Sometimes I ask him why he doesn’t talk to me about his condition and he says he doesn’t want to upset me. I guess I feel the same way about him. I don’t want to upset him either.
All I want is for my son to be happy. Of course. Being his mom, it makes me sad to see him hiding in his room behind the computer all the time. He likes to SKYPE with his friends when he’s gaming.
But when we do go out he always looks down. He never looks people in the eye. I don’t know whether it’s a teenage thing or social consequence of his skin condition, but I can see from his expression that he is not comfortable.
Has he given up?
Oh, he is such a kind and positive boy. He never complains, I just worry that he has given up a little bit. He doesn’t care about his looks. His hair, his clothes. He doesn’t like to go to the gym. Even when we’re on holiday he prefers to stay indoors at the hotel. Is it a teenage mood or an acne consequence? I don’t know.
A friend of our family once told him: “We don’t see the pimples. We see what a lovely boy you are”.
This upset him quite a lot, he told me afterwards. Because it isn’t true. He says the acne is the first thing people see. Always. And he feels judged as an unhealthy person every time he meets new people.
Frustrating not to be able to help
I so want to help my boy and it’s frustrating that I can’t. I don’t know how to help him and apparently the doctors don’t know either. And I don’t want to allow him to take all sorts of medication that might harm his health in the long run. I’m thinking that six months of penicillin can’t be good for his body.
I suffered a little bit from acne when I was young. My husband suffered a lot and has a great deal of scarring left. Still, we don’t know how to help our son. I guess acne is not the end of the world, but it’s a horrible feeling not being able to help when I can see what impact this condition has on my son.
He has started high school now and I guess I would like to see him go out with his friends sometimes. I would like him to feel good about himself and to look people in the eye. I hope that with the right treatment we can get there one day.
This is a personal account from a mother to a patient in Denmark. She prefers to be anonymous but her name and identity are known by Kleresca®