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Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Seeking hair pullers for documentary!


I've been chatting to a lady who works in television. She's looking for women with trichotillomania who are single and find relationships difficult due to their hair pulling. I'm in a relationship so I'm not really what she's looking for but I said I'd spread the word. Anything that raises awareness has to be a good thing, right? 

Here's what she said to me:

"The new documentary series is for The Discovery Network and will follow people who feel that their medical condition affects their love life in some way. It might not apply to you and/or you may already have a partner! But if you're single and you feel that having Trichotillomania can make dating and new relationships tricky, then you would be an ideal contributor for this heart-warming documentary series.

When it comes to meeting people, we all have things that we may not choose to tell somebody straight away, make public on our social networking pages or state on our online dating profile. The series will look at how much we reveal about ourselves to potential partners when dating or at the start of a relationship and how it can be trickier for those with medical conditions. Throughout the series, our contributors will be raising awareness about their conditions and documenting how these conditions impact on their daily lives. We want to give a respectful insight into a variety of medical conditions, to both educate our viewers and at the same inspire others who may be in the same situation.

If you are single and potentially interested in taking part in the series or would like to know more, then I would love to talk to you about the programme. If after having a chat you feel it’s not for you, that is absolutely fine and there is no obligation to be involved." 

It seems like a great idea to me, I hope someone comes forward to take part. I'll put her contact details at the bottom of this post. Break a leg!


Rhianwen Davies| Assistant Producer
The Heal's Building | 8 Alfred Mews | W1T 7AA

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Mirror.


I'm growing my hair. Bald patches or not, I am not shaving it again. It doesn't work. As soon as your hair grows in at all, the cycle starts all over again. I've been trying for nearly five years. It's time to move on.

My hair is longer than it's been for ages. It's growing down, rather than up and out. And it's the strangest thing but I looked in the mirror last night and I recognized myself. As mad as it sounds, I've not been able to identify with the person looking back at me for such a long time. Years and years.

I stared into the mirror and I couldn't stop smiling. She's in there, somewhere, that girl I used to be. She can come back.

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Official BFRB Awareness Ribbon!

It has finally happened! There is now an official awareness ribbon for body focussed repetitive behaviours. And it's green, you can't get much better than that. I urge you all to go to http://store.trich.org/product_p/official-bfrb-awareness-ribbon.htm and buy one... or ten... or twenty! Wear them with pride, whether you're a sufferer or a supporter. Let the world know.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Lies.

I have a confession to make.

I have a scar under my left eyebrow, have done for a long time. I've always told people that a man hit me with a ring on. It's a believable story because of the nasty things he really did do but it isn't the truth. The truth is that I plucked my eyebrows so much that I cut myself with the tweezers. And then kept going.

I'm telling you this now because I'm sick of lying. I'm tired of making excuses and trying to cover up my behaviour. I did it to myself and I was ashamed. But I'm not now. Chances are, if you have someone in your life with a body-focused repetitive disorder, you are being lied to. None of us want to admit to what we've done to ourselves. Lying becomes a daily occurrence.

Please don't take it personally.

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Playing with dolls.



It's taken much longer than it should have done, with money and time issues, but I've finally got a True Hope doll to call my own! I chose Yasmin from the Bratz version. Isn't she gorgeous? I've been carrying her around with me like a little kid might.

I'm very proud to have been a part of getting these dolls made, even if only a tiny part. Everyone's voice counts. Now children suffering with hair loss can have a doll like them - beauiful and bald, with no need to rip out their Barbie's hair.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Is it self harm?




It's been a busy year so far, I can only apologise for my lack of blog entries.

I wanted to talk a bit about trichotillomania/dermatillomania/onychophagia and self harm. There's a lot of debate about whether or not these behaviours should be put in the same category as cutting, burning, head banging etc.

I personally don't think so. While the acts may sometimes hurt and can cause long term damage, they're not being done in order to cause pain - pain is just an unfortunate side effect. The infections, the sting, the scars that can be left behind... they're not the goal. The goal is to get rid of imperfections. It's a misguided attempt at self improvement, if anything. They're similar but not the same. They just follow the same cycle.

That being said, I think we have a lot in common with those who self harm. We feel a lot of the same feelings and we can understand and help one another. Some of us might even have both problems.

I'd love to hear your opinions on this debate. Feel free to get in touch through the comments section or on Twitter @xcattehx and let me know your ideas on the subject.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

The bright side.


There are a few good things about having trichotillomania.
  • I'm an expert with a pair of tweezers. Yes, I can get that splinter out for you. No problem at all.
  • After a long and tiring day, you can almost guarantee that someone will think you're sick and offer you a seat on the bus/train/whatever public transport you happen to be using. Maybe it's wrong to take advantage of this but come on, admit it. You would.
  • My mum is in a wheelchair. It seriously confuses people to see me pushing her around in my headscarf. Their faces are perfect. 'Tis amusing.
You can either laugh or you can cry. I try my best to laugh.


Sunday, 6 January 2013

Enter 2013

Hey guys, I hope you all had a great Christmas and New Year! Sorry for posting so late but I've had a pretty busy time of it. The usual festive family visits but that's not the half of it. In the first two days of 2013, two members of my family were hospitalised. Surprisingly, not to get their stomachs pumped. I hope it's "onwards and upwards" from here, rather than "start as you mean to go on"...

Anyway, the point of this post is to show off my new trich tricks. Wotutu gives the best Christmas presents.


How awesome is this new wig? It's slightly darker than my natural colour but I think it's fabulous. The fringe doesn't even stab me in the eyes! Result. It's much more realistic than the cheap costume wig I bought myself. I don't get nearly so many people staring at me. I have noticed myself trying to pull from it but it doesn't feel right so, hopefully, that'll stop. I just love it.


I've wanted a Tangle for what feels like forever. It really helps me to keep my hands busy. I'd recommend them to anyone who needs to stay distracted. They're good for hair pullers, nail biters, skin pickers, smokers and so many other people. They come in every colour combination imaginable. I think you can even get metal ones. Keep an eye out for them, they're worth trying.

That's all for now but I hope this year is a good one for all of you. Keep fighting those urges. x

Friday, 7 December 2012

Magic Mirror


I hate mirrors. I can lose hours in front of them. Pull, pluck, pick and preen. Just five more minutes. I just need to even these lashes out. I'll just make these brows match. Because baldness is fine and dandy as long as it's symmetrical, obviously. Before you know it, you've been standing in the bathroom all night.

It's not just mirrors, either, it's any reflective surface. I'm drawn to shiny things like a magpie. I dread to think what people must say about it. The thing is, it's only the hair. I don't think I'm a vain person. I don't wear make up, I don't dress myself up like a doll or strut around like I own the place. It's only the hair. I'm obsessed with it.

Is it still vanity if you're making yourself look worse, instead of better? Sometimes I wonder if I'm unknowingly doing it on purpose. A punishment for something I can't remember.

I think I will die in front of a mirror.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Self-Pity



Look at that. Look at how long my hair used to be. Where did it go? Ripped out and dropped on the floor, that's where. I'm sick of it. I want my hair back.

Sorry for being so quiet recently. I had been doing pretty well and didn't have much to say on the subject. That's the worst part of this disorder, I think. It is so cruel. You think you are getting better, you think that you might be past the worst of it and maybe you can start growing your hair back and then BAM! Along comes a hair fit and you undo all of your hard work.

My arms and fingers ache. My scalp is burning. I've been at it for hours now. My mind is screaming at me to stop and I can't. I just can't. It's times like this that I wish I was religious. It'd be much easier to blame the devil. Someone call the minister! Get me an exorcism, get this monster out of my head!

But no. It's me, it's my own stupid fault.

People tell me to stop feeling sorry for myself. Let me feel what I'm feeling. Would you have me be happy about this? Enjoy what I'm doing? There is nothing wrong with self-pity from time to time.