Join today to meet, support and share information with others who are living with "trich" (hair due to compulsiving pulling of the hair).

Website: http://www.AlopeciaWorld.NEt
Members: 26
Latest Activity: May 23, 2013

Discussion Forum


Started by desireenicole1989 Oct 31, 2012. 0 Replies

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Comment by Angie on January 28, 2012 at 6:54am

Hi everyone. New to the site, joined up today. Came across it while I was searching for more wig sites. Hi Kathy. Im a long time sufferer too. So great to finally make contact thru this site. Started at 12 years of age, I am now 46. Started off alopecia 1st, then changed along the way to trich... I come from New Zealand, live in a very small town. It has been a very long and lonely journey.Last year August I decided to check out the internet and start searching for more solutions. Ive worn synthetic wigs since about 16 years old.(Old non secure types-different cap versions but held on scalp by tightening straps at the back-Stay out of the wind, stay away from people/babies, never could swim with/or go roller coaster types. I wanted a change so I decided to get in touch with Advanced Hair Studios. Well they took samples of hair from the back of my head, sent it away for 4 months and 3 weeks ago they called me in for my fitting. My what...I thought strand by strand procedure was a medical procedure/transplant to stick strands back into the scalp from the samples originally sent away. Not to be...Anyway to the appointment I went. What it was, was what I call the test tube wig. (Called in the hair world today ..A System) My system, my own human hair-they say, lenght down to my shoulders, implanted to a silicone very lite weight new design cap. I thought oh no! another wig. (Here I thought I was having a transplant- Didnt read the fine print of the agreement).
It is a match to my original hair texture and colour so pleased for that!Wow the closest in 34 years to believing and feeling i have my own hair back. However these are the implications...
1. Its attached to your scalp (after you shave any existing hair) by sellotape or the other option is glue. (Knowing that now, I could have brought sellotape years ago to use with the synthetic wigs to have more security back then.
2. It cost me $3500 at initial 1st appointment and then another $3500 at the fitting. Total = $7000.
First few days scalp itched like crazy- especially at the shaven areas. It takes practice to line the double sided sellotape around the cap rim of the system (wig)with odd strips to your liking to be placed else where on the cap piece for more security. Then flip it on your scalp and waa..laa. Sellotape wig on your scalp.
So very new to this experience and expense. (Took a loan on top of my mortgage). I do like this better than the old heavy wigs but the sellotape sessions take time to do, but the security of it stuck to your scalp is satisfying. A couple of concerns for me still being new to this system but will get in touch with AHS and talk to them. Its only been 3 weeks but notice losing alot of hair during brushing sessions so abit scary for the price..
This morning I read about vacuum type wigs. Thinking it is better than sellotape wigs.. Emailed to a doctor in USA to query about hair transplant procedures.. They all ask for consultations which I cant afford over there. My trich..condition has decreased alot over the last 6 months - and still have growth on back section of scalp and odd patches on the top. I am not brave/confident enough in my little small town to run around bald headed.So still searching!. This morning I was just reading up on vacuum type wigs at freedom wigs website and I did however find another new website which made for good reading about trichotillamania and maybe a possible way to a cure for trich and alopecia.Check it out and have a read on Hope some of my comments help.

Comment by Sabrina on December 6, 2011 at 6:28am

hi all i suffer frm trich an im wantin2 no if there is anythin i can use 2 ease the itch an all as its gettin worse soz.

Comment by Kathy on September 22, 2011 at 1:27am
Hi Alexis and everyone else! I'm so sorry if no one replied to you yet, Alexis. I guess I was hesitant to reply because I wasn't sure you'd want to hear what my experience is. I don't want to take away any hope or belief that you can get past this. Truth is, I have battled Trichotillomania since I was 16 -- and I am now 54. I could write a book on all of the angst and tears and shame and sadness it caused. I spent many years with therapists and different medications. I tried desperately to hide this from myself and everyone else. Well, 3 years ago my best friend was diagnosed with breast cancer. She was faced with the ravages of chemo and so terrified to loose her hair. I guess you could say that that was my "light bulb" moment. To me, she would be just a wonderful and beautiful and amazing with or without hair. So, almost exactly 3 years ago I shaved my head -- to support her, and to take a break from my own demon called "trich". Well, turns out I was relieved and at peace and happy with my new look. And then, believe it or not, just 1 year later I, too, was diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer! So, I had quite a battle but I had one thing going for me -- I wouldn't have the devastation of hair loss since mine was already gone!! Now, here I am a 2 year breast cancer survivor and Life is Good! I've chosen to keep my head shaved -- I tell everyone I have a hair loss condition and that after the chemo not all of my hair grew back. (True, I had caused permanent damage to my scalp so I have huge permanent bald spots.) I know for those who are trying to get past trich, they might not want to hear that I solved it by removing the angst, but this was my personal choice. By the grace of God, I'm happy, I'm healthy, I'm cancer free and I'm beautifully bald!! Good luck with your journey, Alexis. You are not alone, Please know you have a friend who understands and cares!! Hugs and best -- Kathy
Comment by Alexis on April 12, 2011 at 1:45pm
Hi I am still struggling with this condition after almost three and a half years. Anybody have any suggestion to help me stop pulling? Thanks, Alexis
Comment by Kathy on February 2, 2011 at 12:05am
... looks like I wrote so much that it cut me off!! Anyway, I just want you to know that you are not alone, Elizabeth!! I do understand and I know in my heart of hearts that no matter what, it could always be worse! Hold your head high and don't forget to smile!! You are still beautiful, with or without hair!! Hair doesn't define who we are and I know that anyone who cares about me won't care if I have hair or not. Funny thing, too. If you smile at the world and hold your head high, it helps others to understand that you really are just fine!!

So, best wishes and take good care of yourself, dear friend!!
Hugs and love, Kathy
Comment by Kathy on February 1, 2011 at 11:55pm
Oh my gosh, Elizabeth!! I wish I could see you and have this conversation face to face. If we could meet I would give you a huge hug, probably shed some tears and let you know that I totally understand everything you've said!! I discovered this site about 2 and a half years ago, and it was the first time in my life that I could "talk" about this bizarre condition that has haunted me for about 37 years!! I devoted many, many, many years to so much angst related to trich. And for many of those years I had no idea that this condition actually would be given a name -- that there are others who also struggle with these behaviors. You see, I spent much of my life thinking that I was nuts and that if I had any real discipline I could just stop this pulling. I was so terribly ashamed that I tried valiantly to hide this from everyone!! Of course, having my hair cut at a salon always meant someone learning about my "dirty little secret". I had many well intentioned stylists scold me and berate me. I had others who found about my habit who looked at me like I was crazy -- "why don't you just stop"!! If only they could know how desperately I wanted to stop. So, many years of therapy and a number of medications -- with the most brief and temporary positive results. And always, always a return to the pulling. I cried and felt ashamed. I was embarrassed and at times humiliated. After all, who pulls out their own hair!! I thought I was the only crazy person who would do something so bizarre.

It took me many, many years to finally come to terms with this. I finally, some how, began to understand that this was not my fault and that quite simply it is bigger than me. No matter what I did -- therapies and drugs and prayers and tears -- I finally accepted that this was not something that I could change. Life is strange, too. I remember reaching a decision that I no longer wanted Trich to have such an ugly grip on me and my life. In short, I decided that I was sick and tired of fighting this and allowing it to drag me down. And by the grace of God, I made peace with it. No, I didn't give up. Rather, I decided that whether or not I have hair, I'm still the same person and I want to be happy and carefree. I had no real plans at that time, but I decided that I'd just keep on keeping on. And so, the next chapter was quite surreal. Literally within weeks of making my profound shift in attitude, by best friend was diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer. Faced with the realities of imminent hair loss due to chemo, I decided to shave my head -- to support her and to end my battle. And can I tell you that this decision was the most freeing move and brought me more peace than I could ever have imagined!! Thankfully, my friend went on to conquer cancer and today is happy and healthy and beautiful. My realization, too, was that I would love her with or without hair. I couldn't begin to consider that anyone is any less of a significant person with or without hair!! WOW. And then, guess what!! A year later I was diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer, too. (No, I'm not making this up!) So, there I was facing surgery and chemo and radiation -- and I couldn't care less about my hair. Today, just a year after my diagnosis, I, too, am happy and healthy. And I don't have hair, but SO WHAT!!! I cannot have hair as it would grow back so patchy, with permanent bald spots. So, I have a crazy and fun collection of hats. I hold my head high, beautifully bald. I explain to others that I have a type of Alopecia that leaves me with huge bald spots. (I don't owe anyone the details of this hair loss.) But more than anything, Elizabeth, I've accepted this condition and refuse to allow it to drag me down. I am grateful for my health. I am grateful for my friends and family. I am grateful that even if I do have a unique look, I can still live life with a smile and with energy and with gratitude.

I know I've written so much here,
Comment by Elizabeth on February 1, 2011 at 11:01pm
Hello, friends. I have had trich for 30 years and am finally coming to terms with it. There are a lot of behaviors and emotional dynamics that have simply run their course (finally!) and I'm working to let all of the hardship associated with trich go.

To be very specific, I have struggled with intense self-loathing as a result of it. My scalp is permanently damaged and I will never again have the long blond hair I once had as a little girl. Over the years, I developed a very destructive logic about my pulling in that I was doing this to myself and was powerless to stop. I was destroying my appearance with my own hands! It didn't matter that I could not control it and that I wasn't the only one in the world with trich. I repeatedly told myself that I was weak and that I brought all of the negative social consequences on myself. This thinking resulted in a warped self-concept that took me to very dark places including self-imposed isolation and terrible mental cruelty.

I've recently discovered this site and am truly grateful for the Alopecian community for including us. Reading their posts and perspectives reinforced that I didn't ask for trich any more than they asked for Alopecia. Though our conditions manifest very differently, I've come to understand that the self-loathing which plagued me throughout my life was a terribly unfair thing to do to myself and I'm wondering if any of you have experienced and had to come to terms with this yourselves. In any event, I'd love to hear about your own journey with trich and how you've managed to stay positive (even if it's still a work in progress!). Look forward to hearing from you.
Comment by Kathy on June 17, 2010 at 7:00pm
Hi Emily! I shaved my head in October '08 and haven't allowed it to grow back. My hair pulling was so significant and for so many years that I actually have huge, permanently bald areas, so unless I wear a wig or hat, those bald patches would be extremely obvious. For me, being bald is a relief and something I now LOVE! It was, however, difficult knowing how to be "out" bald and to deal with the questions and concerns. I eventually decided to just go out there and be bald. I discovered that if I answered questions with a smile and calm, it put people at ease. I've told people that I have a type of Alopecia, and they seem to accept that. I know you're concerned about the reaction you'll receive from others, but once you reassure people that you are not sick and that you are fine being bald, you'll be amazed how quickly everyone will accept this. Don't be ashamed or embarrassed. Hold your head high and show everyone that you are beautiful!! Hugs and best wishes to you, Emily Kathryn!!
Comment by emily kathryn on June 16, 2010 at 5:55pm
i shaved my head three times in college to convince myself to stop pulling. it never helped—i just started pulling again when it grew in long enough. i've been thinking about shaving my head again lately, just so it can all grow back in the same length. the problem is, i'm a teacher and i really don't see myself with a shaved head as a teacher in this redneck town.


Comment by Kathy on May 30, 2010 at 12:34am
Hey Kayla!! I'm with you. I'm actually happier being bald, and shaving my head now that I've realized how freeing this can be. As I've allowed my hair to grow a bit at times, it's the glaring bald spots that make me most uncomfortable and anxious. I'd MUCH rather be bald and beautiful, than dealing with bald patches and be self conscious!! Who knew that it would be easier and a relief to just shave the rest of it off!! I'm Bald .. So What!! lol Hugs to you, girlfriend!! :)

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