Warning: this is kind of intense written from the point of view of someone who suffers from “dermatillomania”, a skin picking compulsion. I am not doing this in real life but I work with patients who have this issue usually due to childhood trauma… In some ways the urges and picking is similar to self cutting behaviors where it’s soothing in some way and people who feel like they aren’t allowed to really be who they are can feel the physical sensation as well as trying to get to dig to some sense of self.
So here is the poem:
Picking at my skin, digging in, popping a pimple open then feeling a bit of wetness ooze out. Can’t stop now, digging in with the nail of my right index finger. I get in my pale skin and under to the red raw piece. Greedy for bleeding, small drop of red blood wets on top of the cut my nail made. The jail of skin opens up to me to get under and pick more. Sore skin blood thin. My face full of pick marks more like ripped paper, not skin. Deep in I could get to bone and then would I be real? Would I be my own me? The marks on my face like writing, writing my thin hiding, my skin turned inside out I am so far in I can’t come out without pus and blood, sore and wet like grout that holds together frail pieces of my cover.