New to this forum, not new to Trich
My name is Kate and I am 22 years old. Approximately 8 years ago (around 2012) I started pulling my hair out. I remember the exact starting point, my mother pointed out a hair that was dark and more wiry than the rest of my hair, she offered to pull it out for me and I said yes. I started routinely feeling around in my hair for strands that were like this one. Soon it didn’t matter whether the hairs I was tugging on were different or not. I also moved onto my eyebrows, sometimes my eyelashes and also the fine hairs on the back of my fingers.
I began panicking when I noticed my first balding patch at the back of my head. Just by chance, a girl I used to work with came into the break room one day and mentioned she had been watching this “inspiring video diary from a girl with Trich” I asked what that was and was stunned to hear her explain exactly what I had been dealing with. I went home and began to research extensively, I had always expected it was just something unique to me. Honestly watching a number of videos made me feel bad at first, because I hadn’t done quite as much damage as others had, so I felt like maybe I was claiming to have something I didn’t. I think that’s the reason I also never tried to get help from professionals.
Over the last 8 years I have tried stress or fidget toys, I’ve tried getting my hair cut regularly (this used to work very well as I didn’t want to ruin my nice new hair cuts by creating bald patches), and the longest I went without pulling was maybe just over six months. I started studying at uni in 2018 and it all flared up again in a big way. I had managed to keep it at bay, to a degree, until the last few months which have been particularly stressful (not just because of the pandemic but other personal things). Pulling for me is something that happens more frequently when I am stressed, I’m sure this is the case for many people.
Today I realised the damage I had done recently and it hit me so badly how much I need to stop before I do any worse. This is my first time joining a forum, my first time sharing with anyone else who actually understands the condition (my ex used to tell me “just stop” and my mother didn’t quite seem to understand why it was so difficult to stop, but she is finally starting to get it I think). Today is day 1, this time I want to stop and I want this to be the last time I ever have to stop.
Thank you for reading, it is pretty freeing to share. I plan to see my GP once lock-down is eased, but in the mean-time I have just bought a couple of hats to wear during the day to stop me from pulling and to stop me feeling self conscious. If you have any other suggestions of things that worked for you I would love to hear, there may be some things I have never tried before...