Welcome to the ninth day of the National Health Blog Post Month hosted by WEGO Health. Every day during the month of November I will be writing a new blog post related to health and living with a chronic illness based on given prompts provided by WEGO Health.
Today’s prompt reads…
Just admit it: It’s taboo, write about something that people do but don’t like to talk about or won’t admit to doing. Don’t worry we won’t tell anyone 😉
Okay, so I am going to divulge a big secret of mine. I suffer from a condition called trichotillomania. Trichotillomania is the compulsion urge to pull out one’s own hair. I have suffered from this condition since my early teens, and is not something I admit to doing or have even discussed with anyone. You see, ever since my early teens; when the dizziness started getting much more frequent and intense, and as a result it triggered an anxiety disorder. At the same time, I was going through a hard time at school, where I was bullied and ostracised by my peers. As someone who rarely talks about what is on their mind, or problems and instead bottles them up, I found comfort and relief from plucking hairs from my legs, arms or eyebrows. At this time, I didn’t know what was happening; I was finding it so difficult to cope with both the dizziness, anxiety and depression that I was suffering, and I had no other coping mechanisms that I developed this compulsion to pull my own hair out.
My hair is very fine, so I couldn’t pull hair from my head as people would soon notice, so I began pulling hairs from my arms, legs and eyebrows. It’s my shameful secret – I still do it sometimes now when I am struggling with my condition and during difficult times where I am finding it difficult to cope.
This condition is very common, usually amongst teenagers and young adults, and also more common in girls than boys. However, it is often a taboo subject and not often talked about. Perhaps as it often also causes guilt and shame amongst sufferers of trichotillomania. I know that guilt is something that I feel after I have pulled hairs out for a period of time.
I hope that perhaps by sharing my secret and opening up about my compulsion to pull my hair out will help people who may be doing the same thing. For support, you can try these websites that provide further information:
US – Trichotillomania Learning Centre: http://www.trich.org/
UK – Trichotillomania Support Online – http://www.trichotillomania.co.uk/index.html
Trichotillomania Support on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/TrichotillomaniaSupport