“Living with a skin condition can be tough, but it doesn’t define who you are”- QV kindness survey results

As part of our A Hand to Hold campaign, we recently asked people to take part in our kindness survey so we could gauge how participants feel others react to their skin condition. We received almost 700 responses, and sadly, 34% of those feel that people are not kind and supportive, with one participant stating: “People don’t realise how much it gets me down and how sore it can be.”

Our survey revealed that 30% of people said that they have experienced somebody saying something negative to them about their skin condition, with 48% saying that it affects them if somebody is unkind. Comments included: 

“It makes me feel depressed and embarrassed”

“I take it really personally. I try not to let it affect me but it always does

“It does not make me feel good at all.”

As we delved deeper, it’s unsurprising that many participants went on to state that they feel insecure due to their skin condition, with 43% of people stating they feel very self-conscious and worry about what other people think.

Further statistics included:

  • 68% of people said they are critical of themselves
  • 61% of people said social media negatively impacts on their self-esteem
  • 25% of people said their skin condition makes them hold back in their social and romantic relationships

Fortunately, many inspiring coping mechanisms were shared to help others who are affected by unkind behaviour from others: 

  • “I think it really is a reflection of them. If someone is unkind over someone else's skin, then they must be pretty miserable to try and bring someone else down.”
  • “I try to breathe slowly and repeat a mantra in my head: ‘you are beautiful’, until I calm down.”
  • “I ignore negative comments and keep a positive attitude.”

Furthermore, when we asked people to give their advice to those who have been affected by unkind words, comments included:

  • “Don't take it personally. People who do this kind of thing are mostly very unhappy and use you as an outlet for their frustrations. You are beautiful just as you are.”
  • “Their unkind words is a reflection of them, how you deal with it is a reflection of you. Have courage and be kind.” 

If you feel like you need someone to talk to, consider speaking to your GP or a counsellor. Mental health charity MIND can also help you find the support you need. Visit www.mind.org.uk, call the Mind Infoline on 0300 123 3393 or send a text to 86463.