Life with Trichotillomania

My previous entry was about Trichotillomania and I wanted to continue this specific topic. As most of my readers would know, they would see I like to get personal with any mental illness subject. However, it was hard for me to do so since I do not have Trichotillomania. But one of my best friends has it. So I asked my friend to briefly share the experience. Please read my friend’s words. I hope it will bring more enlightenment.

“I had Trichotillomania for about 8 years. I was in college and going through a lot of issues with family and my personal relationships. I haven’t been open about it towards my family in regard to my trichotillomania. I have discussed it with a few friends who support me. They have been incredibly supportive, even with the broader circle I’ve opened up to. Trichotillomania is kind of hard to explain since it’s rather a subconscious act. I normally don’t know that I am doing it most of the time. Which makes it worse because I will rub my hair out usually. If its bad, I’ll reach towards my scalp and taunt my hair. It doesn’t affect my daily life too much. Its more that it’s a self-defeating cycle in which I lose self-confidence because I ruined my hair from stress.

The worst experience I ever had is when I went to a salon and the beautician ruined my hair, giving me a bald spot. I pulled my hair over it and tied my hair so tight, that even with my spot covered, id pull my hair out to expose it even more…thus creating that cycle of insecurity. But the bright side of having trichotillomania is I don’t have to buy razors, just kidding! Lol!

The way I cope with my Trichotillomania is by dying my hair when I’m manic. It helps me so much. Its less pain and if anything, its made me change my thoughts on not only how i treat my hair, but myself. The advice I would give to people who don’t have trichotillomania is that it’s a stressful motion to go through. Try to find the source of their stress and help the person use their hands in a healthier way. Offer to do their hair and just hear them out. Or if you want, offer them a trip to the salon/ barbershop, it’ll boost their mood to feel pampered. Try a healthy hair habit. Getting it cut professionally or even with ur friends. It’ll help you keep your hands away from your hair and when someone is doing hair for you, its like a spa day. Don’t look at your hair as the enemy, its stress that’s making you fight yourself.”

I hope my best friend’s words brought insight to individuals who were not aware of this condition. I hope when we come across an individual who has trichotillomania, we won’t shed judgement and show compassion. I also hope my best friend experience is a comfort for people who are going through it. If you are reading this I want you to know that you are not alone and just like my best friend, you can through it. You just have to adult one day at a time.

IF YOU NEED IMMEDIATE HELP, PLEASE USE THE FOLLOWING:

Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255

Suicide Prevention Live Chat: https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/chat/

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5 thoughts on “Life with Trichotillomania

  1. I knew someone with this mental illness. I didn’t realize it was subconscious. She pulled out her eyelashes and eyebrows. She was also nervous but a sweet woman. It’s heart-breaking what our mental disorders do to us.
    I love the picture of the two young women.

    Liked by 1 person

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