It took years for me to open up about my insecurities with acne. It’s not as though it was ever a secret — the acne was clearly all over my face, and it was very evident to others that I was upset about it. And yet, for some reason, I thought that if I never confided in anyone I would be able to hide the fact that it was something that caused so much social anxiety in me — so much so that I stopped hanging out with friends and family, and learned how to go about my days interacting with as few people as possible. (Just writing that down makes me feel so sad about this part of my life.)
Then, one day, a friend of mine sent me a long message on Facebook, telling me of her struggles with her weight. Some of the things she mentioned included: “I feel like that’s all anyone can see.” “I don’t feel comfortable in my own skin.” “I’m tired of feeling like I have to hide.” For a second, I had to remind myself that she was talking about her weight, not my acne. I never would have thought the two struggles would have such similar emotional effects.
After responding empathetically, I decided to bring up my acne, and how it caused me to feel some of these same things. We ended up meeting up for tea later that week, where she shared more about our insecurities, laughing and crying over the many similarities. At the end of our conversation, she told me, “I was so nervous to tell someone this. It was like giving away a little piece of me.”
It’s so true. Confiding in someone is giving them a little piece of you. But if you choose the right person, are honest and human about it, I can promise you that it will make you feel a lot better. I’m always on acne blogs and forums, connecting with communities that share my same struggles. And while those have been a huge help for me, opening up to someone I actually know in real life has taken a weight off of my shoulders.
I highly recommend you try connecting with someone you know, and bringing them with you on your journey toward better skin. They’ll likely be on their own journey through struggles, and you may just be opening the door for them to share that with you, too.
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