Dating with psoriasis can be a challenge, simply because you don’t know how the other person will respond to your disease. Although I have heard a few negative stories, in my experience, most people respond pretty well and accept the disease. You can and will find someone who will love you with or without your disease. But, in the meantime, here are some tips on dealing with dating and your skin
**Do what makes you comfortable while on a date. **If you’re not comfortable with your skin yet, avoid wearing clothing that would make you paranoid or uneasy. I’m not telling you to hide, but I am telling you to do what’s best for you. If you do decide to wear short sleeves, shorts, skirts, etc., I would recommend explaining your condition to your date before you meet up to avoid a possible awkward situation. Personally, when I was dating, I wasn’t comfortable with showing off my skin. I would wear cute clothes that covered me up. By doing that, I was able to allow my true personality to shine, and I didn’t worry about who was looking at me or staring at my skin while I was on my date.
**Talk about it with your date. **At some point, you need to tell the person you’re dating about your psoriasis. That could be on the first date, or three months later, it just depends on how comfortable you are and the chemistry that’s there. Besides, even if you don’t end up in a relationship, at least you have educated an additional person about the disease. And, you may be surprised – they may already know someone who has it.
**Find creative ways to tell them. **I used to be really uptight about my skin. I hated talking about it. I never mentioned it while on the first date, but I would eventually tell the guy I was dating about my condition. Showing my skin, however, was always a different ball game. When my husband and I started dating, I created fun and comfortable ways to tell him about my psoriasis. We would play something called the question game. We would ask each other questions to get to know each other. He would ask me something like, “What’s one thing you would change about yourself?” or “What’s something about you, that nobody knows?” These questions allowed me to talk about my skin in a non-threatening, but fun, interesting way, and then it would usually lead to a healthy discussion.
ALWAYS REMEMBER… just because you have this disease does NOT mean that you must settle for anything that makes you unhappy. If a person is not treating you right, don’t think that you have to stay, I don’t care how much they accept your skin. If they could be open to your skin condition, someone else will be able to do the same! You deserve the best just like anyone else. I hear so many psoriasis sufferers who say they are having sex with a person who is not aware of their skin issue. If you’re being intimate with someone, but you don’t feel comfortable enough to tell them about your condition, then you really need to re-evaluate the relationship. If you’re too embarrassed to tell them about your psoriasis, how in the world can you be physically intimate with them? The point is, talk about it. Explain the disease to them. If they can’t accept it, kick them to the curb!
Alisha Bridges is a freelance health writer on the topics of sexual health, skin care, and psoriasis. She has lived and thrived with psoriasis for over two decades. Alisha is the creator of www.Beingmeinmyownskin.com, a site dedicated to sharing what it’s like to live with psoriasis. She is also a student at Georgia State University pursuing a career as a physician assistant with a concentration in dermatology. She can be found on Twitter and Instagram @alishambridges.