I recently joined a group for cutters maybe a week ago. I knew i had something in common with them, but i didnt know what my actual 'problem' was called, so thats why i joined them.
I am a 'Skin Picker', meaning that i friction burn my skin. I have been doing this since i was two years old. Maybe it was one of the first warning signs that should have alerted someone that i wasnt quite right in my head. I am Bipolar undiagnosed for 24ish years, then diagnosed for the past almost 4 years. My family members had names for what i do to my arm which range from; pinching my arm, digging in my arm, or rubbing my arm... No one thought, 'hey, lets take S to a shrink', lol.
Most of the time i don't realize when i 'pick' my arm. I just do it and realize it after i do it. But, then it's really hard to stop because it's sooooooooooo soothing. Like i feel nothing really when i do it. I don't think about it, i just do it.
I usually use my pointer or middle fingers, and my thumb to do it. I rarely use my other two fingers. Guess it depends on my moods. I notice that with whatever finger i use, i am feeling a certain way. Sometimes i can go years without doing it - then something will happen am im doing it all over again. I don't necessarily want to stop cause it calms me and i can focus on other things when im not sooo-happy, rather than focus on what is bothering me. Its like i forget whats going on for a long time and whatever i may be going through can resurface when i am able to handle it.
Its nice that i only do it in the joint of my arm opposite the elbow cause it's easy to hide. Im not ashamed of it, it's just really hard to explain to others who question it. But, i hide it unintentionally actually.