Why I Started to Hide My Psoriasis Again

Encouraged by many supportive forums and articles I read about psoriasis, I decided to be more open about my psoriasis. On my travel blog, where I often post photos of myself, I was posting pictures of me with red patches and scales. I thought I wanted to be more authentic to my readers once I do it. Moreover, I was also tired of constantly photoshopping my photos, as in real life I came to terms with my skin.

However, just a few months later I've changed my mind about the whole thing. I started retouching my photos using a healing brush on my photos to remove psoriasis from my shots, or wearing clothes that perfectly covered up my skin. One would say, why? Doesn't it seem like lying to everyone about the real you? Well, I thought so too at first, but it isn't so simple. I still openly say on my website that I suffer from psoriasis, but not that often. Here's why.

When I first posted photos of my affected skin I was proud of myself. Proud that I did it, happy that I finally didn't have to care whether people can point it out or not, as they clearly could. Many readers were also emailing me with tips, others were asking for advice, even some fellow sufferers began to congratulate me for showing my skin off.

We are more than just our psoriasis

But weeks passed and I realized that I'm actually running a travel website, not psoriasis related forum. No matter what kind of amazing place I visited or what I talked about, the conversation always turned to psoriasis. When I posted a photo from an amazing crab migration in Cuba, instead of discussing the topic I received comments like: 'what's that on your skin?', 'what happened to you?', 'did you fall off the scooter?', 'oh, I have psoriasis too', 'have you tried that cream?' – you get the point. It saddened me as no one seemed to care about the actual photo, the amazing crabs and the story behind them. It was all about my skin.

But this isn't even the worst. For some, unable for me to understand the reason I started receiving strange messages from friends who thought it's a great idea to connect me with them friends affected by psoriasis, eczema, or any other skin condition. Once, a friend of mine told her male friend about me and the guy found me at the coffee shop where I usually worked. 'Oh, hey, she told me to connect with you as I also have psoriasis' he said, which was basically the one and only thing we connected over. The meeting with a friend of my friend couldn't be more awkward if you ask me.

Seeking balance

I thought that in the XXIst Century people won't think that just because we're suffering from psoriasis we should be friends. I mean, do all people with black skin connect? No. Do all people with white skin connect? No, why would they! Then why people with psoriasis should be friends just because we have the same skin issue? While it's nice to exchange ideas on travel forums, psoriasis isn't everything we're interested in. At least I'm not. Therefore, unless we had some other common interests there was nothing we could talk about.

Once I started sharing my unaffected by psoriasis photos, or some retouched ones, everyone started paying attention to what these photos were really about. I guess I'm ok with retouching my photos these days.

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