Now, i cant really remember my life before the age of 6 years old, thats when my 2 twin bothers were born, which many people find rather strange in itself but there you go, but what i do remember from being that age is always feeling un happy with my appearence, mainly my weight. I have an 8 year old son now, and when i look at him i think to myself how severe it would be for him to feel the same way as i did at his age and younger. conclusion........ My alopecia did not cause my eating disorder.
When i was around 10 years old, i begin to hate my nose and my teeth, now i dont mean i just disliked them i mean i loathed them, to the point where if i smiled or laughed my hand would always be covering my mouth to hide my teeth. I still feel this way about my nose and teeth to this very day, the hand always covers my mouth if i smile or laugh. Conclusion...... My alopecia did not cause my Bdd.
Like i said earlier, when i was 12 years old i lost all my hair, eyebrows, eyelashes and body hair. Alopecia universalis was the diagnoisis. I had great support from my dad, who i never ever saw as being upset about my alopecia, he always advised me to do a few things when i was feeling down or scared. Tactics he called them, but i was so upset at that age i took no notie of his "tactics" untill i was around 17 years old. At 17 years old for some reason i felt i was strong enough to try and come to terms with my alopecia so my dads "tactics" started being used. I have listed below the things he told me to do, and they do help you gain back your confidence and come to terms with hair loss. I hope they can help other people reading this blog too
- You are who you are - Not the best quote when your in a deep and dark place about your hair loss, but non the less a very important fact that you should never lose sight of.
- Your still you - Although you are losing your hair (or have lost your hair) you are still the same person inside. Hair does not make an individual kinder, richer, smarter or more compasionate.
- Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - I used to hate it when my dad said this! Its true though.... its very easy to hide yourself away because you believe that no one will ever love you because you have no hair, this is simply not true. People fall in love with the person, not the hair do, i fact i have proved to myself over the years due to the fact that i never had any trouble finding a fella!
- Pretend your not bothered - Its a sad fact but unfourtantly there are a few individuals out there that are not very nice people. You know the kind, the work place bully, the idiot relative, or the jelous so called friend that you suddenly realise is not a freind at all. These type of people look for the weaknesses in every person they meet, and once they know it they target that weakness. Now, the trick with handling people like this is to simply pretend your not bothered, when they make a comment about your hair loss, wig or headscarf just look them straight in the eye and tell them it does not upset you in the slightest, its only hair. They wont taget you anymore. You will also meet people throughout your life that are the kindest of people but are just genuinly interested in your hair loss, they may ask youlots of question and they will always say "you dont mind me asking do you?" Use the same tactic on them, this wont stop them asking question but it will build your confidence on how to handle the situation.
- Get some new hair - If you want to that is. Just because you have lost your hair does not automatically mean you need a wig. Bandanas, headscarfs and hats can look equally as beautiful and flattering. If you do want a nice wig, do your research and go for whatever you feel most comfortable with.
- See yourself hairless - For years i wore wigs when i was younger and refused to look at my self in any mirror without my wig on, this is not good and will make you feel worse in the end, its not constructive behaivour at all. Take off your hat and put a full face of make up on, powder your face with sunshine and look in that mirror! Your gorgeous! Do this at least once a week, i promise you will soon start seeing that beautiful person that everyone is already telling you you are.
- Dont hide alopecia from your kids - I have always been open and honest about my alopecia with my 2 children, 3 step kids and 2 extended step kids (its complicated lol) and every single one of them has a good understanding of alopecia and peoples feelings towards hairloss. Even my 2 year old daughter uderstands that mummy had poorly hair that fell out and i can take my new hair off every night for bed, she also understands that her hair will not come off for bed! My 8 year old son has adhd and autism and he understands too. The result.... no sneaking around the kinds and kids that will grow up with a good understanding of alopecia and peoples feelings.
I hope this Blog will help anyone that reads it, i just want to point out that i am not a counceller or anything like that, just a sufferer myself and this worked for me so hopefully it will help you a little too. All i have to do now is have a little more confidence in my nose and teeth! I might give my dad a call and see what he recommends!