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Aug 1, 2003
I just discovered this site this week and I feel like I've found a support group. It's amazing to suddenly realize how NOT ALONE you are. I can totally relate to so many of the comments and posts I've viewed and have been through so much of the same things. I am 34 years old and have had acne for about 20 years. It started in high school and got much worse in college and has never gone away completely. It comes and goes in "OK" and "terrible" phases. I've been through so many derms and creams and antibiotics I can't even remember them anymore. Nothing ever really helped except the Accutane. Had 2 rounds of that several years apart, and still, they were only temporary. As I recall, after a year or so (maybe longer) it "wore off" and the acne returned. And each time it took months of Dr. visits and trying creams and pills before the Drs. reluctantly agreed to put me on the Accutane at all. I am currently extremely interested in the Smoothbeam laser, although the cost is so prohibitive. I'm eyeing those Smoothbeam updates in this forum though, please keep them up. Anyway, I'm going to try and post some more in other topics but as to the topic at hand... EMBARRASSMENT...
I can totally relate to going to the dentist - omg that's the worst. And wondering how me or my life would be different without acne? I've often done that. Examining other people's constantly beautiful, clear skin... just trying to find someone else - any stranger - in my whole metropolitan area that might have a bump or two, with no luck... Extreme depression, missing out on things, staying home, mood directly dictated by condition of skin... done it all and still do.
One of my most embarrassing moments was in college - I was probably 21 or so. I was dating a guy I was really liked. I never - and I mean NEVER - let him see me without makeup. Well, he decided to surprise me one day by stopping by my house unexpectedly. My roommates answered the door and he came to my room and saw me in all my horrible no-makeup glory. It was of course a particularly bad breakout with plenty of huge cysts. Obviously he could tell my skin wasn't the greatest but I can often do wonders with makeup (have had plenty of experience). I was just horrified that he saw me like that. He did not stay too long because he could tell I was uncomfortable. The relationship eventually fizzled out, but I'll never forget how embarrassed I felt that day.

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