A woman with eczema on her face appears in a sea of faces that are staring at her and whispering behind her, causing her anxiety.

Finding My Armor

A big part of having eczema are the comments and looks. I guarantee that if someone has eczema, they’ve at least had one person make a rude comment or give them an odd look.

Tips for coping with the social stigma of eczema

I used to struggle with dealing with people who couldn’t stop themselves from making blunt remarks, but for my own sanity, I had to start teaching myself how to get over these remarks and stares. Here are some of the ways I got over the comments and glares.

Remember, people don’t mean to offend you

I used to think people were trying to upset me with their comments or questions, but it’s often quite the opposite. Some people are just curious about eczema and they just don’t know how to bring it up politely.

Not everyone has been around people with eczema, so even if their questions do seem a bit rude, it might be because they’ve never seen it before. I’ve had a few friends express that they felt weird and nervous to ask me about it because they’ve never been exposed to it. Just be kind and patient with these people, they mean well, even if their question comes off a bit blunt.

Drown it out

Sometimes, just not listening to the comments is the best. Obviously, you don’t want to outright ignore the person, that would be rude, just ignore their comments. This also heavily depends on the person, some people don’t necessarily know that they’re being rude and are just curious about your condition.

Others might not know that they’re saying something hurtful but could also have no intention of learning about your condition. There have been times where I’ve corrected someone when they got something about eczema wrong and they became annoyed with me. I no longer discuss it around these people because of how apathetic they are about it.

Don't let others use your eczema to hurt you

I tend to take things a bit too personal and in all honesty, I’m kind of a big softie. So, when it comes to people talking and asking about my eczema, I tend to get a bit defensive. If possible, I try to steer the conversation into something else.

Unhelpful eczema advice

I have never liked discussing my eczema because most of the time it people would just stare at it rudely, give unhelpful advice like “just eat a banana.” Or they try to diagnose it themselves and suggest that it’s not eczema when it indeed is.

Finding my armor

I used to hide my eczema, especially when it is inflamed. It wasn’t really until the last couple of months that I’ve been able to move past most of this. I recently started rewatching Game of Thrones and in the first episode, one of the main characters tells someone “Never forget who you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor and it can never be used to hurt you.” I decided took this to heart. Eczema is a part of my life, whether I like it or not. If someone makes a dumb comment, I’ll just shrug it off. If someone has a problem with my eczema, that’s on them not me.

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