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Hi everyone. I've had acne since I was thirteen-years-old and I've been visiting Acne.org messageboards since I was 18-years-old. I've had 2-3 years hiatus and now I'm back here at 23-years-old.

Five years ago, I honestly thought I'd be clear by the time I was 21-years-old, but I'm not. In fact, I still have acne and it's gotten worst.

I thought life would be so peachy keen when I got clear. I'm not, and will never be clear from acne. As much as I invest in skin care for my inflammed skin, my body just won't respond.

For a long time, I wished for clear skin. When I felt that wish was no where close, I replaced that wish for good mental health. I read about learned optimism, happiness, and all the topics on psychology I could to keep myself from getting deeper into depression. Reading about psychology concepts saved me, but I still needed to work on myself.

All that hard work to keep myself mentally afloat worked for the most part, but I still needed to face my reality. I always knew I was socially awkward because I hid myself from the world; to protect my Retin-A plastered skin from the sun, I stayed indoors; I talked to a few friends, but I was constantly afraid they'd see the real, ugly me so I hid. I was deathly afraid of failures and mistakes that I couldn't learn from them.

When I stopped hiding, I saw myself through the most objective view possible. I am socially awkward, I am soft-spoken, and I can't form coherent sentences. This was not a result of acne, but the result of the lifestyle I led because of acne.

Now I see myself in an objective lens. I try to not to cry about my skin. I'm choosing to focus on improving myself, and that means thinking positive. I don't know when or how I'll get clear, but I do know that as I encompass myself in positivity, maybe those positive feelings, habits, thoughts, or what have you can help me be clear.

I used to think I wish I had clear skin, but I'm becoming more bold and confident to live now.

I still want clear skin. I will have clear skin. One day, someday soon.

Edited by Daphnis

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Daphnis....you should be a poet. Your emotions are so raw and real and they resonated with me. I have cancelled many plans, lied about future plans and basically shut the door on friends because i couldn't face them. i agree with you that surrounding ourselves with positivity makes this difficult time much easier to deal with. Acne is a mystery and despite everyone suggesting a miracle, one person's miracle is another person's false hope. With that said, stay strong, stay positive and stay involved. Our true friends and family love us inspite of our flawsrolleyes.gif

We're all on the same journey, we're just taking different paths to get there

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You should write! You are so young...there is still much time for you to outgrow acne. Right now your hormones are still acting up and it isn't uncommon to outgrow acne in your early thirties. But welcoming change in a perspective right now is good either way. I commend you and have found for myself that remembering a positive outlook is part of our whole life journey!

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I can certainly say that you're going about things the right way, Daphnis. It's very surprising how we can react to things if we allow them to have control and it seems pretty easy to make the mistake of thinking that the acne is directly to blame for a lack of confidence, low self-esteem and so on. I fell into that trap and assumed that all the bad habits I picked up would go away and I'd know how to go about things without hiding away once my skin cleared, but it didn't happen. Because it's now habitual and I can't really remember thinking or acting any other way, those detrimental actions and negative thoughts are still very much present even though my acne isn't.

You should certainly continue to look at them as two separate issues, work on both at the same time and certainly do your best to keep that positivity going. Surround yourself with positive people, think in a positive way and take positive steps to tackle your acne and there's no reason why it won't all come together eventually. I guess these things just take take and the belief that we can get there and we deserve all the good and positive things we would hope for and desire, no matter what our skin may be like.

:)

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You may not think so but you are still very young. It is not unusual to be socially ackward or soft spoken especially if you are asian. Acne and the psychological effects can be a long tough journey. You need to continue to search for the answers and they may very well be on this web site. I was able to get clear from changing my diet. It was a sacrifice initially but I believe that I am healthier. You can beat acne.

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When I stopped hiding, I saw myself through the most objective view possible. I am socially awkward, I am soft-spoken, and I can't form coherent sentences. This was not a result of acne, but the result of the lifestyle I led because of acne.

This is so true. I feel like I never learned any social skills because right at that time when you go from teen to young adult, I hid in my room and didn´t want to see anyone. Now I´m almost 21 and still feel like an awkward 16 year old.

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I couldn't resist replying to everyone here. I just want to say thanks! (practicing a little gratitude goes a long way smile.png) The forum has changed during my hiatus. In fact, changed so much that I'm surprised with the palatable shift toward positivity.

sasch12, a poet? That's a big compliment smile.png I've never considered myself as a good writer, but I must seriously consider writing more. And thank you for your last words; it's absolutely important to remind ourselves about our different paths. Just like the circle of life (couldn't resist using Lion King).

cvd, writing I shall attempt! Thank you for your encouragement. I will look forward to a better self today and every day hence forth smile.png

PaulH85, you've described my life story. After exhausting my mind on acne, it is certainly about time I separate the two issues of confidence and getting clear. I love it when you say "we deserve all the good and positive things." I've certainly felt the total opposite so now I shall look for the positive smile.png

alwayshope, I seem to fit the Asian stereotype but I hope to change that soon. I've looked into changing my diet to more organic foods and probiotics. I hope clear skin is just around the next year :)

thrillpink, be bold---be brave! I've named my shortcomings and now the only thing left is to challenge and show it who is boss. From here on, it's practice and we'll only get better smile.png

Edited by Daphnis

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I've had acne since I was 14, I'm now 20. Now I realize that I will have it to some degree for life. It used to be a lot more severe, it still is if I don't take perfect fucking care of my stupid, sensitive skin. This shit never gets better. Well, it does, but only for a few days at most. Then it goes to being fucking red and bumpy and nasty and splotchy and spotty. I've accepted my fate. I've become used to pain and disappointment. No one can help me. My family can't help me. I can't help myself. If stubborn, endless acne wasn't enough, my depression and anxiety and OCD has gotten worse these days. I did abruptly stop taking my medication a couple months ago due to insurance issues so that is most likely the reason why... Acne and an already fragile and sensitive personality don't help of course. My family drive me crazy, people outside drive me crazy, I drive myself fucking nuts. I don't know what I did to deserve this. Well, of course I don't really deserve it, life is just a random bitch. Life is a long, random, impermanent, pointless piece of shit.

This mad, endless cycle of transient, illusory pleasure and disappointment and suffering will only end with death. In the meantime, I trudge on meaninglessly. In the meantime, I continue to lie to myself. In the meantime, I continue to sink deeper into my numbness and depression.

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