Living with eczema is hard enough, what with all the Doctor appointments, Bathing, changing clothes covered in blood and the endless hours spent each day creaming, without having to deal with other peoples ignorances. There are things you never want to hear if you have eczema.
When I was younger and had a rare good day with my eczema it could and so often was spoilt by one stupid and ignorant comment from someone about my skin. The way it looked even on a good day was enough to be spotted by someone and for them to comment and ruin my day!
Don’t get me wrong, spotting I had eczema and saying nothing was sometimes just as bad as pretending they hadn’t noticed it. But just say the right things! It’s not rocket science. My mum used to say. ‘ If you have nothing nice to say, then don’t say anything at all‘ She was right. Some people simply need to put their brain in gear before they open their mouths.
So I’ve sat down and thought about all the stupid things people have said to me over the years, and believe it or not 46 Years later people still say some stupid things to me.
Here are a few stupid things that have been said to me over the years.
#1 Your skins dry, you should put some cream on that!
WOW. Thanks, I’ve never thought of putting cream on my eczema. ARE YOU CRAZY? I cream my full body 3-4 times a day which take 30 minutes each time. I just want to say to them ” Think about what you’ve just said, you’re an idiot” But we just smile and say yeah Thanks, I’ll try that. LOL
I have also worked out how many tubs of Diprobase cream I’ve used in my life. It’s over 700 Tubs! Costing over 20k WOW Eczema isn’t cheap.
I found the type I use on AMAZON
#2 Is that contagious?
No, It’s an immune disorder, not a contagious virus. But sometimes I really wanted to say ” Yes, so don’t come near me or else you’ll get it and die” I’ll tell you what else isn’t contagious… Stupidity so stop asking stupid questions.
#3 That looks bad! You should see a Doctor.
Really? I’ve never been to see a Doctor over my eczema that I’ve had from birth. Why didn’t I think of that? Do people really think you’ve never been to see a Doctor about your eczema? I’ve just worked it out in the past 46 Years, I think I’ve seen my Doctor ( Including picking up prescriptions each week) over 2000 Times.
#4 You’ve got really bad Dandruff
No, I don’t I have Dandruff I have eczema so get your facts right before opening your mouth! There are dozens of skin conditions that can cause flaky dry skin so why does everyone always see it and think its Dandruff.
#5 Your sunburn’s really peeling?
I used to get this one a lot when I was younger at school, It’s the middle of winter and I’ve not been on holiday so how can I have a sunburn. I have, however, used this excuse myself when I was younger to get out of telling people I had eczema. When I was between the ages of 12-16 I didn’t have the strength or courage to tell people I had eczema. It was only when I reached the age of 21+ did I start telling anyone I had eczema. When I was younger and children said to me ‘ Whats that on your face?’ I’d say ‘It’s sunburn peeling’ They were too young to realize I’d not been on holiday and peeling sunburn is acceptable to people but flaky eczema skin all over your shirt isn’t. But still people say this to me even now when I’m older and they should know better really.
#6 Stop scratching!
One person once said to me, ‘Stop scratching you’re doing my head in’ Well, sorry it’s no picnic for me to you know. This website was originally going to be called STOP SCRATCHING because it’s one of the most commonly said sentences to someone living with eczema. Don’t get me wrong I must have said it a million times to my own son, but that’s to protect him from the hypnotic spell scratching can put you under. You go into a scratching frenzy because it feels so good and you can’t get out of it until someone or something takes your mind off it. But for strangers or work colleagues to say ‘stop scratching’ is so annoying.
We all know the damage scratching can do to our body and the flare-ups it can cause. Read our blog on ‘ Why is eczema so itchy?‘ And share it with someone in your home that keeps telling you to STOP SCRATCHING’ Then maybe they’ll understand why you do it.
#7 I used to have eczema
That’s brilliant for you, but no good for me so why tell me. People tell you they had eczema when they were younger and it went away. Did they really have eczema? or was it just a bit of dry skin. People think just because they have or had dry skin they know what you’re going through. They have no idea! Did they scratch until they bleed? Did they have to moisturize every inch of their body 3-4 times a day? Did they suffer the stigma and embarrassment that full-blown eczema brings? NO, I don’t think their tiny bit of dry skin came with all these issues did it. Lucky them!
#8 My friend had eczema and he used this lotion and it went away
No, he didn’t. And why tell me this? If there was a miracle lotion out there that cures 100% of eczema when used then why are there currently over 40 studies and over $20 Million Dollars spent each year researching for a cure for eczema worldwide? It’s like saying ‘My friend had cancer and he took a pill and it went away’ It’s total bullshit so don’t tell me this rubbish.
#9 It’ll probably go away
How do you know this? Are you a specialist in dermatology? Yes, eczema can go away in younger children, a small percentage grow out of eczema before that age of 11 years. But unfortunately lots don’t and even some who think they have grown out of it can suddenly have flare-ups without warning.
It’s not all doom and gloom, thankfully some do grow out of eczema but you are telling me now at 46 Years old that I will grow out of it? Have a day off and think before you speak, please.
#10 That looks sore?
No, actually the red, itchy patches that are bleeding all over my body make me feel great! Of course, they’re sore its eczema. It’s really itchy and painful, not to mention I can’t sleep at night for itching so I’m tired constantly, and don’t mention the stress and depression that can come with it. Oh and the impact it has on my daily life. But no you’re right it does look sore, doesn’t it?
I hope you understand the sarcasm in the tone of this blog, but I’m sure if you suffer from eczema and are reading this you will probably understand where it’s coming from. If you don’t have a sense of humor when you live with eczema, then you’re in big trouble.
Eczema can lead to all sorts of underlining issues, depression, stress, and anxiety. Learning to deal with your condition is vital for beating eczema. Find a way not to let eczema win.
Education is vital and teaching younger children how to deal with questions they may face now or in the future very important. Books are a great way to start to educate children, especially if they’re under 10 years old. For even younger children at pre-school or nursery, they can take the educational book on eczema into school to share with other children. Sharing is caring!
That has always been our motto, and awareness of eczema and the underlining issues it can have is so important. If we can educate people not to say stupid things to sufferers of eczema then their lives will be a little bit easier.
Here’s a couple of books we used to read to our son and take to school to educate his fellow classmates, there available online from AMAZON.
I hope you take something away from this blog, even if it’s just put a smile on your face or made you laugh. Good luck with your own personal battle with eczema and please share this blog with others who may find it helpful.
Let us know below if you have experienced someone saying something stupid to you, share your story to help others.