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The Blame Game



So as I sit in front of my laptop and type this, I have to say that having just celebrated my 31st birthday yesterday has brought on some clarity on my acne situation. As a person that has suffered with this disease since 15 with 1 or 2 years of clear skin due to medication/topicals, I have come to the epiphany that we as acne sufferers are masters of playing the Blame Game. This idea that we are the cause of our acne is reinforced by doctors, the media, well meaning friends/family and other people that want to share their 5 cents of unsolicited advice. That has not been made more clear more so than on this site where everyone is an acne expert and knows the 'true cure'.

Well folks, i'm here to tell you that I am more than ready to get off the blame game carousel. I have been systematically trying to 'cure' my acne through topicals, diet, lifestyle changes and such since 2011 and guess what, i still have acne.

My trial and error process went something like this:

"Ok, maybe I need to see a skin care professional for natural products because natural products work miracles."

NOPE - Acne Worsened

"Ok, my skin care professional said to get off dairy, and get on supplements, that will help."

Dairy free since 2011 and have taken 'acne' supplements off and on and I still have acne

"Ok, accutane is the way to go, it worked well before....nope changed my mind, let me try topicals."

Acne cycled, thought I was getting better, then i got worse, then i got better, then i got worse and stayed worse.

"Ok, I need a naturopath, why didn't i think of this before?!?"

Hundreds of dollars on visits and supplements and zero change in acne

"Ok, diet is the key, i knew it! Paleo, here i come!"

Nope, lost a ton of weight, looked like a skeleton and guess, what, still had acne

"Ok, accutane again."

Never stopped breaking out but acne improved

"Ok, i'm desperate to try The Regimen! Topicals and a healthy lifestyle should help better than either alone"

It worked for a year and gave me facial eczema

"Ok, juicing and an elimination diet. This is it, i can feel it!"

Acne worsened

"Ok now i'm back to square one. No idea where to turn."

So this is where I'm at in my acne saga. I am still searching for some respite but while I look, I realize that I don't have to keep on blaming myself for something that is out of my control. I had my birthday yesterday and wasn't gonna even eat the cake that my friend had bought for me (dairy and gluten free = expensive) and then I thought to myself, that is so ridiculous. It's my birthday, a day that should be all about me, not my acne! It made me mad that I was even considering staying home because of my skin....grrrrr. I also don't have to get all psychotic over my food choices because in all honesty, diet, while important has never cleared my acne.....i mean not even a little bit. Am i going to have a heart attack because I ate rice or beef or even pork? Is it worth the aggravation?

Needless to say, I am going to continue eating mostly paleo because I like it but you know what, rice once in a while is an option too. My derm is going to have me try a salicylic acid product so we'll see how that works out and I am going to continue to live because I have no choice. I won't be the 1st person with acne nor will I be the last. Moving forward, i'm going to take ideas from this forum with a grain of salt and keep on keeping on because while life with acne is annoying, embarrassing and at times, distressing, life with acne and a negative mindset is much worse.


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Happy Birthday! I think you're right, eventually we need to let go and get on with our lives while we strive for clear skin. Salicylic acid has worked well for me, I use a product a serum based product under or over my moisturiser during the day and it has really helped with stubborn clogged pores and just overall texture! I agree with all you said on diet, I actually find when I cut things out my skin gets worse as I am stressing constantly over what I am eating, now I just eat sensible (well apart from the weekends, that's a bit f a free for all) and don't cut out any food groups. I have also been on a low dose of anti depressants for about six months and they have really helped me break the cycle of negative thinking, once I got out of that I just found my mood getting better and better and I actually have the odd day where I don't think about my skin at all which is such a relief. I'm sure you will find something that works for you be it for you skin or peace of mind :) x

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Thanks gkitten. Your advice is solid! My focus exclusively has been acne for years now and tbh, i am so tired of it all. I don't think i'll ever give up the hunt to clear my skin but I don't want to drive myself nuts in the process. My mind is in such as unhealthy stage but I believe God is good and is helping me get back on track.

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It's great that you have your faith to get you through these tough times, I'm sure that one day you will break the cycle of thinking about your skin, one day you'll think oh I've not thought about my skin at all today and from there things will just get better :). In the meantime, we're all here for each other x

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Sounds like a long unpredictable journey you've been on! I sincerely hope you find your solution soon :) my friend said to me today - don't let this get you down, inner beauty is more important!

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