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Dealing With Insecurity, Grief, and Eczema

I consider self-awareness and teachability among the most important traits a person can possess. So, naturally, when I notice that I have been experiencing feelings of envy or insecurity, I try and turn inwards and examine the root of the feelings so that I may overcome them. Or at least understand them better.

Why have I felt insecure and jealous?

Lately, I have noticed myself experiencing envy and insecurity. I have also noticed myself hyper-fixating on my and other people's skin.

Honestly, I hate admitting that I am even feeling like this. All through my life I've been conditioned to view feelings like jealousy, envy, and insecurity with disdain. I was told to meet these feelings with denial and shame, rather than view them as indications of change and growth. Feelings like envy or insecurity can be used as indicators that something in oneself, or one's life needs to be addressed.

Will I ever move past this insecurity?

Feeling envious when a friend, relative or acquaintance hits a life milestone can bring awareness of what kinds of goals you want for your life.

Feeling insecure about an aspect of your physical body can lead to deep reflection on the reasons for that insecurity, which is necessary for healing and moving past the insecurity.

Why am I struggling with these feelings?

As I mentioned before, I'm struggling with my feelings around hyper-fixation on other people's skin. Specifically, people who I perceive as having “good skin.”

As I also mentioned before, the idea of jealousy or envy based on insecurity feels deeply shameful to me. I believe myself a feminist and try to foster body positivity in my household. I feel it's important to do this while raising children in the age of social media and filters.

It feels like I was being a hypocrite. Here I am telling my daughter to accept herself while I am feeling horrible wearing shorts with my eczema scarring visible just because I happened to walk past someone who has beautiful skin. I believe in women empowering and supporting other than women and the feelings I had when encountering these situations made me feel like I was a feminist fraud. It took a while for me to come to terms with having these feelings in the first place. Until I was able to face them honestly I was unable to see the real root cause.

Is it really inesecurity of my eczema or something else?

I realized that while on the surface it appears that the feelings came from a place of envy or jealousy, it felt more like grief and loss.

I am grieving the skin that atopic dermatitis, autoimmune disease and mental health took from me. Seeing others that are unaffected by the same visible and damaging skin conditions serves as a reminder of all I have been through up to this point with my skin. That can be hard to face, especially constantly because your mind is hyper-aware of it.

How has this self-awareness helped?

Coming to this realization has made it a bit easier to cope when these feelings surface. I know one or two things about grief and loss and I’ve been able to apply that knowledge to this situation.

I know it comes like waves, at first they are big and seem insurmountable, but as time goes on the waves even out. They will still come, but the impact will lessen. I don’t know when that day will be on my journey to accepting my skin but I am hopeful that if I keep moving forward and facing these hard emotions head on that I will get there!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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