The Sisterhood of Having Eczema

By Garrett White
Updated 2024-03-24 13:30:40 | Published 2023-07-29 00:29:58
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  • Atopic Dermatitis
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I have a unique connection between The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants and all the girls I know who have atopic dermatitis, or eczema. I like to call it the eczema bond, a phrase that I came up with myself. It's a bond that I share with my mother, my baby sister, and my best friends, both here and in another place. If I only had my personal experience to go off of, I would think that eczema only affects women.

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My mom is obsessed with shoes and her closets are filled with high heels in various patterns. She doesn't enjoy cooking or cleaning much, but she loves watching HGTV and Hallmark movies. Our interests may be different, but we always have a good laugh together. She reads books on her laptop while I prefer eBooks on my phone. We connect over our matching eczema rashes in the summertime.

My baby sister has a passion for languages. Despite being born during the pandemic, she has managed to visit two countries already and is well-behaved on airplanes. She knows how to access YouTube on any device, which is both impressive and a bit scary. She watches Cocomelon in English, Little Angel in French, and Arabic cartoons. She's adorable, but also going through her terrible twos. We bond over the silly handshakes and facial expressions I teach her, even though we sometimes get in trouble for them.

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My friend loves dancing more than anyone I know. She's a little cringy, but her dance moves could be the inspiration for Phineas and Ferb's choreography if we were old enough to influence it. She's the party planner in our friend group and puts together holiday-themed parties just for the fun of it. She sends chain mails with inspirational quotes to everyone in her contacts. She makes a vision board every year and uses it as her laptop lock screen. She's full of energy, sporty, and ambitious. And she also happens to have eczema. We bond over the ups and downs our skin goes through as the seasons change.

My roommate is passionate about music and love. She's an artist with impressive craftsmanship skills. Despite attending an art school, she still manages to stand out as a quirky girl. She can write essays based on music videos and can talk endlessly about discographies without any prompting. She loves fish, chocolate, and going to concerts. She's the epitome of an extrovert and craves touch. If I had to describe her in one analogy, she's both the sunflower that follows the sun and the sun that leads it. She's a bit crazy, but in a good way. And she also happens to have eczema. We bond over our struggles to find the right dermatologists.

In fact, my roommate once told me that she thought I was perfect, even with my eczema. Her choice of words, using the conjunction and instead of any negative connotations, meant a lot to me. It made me realize that my individual self is not defined by my skin condition, no matter how it may make me feel.

To all the girls out there, whether I know you or not, who happen to have eczema: you're perfect just the way you are. If you're looking for more information about eczema, feel free to join our Eczema Resources Group on Facebook.

Garrett White is verified user for iMedix

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