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Hello everyone, I won't harp on... I'm severely depressed over my skin.

I live in a constant state of anxiety, depression and panic. It causes me to be endlessly tired and worn out. I deal with acne on my face, neck and back, cystic acne and seb derm on my face. In the past I have come a hairs width away from commiting suicide.

Without boring everyone... I want to know, desperately... how do YOU cope? What are your coping mechanisms? I read here of people with acne who still go out, have succesful jobs and lives despite their skin condition. How do you do it? Last year I didn't leave the house for 5 months. At all. It's happening again and I'm watching myself spiral out of control.

How do you cope? I don't have access to CBT or a counseller, so for those who have undergone therapy, what techniques did you learn? I don't see a lot of coping techniques or mechanisms on this site, and I really need all of your help.

I want to save my life.

In the past things that have helped me:

- Playing video games
- Talking to my mum
- Telling myself that "nothing lasts forever"
- Telling myself that there's nothing else I can do and that it's out of my control

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Playing video games helps me too! Especially story-driven walking simulators. I'd recommend "The Begginner's Guide." It's new, kind of true story (you'll know what I mean if you google it), and it deals with issues of isolation and depression. I loved it.

I like walking in real life too, that always helps, especially if I'm with a friend! 

We're like robots--our moods can be changed with the right inputs, even if we're aware that it's happening (I hope that makes sense?) There are certain things we can do that consistently trigger good feelings. Find out what those inputs are! 

My scars are pretty much self-inflicted. This makes it very, very difficult for me to move on. I frequently have thoughts like "I could have been with the girl of my dreams if I hadn't done this to my skin." It really hurts. However, I figure that I wouldn't have even appreciated having nice skin. I'd appreciate it now, of course.

Also, these scars have given me a crazy unique perspective on life. Becuase of it, I'm different from other people in a positive way, and I'm noticed for that. Having imperfections like these has made me who I am.

I hate myself sometimes, by the way. I try to stay positive and busy, but when I have too much time to think and examine my flaws, I begin to feel really terrible and hopeless. 

I also cope by helping others. Hopefully I helped you a little bit by sharing this with you?

Edited by jodorokes

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When I first started having acne at the beginning of my junior year in high school, my face was really really bad. I'm a girl so it takes a lot for me to cope with it. I used to refuse not to look at myself in the mirror. I wouldn't turn the lights all the way on and instead just applying makeup in the dark. By saying "applying makeup" I meant just putting chapstick and mascara. I had oily skin and every foundation I have tried broke me out. Makeup is the reason why I had my severe closed comedones in the first place. Ha sorry enough about my acne. I really didn't do much about it. I tried to surround myself with nice,supportive people (ones that don't really care about how I look). Friends and family helped me a lot. Not by encouraging me or anything but by understanding and not making my acne a big deal. Although I have some really rude relatives who make comments about my acne but I just generally brushed it off. I stopped wearing nice clothes and was terrified of wearing white since I think it would just bring attention to my face. I've been stressed ,depressed and sometimes I just wanted to hide inside. But at the end of the day,I constantly remind myself that it won't last forever like you did. Acne sucks buddy but it's part of who we are. I truly believe that you will get through this because as much as you think it won't go away, it will. Just keep trying and trying. Wake up and live your life. Don't let it get in your way :) IT IS DEFINITELY NOT FOREVER. 

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22 hours ago, jodorokes said:

Playing video games helps me too! Especially story-driven walking simulators. I'd recommend "The Begginner's Guide." It's new, kind of true story (you'll know what I mean if you google it), and it deals with issues of isolation and depression. I loved it.

I like walking in real life too, that always helps, especially if I'm with a friend! 

We're like robots--our moods can be changed with the right inputs, even if we're aware that it's happening (I hope that makes sense?) There are certain things we can do that consistently trigger good feelings. Find out what those inputs are! 

My scars are pretty much self-inflicted. This makes it very, very difficult for me to move on. I frequently have thoughts like "I could have been with the girl of my dreams if I hadn't done this to my skin." It really hurts. However, I figure that I wouldn't have even appreciated having nice skin. I'd appreciate it now, of course.

Also, these scars have given me a crazy unique perspective on life. Becuase of it, I'm different from other people in a positive way, and I'm noticed for that. Having imperfections like these has made me who I am.

I hate myself sometimes, by the way. I try to stay positive and busy, but when I have too much time to think and examine my flaws, I begin to feel really terrible and hopeless. 

I also cope by helping others. Hopefully I helped you a little bit by sharing this with you?


Really nicely worded... thank you. I'll definately have a look into that game! Gaming has proven to be the only thing that can consistantly distract me it seems. I like your metaphor of being a robot and inputs... I guess I need to truly find out what makes me happy. I'm kind of just going through the motions of every day, retunring home and crying.

I'm also sorry to hear that you're going through this with your scars, but it definately seems like you have a positivermindset...I need to become more like you. You've definately helped give me food for thought. Thank you.

Hbxgirl, I'm sorry to hear you're going through this as well. Makeup just makes me feel worse. Unlike women I am not using my makeup to enhance... I'm doing it to hide. And seeing every other guy go out with flawless skin makes me just feel worse, knowing Ihave to rely on makeup to make me feel presentable. I'm glad you can rely on your family though for support... I honestly dont think I'd be alive if it wasn't for my mum. I also totally avoid white clothes for that very reason! It just brings out my redness...

Thank you so so much for your  kind words... I do really appreciate it. Sometimes I just dont know how to cope... I need to figure out my own coping mechanisms. I tend to hide and isolate myself, but can't help myself.

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It's probably not what you wish to hear but...
There is no magic coping mechanisms, I don't think it's a good idea to cope, it's better to roll with it.

I absolutely recommend to you to force yourself to go out with your friends and relatives so you have some fun and get your mind off skin problems. On times my skin was bad, I did like you and stay inside, felt bad about it because staying indoors because I didn't felt like living like this, hiding. But staying indoors gives some sense of security in very short term.

But staying inside, we can only think or even obsess about it. 

So my personal experience is, the more I stay inside, the more I obsess on it. If I go out multiple days in a row, suddenly acne seems like not a really serious problem, and I suddenly understand people don't care about it, generally I enjoy myself much more during these times and feel like I "live" again. When I went out, I saw and met all kinds of people and I could saw they also had some kinds of imperfection and seemed not to pay attention at all, just enjoyed their lives - so I did the same.

Actualy I just met one person like this with acne yesterday, he was a guy with pretty serious acne and scars, we were in a social event and this guy was just generally enjoying himself, being extraverted, making friends, chatting girls and meeting people. No one took notice of his acne, he also didn't seem to mind it. I thought this guy was so strong, because his acne was pretty serious, and at the time I would never have gone to a social event like this. Both of us have or had much more mild acne than him.

You only need the strength to force yourself to go out and laugh, have fun the first few times, after that you'll just enjoy yourself naturally.

Definitively cut down mirror time too if you can, these days I only watch once in the morning, once in the evening.

Basically : try to force yourself to go out, worked for me, saved my life and made me happy again (we really have similar situation so I really hope you can get it to work with you)

ps : did you decide for or against your job in Japan ?

Edited by Jaures

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Computer games.
Reading
Going to a very specialized hobby group (where many of the members don't really care what each other looks like as long as you know how to problem solve and can laugh and have fun)
read/watch lots of stuff on the web
HuluPlus
Hiking once the weather starts getting warmer
 

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Hey, you sound really depressed. Are you undergoing any kind of treatment for your skin?
I do hope so.
When I started breaking out like crazy. I popped my pimples and when I looked into the mirror what I saw was hideous, super depressing. I am certain you can relate.
The thing that kept me going was makeup. Sure, I am not a makeup artist. I never used to wear makeup. I found makeup made me looked grey. Gross I know.
But then things evolved. Acne happened and I had to resort to makeup. So, I began watching you tube videos on "how to cover your acne" or "how to cover you hyperpigmentation" and lord, these dudes are geniuses. They also mentioned of the products they use. Quite a fortune I must admit. Not sure I can mention of brands on this platform. But well, the techniques are what you should essentially retain because I personally could not afford all those expensive brands. Yet, concealers, foundations, powder became my routine since one and a half year and saved me from humiliation. Sure, everyone will know you are wearing makeup but it is better they see you with makeup than without, right?
It was then that I came across the famous " accutane" and I saw how acne sufferers posted about their journeys. We, acne sufferers, no matter where we are in this world, we share similar thoughts. Rest assured.
I ultimately went to a derm next to my workplace and BAM, I am today on my 72 day on accutane. Trying to go through this by reading posts on the net and ofcourse watching youtube videos of my fellow accutane users.

Edited by Y110289

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Jaures, thanks for checking in - appreciate it. You're right, and I know it, but I just find it so hard to go out when I have a bad breakout... I feel so embarrassed and self conscious that I just don't have a good time. On the other hand, if I have clear skin, I get worried that a night out/lack of sleep/alcohol will break me out further... sigh. I need to lower my mirror-looking, but I struggle. I definately have an OCD with it as I get anxiety if I don't check. and yes... I'm in Japan now.. the country is beautiful, but my skin is proving problematic out here, and effecting my experience. How are you anyway? How is yo skin? Are you still on a low dosage accutane?

Ichhassse. looks like we share common interests. Luckily I'm right by the sea and I do find walks by the seaquite relaxing which helps momentarilly.

Y110, I am currently on a low dosage of accutane. 20mg a week to maintain. My skin is super sensitive, and I finished a full course of accutane around October last year, so was put on this to just try and control the breakouts without sensitizing my skin even more. I do find makeup helps. I always put bare minerals on my right cheek to cover the scarring on that side as it looks natural on a guy and doesn't break me out. However, I do have to wear heavy makeup every day of the week for my job. I use it primarilly to cover my scarring and stubble lines so it has to be thick...but I think I've noticed a correlation with this and my breakouts. I rarely used to breakout around my jaw, but this seems to be a consistantly bad area right now -- and this is where I put on my makeup. I'm not sure where to find any other type of makeup that is thick enough to cover stubble but won't break me out.. bareminerals unfortunately is not thick enough, so it makes it quite difficult and I'm at a loss...ay ideas? :(

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1. Antidepressants. once you start treating your outlook on life itself, (and the chemical imbalance in your brain that is causing you to have those thoughts), tackling acne isn't the mountain it once seemed to be. Everything in your life will be better with managing the symptoms of depression, not just the battle for clear skin. There is no shame in seeking help for depression, whether through counseling or medications. You deserve to be happy.
2. Reminding myself that everyone, EVERYONE, has had acne at some point in their lives. When I go outside, I look for the people who also have acne like me. I constantly remind myself that I am not alone in this. The truth is, most people out there are not judging you at all, they have gone through the same thing. Going through the message boards here also helps with that reminder, YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

P.S.: I see your most recent post is asking for ideas. My recommendation would be to make sure that all of your makeup is completely removed at the end of the day. Maybe your current cleansing method is leaving behind a little bit of that heavy makeup, causing clogged pores??  I use an oil cleanser first to remove makeup, and then wash again with a gentle foaming cleanser like cetaphil. Unless I am mistaken, I believe that there are great oil cleansers and foaming cleansers widely available in japanese drugstores. 
P.P.S. Just wanted to make it clear-- I am in the Regimen mindset of, 'touch face as little as possible'. I go over my face gently and slowly with the oil cleanser, allowing it to melt away the makeup. No scrubbing the face vigorously with hands, or scraping makeup remover on cotton pads. The foaming lather from the 2nd cleanse means that my hands don't ever have to actually touch my face, just glide over with the foam. 

Maybe someone here can recommend a makeup with high coverage, that will still let your skin breathe...? good luck

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Bare Minerals definitely will not provide high coverage for all the blemishes you are trying to cover. I can relate. I have so many on my face right now. Double wear foundation, concealers including colour correctors and 24hr stay matte powder can provide you with high coverage. It is heavy make-up but atleast, you won't show off your red inflamed zits to the World.
I do recommend that you watch out the videos on you tube. There are many tutorials of guys actually having recourse to make up to cover their acne, their dark marks, their large pores and so on..You will see for yourself the techniques and the products they use. It is important to take note of their type of skin. Watch for those who have oily t-zone areas. From what I learnt, if you have acne prone skin, you should essentially purchase make up that is oil-free. Check out for the list of ingredients when you are choosing. 
I am currently on accutane and my derm has never told me not to wear any make up. He understands that I have so much to cover. I asked him whether makeup could be the cause of my breakout. He told me that my acne type was essentially because of the oily skin that I have inherited from. Acne forms from within. If wearing makeup helps me perform my daily activities, then it should not be an issue.  

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