"I've been picking for almost half my life. I can vividly remember being in high school and a friend asking why my thumbs were so red and feeling as though I wanted to sink through the floor because I was so embarrassed. For me it's my thumbs, my scalp and my feet but it's mostly just my thumbs. I started picking because I was an anxious child, probably due to trauma. Sometimes it's subconscious. Sometimes it's not. Sometimes I do it because of a piece of skin that is bugging me and sometimes (mostly) it's because of anxiety. When you've been picking for so long it's extremely hard to stop because it's something you can control (although I sometimes feel completely helpless because of Dermatillomania) and when you're anxious, having something to focus on and distract yourself, at least for me, helps.
I wish someone had told the me that was the anxious teen in high school that I wasn't alone. That I wasn't a freak for ripping off my skin and seeing blood under my fingernails from picking. At the time I felt like I was the only one in the world who did this to myself and that was a very lonely feeling. If you're struggling with this I want you to know you are not alone. Just knowing that can make a difference." -Tina, 29, OR, @_itsoktofeel_