Posted by: glitterseason | December 5, 2008

we are not alone (other peoples stories)

I get a lot of comments left here. Sadly I do not have time anymore to respond to everyone BUT I do read every single comment. Every one means sooooooooooo much. Thank you. It really helps. Here are some of the personal stories people have shared. (I have taken names and email addresses out.)

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Person 1:

I’ve been a Trickster for about 13 years and never knew that others had the same thing. I’ve dealt with depression and being suicidal..the whole nine yards. It’s refreshing to know I am not the only one that pulls. I actually pull my lashes out and they are pretty much bare. It is so frustrating and embarrassing…

Person 2:

oh this is exactly how i feel as well. it’s like an urge and i cant stop i always wear my hair up and people are always like why don’t you ever wear it down. i simply say. ” because i don’t feel like it” i don’t get in the pool with people or else my bald scalp will show. i just wish there was a cure.

Person 3:

i am so glad i have found this website, i have been pulling my hair out for 8 years and i am 18 now. now i finally know that there are more people with this condition than i thought so glad i’m not the odd 1 out. i tend to wear a wig these days because when i went to school and even now i get really badly bullied for it off people that know me in the street. i feel that and wish that i can wake up one day and i wont get that horrid temptation. i only ever pulled hair out of my head for some reason but still it it has put a hell of a lot of pressure in my life. i hate going out or leaving my bfs side because i get paranoid that people know or there staring at me. its completely ruined my confidence and my independence

Person 4:

I’ve been a puller for 11 years or so. Eyelashes and eyebrows mainly. I find myself in trances when I use my laptop too but unfortunately my work is solely based around using a computer so I have a lot of difficulty trying to stop. When I realise I’m doing it, I usually sit on my hand or put it in the pocket of my hoody or on my belly to make me stop and make myself aware of it. I’ve picked out only 10 hairs today from doing this rather than the million I’d pick out any other day. I’m determined to lower my pull count and have been doing lots of research on trich over the past few days. Awareness seems to be the key.

Person 5:

I am a 28 year old female who suffers from Trichotillomania and I have for 14 years. It started with trauma in my life and escalated to something I couldn’t control. I was eating the hair I was pulling and over 7 years it built up to the point where I could no longer digest my food properly because the hairball took up the entire space in my stomach. I had gone to doctors over many years but got no real answers even though my stomach was clearly larger from the blockage. I was ashamed to tell anyone what the problem was as I knew all along why I was feeling so sick. I thought I was crazy and who would actually pull hair out and eat it. Eventually I had to visit emergency and wouldn’t leave or take no for an answer. I told them to get a specialist in to do an endoscopy and they found what they call a trichobezoar or hairball. I was told I was 6 months away from dying had this been left untreated. This is not something to be taken lightly, if you or someone one you know may have this problem please tell them to get help. I went for surgery in 2001 and never ate my hair again. I still find myself pulling more often then not but I am consciously working on it day by day. We are not alone and there is help we can get, but the most powerful help we can get is from the will of our own minds. It can be overcome….if you make the choice.

Person 6:

Ive been pulling from the back of my head since I was 13. I stopped when I went to college about 3 years then it started up again & I had to shave my head. I kept it shaved for years then my fiance begged me to grow it out for our wedding. 2 weeks after the wedding (now) I started up again. I want to shave my head to stop it but I want long hair again ( I pulled so much the past two days. Its not noticeable yet.. I mean it is, but my hair covers it still. It just feels so good & what sucks the most about it is that after pulling ill obsessively look at the damage..I can’t stop looking at the damage in the mirror saying to myself ‘ok its a smallish bald spot & if I stop right now it can be covered up & I say ok this is the last hair. I find the last hair that feels really good & say I am done forever. Within a few hours I screw up & pull again then I have to go look to see if the damage is a lot worse or not. Im so sick of wasting my time looking at it but I can’t stop.

Person 7:

Wow…yeah, I pull my hair all the time too; I have had this terrible problem since I was 13 or 14 & vowed to stop since then, but it never goes away. I am disgusted with myself every time I pull, but I can’t make myself stop. My hair has thinned quite a lot since then, (I used to have beautiful long hair but have cut it since from embarrassment partly as well as experimentation). I don’t even pick it up off the floor partly out of fear of seeing the amount of hair & also because my mum parent’s vacuum regularly & insist on it :P. I have sometime’s collected some off the floor though as it fall’s on my books & cd’s by my bed if I pull in bed & it really scare’s me…I don’t want to be bald by them time I’m in my early 20’s! I’m only 19 now. I have naturally golden hair and would really love to grow it long again like it used to be, I really miss that; and luckily it can be mostly conceiled that I pull it now – but I’m worried if I keep going it won’t be a secret for long. But whole immediate family know’s about it though and are very worried. And between washing it you can notice the thinness even more, I don’t know what to do – I have OCD/have been diagnosed w/ it, but my Doctor says it’s not the exact same disorder.

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Please keep leaving your stories, sharing and educating the world. It starts here.

x

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Responses

  1. I agree, I think it is SO important that we all share. It really helps me too, just getting it out by writing about it. 🙂

  2. Hi…I can relate! I’ve been triching for the last 21 years..I am 26 now. IT’S A STRUGGLE EACH AND EVERY DAY! My hair is like a Lays potato chip..i cannot pull out just one! I pull from my head mostly now but have stripped eyes lids, eyebrows and pubic area bare. I love looking at my hair roots for whatever sick reason and i enjoy the pleasaurable plan that comes from pulling. the sorer the spot is on my hea the better the pull feels. Like others I am ALWAYS looking in the mirror to see if the bald spot has gotten bigger. I always promise “this is the last one” but we can all agree that is NEVER the case. WE NEED HELP! I want to leave it alone and not to feel these strong urges. But sometimes what can you do? BE STRONG EVERYBODY! WE CAN DO IT! :OD

  3. pain* not plan and head* not hea

  4. I came across your blog accidentally–meaning not intentionally while looking through others. I’m a nature writer/photographer who seems a bit off track here.
    But, I’ve stayed and read through a bit–glad I did.
    I haven’t had any experience with what you’re dealing with –specifically. Though, in our own ways, we all have our own circumstances we wish were different.
    I know the hair pulling baffles you–and, others, too. I’m sure many medical professionals throw their hands up looking for satisfactory treatment.
    But, I wonder about something as simple as “getting out” (meaning outdoors/outside ) to immerse yourself in nature? If stress worsens your pulling, maybe it could help you?
    I find myself craving long walks when I’m troubled or need to clear my head. And wherever I go, I find something that helps me. Watching a small brook bubble along, staring off at a sunset, sitting alone on a log listening to squirrels run through the leaves…
    Have you tried anything like that?

    At any rate, I wish you the best.

    Nina at Nature Remains

  5. thank you, thank you, thank you.
    i am 16 and also a trichster.
    i hate getting my hair cut, because my hairdresser knows. she was the one that pointed it out to my mom when i was in 4th grade. i didn’t know it was wrong. but i got in HUGE trouble, and so then i just stopped. but recently, I’ve been dealing with some on/off depression leftover from my 8 month stint on accutane, and my trich has gotten horrific. I’m truly scared. i don’t want to tell my parents, because that seems way impossible right about now. i told my best friend, and she didn’t realize that i was telling her my deepest secret. so that was a bad response. but i told my other best friend (coincidentally, her boyfriend of 2 years) just today, and it seemed like a positive response. I’m not sure yet. but i always seem so alone, y’know? and the bad thing is that sometimes i don’t even know that I’m doing it.
    my ponytails are getting smaller and smaller, and I’m truly scared. i don’t scare easily, but now, i really am.
    but this was just a thank you for doing this.

  6. I started hair pulling more than 20 years ago. I can never seem to get it under control. I alternate between pulling out at the crown (which creates bald spots) and chewing/pulling out on the left side (which creates jagged ends and a sparse spot). It drives me nuts and it makes me hate myself. It is exacerbated by stress and I always seem to have a lot of stress. I am receiving no treatment and no one ever seems to care. Doctors don’t take me seriously. I have given up trying. I know that I’m not worth it. Everyone is expendable.

  7. i fink that i may hav the same thing as you guys. about a year ago i started pulling out ma hair. i didnt realise till i saw bold spots. theses were noticable by other people to. i then got worried that people could see it and by a few months later i had a huge patch missin from the top of ma head n several blothes in other places. its growing back slowely bit when i get bored or stressed i start pullin ma hair n it falls out as it is very thin to start with. what can i do. ive been to ma doctor and they said its normal and there is nothing wrong with me but im worried. wot can i do???

  8. sadly, im a hair puller, and were not alone. ive been pulling my hair since i was in grade 7, and now im in high school. grade9. i no how alot of you feel, its almost like you feel alone, like no one understands you. im almost completely bald, and it gets worse everytime i pull, i feel like people are always starring at me. i do wear a wig, its my second one. im not proud of it either. now that i look back, i wish i never got the wig, it just allowed me too keep pulling, i thought my parents wouldn’t notice. but they did, they tried everything in there heart to help me and i took advantage of it. they put me in the hospital, they took me to the doctor, they tried treatments, they tried putting gloves on my hands when i sleep, and nothing worked, i no the feeling of pulling hair, and at the time it feels so good, I DONT KNOW WHY, I WISH I NEW,. i used to have LONG, nice beautiful thick blond hair, and i miss it so much, theres not a day that goes by that i don’t wish i never pulled, i wonder why i did, and i just don’t know. when im alone i just stand in the mirror and look at the disaster i have made. sometimes i cry, and say im never going to pull again, i promise myself it would be the last hair, but it wasn’t. i do it everyday. i wish i could stop. i need help and i no i do. it was so hard to talk about it to people for the longest time. ALOT of bad things has happened to me since the hair pulling. in grade 7 i didn’t have a wig yet, so i wore a bandanna around my head. and one day it was a indoor recess, so all the kids stay in the gym, and some inconsiderate asshole decides to come up behind me and pull it off 😦 than k god only a few people saw, but i ran outta that gym so fast just crying i had to go home. :(, then the next year, which would be grade8, i was in gym class, and we were playing basketball, a girl ran into my by an accident and i went flying to the floor so fast, my wig just got knocked off my head and i was just sitting there on the gym floor while people saw, it was humiliating. i cant go on like this i want to no everything is going to be okay. :(i miss my good old life, not having to worry about this every single day. i used to be soooo pretty, ( not being conseeded) but now i look at myself and just see ugly. its so sad,. im sure you all know what that feels like. you think why me? out of anyone in the world why did i have to do this? 😦 its hurtful, sad, lonely, and depressing. i miss my old life i want it back :(, im so afraid that ive been doing this for so long, that my hair wont grow back 😦 and ill be like this for the rest of my life. its so scary.

  9. This disorder has its hold on me too. Did anyone find something that works to stop it?
    I started young and now I am turning 30. I want to be done with this!

  10. My brother also has picked his hairs out since the age of 5 or 6 People look at him and just look knowing that something is really different and they notice and then look down or away that is what hurts him most. he is a good person i wish someone out there could let me know of a group that he could attend. he would love that i would even attend with him

  11. I found something helpful accidentally — a supplement called L-Theanine. I was taking it for something totally unrelated, and after a while, I realized that I had stopped pulling completely. The thought/urge simply stopped. The damage is done, of course — once the roots are pulled, the hair will not grow back. I’ve read that hair will sometimes grow back thicker or curlier — what baloney. Once the root is gone — it’s gone. Anyway, the theanine is worth a try.

    • This is true in my case S Quinn.. my hair has grown back thicker.
      I have 20 inch full head of thick hair and it’s all my own.

      But i still pull out the occasional hairs, and i’m always pulling out the hairs on my legs and pubic area. 😦

    • hey wondering how the theanine is doing now and wether or not you w re diagnosed as having ocd or was the hair pulling due to anxiety

  12. Hey I just wanted to add that I’m 18 and been suffering from this since I was 11…but now I’m not sure because now I have disturbing memories of me pulling my hair out when I was younger (at about 6 or even younger) so I don’t know how old I was since I had this. I hate it I really do. It’s pushed everyone away from me. It’s made me really depressed and I’m in a vicious cycle of cutting when I’m not pulling out my hair and vice versa. It’s really hard and at the moment I have a gap in my eyelashes so I have to wear false ones to hide it. I feel so ugly and ashamed. I don’t even really want to look pretty…just normal.

    I’ve been looking up trich sites and they’ve helped me a bit. My trich seems like it’s getting worse, but realising I’m not the only one who has it makes me feel a little better.

    Does anybody know of any cure or anyway to stop this, or make it better? I’m willing to try anything.

  13. I am a 32 year old who has been pulling hair since I was about 10 or 11. I do remember that it started as a result of being molested. I was in denial for many years and kept it a secret from my family until only recently. I tend to pull from my fingers and pubic areas. It has impacted my life tremendously. I am often preoccupied for hours sometimes pulling hairs. I can’t complete tasks at work or home. I am often late which has affected my relationship at work and with friends and family. I seem to never be able to complete task. When I am not pulling hairs I am chewing or snapping gum to the point that my jaws hurt and I have developed TMJ. I have to find help to deal with this condition or I will become completely isolated from everything and everyone.

  14. I have pulled my hair out since I was 13. I thought it was a silly teenage habit, however it continued and I still pull my hair out at the age of 29. It has taken me a few years to realise I pull when I am stressed, upset and feeling very unhappy.
    I pull hair from he top of my head until it hurts and then I feel a sense of relief. Sometimes my scalp bleeds fro where the strand has been pulled from and I always bite the root. I am disgusted with myself that I bite the root, it is horrible and disgusting and I pull when I am alone, on the laptop and MAINLY when I am in bed and settling down to sleep.
    I have tried acupuncture – it didn’t work! My hairdresser knows I pull and so do a few close friends. I am seeing a counsellor next week to find out why I pull my long brown hair out!!!!
    I am ashamed of myself and always say I will stop pulling, but then I pull it out 5 minutes later.
    I WANT TO STOP!


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