Re: at the end of my tether! . . .
Differin Gel (on prescription) helped me a lot. It is quite gentle but effective at unblocking pores and calming inflamation. You need to be persistent in using it: I've been told that you never see any effect in acne with anything used for less than 3 months.
In general, I dont like using antibiotics or hormones unless my life is in danger! I think they weaken the system, and can have a rebound effect when you stop.