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There is no other way to put it: I feel trapped by my skin issues. I am currently 25, and I started getting the typical "teenage" acne on my face when I was 12...nothing horrendous. As I got older, acne started appearing in other places: shoulders, chest, back, and even on my legs sometimes. It just kept getting worse despite countless medications, ointments, regimens, etc. To top it all off, eczema also began to spring up when I was 16. I haven't worn sleeveless tops or even a bathing suit since I was 13. The acne on my face has somewhat calmed down (although if you look closely, practically every pore on my face is clogged in some way: blackhead, small whitehead, etc.), but my 'body acne' is just so depressing. I'm a full-time nanny and it just kills me how the kids I care for (preschool age) always ask me "Why do you have so many bug bites"?

I know I have much to be proud of and one may assume I have high self-confidence... but I don't. I have a Masters degree, a job I adore, an amazing family... yet I feel so inadequate. I honestly cannot remember what it feels like to have "normal skin." There are probably only a few (small) areas of my body that are not affected by acne or eczema. It's not just that it makes me look horrible, but it is physically stressful! I'm constantly itchy and always wary of the acne on my chest/back causing blood stains on my clothes. Also, I'm pretty sure my skin issues have led me to avoid pursuing relationships and experiences. I never went to school dances growing-up because the dresses might reveal too much of my acne. I haven't gone to the pool/beach since middle school. I've never been on a date (never even been 'asked out')...probably because I'm so shy because of my skin. I feel trapped because of it. It's as though I am still (psychologically) a young teenager: embarrassed of her skin, avoiding eye contact with strangers because of it, hiding it as much as possible.

My sister recently got married and I was her maid-of-honor. My dress was gorgeous: navy chiffon with the most lovely detailing. It was my goal to clear my acne for the wedding as it was a strapless dress. I tried everything under the sun (it seems) including several dermatologist appointments/treatments and special diets. Nothing really worked. A week before her wedding I had such the meltdown. I just felt horrible..I was going to be stared at, I was going to ruin her wedding photos...so many ridiculous anxieties compounded. I hate that my skin issues have caused me to think so inwardly: I am not a selfish person, yet I find myself concerned with my skin too much! It's like it has this power over me! Bible study and prayer are my saving grace. I know I am beautiful in God's eyes. I just pray for the day when I can feel my own skin and no longer feel the bumps, no longer see red blotches, no longer have to answer the "What's wrong with your skin"? question, no longer feel trapped.

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what kind of diet do you have or have you tried? I hope you know that you can get the skin yyou want :) i know it might be tough sometimes but there are a lot of things to improve it. I hope your days get less stressful because you deserve to be happy.

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