Tuesday, March 2, 2010

American Picker

When I first heard about this new TV show called "American Pickers", I was fascinated. My first impression was that it was about people that have chronic skin picking. However, it's really about antique dealers and how they go around "picking" things that other people throw away.

I guess I am an America Picker, though. There are many of us, all over the world in fact.

The show that really opened my eyes was "Obsessed" on A&E which was a reality show that followed people who had problems like hoarding, skin picking and hair pulling.

I watched a few episodes before finding one about a skin picker--episode 9, with a woman called Vanessa. It was a young woman who picked her face all the time. She didn't leave the house much and couldn't stop picking. As we followed her through therapy, and going through her life, I was fascinated. I had never seen anyone suffering with skin picking on TV.

As I watched it with my wife, I would joke how crazy these people were. How sad their lives were. All the while, hiding my own skin picking. Even while I was watching the show, I was secretly picking my favorite scabs.

I was secretly very uneasy while watching the show. I didn't want to let on to my wife that I was a picker. And didn't want to tip to her how interested I was in this particular episode.

In fact, I watched this show during the day without my wife, rather than wait to watch it later with her.

Although the woman on the show picked her face, I don't do that. I pick other areas of my body, specifically my scalp and legs. In other words, areas that I don't have to show to the public so I can keep it hidden.

My knowledge about skin picking was just beginning when I watched that episode. I had already done a bunch of research, and was calling around to find a local therapist to help me with my skin picking. Still, it was great to see skin picking on TV.

After watching that episode of "Obsessed", and maybe one more, I haven't watched another one. I think it just hits too close to home.


  1. Hi, I came across your blog searching for info on skin picking. I too am a skin picker (my hands). I didn't know anything about it until I watched that same episode of "Obsessed" and quite honestly felt like I was the only one out there dealing with this. I can't remember when it started, but it has been within the last 10 years (I'm in my mid-30s). I can relate to a lot of what you're saying. Unfortunately, I have severe scarring on my hands as a result and will always be reminded of it. I will be following this blog from now on. Maybe seeing how someone else deals with their skin picking will help me to get mine under control.


  2. Hi, sorry, but I haven't really been updating this blog. In fact, I am moving all my content to Tumblr, so please look for me there.


    I appreciate you writing in, and hope you can get some help with your skin picking. It's so hard to do it alone. I felt so much shame, was very confused and felt so alone for years.