The mind of young adult suffering from moderate acne.
Perched on the toilet, my toes curled over the edge of the cold white lid, I scroll through the results on google for “acne treatments.” Desperately searching for ways to clear my skin, I sift through over 25 million results. Staying up past midnight on a school night isn’t uncommon for me. It’s not that I enjoy staying up that late, because I don’t. My eyes sting with a dried out tiredness as I obsessively look for something- anything- that will cure me of my disgusting, acne-ridden face.
“That’s a really unfortunate pimple,” I think to myself as I try to focus on my friend’s story about something that I can’t quite remember. An inflamed yellow spot right in the crease of her chin holds my attention with an intensity I am ashamed to admit. “Is that how people see me,” I ponder as I mindlessly nod in agreement to something she has said. “Are the pimples all that they see when they look at me?”
Stop picking your face. Stop picking your face. Stop picking your face. I hear it almost constantly, from my mom when she drops me off at school in the morning, from my dad as he tries to get me away from the bathroom mirror to go to bed, even from myself as I check my blood speckled face in the reflection of my phone during class. But I still can’t stop. I can’t stop picking my face. No matter how destructive it may be, my mind is convinced that I can squeeze the disease out of my face with my fingertips.
“Well at least you don’t have cancer.” Great. Awesome. Thanks mom. Now I feel even more like shit. Not only is my face bumpy with pimples, but now feel terrible for complaining about it.
Why does my body hate me? What the hell did I ever do to it for it to attack me like this? Did I eat too much sugar? Too much grease? Is it the dairy? The chocolate? Did I not drink enough water today? Am I too stressed? Do I need more exercise? Did I unconsciously touch my face too much today? Is it genetics? Was it because I didn’t wash my face last night? Is it the makeup that I used last week? Is this just how I am?