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#ShareYourStory: Franki

"I have Dermatillomania. It’s also known as Excoriation Disorder or chronic skin picking. It’s part of the body-focused repetitive behavior area of OCD, characterized by the compulsive need to expel real and perceived flaws from the skin, especially when I’m experiencing high levels of stress and anxiety in my everyday life.

Since I was about seven, I have spent hours upon hours tearing away at my skin, causing awful, deep scarring and embarrassing red marks across my body, all while feeling completely helpless to stop (it’s okay if you don’t understand why, because I don’t either). I’m sharing this because I’m getting really tired of hiding this part of me and being alone in this struggle. This actually afflicts 1 in 20 people so that may mean out of my nearly 1,000 followers, I can let 40-50 know that they aren’t alone. And that you are more than your skin and your obsessive looping thoughts and no matter how much the world or your own brain tells you you’re not, you ARE still perfect just the way you are and you are so much more than just your flesh and blood and people will love and support you even on the days you feel like you can’t for yourself.

This journey of self acceptance and self help has been 17 years in the making and I bet it’ll be many more before I am through. I have good days and awful days and you’ll be able to see them cataloged here, no make up, no covering up, all me. If therapy and reflection has shown me anything, it’s that this change starts with me, so I’m starting here, and #PickingMe over my Dermatillomania." -Franki A, @frankiabraham

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