Sometimes when it's brought up, all I can see are two thumbs coming at me from an otherwise well-meaning mother or an otherwise well-meaning sister.


Picture it (as Sophia from The Golden Girls would say--I'll score major points with Angel for that reference), there I am in the throes of puberty and all the emotional crap that brings; I'm dealing with acne, AND I have a mom and a sibling who could spot a zit a mile away and would come for it. I HATED popping zits. But they clearly didn't. Yes, I would let them, but not before extending my arm and slowing them down. (For the record, Mom was a nurse, so this was a no-brainer; I can't explain my sister's interest.)

I especially remember needing a trip to see my pediatrician, the amazing Dr. Edmund Bickel, because of something on my elbow called cyst acne. I won't go into details, but it made my entire elbow warm from the infection, and I was escorted to the back examining room to have it "taken care of." Just terrible.

Yes, I know this is gross, but the whole STORY is gross. And the subject of the story is even worse. But I'm digressing a bit.

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So there are figurative and LITERAL scars from my adolescence and early teen years that make me end a conversation that begins with, "Oh you should watch 'Dr. Pimple Popper.'" It's a wildly popular TLC series that has come up twice in conversation just in the last week. Why would I watch something like this?

[CONTENT WARNING: I'm not watching this video, but you can.]

Or this.

[CONTENT WARNING: I'm not watching this video, but you can.]

Or this.

[CONTENT WARNING: I'm not watching this video, but you can.]


Yes, I know TLC swings for the fences when it comes to extreme content, and, so far, it's proven to be quite a successful business model for the network. And let me clarify...I'm sure the series brings people hope that they can deal with an issue they may have thought was out of reach.

But Dr. Pimple Popper will never have me as an audience member, and my friends can quit asking. And by the way, when I tell them I don't watch it, they can ALSO refrain from giving me a detailed description of an episode they just saw.

Hard pass.

Goosebumps and other bodily reactions, explained

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