Beauty

‘Sometimes I felt so hopeless I’d just sit and cry’

‘Sometimes I felt so hopeless I’d just sit and cry’

‘Sometimes I felt so hopeless I’d just sit and cry’

Steph Klassen shares her battle with severe adult acne to remind others that they’re not alone. 

Image: Instagram @stephmkt1d

Dealing with acne can be painful, physically, never mind the impact it can have on your confidence.

It can bring your self-esteem down, and make you feel too self-conscious to even step out in public.

For mother-of-two Steph Klassen, it was only when she turned 25 and fell pregnant, that she suffered her first breakout. But it was no ordinary breakout. In fact, the cysts on Steph’s face were so severe that she developed sepsis – a life-threatening condition that occurs when the body reacts to an infection.

And, although she was admitted to the ICU and survived, she miscarried her baby at 18 weeks.

“The cysts were so deep they were hitting the nerve endings in my face,” Steph said in an interview with the Daily Mail.

“The feeling was like a million lightning bolts shooting all across my face. I would actually twitch involuntarily. I wouldn’t wash my face or touch it. Sometimes I felt so hopeless I’d just sit and cry.”

Even though she describes feeling “like a monster” some days, Steph has bravely taken to Instagram to remind the world that even without makeup, acne doesn’t discriminate.

In an image she posted in December last year, she wrote: “I’m trying my absolute best to be positive, to not hide myself away but carry on. I won’t lie, it’s not easy, some days are sunshine, rainbows and puppies, others I bawl in a fetal position for hours.

“One day this will all be behind me. There’s light at the end of the tunnel but let me tell you it’s a loooong ass tunnel.”

Her account has since been filled with positive comments, and has even helped others struggle through their battle with adult acne.

One user commented: “I hope you know that you have a smile that lights up the room. I know the pain of adult acne, of Accutane, and the toll it takes on the self-esteem. You’re so genuine and real, and you should be proud of the inspiration that you are. Hugs. It gets better.”

Since her miscarriage, she’s been treating her acne with Accutane, hormone balancing capsules, and following a strict anti-inflammatory diet. But despite her optimism and her efforts to stay positive, she still has days where she looks in the mirror and only “sees a mess”.

“It’s so hard to not assume that everyone is staring at me and thinking ‘omg look at her face’,” she wrote in a recent Instagram post.

“I go out and I have a hard time making eye contact or even holding my head high. I end up exhausted from trying to keep myself from bawling or just straight up losing it.”

But what’s most important right now for Steph, is to keep her head up high and know that there’s so much more to life than simple looking good.

“I’ve had an amazing support system through this season in my life.

“My husband, friends, family, my faith and even strangers have kept me going when I thought there was no way I could.”

If you are concerned about your health, book an appointment with your GP who will be able to advise a correct treatment plan.

If you or someone you know needs help, call Lifeline on 131 114, Beyondblue on 1300 22 4636 or Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800. In an emergency, call 000.

For more information on mental health and treatment options, visit Beyond Blue, Black Dog Institute, Lifeline, RUOK or Headspace.

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