Thursday, January 2, 2014

How I've Lived With Skin Picking Disorder

I've lived with Skin Picking Disorder probably for about 45 years.  It started when I was a young boy.

It would start out as a callous on the knuckle of the index finger of my left hand.  This callous would develop from a soft toy doll that I'd sleep with.  Even though the doll was soft, it had a dense seam that I enjoyed grinding my knuckle into.  Then I'd pick at and bite the callous.  Or I'd stick a pencil, pin or nail into it.  It would hurt.  It would bleed.  But I liked doing it.

Back then I was very ashamed of letting anyone see the knuckle, especially my mother.  I made sure to keep it hidden.  If I had to point, I'd use my right hand, or I point with my pinky while I kept the knuckle tucked under my thumb.

I don't have the doll anymore, but I still go through spells in which I form the callous using the inside seam of blue jeans as I sit at my computer.  I am no longer ashamed, though.  First, no one but my daughter calls attention to it.  Second, it's just what I call "Nerves," or a manifestation of anxiety from having a partly disabled wife; a gifted, eccentric daughter with massive inferiority beliefs; and a dwindling bank account due to expenses that exceed my income.

Eventually, I'll wrap a bandage around it to prevent myself from picking and biting, and it will look normal.

Here is "Nerves" for you to see:

Skin Picking Disorder -- Left Index Finger


Rummuser said...

While I am saddened to read about your anxiety causes, I am also grateful for your teaching me about a disorder that I knew nothing about till now, but can identify someone with it. Thank you Square Peg. My best wishes to you that your anxieties go away soon in the new year.

Square Peg Guy said...

Thank you, Rummuser. Tax season is here. Maybe my refund will be astoundingly big.... :)

Don't worry; be happy!