If you have acne, you know it. But if you don't, you may not be aware how deeply acne can affect the psyche of the sufferer. Mental health and acne is not just a passing topic of conversation. It is real, it is raw and it has the grit to shake the foundations of a person, even a strong person.
We asked Vlad to share his story to shine some light on young people's mental health struggles while living with acne. This is his story.
"Hello, nice to meet you and I am honoured to be featured on this site! My name is Vlad, I am 22 years old and I have been struggling with my skin for 4 years already. I always considered myself a strong person, made of „iron” but acne showed me that’s not 100% true. It really affected my confidence and my mental health. My quality of life dropped drastically, I felt disgusted and ashamed to look at myself in the mirror. I started avoiding people, going to the gym, having romantic relationships, and losing friendships because I was absent and people thought I didn’t want to hang out with them anymore. I like being surrounded by friends and people I can interact with easily, but at some point, I felt like acne took that away from me. This is how acne can affect one person, it can drain your soul so bad, that you feel like you just want to survive. Not live a happy life, just survive and get through the day.
Right now, I am much better, my page and those who support me helped me tremendously. I am still working on my confidence, it’s a constant battle and there are days where I just want to be alone. But as I learned, progress is not linear and I see this as a true test of how much I am capable of loving myself even if I have a lot of reasons not to do so. It’s very common to be vulnerable when you have acne, the best thing to do is to have a hobby and to stick to it and also seek help from a psychologist. Some battles should not be fought alone, that’s my opinion. Stay beautiful and stay real!"
Vlad's handle on Instagram is @scarryacne_with_v
Vlad is also a proponent of #acnepositivity movement.
If you would like to share your battlefield stories like Vlad - your darkest moments or the moments you found inner freedom, send them to us. We would love to read them and share them. Write to us here with the heading "Battlefield Stories".