety are in everyone's lives and not everyone is taking it out on their skin. research healthy ways to deal with stress. yes, some smoke, some drink, some do drugs, and some pick, but you don't have to be any one of those. you can choose something else. you are all intelligent people and are at the height of your intellectual capabilities. put overcoming this on your roster and making your life healthier and more loving to yourselves. you deserve it and simply do not deserve the self harm you are doing. neither your doctor, therapist, nor psychiatrist nor medication can do this for you if you don't want this for yourselves. want it. want it more than the perceived, warped, sick pleasure you've ever gotten from it. want your health. want to care about yourself. want it bad. ....... end of lecture .... stepping down off my soap box ......................................................
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May 01, 2010

Like I said it doesnt mean Im not actively trying, and I havent given up hope. Im talking about looking at it from a spiritual perspective. Its going to take a lot for me to completely stop. Yes, there are many things I can do to help myself, Im not saying Im letting it continue to wreck my life, but theres also going to have to be something bigger than me, some shift, for me to be fully done with it. Call it god, or karma, or whatever, just something. I also believe that its in my life to teach me something, what that is Im not completely sure of yet. Granted, some things just suck, and aspects of this addiction certainly do, but I think I can come away from this having learned a lot about life/myself in the process.
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May 01, 2010

Thank you, Wildflower. That is so motivating!! Keep it up!! You cannot fall back into our habits because you have become my inspiration.
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May 01, 2010

Wildflower...I am so proud of you!! How are you doing it? I have gone 24 hours and I am so proud of myself. You still have urges? Ughhh...what do you do? What about when you look in the mirror? I need advice. How are you doing it? I am so afraid that I will never overcome this but I am such an independent, strong, and educated woman. Why can't I get over this??? I am so proud of you. I cannot wait to be where you are. I can't wait till I have been 1 year in.
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May 02, 2010

" i hope with all my heart that it isn't true, that is, that you think it has to run its course. any of you. if that's true, if i were you, i'd be very afraid." OH WILDFLOWER ... I know I have said this many times before but ....... you are really such an angel to me ....................... a true blessing ................. I ... and many others I am sure. .... are so thankful for you. I am so glad to have met you via this forum and to know the wisdom and strength you have!!!!! And so thankful that you pointed out the problem with that thinking picking needs to "run its course" ..... i totally understand where cherrycolalola* :) is coming from ..... but personally, I am glad you called attention to the danger of that thinking ............ i think pickers tend to think somehow someway *WE DESERVE THIS* .... or at least I PERSONALLY have fallen into that thinking ........... that picking is keeping me SAFE* from doing other harmful things .... or getting into trouble ......................... by picking I have sometimes believed it has saved me from other thigns ... and this is GOD's* WAY of teaching me something ........... and that eventhough picking is bad and unhealthy ...... God wants to use it in the end for me to trust Him more ......and until I actually learn to fully trust Him and learn to obey Him ................ I will be stuck with picking forever .................. welll as I am sure you can see ..........that thinking ........... is pretty warped ...... most likely ................. I just wanted to say .... THANK YOU WILDFLOWER!!!!!! You go girl!
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May 01, 2010

Hi everyone. I am new to this. Today was the day I decided to change my life...for good this time. I am almost 25 and I have been doing this since I was in the 8th grade. I always knew I had bad anxiety. I actually talked to my doctor about a year ago about my anxiety and was put on Celexia which is an anti-anxiety perscription. I never did tell him about my obsessive picking problem. I never knew there was a name for it, or that other people had it! I have always felt so out of control with my friends and family always shouting at me "quit picking!" I thought it was maybe a little bit of OCD. I have tried to stop picking so many times...I have gone maybe a week or so without picking, but it is SO HARD!!! I do a very good job at covering up...some people even tell me I have great skin??? When I hear that I just think "well, you dont want to see me without makeup!" I realized it was a problem when I would lie about being in the bathroom. I would say I was "tweezing" or "going number 2" lol. But my boyfriend who lives with me knows better. He even tries to catch me. There are times I do it for over an hour. Why today? Well....I had a client tell me that this "habit" is not a habit! She said it was a disorder and it is self-mutilation. I was like WHAAAT. I said "I'm not a cutter" in a joking way. She said "this is serious" it isn't healthy. Hearing someone I don't know very well saying that to me was a rude awakening. Also, my boyfriend has been smoking for a few years now and He finally decided to quit! He has gone a week now, which has been the longest he has ever gone without smoking and he is having severe withdraws. I feel awful picking at my face while he is struggling so much. So, when I got home from work today I decided to do some research. I found this site and decided to take some action. Any advice? This is going to be so hard!!! Any advice?
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May 02, 2010

Cherrycolalola, I totally know what you mean when you say that .... "This thing has to run its course" ................................ I have fallen into that thinking ......................... where I think by going through this ........... is going to teach me something in the end .................. and that God / Karma / etc. whatever you call it ...................... wants me to learn something bigger from picking ................. and until I learn what I am supposed to .................. or get to where I need to be in order to be free of picking and whatever else ......... it will just have to "run its course" ..............but I am questioning that logic very seriously. I am so so so so thankful that you said that ................. but in terms of what Wildflower :) had to say......................... I think she sees a very big problem with that thinking ..................... which I am now realizing a problem with it as well ........................................................... I think Wildflower makes a great point when she says we have to really *WANT* this more than the warped pleasure we get from picking. And as Rosie has said .... those "ABC's" ... are a really big part of overcoming this ............. BEHAVIOR ... will change our COGNITION.
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May 02, 2010

I've been trying really hard on trying not to pick but i just keep giving up. I have been having so many problems with my boyfriend, and very stressed from school. I do have nice skin, with the exception of scars. But a couple months ago i developed these tiny bumps all across my forehead. The dermatologist told me what it was. I forget what he said now, but it was something describing black heads that aren't exactly formed yet? their very deep in my skin. they just look like little bumps under my skin, not red or anything. but they will occasionally itch and become inflamed black heads which really temps me to pick at them. I lose my confidence so easily. not just with picking, but with everything. i don't know how to help myself anymore. Please help, i don't know how to get through this. i have scabs all over my face again.
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May 04, 2010

Alex...I know how hard it is. I am almost 25 and I have been dealing with this since the 8th grade. Someone told me on Saturday that what I am doing is "self mutilation." That is what brought me here. I searched for skin picking and realized it was a disorder and I was so ashamed BUT it also was a wake up call. I am like you and I sometimes have very pretty skin. I do have a few scars but they are easily hidden with make up. Most people even say I have pretty skin? Well, ever since I came accrossed this website I haven't picked. I do have some tips. Put a sticky note on every mirror in your house that says "short term pleasure but long term pain" also..try not to look in the mirror every time you go to the bathroom and as little as possible. Don't touch your face if you do not have to. I keep repeating to myself "self mutilation" and "short term pleasure/long term pain." I know that I HAVE to do this now. I have gone so long with this and I am embarassed. I don't ever want to go swimming because I am so embarassed for people to see my skin without make up. I don't know how you are, but I really only pick at my face and sometimes my back. I also get those little bumps...just don't touch your face!!! We can do this together. How old are you?
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May 04, 2010

great tips !! ... how about adding them to the tips and products topic?
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May 05, 2010

Thank you so much for the tips. i tried covering up my mirrors for awhile but my moms bathroom always temps me to pick. She always tells me to keep my hands off my face because i seem to always be touching it, and i will try harder not to. I am 16, and school is really stressing me out, but i am hoping since it is ending soon maybe i wont pick during the summer, although i did last summer. i pick my scalp badly. ive been picking it for about 8 years now. then just the past two years i have started on my face, chest, legs and back. probably my face and chest would be the worst. and it is hard also to wear shirt because i need to make sure they rise like all the way up to my neck so no one can see. it is so frustrating. today is my first day of not picking. i didnt even pick my head, which is amazing. i am so tempted to pick the scabs off my face but then i keep telling myself itll just make another scab. ive been trying not to study my body so much also. i start picking at my chest just about every time either before or after a shower. im going to try harder this time, and hopefully i am able to go 40 days. i am ruining my skin. i truly have such nice skin. i was recently looking at pictures of myself from about 3 years ago and my face was soo clear. it makes me so mad. now i have these deep scars that i probably cant get rid of. thank you so much for giving me advice and talking. it encourages me to try harder.
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May 05, 2010

Alex...I am with you! I promise you. I am struggling so bad. But we need to quit together. We have to seriously say we are done for good. No more excuses. I even told my bf if I have a white head he has to get it bc I am not going to pick my face. I hate going to social events sometimes. I also have to put make up on my chest bc I pick at that too. But I just got this new scar cream and I put it on my chest tonight. After I showered tonight I wasnted to pick so bad but I didnt. I got in bed and left it alone. Tomorrow will be day 4. Come on...Let's see if we can just go 1 month!!! ok? Let's not even do 40 days...let's so small goals and reward ourselves if we do it. My mom told me awhile ago that if I quit picking she would pay me. Don't even look in the mirror. I work a ton AND went back to college so I am beyond stessed. Thinnk about this....if you quit picking you will look so good for summer...shorts...swim suit...I know that if we can go atleast 28 days it will get easier. It takes 28 days to form a habit. I keep trying to do somethig different every time I pick. We can do it!!!
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May 06, 2010

i can appreciate all the stress you have in your life. it's wonderful that you are intent on getting your skin back to health. understand, though, that picking is picking. even if someone else does it for you. and even if you do it to someone else. you mentioned your bf is quitting smoking. having him pick your whiteheads for you is akin to you holding his cigarette for him so he can smoke it. his lungs still receive the damaging smoke. even if he picks your whiteheads, your skin still sustains the damage even if not as severe as you would do. whiteheads will go away on their own, i have experienced that. no one notices them but you. so, i think you should rethink your logic.
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May 09, 2010

I picked :( i kept restarting my days all week . i know my depression is making me pick. but should i try to avoid the depression or avoid picking? i dont know where exactly to start. i had my boyfriend doing that for awhile too! lol i try giving myself rewards but when i get depressed its just like i dont care. im back to day 1. im going on a vacation in about 20 days, and i will want to wear a bathing suit so im really going to try not to pick anything this time. thankk you for talking to me
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May 03, 2010

Hi, this is my first time commenting. I only recently became aware of this site but have been reading as much as possible. I have been picking at my skin for as long as I can remember but a couple of months ago I decided it was time to stop picking/obsessing over it. I'm in my early 30s and my skin is reacting differently to picking with big and long-lasting inflammation that is not going away. And it's quite scary because it used to heal easily so I guess this is my body telling me enough is enough. I have not discussed this issue with many people, only a therapist I had long ago and realized that after a year I don't feel nearly as comfortable talking to my new therapist about it but will in the next session. I'm hoping that signing up for this 40 day challenge will help me with my decision to stop picking while hopefully becoming part of a community where everyone is aspiring to the same goal of self-care instead of self-destruction.
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May 04, 2010

Susan, it is funny you say that, because I am 25 and have noticed the same thing...that my face doesn't heal the way it used to and I scar so much easier too. That is so crazy that people don't know. I do it so often that people know. My friends and family always say "stop picking!" Alllll the time. I know we can do this. In the past I think I just always knew that quitting was temperary. This time, it is for good. This site helps. I never knew other people struggled with this. Every day after work I go to this little 5X mirror and pick at any pore, bumps, and sometimes even freckle that I can fine. It's awful...but those scars may be permanent now. They aren't going away. I used to bleed and scab and all I had to do was pick the scab and it was gone. Now it takes weeks to even scab enough to wear I can just pick it off. I always just pick off the scabs right away and then it scars over. Does anyone else use neosporin? It is a best friend of mine. I will get into a huge picking session, look and feel awful, so i coat my face with vasoline or neosporin. I must admit it helps with scabs...But I know that we all can do it. For me, I know I HAVE to make this the last time. I can't make excuses...I need to come up with something different to do when I get that feeling to pick. I even thought of bubble wrap. Here is another Q...do any of you like to pick at your boyfriends/girlsfriends/friend's skin? I always bag my bf to let me pick at his back. it is sad because he used to have a beautiful back and had no marks on it, but because of me he has scars on his back. He knew about my skin picking and so he would let me pick at him, so that I wouldn't ruin my face. I am so lucky though because he understands what I am going though. His addiction is smoking and he decided to quit with me. We both get urges and it is so hard for both of us. He wants to smoke and I want to pick. If you are living with someone, ask them to help you. he constantly tells me how beautiful my skin looks and I even decided to go to the bathroom with the door open so that he can see if I am picking or not.
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May 23, 2010

Starfish, thanks for your comment. I've been quite busy with school and only today came back to the site but so far I've kept with the challenge and haven't picked at my skin as I used to. I didn't say much about myself in the previous post but part of my success might have to do with being a yoga and meditation practitioner for about a decade and having been working for a year or so with a fantastic therapist and also being part of a strong spiritual community. Still it hasn't been easy especially the first couple of days when I had some near anxiety/panic attacks which my therapist told me it's a kind of withdrawal symptom and my finally "feeling" my feelings. Also, I have been using lots of tools to stop from picking including a note by where I used to do the picking reading "I WILL DO NO HARM," which I repeat when I wash my face or apply makeup. Also, I read and like www.highonhealth.com and in the beginning would bring my laptop and watch/listen to the videos while washing my face, which helped me lots because I felt vulnerable and didn't trust I could stop from picking. And finally I got a mala which is a sort of Buddhist rosary that I carry with me and use whenever I get anxious and have an urge to pick my skin. It's fantastic and I highly recommended it to keep hands and mind busy.
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May 04, 2010

if i can do this, so can you !! this day is week 10 for me with 3 minor setbacks. that is, minor. i picked at 2 white heads and a somethingorother in my nose so subtracting 3 days from 70, i have 67 pick free days. all i've done to accomplish this is ... i got serious. i addressed my denial and researched researched researched. i knew i was self harming and that it had to stop once and for all. i decided i was going to treat my skin and my body lovingly. i've written about it in many topics. i eat better, take vitamins and supplements, drink more water, changed my skin care regimen, wore gloves, sat on my hands, did the elastic band on my wrist, but most importantly i got serious about not picking. my skin has healed and although white heads are present, i leave them alone. i touch my skin gently now and scratch itches gently. i've changed my behaviour. i catch myself with urges but rise above them. i am stronger than it now. and i don't think it has anything to do with my age. i believe anyone can do it with the information and resources available now. had these things been available way back when i believe i would have done it much sooner. i don't believe the saying ... old too soon and too late smart. if you're reading this you have wisened up to the fact that self harming is not the way you want to live. so, get serious, make changes, stick to them, count the days, and praise yourself for doing it. don't rely on others. others will let you down. do this for yourself. you deserve to be treated lovingly so start treating yourself lovingly and keep at it, seriously. i believe you can <3 <3 <3
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May 04, 2010

10 weeks? Oh my gosh! Good for you wildflower...I had a white head a couple days ago, but you know what I did? I told my boyfriend to gently get it for me. It worked! He just did it enough to get the white out and then he left it alone and so did I. It didn't bother me because it wasn't white anymore and I didn't feel bad because I didn't touch my face. He is very supportive. I haven't had a painful zit yet though. That is what I am worried about. I am worried for when i get one of those under the skin and it hurts and it swells. It is very rare that I get one like that BUT I do sometimes break out during "that time" of the month. Does anyoone have any advice for that?
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May 15, 2010

another confession is in order. :( i have had a bump on my jaw right where you feel the muscle flex when you clench your teeth ever since i stopped picking and i'd been waiting and waiting for it to subside and it never did even though many others have come and gone. i had hoped exfoliating with my daily washcloth routine would take care of it but no such luck. slowly it came to a white head but it was very firm and got sore, likely from my exfoliating attempts more than anything. :( i'd tried putting 3% peroxide on it too and it did nothing. using the soreness of it as my excuse, i went at it last night. and for the first time since i quit picking in light of the fact that i did some very minor picking before this, i went at it quite viciously with all the old deluded thoughts involved. i bandaged it up. it never bled, but it wept all night. on my face or not, i'll keep it bandaged up until it heals so it won't scab up with a hard scab which would be too tempting to pick at again. my bandage will be my badge of shame. i do feel good though, that it was the only thing i picked at, considering i have a number of others here and there that also are tempting me, including one on my chin !! i must be strong. i must leave the rest alone and start over at day one although i am still keeping track of my huge change since the original day one. today is day 81 and in that time i have picked (only) 5 targets and i consider that huge compared to how i was before. now i will get back to being serious about this. let's hope i can overcome the temptations that i have yet.
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May 17, 2010

so soon and yet another ... two actually ... i thought i'd take the bandage off of the one on my jaw to give it some air ... it was sore and my fingers kept finding it ... and then i went at it to relieve the soreness !! ... the things we tell ourselves !! ... i have bandaged it up again and will keep it bandaged for as long as it takes to get it healed over .... and if that wasn't bad enough i justified taking off the bandage of one i've kept covered now for about a week hoping it would go away on its own and since it was still there and i'd picked one thing today i got rid of it ... so this day i picked at two things and will stop with that ... i want to make it to day 100 with NO MORE PICKING ... that goal is 17 days away ... since i started this 40 day challenge 83 days ago i've picked on 5 days so i have 79 days pick free and want to keep it at that by day 100 ... i must be strong ... ever vigilant ... we all must be ... this is such a bad habit ... the sores i have now to heal remind me of that as does having to wear bandages after being free of them for such a nice while .... *sigh* ....
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May 04, 2010

Well Im on day 6 of my challenge and I have to say Im struggling.Im struggling because I feel so dirty,even though I have skin brushed,gently exfoliated the areas and left them alone.Today I ran my hand along my back,I am covered in rashes,now maybe thats because I played tennis in the heat on Saturday,or maybe its just weahter change full stop, but feeling that ,made me feel my arms and look closely at my face!!!Arrggghhh,I feel like going back to bed and hiding away,Ive got things to do and I will do them but my thoughts are over powered by my skin and what I want to do to it,to make myself feel clean!Its kinda like when your craving a cigarette,then then craving passes ,then comes back!!I also dont want to start over washing because I feel grubby,I know this wont help matters at all!I feel despair because ,although I keep telling myself this will take time and my skin will settle,that picking will just over work the skin and Ill be back in that vicious cirlce again,I just keep thinking my skin will always feel grubby because this is the type of skin I have and thats how I remember starting skin picking years ago.Im going to write down how I feel today and try my hardest not to give into temptation,the 10x mirror I have is going to be put away,I dare not even pluck my eyebrows incase of my eyes focusing in on other matters! Anyway just thought I would write down here how I was doing and you know what its helped,its got me away from the bathroom, its kept my hands busy but most importantly its made me think ,rather than pick! Take care guys!Jo x
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May 04, 2010

6 days is big !! way to go !! yes, it's a struggle but you're doing great! yes, it helps to hide the mirrors and keep out of the bathroom and/or keep the lights dim there and keep your hands busy and doing anything and everything besides picking. trust that the urges will be strong at times, but they will lessen. you will feel great with healed undamaged skin. you will be proud of yourself. don't forget to reward yourself. you deserve it !!
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May 05, 2010

Thanks wildflower,I got through the day ok.I do find sometimes when I am sat watching tv or on the computer I am feeling for things,I know I have to break this habit to,I am going to sit on my hands tonight!But as far as damaging my skin,I havent done that and I do feel proud!I also feel very happy to have found this website.Thankyou!
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May 30, 2010

i am back on day one again having picked some last night. more than i have at one time since i first began the 40 day challenge almost 100 days ago. but i still didn't do toooooooooo bad. i attacked 3 spots. now they're sore. i didn't go at them as aggressively as i could have and used to do. i managed to not go too overboard, though realize going as far as i did was no good. i didn't let my session last any longer than 2 minutes. now i must try to let them settle down and heal up. i know better. i allowed myself to go a bit crazy and that is what it is. craziness. difficult to overcome, for sure, but i know i can do it. if i did it for 48 days before, i can do it again. since i have my body 98 % healed up, i can get this little bit healed up. and i must. i must not allow myself to slip back to a painful existence of sores and bandages. it was so nice not to be sore or need to wear bandages anywhere. it was exhilarating !! i want that back.
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May 07, 2010

Well Im back to day 1 again!!!!! O(((
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May 10, 2010

Well today is a new day,Ive had a very bad weekend ,slipped most days,so this is day 1.I have been feeling ill over the weekend ,which has made me harder on myself,as I havent felt or looked my best,its made me feel quite depressed,feeling as though I have failed,I laid awake for hours last night,going over allsorts, of how to overcome this problem,a problem thats been going on for 25 years now.I dont want to give up trying to work this out though and change my habits and thoughts.So here goes day 1!
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May 14, 2010

I am new to this forum, but very familiar with what everyone is going through. It probably began when I was 10 and now, 18 years later, I'm still at it. I managed to control most of my impulses for a few years after getting married, but after Hurricane Katrina I escalated to picking at my arms. I always feel self-concious about them and know I need to stop while I'm picking them and know the consequences. I would try to do this on my on, but I know it doesn't work and know I need somewhere to talk to others in my shoes. So, here I am. I'm going to take a 40-day challenge along with those of you who have already and will in the future. I know there will be temptations every day, but I hope that at the end of 40 days, I can proudly wear my cute shirts again and not have to cover my face with so much makeup.
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May 16, 2010

Hello, I am new to this forum but so so so glad I found this!! I have been picking since I was 15 or 16 and now I am 25:( I have tried a million times to stop and a million ways it feels like. I am going to try this 40 day challenge! Tomorrow will be my day 1 and here is what I am going to do every day along with using this great site to help me quit: 1. do my Qigong 2. read the journal entry I wrote tonight after destroying my face to remind me how important it is to me to really quit for GOOD... because I never want to feel like this again! 3. write about my progress on quitting picking 4. use a timer while in the bathroom ... only allow myself a few minutes to go 5. apply vit E oil to heal my scabs I just created. 6. every time I think about picking try and remember my positive affirmations
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June 02, 2010

This is my first time on this site, so I guess I should go and introduce myself first, but all I had to do was read the first couple posts and I've decided to try my own forty days. The longest I've gone so far *for sure* was a day, though I may have survived a spring break once. I've been picking for probably about 3 years. I'm afraid to admit it, but it's a combo of stress/boredom. I didn't even know this was a condition until hearing about it in a textbook. My friends all think it's just something gross I do, I don't think they get that this is something mental for me. This is going to be really difficult for me, because finals and such are coming up. I've tried before, but I guess tomorrow is my next Day 1. Edit- Oh, I pick my face/arms/chest/collarbone/back, sometimes legs. My arms are the worst, with face second, then collarbone/back.
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June 02, 2010

Agh, also forgot my head, as in, under my hair. -Like I'm doing right now.- D: I promise, tomorrow. Promise.
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June 02, 2010

best wishes to you on the challenge. do try to read as many topics as you can here. there's loads of information and links to other sites that can help you with the many aspects of this compulsion. information and understanding it is very important in dealing with this. good luck !! ☺
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June 02, 2010

Thanks! I crashed/burned today. First day was more like 2 waking hours. Last night I was trying to fall asleep, and I kept making myself not touch my arms or anything. It was so difficult D: Can I ask, if anyone is still on this thread, if anyone here has told any friends/family about this? Good luck to anyone working on their 40 days, and congrats to anyone who's made it more than 2 hours! :D

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