I Can't Believe...

I can't believe that this is really something other people have.

I'm a pretty severe case, from what I'm reading here. I wear gloves, not to prevent myself from gnawing my fingertips off, but because I don't want people to see how bad it's gotten. When I'm alone, I take them off and stare for a little while. I literally don't have fingerprints anymore, and practically all the skin from the end knuckle on every finger down to the very tip looks completely messed up. If I saw me with the gloves off and I didn't know what was going on, I would probably run away.

Fingers and lips for me, although I used to bite my toes when I was younger. This all started when I was so young, I don't actually remember how old I was anymore. All I know was, I was so impressionable back then and I was so into fantasy stories that I used to think I was secretly a ghoul. It was a really big problem because I got so caught up in it, and I never told my parents about how I suspected I wasn't human- I was a secretive kid. So what was the basis for my suspicions? The cracked and bloody lips that were always deep red and puffy from my stripping the top layer of skin off with my front teeth, and the fingertips that were... well, they're the worst.

My fingertips are my worst problem. Biting them incessantly from such a young age has caused them to develop strangely. I couldn't have mutilated them worse... pretty much in any way. The bones are warped, the fingers are long and bony, the fingertips themselves are sort of thin and discolored, they're so covered in scars that they don't actually look scarred anymore, and there's one thing that's surprising- I've bitten them so much that they haven't become desensitized. They USED to be desensitized, but I think it's surpassed that. Now, they're actually hypersensitive. I can feel textures THROUGH my gloves, and I can't light one of those click-lighters with the scratch wheel because it's too hard- the act of trying to light it is actually too hard and too painful. But does the pain stop me from biting them? No, I still do it. In fact, I'm almost a little afraid to stop.

It's something that makes me who I am. I don't know what would happen if I stopped. It's like that little girl from all those years ago is still trying to convince me that I'm a ghoul, and that if I stop, I'll lose that. Like I'll be stuck in-between something human and a freak, and the only way I can keep going is if I keep biting.

Never thought I'd admit that to anyone. I just hope some of you out there know what I'm talking about.


Nidas Nidas
2 Responses Jun 23, 2009

I sent you my own take on it, but here's another thought- why not create a poll nearer to the bottom of the page? See what's what with this group. It's probably the easiest way to get your answer, if you've got a second to create one.

Thanks for sharing! If you don't mind me asking.. I'm curious to know if for you it's more of an anxiety/stress thing, or like a compulsive, something you literally feel like you have to do.. like seeing a piece of loose skin drives you crazy... because for me I feel like it's definately both, so I'm curious to see how it is for others.. I know what you mean about not really wanting to stop... I've talked to a counselor about stopping but I know I don't believe I can do it, and sort of don't want to stop.. it sounds like I started after you (age 8) but it still feels like it defines a part of me.. and there's definately something calming about it.. I also feel like if I ever managed to stop, other body-centered compulsions (not sure what to call them..) I have would worsen, such as pulling out my eyebrows and picking at my scalp.. so I really don't see myself stopping anytime soon!