Psoriasis Tried Taking Away My Confidence, But I'm Fighting Back
Psoriasis. Good ol’ psoriasis. A skin condition I’ve lived with for years now. And even though it’s rearing it’s ugly head, I’m managing to stay more positive and confident than I ever have been.
I have just finished watching ‘Finding Your Feet’. It’s a brilliant film, with a good ending message: take chances in life or you’ll never live your best life.
Finding your footing with psoriasis
If only those struggling with psoriasis could hear that. The plaques cause profound discomfort and distress for most. Many spend their years battling to come to terms with the condition. But I am determined not to let the red blotches rule me.
The hardest part about living with psoriasis was during my teenage years. Those important early years when everything is coming together, when you are, literally, finding your feet. You begin to understand yourself as a person. You grow. You develop. You begin finding out what you want to do and what you want from life.
The dreaded teenage years
It’s not such a good time for a chronic skin condition to develop. It can make everything difficult from finding friends to building a romantic attraction. You may develop anxiety and depression, and find doing everyday things becomes a much bigger challenge.
But I am here to tell you things can and do get better. Psoriasis is a terrible disease. Let me tell you that. I’ve been in dark places. I’ve found life with this condition difficult. But, please, do not give up.
If I look back on my life when I was 15 I always thought I would probably struggle. I would never get to where I want to be, I would struggle in jobs and building relationships, and I thought I would always be miserable and never enjoy what the world has to offer.
The challenge continues
And look: I’m not going to say, now, at the age of 26, that everything is a bed of roses. It isn’t. I’ll be honest with you: I still find romantic relationships difficult. I find it hard to open up about my psoriasis and let potential partners know about it.
I find it hard making friends and telling myself I don’t need to isolate myself away from the world. And I can still find it a challenge to keep up with everyday tasks and chores.
Never give up
Some days are better than others. And I do have more good days now than bad ones. What I’ve learned and what I would tell my teenage self is don’t give up. Never give up. Go on. You have to. You can be happy with psoriasis. It doesn’t have to rule you. You can be something. You can thrive.
University changed everything for me. It helped build my confidence. It helped me develop social skills and helped me embrace my condition. I began writing about it for national newspapers and found people with the same condition who I could relate to.
Your confidence journey
The key to this disease is to be open about it. Don’t hide away and don’t live a life beset by illness. See a therapist if you need to. It’s so important.
Good luck on your journey. And remember you’re on just that: a journey, full of ups and downs; peaks and troughs. You’ll get to your end destination though: full of joy and happiness. Stay on track.
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