Struggling With Acne Has Been Far From Easy
Start writing a post

Struggling With Acne Has Been Far From Easy

In truth, acne has given me a real sense of bitterness.

Struggling With Acne Has Been Far From Easy
Wikimedia Commons

My relationship with my complexion has had a lot of ups and downs but I feel that now I am more accepting of my skin and what it can and cannot do for me. It is a struggle to have confidence and love oneself despite societal standards and dealing with acne has certainly been a challenge for me. I’ve had many setbacks, but I have also had many triumphs when it comes to embracing my skin and the person I am underneath.

In truth, acne has given me a real sense of bitterness.

I started developing acne when I was in elementary school (not severe acne, but a few bumps here and there) and looking back, it hurts me that it started that early. I felt alienated from all of the other children (emphasis on children- who has acne at 10 or 11?) and I felt that it gave me a lower starting point of self-esteem than many of my peers.

What could have triggered it so early?

My father, whose work hours made it possible for him to be home after school, was responsible for the food we ate and the drinks we drank, and my siblings and I ate a good amount of fast food. Could that be the culprit? I can’t blame my father for my complexion, but deep down I do wish he was more in tune with the fact that if you put good into your body, you get positive results.

I’ll never know for sure what began my acne’s early immersion, but as much as I try to let it go, there is a gnawing curiosity in my brain that can never be fully calmed.

In middle school, my bitterness only grew. As everyone was going through puberty, there were obvious flare-ups of acne amongst my friends and classmates. However, having already had acne, MY skin was already in worse shape. When puberty began for me, it was a nightmare. My skin had turned against me completely and my confidence was in the gutter.

I had started wearing makeup earlier than most people in order to combat my heinous appearance, but I was still a child. I had no idea what to do. I would come to school looking like an orange, but anything was better than the redness, and swollenness, and pain of my natural complexion.

People would tell me to just stop wearing makeup and let my skin relax, and it infuriated me.

My skin has never been relaxed. My acne began before I even understood makeup, and this was not a choice, but rather a lifeline for my sanity. I didn’t want to wake up earlier in the day to cake my face only to have it be shiny and patchy later in the day. I didn’t want to freak out whenever someone grabbed my face or my cheeks jokingly. I wanted skin untouched by chemicals and substances that would only age and irritate my already awful skin. However, I wasn’t able to calmly and securely leave my house are carefree as everyone else.

My face hurt. All the time. It hurt to touch, and it hurt to lie down on, and it hurt if the wind grazed it a bit too harshly. My face was always red, and significantly swollen. To tell a person that all they need to do is take away the only thing that gave them a small sense of security was the most ignorant and arrogant thing someone could say to me at the time.

It was infuriating.

In addition, whenever my friends would have a blackhead, or a small pimple, or “breakout” from their period, I would have to sit and listen to what an awful time it was for them. Not to be dismissive, because any kind of facial discrepancy is a tough thing to deal with, but having a beautiful girl with skin as clear as day tell me about the hardships of acne was something I could never cope with.

Their breakout was like dipping your toe in the pool. And what would it last, a week? You’ve got to be kidding. I developed serious self-esteem issues, as well as jealousy issues. I didn’t understand why anyone would talk to me, or find me attractive. Anyone that talked to me in a romantic way I was so sure would just leave if he ever saw me without my makeup. My insecurities barred me from experiencing so many things during high school, just because I couldn’t stand my own skin.

Now that I’m older, I’m much more accepting of myself and my qualities. I still have bad skin. I’ve accepted there is very little I can do. But I try to treat my skin as if there is not a single mark on it. My acne has its ups and downs, and I can’t get rid of the scars and marks previous breakouts have left behind, but I cherish my skin and treat it accordingly. Also, I try and remember my self-worth.

I am not my acne, nor am I less than because of it.

If someone is interested in me, romantic or otherwise, it is because of the goodness I have in me. It is because of my humor, my interests, my endearing traits, etc. and I have to trust that. Granted, these positive thoughts I know am able to think are not bulletproof, and I beat myself up about what I cannot change every now and again, but I am human. And humans have acne sometimes.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

10 Songs That Made It Onto My September Playlist

September is the month for Los Angeles natives and Australian music fans.


The Neighbourhood, Bad Suns and The Driver Era are three Los Angeles bands that released songs this month. Not only was it a month for Los Angeles bands, but many Australian bands released new music — San Cisco's fourth studio album, Surf Trash single, Skegss single, and High Tropics single. I made new discoveries this month and was pleased by the amount of new music.

Read the listicle below to learn what came out this month in alternative rock music:

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

7 Things Your Partner Can Do To Support You When You Have PCOS

Don't be afraid to ask for help or comfort if you need it.


Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) may not be totally visible to the eye, which makes it a lot harder for your partner to understand what's going on with your body.

If you are in a relationship, it's important that you communicate your PCOS symptoms with your partner. I say "your" symptoms specifically because everyone's symptoms are different.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Watched 'The Social Dilemma' And YIKES, I'm Terrified For The Next Generation's Mental Health

Millennials can remember a time without online social affirmation, but we may be the last ones.

The Social Dilemma / Netflix

I've been in a media job for the entirety of my professional career. From part-time social media internships to full-time editorial work, I've continued to learn how to tell stories, write catchy headlines, and keep people interested. I believe working in media is a big responsibility, as well as a valuable way to advance our world.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

One Indictment, Three Charges, And No Justice For Breonna Taylor

We can't settle for this decision or a system that is fundamentally broken and unequal.


On March 13, 26-year-old Breonna Taylor was fatally shot in her apartment by police who were executing a "no-knock" warrant. Since then, there have been rallying efforts both in the streets and on social media demanding justice for Taylor and keeping her name known.

Keep Reading... Show less

I’m OK With Hooking Up On The First Date, But That DOESN'T Make Me Easy

2020 has been a crazy year. And yet, women being comfortable with our bodies still seems to be a big topic in mass media.


I'm an adult. There is no reason I can't have consensual sex with someone on the first date. It does NOT make me easy, and it does not mean I'll have sex with just anyone the first time I meet them.

Keep Reading... Show less

I was so excited to vote in my local primary election in August. I eagerly researched my local candidates, combed the newspaper for profiles and policy positions, and shared infographics on Insta about voting deadlines. I considered myself a keen voter.

Keep Reading... Show less

Nothing! There is no reason to feel guilty about food and nourishing your body. It's time to make peace with food and stop focusing on the "good" or "bad," "right" or "wrong" because food does not have power over you.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Sat Down With An Endocrinologist To Ask All My Questions About Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

There are so many moving parts of hormonal health, so I went to an expert.

Anjanette Tan

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is an autoimmune disease that impacts approximately 1 in 10 women. Any woman who has PCOS can attest to the fact that no two cases are the same — there are so many aspects of hormonal health that can impact a woman's reproductive health! For many, PCOS is a trial and error condition, with many doctors' appointments depending on the stage of life the woman is in.

This week I sat down with Dr. Anjanette Tan to get the expert opinion on all my PCOS questions. Dr. Tan is a board-certified endocrinologist who's worked in private practices since 2004. She currently works at the Diabetes and Thyroid Center of Fort Worth, one of the largest all-endocrine practices in the area, where she is the managing partner and head of clinical research.

Keep Reading... Show less

This $40 Silk Sleep Mask Gives Me The Best Sleep I've Ever Had — I Never Go Anywhere Without It

Crane And Canopy just redefined the meaning of "beauty sleep".


- Since I can remember, I've always been a light sleeper, with the quietest sounds waking me up, and I regularly wake up with the sun.

- While talking to a gynecologist friend of mine, she mentioned the importance of using an eye mask for quality sleep, which regulates hormonal levels.

- I was serendipitously sent the Crane & Canopy Silk Sleep Mask almost right after that conversation and was honestly reluctant to try it after testing other sleep masks that felt uncomfortable and irritated my skin.

- This sleep mask was extremely comfortable, and for the first time in nearly a decade, I slept in far past when I usually do on the weekends and woke up feeling more refreshed than I can remember — I've worn it nearly every night since then.

The older I get, it seems that sleep becomes an increasingly important topic of conversation amongst my friends and me. Yes, of course we complain about how tired we always are, but the pattern seemed to be a lack of sleep on the weekdays followed by late nights and sleeping in on the weekends without any solution.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

The Self-Care Kit Every College Student Should Have Handy In 2020

Make sure you have everything you need to relieve some tension.


As college students, sometimes life can be overwhelming. Four tests in a week and you only passed one of them? I feel that. Days like that, you just need time for yourself. A time where you're nice to yourself and put your own self-care before anything else.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments