Skin

Discussion in 'Self Harm & Substance Abuse' started by Ani, Jun 4, 2007.

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  1. Ani

    Ani Member

    Im new to this site, but I think it'll help me. You guys seem really nice and so I feel a little more confident about saying this.

    I guess I found out about 5 or more years ago that I had Obsessive Compulsive Dissorder. I would always do these silly things like not step on a crack, I'd always want an even number of money, if I did something like scuff my shoe on the ground I'd want to do it a certain more amount of times. Simple things. But when it was summer after 4th grade, my family went to California to visit my dad's sister. They had a swimming pool and I accidently jumped in the shallow end of the pool and sprained my right ankle. I had my face down in the water for a few seconds, unconsious. Until my older cousin picked me out of the water. I had to get a cast and then a boot a month later.

    When it was all over, I guess I wouldn't stop looking at my foot or something. But I started picking at my big toe. I would rip the skin off of my big toes all the time after that. When it would heal a little, I would start picking again. They would bleed sometimes and I would have to put bandades on them. It would hurt just to walk around, so I would start to walk a little differently. I guess my parents found out about a year later what I would do to my toes. They got me help and I would start taking medication, seeing a counselor. I'd then have to start taking pills just to fall asleep. I don't know what happened but I stopped picking at my feet entirely a few years ago and would instead start biting my nails so I could get to the skin on my fingers and tear that apart. I'm still tearing the skin off my finger tips today at age 15, just finishing 10th grade. It's painful, but I don't seem to stop. I hate showing my fingers, so Its kinda hard when I'm at school and you're writing or doing something. Its strange. I've tried using silly putty. And even though it keeps your hands busy, when it's not with you, I end up picking at my fingers.

    This summer I'm going to try to beat my OCD, even though hardly anyone gets cured from it. It sticks with you forever. Or at least I hope to pick up a different habit, one that doesn't hurt and involves peeling the skin off me.

    Thanks, I just wanted to let that out.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 4, 2007
  2. resistance

    resistance Staff Alumni

    Hey Ani, welcome to SF, I hope it'll be a help to you.

    When you peel the skin off, how do you feel before? I mean, do you feel anxious/upset or any other negative feeling, or do you just see your skin and have an urge to peel it? I'm trying to think of practical alternatives that will help you stop peeling skin but I can't think off the top of my head right now. Have you considered going back to therapy? How about wearing gloves so you can't see your fingers as often, would that help? If you approach your teachers in school and mention you feel self conscious about your fingers, maybe they will allow you to wear gloves of some sort.

    Anyway, I'm glad you're going to try and beat your OCD this summer, good luck with it and you're welcome to keep us updated and we're here anytime. Take care of yourself. :hug:
     
  3. pisces-music-girl

    pisces-music-girl Well-Known Member

    Good luck with trying to beat OCD... best of luck to you! :biggrin:
     
  4. I also pick the skin from my fingers and toes. I feel quite embarrased over my fingers because it's so obvious and others tend to notice when they begin bleeding.
    I have noticed that I do this in more stressful situations, do you? When I am nervous I pick away and I never do seem to notice right away. Sometimes I also pick when I'm bored.
    Try to keep your hands busy when you notice you're beginning to. When you find that you're starting to pick, make yourself stop. Become more aware of your hands. I successfully stopped for a month or two a few years back by becoming more aware of what I was doing and when but I didn't have enough willpower to completely stop.
    I wish you luck! :hug:
     
  5. Ani

    Ani Member

    Usually when I pick at my fingers, I'm either really nervous or just bored. Its really embarassing to me, too, AfraidofMyself. It's just been a habit over the years that I cant help but just do it. I dont have fingernails to pick at my fingers, so I always have to find something. Usually like a pin or a staple. It usually starts up because of school. Thats why I'm trying to get better over the summer. School made me really nervous this year. I got new pills a few days ago, so I hope they help a bit. I'll keep you guys posted. Thanks for your concern. :smile:
     
  6. ~Nobody~

    ~Nobody~ Well-Known Member

    Hiya. I just wanted to tell you that a friend of mine had very severe OCD when he was younger. His issues were extreme perfectionism (if he made a tiny mistake, even in an exam, he'd have to screw the whole thing up and start again), and an obsession with hygiene (he'd wash his hands constantly, he wouldn't touch anything anyone else had touched, and there was an entire year where he wouldn't touch any other person, even his parents). He had medication and therapy, and he gets on fine now (he's 18). He still has OCD traits, but they are much less pronounced than they were when he was younger. He gets on fine, you wouldn't even know he had a problem really :smile:.

    I was pretty severely OCD when I was a child, I had weird rituals and got hysterically upset if I made a mistake in a drawing or something. I never had meds or counselling, but pretty much grew out of it to a certain extent. I still have weird rituals (like waving at my Grandparents' house every time I drive past. even on a crowded bus), and I do things where I cross my fingers and can't uncross them, and some days I don't step on cracks at all. I can't have one sock on and the other off, things like that. But I function fine. My friends laugh at the silly things I do, but the OCD doesn't stop me from doing anything I want to do now.

    Just wanted to share with you the fact that many people do grow out of the worst of it, even if the OCD is still with them on a lesser level. And that meds and counselling can really work wonders. Having OCD doesn't have to mean you can't live the life you want to live. You can come through this :smile:. Do not lose hope. You sound like a very positive person, and I don't doubt for a minute that you will get the better of this illness :arms:.

    I understand the OCD issues, and I also self-harm (for completely different reasons) so I understand how it's difficult trying to keep wounds hidden and so on. If you ever want a chat then feel free to PM me :smile:.

    Take care :hug:

    ~Nobody~ x
     
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