Looking for support
I began picking my hair from my scalp 4 years ago when I was feeling extremely stressed at university. This varied between picking split ends and pulling my hair from the root.
More recently, I have been under a lot of stress and have been prescribed medication for anxiety and low mood. I am aware that my hair picking has escalated.
A colleague noticed my hair pulling and work one day and confided in me that she also experienced thrichotillomania and encouraged me to google it. This is when I realised other people also experience this struggle and I immediately felt less embarrassed.
I have tried various distraction techniques such as playing games on my phone, jigsaws, squishy toys, stress balls and reading, however nothing quite feels the same as picking my hair out. I have also tried having my hair in French plaits.. however funnily enough, I just pick them out!
I no longer pick my split ends however snap my hair so it is very short and I continue to pick it from my scalp, which is increasingly sore. The right side of my hair is now really short and I have bald patches which people have pointed out to me. I have also recently connected my obsession with squeezing spots or any kind of mark on my skin - I used to think this was a funny, annoying habit however I now realise this gives me the same feelings as pulling my hair. I will pick my face until it is red, scabbed, bleeding and sore.
The part I’m embarrassed about and struggling with is despite my bald patches, short hair that sticks out and my scabby face, I don’t want to stop. It feels good when I pull my hair out and I can’t find any other way to release my anxiety.
Has anyone else felt like they didn’t want to stop? Did you overcome this feeling? If so, how?
Sorry for rambling and thank you for reading.