1)’Just stop scratching!’
2) ‘Have you tried moisturising?’
If only it were that easy. And yes.
3) ‘I’m sure you’ll grow out of it.’
I’m twenty-one, but thanks.
4) ‘Oh dear, were you crying?’
Nope, my eczema just always decides to manifest in the most inconvenient places, and this time it was my eyes.
5) ‘Did you burn yourself?’
Yes, I actually burned myself as I saved a load of little kids from a burning orphanage and had to fight a bear on the way out of the burning inferno (he was on fire, too).
6) ‘Is it contagious?’
No, it’s not contagious, so please don’t treat us like we’re lepers.
7) ‘I didn’t even notice your skin condition!’
I know this comes from a kind place; that you don’t want to make people self-conscious about their skin, but it’s okay to notice our skin problems. Humans are curious creatures and if something catches your eye that’s okay. What’s not okay is to stare and make sufferers feel self-conscious.
Although if you genuinely didn’t notice it, I guess that means my valiant efforts of applying makeup have not been in vain.
8) ‘Have you tried cutting out tomatoes/dairy/gluten/your left Fallopian tube?
Okay so the last suggestion was a bit of an exaggeration, but as long term sufferers we’ve tried everything because we’d quite like it to go away. It’s really awesome that it worked for you/your sister/cousin but everyone’s bodies are different, so what works for them might not work for the next person.
Most of all, it’s the non-verbal things that people do that irritate an eczema/psoriasis sufferer the most. It’s small things, like having someone stare at your hands when you’re counting your change at a bus stop, or a cashier looking a little apprehensive to take your money (you can tell they’re debating whether it’s contagious or not).
This article was a little bit sarcastic, and I do appreciate that most of these questions or statements come from a kind place but in all honesty, I think I speak for a lot of sufferers when I say it’s my biggest insecurity – so please don’t draw attention to it.