Is Trichotillomania Caused By Childhood Trauma?
Although experts can’t pin point the cause of Trichotillomania, I can definitely see where my stems from.
Don’t read this post if you’re sensitive to issues of abuse and abandonment..
I did not change any of the names in this story.
Does My Trichotillomania Stem From Abandonment?
Ever since I was a little kid I have lived with a lot of insecurities.
My dad left my mom when I was very young.
I can actually remember my mom getting in a fight with his toe headed mistress at the time.
I can also remember how that ripped my mother apart, so much so it’s really one of the only times I remember my mom crying, a lot.
Does My Trichotillomania Stem From Sexual Abuse as a Child?
My mom had to work lots of jobs to support us and I remember having to live in lots of different places.
One of those places we lived was with my Uncle Roger and his man-wife Raven (a transvestite, yes you read that right) and my cousin, Fred.
I can remember as young as 4 or 5 years old my cousin sexual abusing me in my uncles home.
I was so young I had no idea what to say or do and I can remember being frozen in time STILL to this day.
I never told anyone until much, much, later in life because I was so little and I almost felt guilt.
My uncle at the time was letting us live there and I can’t remember seeing much of my mom.
It wasn’t that she wasn’t there, but my memory of her being there is very vague.
I regret to this day not telling someone sooner about what happened because Fred later went on to abuse more children in adulthood.
THAT memory stuck with me for a long time.
I can remember just feeling worthless and ugly and growing up feeling that to this day.
I hated my dad for the longest time because I always thought, had he not left my mom, my mom wouldn’t have been forced to take care of me on her own and live in these horrible places with people who treated me like this.
It wasn’t just Fred.
Sick, twisted men seemed to be a genetic trait….
I can remember staying summers with my grandma and grandpa in Arizona and my grandpa would touch the other girls in ways that was noticeable.
I knew he was a child molester because my mom told me he raped her when she was a child. It’s one of the reasons my married so young she said, to get away from my grandpa.
I can remember my cousin telling me that “grandpa held a gun to her and made her do things.”
Now for some reason, grandpa really liked me, more than the others I believe, because he never did the mean things to me that he did to the other girls.
I was so scared of him but at the same time, he made me feel immune to the abuse as long as I continued to be a good girl who kept her mouth shut.
I remember how much relief I had at his funeral.
I was so young when all these sorts of things were happening that I didn’t even know how to process them.
I think about my beautiful children now and their innocence and it brings me to tears.
I pray over my kids, I thank God that they are loved and protected…
God stopped the cycle of abuse.
I’m an Overachiever Out Of Insecurity!
My whole life I have striven for excellence.
From the youngest I can possibly remember..
I wanted the approval of others so badly because of all the insecurities I have.
I would bury down my real feelings and put on my best performance in hopes that everyone would always like me.
I grew into my teens and the insecurities only grew stronger and my need to out perform others did too.
I had this constant chip on my shoulder to not be the lowest… probably because deep down I felt I belonged at the last place and lowest level.
Pulling my hair at the time really seemed like the least of my issues.
I mean I was so insecure I became bulimic, I even started losing teeth.
I would pull my hair, suck my thumb, bite my nails and puke up my food – you name it – I was dealing with it secretly.
I can remember going on medication for it and that only made stuff worse.
The medication just sent me into suicidal thoughts, night sweats and all sorts of evil.
To this day, I don’t agree with Big Pharma’s answer to anxiety and depression.
That was just a mask, anxiety is just the a branch off of so many insecurities that really need to be dealt with, not swept over with a couple pills.
It was like an exorcism trying to get off anti-anxiety meds, so now I avoid them at all costs.
It wasn’t until I came to know the Lord, I mean seriously handed my life over to Him that I was able to get off the anxiety medications.
I remember saying to God, “I wanna know You are real, so I’m putting down these drugs and I’m trusting You.”
That was a battle but I made it, exactly 7 days after saying that it was like I had really been given new life.
I came out of an anti-anxiety/depression fog that was just AMAZING!
To this day I remember that day so clearly because it was like heaven opened up over me and I knew, I knew God was real.
You can’t put those things into words, but He saved me from myself.
Fast Forward to Now!
I still battle the hair pulling, the anxiety but I’m so much closer than I ever was to overcoming this too.
I can see where God is working through me over the years on each insecurity, one by one.
He’s restored so much to me over the years by just trusting Him.
I know that overcoming Trichotillomania will also be a testimony one day to His goodness.
He always gives me the desires of my heart, since the day I put those meds down and told Him I trust Him to get me through this life.
Even the little, tiny details, He cares about.
I can remember when I was going to buy my house, something I never thought I could do (but He made a way by His grace) and I wanted a gray house (because where I live they all seem to be brown), I wanted a loft and a balcony, an open floor plan, 4 bedrooms, etc… – I had this crazy long wish list that you just don’t see in one house for the tiny budget that I had…
But by golly, God gave me all of it and through in a pool too!
So Trichotillomania, seriously doesn’t stand chance, God is making a way!
I still have plenty of insecurities, but I know He’s going to help me pluck up the root cause of those too!
God didn’t want these things to happen to me, but I know as I continue to trust Him, He’s going to make sure it all turns out for my good. Rom 8:28
Related: What Causes Trichotillomania?
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