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Self confidence

My confidence has grown due to those around me

Around the age of 3 I poured a kettle of boiling water over my neck and left arm. The resulting skin grafts left minor scarring to my left leg (where the skin was taken) and major scars to my neck and left arm. As a child I soon became aware of the stares and discomfort the scars arose in others which lead to serious embarrassment My response was to "cover up" whatever the circumstance or weather and remained so for around 50 years. It is only recently I have been comfortable wearing short sleeves or taking off my shirt in public. The change is due in part to less concern on my part but also a more relaxed view from those around me.

Chris, UK

I didn't want anyone to know about my scars

I have several scars, on my hands mainly thumbs and from carpal tunnel syndrome and one on my stomach from a hernia when I was a child. The one on my thumb bothers me the most, it's dry and stiff and I haven't received any guidance concerning it when I had the surgery so I've just put up with it. I can still do my day to day job despite the uncomfortable feeling so I haven't done anything about it. Didn't know you could get advice regarding it. The scar on my stomach means I've never felt comfortable wearing a two piece swim suit or getting undressed in certain situations. It has obviously gotten better with age but as a young person I was very sensitive about it and didn't want anyone to know about any of my scars.

Linda, UK

Stay strong people!

I have scars pretty much over most of my body. None of them are self-harming scars they are injuries that I have gotten over the years. Scars are common - most people have at least one on their body. Others are lucky if they don't have any. People who have scars are very special they may not think it but they are. 'What doesn't kill you makes you stronger' right. Scars are not injuries, a scar heals. After injury, a scar is what makes you whole and mends you. It shows you that you have been through a lot and come out of the other side and that makes you stronger.  Over the years, my scars made me very self-conscious of myself. I lacked confidence not only because I was bullied but because of my scars. I was lucky that I wore a school blazer that hid my scars but when interviews and other events came up I could see people staring. Some people are so ignorant and just judge without knowing the whole story. It doesn't bother me much anymore. I've learned to live with it and accept my scars. We are all beautiful. Stay Strong people!

Rebecca, UK

I'm nervous about meeting new people!

I have multiple scarring from years of clumsiness and bad luck falling and catching my body on sharp objects plus have many scars from surgery especially my back from 2 surgeries which make me nervous exposing them around people. Especially when it is very warm. Plus getting intimate with someone worries me what a partner would say and think when they see so many scars that i feel are very ugly. Mentally it is something that bothers me and being single meeting someone is a nerve racking thing on a good day but with the scars I’m very nervous.

Matthew, UK

My struggle with confidence

I used to be a very confident and outspoken girl however due to the bad scar which remained with me as a result of an accident which I had on my motorbike on my forehead has left me with 5 stitches and it makes me feel quite horrible in front of others and I personally feel self-demotivated. Every time I look into the mirror it reminds me of my scar as it is horrendous. And I also have a badly burnt scar on my hand which I got through a wax jelly candle that got melted on my hand. It was the liquid paraffin wax that made my hand very sensitive and I cannot write for long due to the inner deep scar which I have and it seems to look like I have some kind of illness as my hand colour seems too weird comparatively to the rest of my skin colour. It makes a person’s self-esteem low. However I try making myself realise that it's just not the outer beauty that makes a person but the deeds and character and the inner beauty matters.

Janice, UK

Overcoming Discrimination from my Partner

I was burnt by a deep fat fryer full of hot oil. I went into shock, and was put in intensive care for just over 24hours. I was covered in blisters, and had 30% burns. I had skin grafts and was in hospital for a total of 5+half weeks. I had a district nurse come to change my dressings for 1st 2weeks after I left hospital, and then had to go to burns outpatients for 5/6weeks on a weekly basis. I developed MRSA. My ex-husband kept telling me that no-one would want me with my burns, and I already felt ugly and marked. Eventually I left him and am now happily remarried.

Emma, UK

Living with body scars

When I was 18 months old I pulled a pan of boiling water off the cooker top which poured over my face, neck and chest. My mum says I was in hospital for about a month afterwards, and I was left with scald burns over my chest on my left hand side from my collar bone down to just above my navel. I had some skin grafting done on the top portion which, although visible, is quite a smooth, neat job (thank you, Odstock burns unit) the bottom half of the scarring is quite uneven, possibly due to blisters or where my clothing stuck.  Read the full story here...

Rebecca, UK

Acceptance of your scar is the first hurdle

At the age of 21 I got admitted to hospital with what they initially thought was food poisoning, but what ended up being peritonitis and emergency surgery. I have a scar from under my ribs, down through my belly button to my pubic line. Although without the operation I would have died I was left with a very unsightly scar which was very thick in places, very purple and very tender. I was very self concious and my days of wearing cropped tops and bikinis were now long gone. At the age of 21 this was devastating as not only had I the scar but I also suffered from many other problems after the operation. They say time is a healer and this is certainly true. The scar soon became less obvious as the purple went and the scar looked more like my own skin colour. I got my belly button pierced and that hid a small amount of the scar. I am now 53 and forget it's even there. It's usually only ever mentioned now when I go for a check up and the doctor asks what happened. We are a family of scarring as my husband was burnt as a child on his arm and our daughter was involved in a RTA and had stitches on her face. There is light at the end of the tunnel and acceptance is the first hurdle.

Andrea, UK