A post submitted by an anonymous BFRB member.
For the past year now I have been struggling with what I believe to be trichotemnomania – the obsessive compulsive need / desire to cut or shave body hair. For me personally, it badly affects my head hair as it has caused me to cut my once shoulder length hair to hair that’s now less than a few cm from the scalp in some areas, and I also have tendencies to shave or remove any body or facial hair. However as a lesser known BFRB, I have found it incredibly hard to find any information about it or get a firm diagnosis from any doctors or therapists.
In many ways, trichotemnomania has badly knocked by self confidence and created tension from those who don’t fully understand what it is, even I’m not fully aware of why it started or what my compulsions are driven by as there is so little information to access, and no one has heard of it. As a result I don’t receive much sympathy and many people like to point out that I have weird looking hair or ask me why I have bald or uneven patches in certain areas. I have tried many times to control the urge to cut my hair and let it grow, but any attempts I’ve tried seem to fail. For now I am trying to forgive myself and be kind to myself when I cut my hair down to the scalp or relapse, I only wish that people would take trichotemnomania more seriously and that there was more to help the people who have it.
If anyone feels that they are going through the same thing then I would like to say that you’re not alone even if it feels that way, and we should use our voices to educate others so trichotemnomania can become a more recognized condition!