Through Tears I Write My Hair Loss Struggles

by admin on June 8, 2008

As most of you have probably already noticed I haven’t written very much lately. I’ve just been sort of trying to refocus my energy to get through this really really tough time. As I write I have to pause as I cannot see the screen though all my tears that keep falling like water out of a facet. I cannot be certain as to why I am going through another very bad shed, I should know by now that I probably should just stop asking why and move on.

For the most part I get through my day, but with a sadness and awareness each time I touch my head or see my reflection. I avoid all mirrors even the ones in grocery stores. I run past store windows for fear I’ll catch that glimpse that will ruin my day. That is how I’ve worked to be able to main a quasi productive day and to live my life… avoid my reflection, turn off the bathroom lights before entering, wear my hair up in a ponytail type bun so that I do not feel the lack of hair I have and to avoid having to be reminded every second of the day that I’m losing my hair as another strand falls on my arm, shoulders or back.

I just took a shower and washed my hair, it pretty much is dried already by the time I take a comb to it, thats how thin it is now. I comb through, saying any words of comfort to myself, a prayer, the alphabet, anything to keep myself busy while I get through the toughest part of my day. The hair falls out so easy like gobs of spaghetti. I consider taking the razor to my head right then and there and just being done with it, but I decide against it for the moment. I’m usually much stronger than this when dealing with my hair but I’ve felt so sad and weak lately. I remind myself it is only hair, and if this is the worst thing that ever happens to me then I probably should consider myself lucky. I feel so sad right now, a heaviness that just sits on me. It’s 4:35pm do you think it is too early for a glass of wine? :) I think not.

P.S. Forgive me if you’ve written to me and I have not answered yet, I will definitely get back to you. I’m just trying to piece myself back together right now.

{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Mer June 8, 2008 at 6:16 pm

I write this and all I want to do is hug you, and i am so not a “huggy” person. Last year I had that day, that awful day that so many women who have massive shedding have, where you stand there with the razor ready to shave it all off. I spent an hour in my bathroom, clippers in hand, crying and thinking to myself “I’ll look just like Demi Moore or Natalie Portman, it will be cute, right? It will end all my suffering, and I can just be done with this”. In the end I realized that looking at a head I shaved myself would remind me that I gave up and I thought that would hurt emotionally even more.

It is just as hard sometimes to consider yourself lucky, because it doesn’t make the pain and frustration go away. Sometimes it is just another thing you say that doesn’t make you feel any better. Your pain is real and hurts and sometimes nothing will make you feel better. Those days are sometimes frequent and unbearable, but you survive them because better days do come. I just spent more then a year living through shedding hell, watching the one things I held most precious to me fall out in clumps and stop up my drains. Months and months were spent seeing doctors, trying different shampoos, foams, pills and serums. At my darkest, I couldn’t wash my hair for almost two weeks because I couldn’t take the pain of watching the hair end up everywhere in that shower. Slowly my hair is trying to make a come back and I am still working through the emotional damage of the experience.

A few times a month I have to go to Dana Faber in Boston and see the women, sometimes a whole floor full, getting their chemo treatments and I feel guilty for thinking I had it bad. The other day I sat next to a 45 year old mother of two who was waiting for her treatment and she commented that she loved the color of my hair. I got quiet and looked embarassed and she asked if she had said something wrong. I told her a very abbreviated version of my hair trauma and then told her I felt stupid that I ever felt bad about what was happening to me. She said the truest thing I have heard in a long time – “Your hair loss is the worst because it happened to you. Don’t let anyone tell you that it isn’t a big deal, because to you it matters and it will change you forever, because it is your battle”.
Ok this is the longest comment ever, but I was so pained to read your post and I wanted to write something. I hope your days get better and I send you much love. Take care of you and remember we are all here for you.

~ Mer

Ally June 8, 2008 at 7:13 pm

Tears are running down my face while I read your post. I can only say I truly feel your pain. My husband cut my long hair short a few weeks ago, because it was so thin. I did not want to go to a hairdresser, because I did not want to hear: “my gosh your hair is so thin, you got some balding spots”. I can not say anything to make you feel better, but one thing is for sure, at least you are not alone. Not that I wish this pain on anyone else. Unfortunately it is reality. Now I am going to have a glass of wine as well. Who cares what time it is. “laughter”

PS. Maybe we should all get together for lunch…”laughter”

grammie June 9, 2008 at 7:26 am

I wish I could hug you and make it all better. I wish I had the magic words that would suddenly help you to shift your perspective and get you out of the place you’re in right now. I’m sorry you are hurting so much. I have had a lifelong battle with depression/panic attacks and am deeply acquainted with the heaviness of which you speak. I wanted to share a couple of things I have found useful in dealing with those terrible times. I don’t know where you stand on spiritual practices, but if they are not offensive to you, I have found the following to actually be of some help: praying out loud for someone else. Doing that has helped pull me out of intense negative emotion, although it was really hard to keep focused on the other person…but persisting in it pulled me out of some very bad emotional places.

Another thing I have found really helpful is making it a point to list or note the things I am grateful for every day and give thanks out loud for them (maybe it would be just as helpful to list them…I think it is whatever best helps you focus on and enter into the feeling of gratitude…so remembering/imagining people and places and times you are grateful for in the most vivid way would be more helpful than just making a list off the top of your head).

Also, immersing myself in music and singing/dancing along has been extremely helpful. Being from a Christian background, I chose praise and worship music to listen to/sing along with, but I think it would work with any kind of music that you find upbeat and joyful and can throw yourself into. I sometimes put on headphones and dance along with the music to focus more intensely. Maybe it fools the brain or maybe it jolts the brain out of whatever negative feedback loop it gets stuck in. It sounds pollyanna-ish but these things have helped get me out of some really bad emotional prisons I have found myself in from time to time.

In my experience there was some struggle (sometimes quite intense) experienced in forcing my attention away from whatever was tormenting me and keeping my attention on what I had chosen to do (the prayer, the singing/dancing, or the gratitude exercise) — I found it really hard to stay on task when in the throes of strong emotion– doing the exercises out loud with my full attention helped me to stay focused and made them much more effective. Also, I found that they became more effective the longer I practiced them. I am not sure why it works…it may be that the emotional states evoked by these practices are simply incompatible with the negative emotional states we are trying to get out of.

It has been really helpful to me to do uncensored writing when I am really upset…just keep writing whatever comes to mind without even looking at it for 15 minutes or so. It seems to help a lot just getting stuff out of my head and onto paper. For some reason, I can put things in perspective better if I have it out of my head and on paper…don’t know why…and the writing also brings things to consciousness that I didn’t realize were bothering me. Anyway the whole process can sometimes bring amazing emotional relief.

I also try to remember a saying by David Burns, M. D. (paraphrased) “Depression is over-thinking and under doing.” It may not apply to you but I have found it very helpful so I am including it. And one last thing I have found useful is setting a timer for 5 minutes (or ten or whatever you decide) and during that time you can feel as bad as you want — scream, yell, bite the sofa cushions — whatever you feel like doing. But after the timer goes off, it is on to other things and no more thinking about the problem until tomorrow.

In no way am I in any way suggesting that it is not appropriate to feel how you feel in your situation. The way I think about it is that life will always hand me stuff to feel terrible about and I can’t change that but I refuse to suffer any more than is absolutely necessary… emotional suffering doesn’t help me deal more effectively with any situation I have ever found myself in (it makes me less effective, in fact) and it steals my ability to appreciate and enjoy all the other things in my life that I could be enjoying. I don’t want to let anyone or any thing steal one more minute of my life. Anyway, they aren’t quick fixes but they are the best I have found and I hope you will find something you can use. It has helped me to be reminded of these tools.

I hope I wasn’t presumptuous in sharing these things I have found useful. I just hated to see you so down and hoped I might have something you could use to pull you out of the pit. It made me angry on your behalf to see you suffering and I hope you will decide to get militant with those feelings of depression and that when you catch a glimpse in the mirror that you find upsetting you will say to yourself, “The h*ll with that! I refuse to feel bad about my hair today! I am damn well going to enjoy every second of my life and nothing is going to stop me. I am not my hair! I am an incredible human being (you are!) and I refuse to diminish my worth by focusing on something as insignificant as hair! Anyone who loves me isn’t going to care how my hair looks and anyone who cares how my hair looks isn’t worth caring about.” If I have overstepped, please feel free to delete my post but I wanted to help you so much.

Rachael Jean Harper June 9, 2008 at 10:54 am

Hi Hon. So sorry to know that you are in the pits with this challange that us beautiful women are having. It is OK to go there because it is real, and happening to you. I had a friend with breast cancer, tell a friend of mine (that is also losing her hair) that losing her hair was harder than dealing with breast cancer. It is hard, no matter how possitive we try to be, and somedays are harder than others. Just know that good days will come around again soon, and know that we are here to share with you in our frustrations and anxioties about this.

As you know, I am handling my hair loss through nutrition. As a nutritional therapist, I know that taking hormones interferes with the hypothalymus,Pituatary feed back loop, so your own hormones cannot complete their natural cycle and this can lead to estrogen dominance, for example, for women that are taking estrogen, and even, example, estrogen resistence, side effec of single hormone replacement therapy.

If we are nutritionally out of balance, we can experience hair loss, as well as a myraid of other reasons, but getting in balance gives our bodies a chance to regenerate. As a person into nutrition, I feel doubly awful about my thinning hair. I have discovered that I was iodine defecient and had low thyroid, even though the blood work said that I am not. I was also zinc deficient. These are important minerials for hair, though they all are and need to be in balance. I needed more fatty acids, as in fish oils, coconut oils, organic butter, flax, the omega 3’s and 6’s. These help in the regulation of steriod hormones which are derived from good quality fats and unrefined complex carbs. I have been paying much better attention to my own post menopausal needs and my unique body individuality and no longer looking for answeres where they don’t know them (ie medical profession), not all, but lots), and giving my body a chance to recover its own destiny. It is working. The hair loss had dramatically slowed down, and just in the nick of time. Just when I was making plans for the next step, a wig.

I also tried Edgar Casey products. Strange, but that is also when the massive shedding stopped. He got all of his formulas in trance. I used the crude oil one and man, what a smell, and the pinescented oil remover, and shampoo. He also had an endocrine formula with iodine and liver, etc. I believe that it is formula 636, or something like that. My friend uses that one and it helped her out a lot with hair loss.

It is empowering to take controll over your own body and feed it what it needs to repair its self. It will also help with health and vitality.

Anyhow, my dear, I just want to give you another perspective, something other than a dead end feeling. I have been there, too. I would brush my hain in the dark, and only once a week. I learned to brush it before shower, so that the wet hair would not come out as fast and fill the bottom of my shower. I agonized over the thinning and bald spots. All of it. Not all of the spots are coming back fully, but my hair line is, so I am very grateful.

Check out http://www.westonaprice.com. It is an educational site about how to eat the way we are suppose to, like our ancestors did. Eat the way nature made it, not man. Man makes low fat milk, it’s is bad for you. Drink it whole, organic, and perferable raw. Eat the organic meat with the fat, if our creator wanted you to eat low fat, he/she would have made the cows and other creatures lowfat, eat whole grains,they have the vitamines and minerials in the hulls. Eat whole foods, not processed. I could go on and on, but go to that site and get educated. Get ready to experience the truth about foods and not the contradictions of the profit making food giants. A really great book and cookbook as well is by Sally Fallon, pres of the Weston Price Foundation. It is called Nourishing Traditions, and is worth its weight in gold.

You are soooo wonderful, Y, and you have helped us all soooo much. I cried many tears of relief when I found this site. I felt so alone and so not understood. Because of you, and the other women that have the courage to tell their stories, I am able to feel strong, and supported. I just love you for lending a kind word so many times when I was in my darkest, loneliest days. It was because of you that I no longer felt alone, because you cared enough to create this community for us all, and we are here for you, always, Great Big Bear Hugs and Love to you, Dear One, Rachael Jean PS If I can help you to understand more about nutrition and hair loss, I am here for you.

Ellie June 9, 2008 at 12:21 pm

As I read your post I was thankful, I just pulled out of a slump that seemed to last forever! I was wondering and scared I would never pull out of the pit. Our femenitiy as been cut to the core. A trial to say the least. Yes other people suffer more than we do, but this does not dimminsh our pain, our suffering, our trials. I too feel as you feel. It is not like something you suffer and get over. It is a loss that will stay with us the remainder of our lives here. Simple things made extremely difficult to do without hair. It is not like some kind of problem we can hide under clothing. When we are out people notice our faces first and our hair can make us look better or worse, hence the bad hair day which makes us feel like crap.Everyday for me is a bad hair day. No matter what i do to make myself look and feel better. My hair is thinning and my scalp is showing. No way can I hide that, even if i put my hair up, I am not free to sit and move the way I wish for fear of my bald spots showing. I feel trapped, not free in my own body. Be kind and gentle to yourself, it is okay to feel sad, I cry everyday, this is our walk. We all understand. I wish i could change what we are all going through. I do not know why this is happening to us, but I do know we will all survive this as well. You are stronger than you give yourself credit for, look at all you have accomplished and done for women throughout the world. I pray for all of us everyday. In our unity there is strength to carry on one day at a time, some days one minute at a time. Peace and love, Ellie

P.S. My spelling sucks.

jann June 10, 2008 at 6:19 pm

my hair loss has devastated me also. Your post spoke directy to me. I’m like you, my hair dries in an instant. I’m on spiro, hormones, Rogaine. But everything is wrong. I have fibroids. To get the hormones up to where it helps hair loss, I’m now having massive bleeding. Maybe spiro is causing it too. But the spiro took away the heavy oiliness with my hair, and gave me hope maybe in a few months I could halt this. I look at old photos and I was so pretty and now I’ve lost all hope. Even now, I don’t have energy to move forward with problems, which is
to have hysterectomy, up hormones according to Dr. Redmond’s book to halt hair loss and grow, and be able to stay on spiro. I don’t have children, so every day I think I don’t want to live anymore and some day I won’t. I cry everyday and I’m hopeless and sad. Everything I should be taking I’ve had to change because of continual bleeding for weeks. But weird thing is my gyno changed me off Vivelle dot to evamist, probably way too low for hair, to see if bleeding would stop and my mind cleared and made appointment to talk about hysterectomy. obviously vivelle dot numbed me and worsened my depression. But to go out of the house I have to use Toppik. Even worse after noticeable drastic hair loss in November, which I call D day, in January contracted scalp folliculitis. No amount of antibiotics is taking care of it. Each day is to be endured for me, but at least now that I’m on this Evamist, I made more appointments. But the sadness is overwhelming. I haven’t had my hair cut in six months since this all worsened. Except finally I went month ago to cheap hair cuttery place when no one was there and asked for a dry cut on ends. It’s too humiliating. I feel every ounce of your pain. I’m so sorry for you and me and everyone who is going through this, because anyone in your life who isn’t will never understand.

lisa1969 June 12, 2008 at 8:10 pm

I wish we had the power to stop this for each other. Like you, I’ve thought about cutting off what pathetic, atrophied strands of hair are left dangling on my head. It would give me control over something I have no control of, despite years of trying. It’s hard to think about anything else when you constantly see evidence of what you are losing. A bit of me grieves every time more hairs come out. I hope you get to a better place soon. I know I’m tired of living like this and tired of the control I have allowed this to have over me. Thank you so much for being there for us and for creating this support system; you’re an angel.

Rebecca June 14, 2008 at 8:41 am

I cried when I read this as well. I truly feel for your loss. I am going through a grieving process as well right now. I am especially sad as I just got out of the shower and pulled another blob of hair out of the drain. A few blobs actually since I try to brush loose hairs off before getting in the shower, then I have to clean the drain a few times. In April of 2007, I was diagnosed with Alopecia Areata 2 months before my wedding. I used the usual steroid cream and luckily the hair grew back. I thought it was all behind me until this April when I found another spot in the same area around the base of my skull only this time it kept getting larger with bumps around it and it itched like crazy. My doctor still thinks it is AA and gave me steroid injections then the following Monday I found another spot and today one more all on top of my head.

I think one of the worst parts about this is trying to get the doctor to listen to me. I convinced him to do a biopsy of the area and have a dermatologist appointment on Monday. However, I feel I am loosing faith in what doctors will do for me. Now I am loosing hair all over my head, not just in patches. I feel like screaming but no one will listen. I’m tired of the comment “well at least it is where no one can see it” like a new spot won’t pop up tomorrow where everyone can see it. I feel aweful that I can’t wash my hair everyday, but no matter what kind of happy front I put on throughout the day, I cry after the shower. Last week I had my mom cut my hair short because I couldn’t deal with all these long hairs on everything except for my head. Plus, I felt I was losing more hair just trying to come it out.

My husband is great. He is bald and shaves his head because of his hair loss. But no matter how much he says he understands I know that he can’t possibly understand what it is like for a woman to loose precious hair. Nobody looks twice a man when he is bald. I couldn’t say the same for women.

I’m sorry if this is long winded. I just related to everything you are saying. I can talk to family and they are supportive but they don’t understand. My dad has scloroderma so I feel guilty for crying about this as well, but I feel anybody going through this would have the same reaction. I hope we can all find strength in this struggle because it is feeling like it is too much right now.

Elizabeth June 18, 2008 at 4:42 am

Hi there. I am so sorry you are going through what you are. I have been there and know its terrible. I thought I would share with you what’s helped me.
1. Working on getting my body in tip top shape. I work out a lot but my body is still a work in progress. Try to make sure the inflammation in your body is low. Doctors can order a test for C-reactive protein to check this. Green tea may help. I take a baby aspirin a day and my doctor ok’d this. Weight lifting is also doing wonders for my body, really toning me up. I follow the weight lifting plan in the book “Body for Life”.
2. Remember that doctors are working on gene therapy for hair loss. It may only be a few years away. It helps me to have hope.
3. The book, “Solutions to Women’s Hair Thinning & Loss”. Its intended for hair replacement specialists. But it was nice to read about the many MANY options for women with our problem.
4. Remember this is NOT YOUR FAULT!!!! Part of the reason this is so devastating is our fucked up society places such a crushing burden on us to look perfect. Getting mad about it makes me feel more powerful. :)
5. Consider seeing a psychologist and getting on antidepressants. Your health insurance should cover it.
6. I bought a bunch of baseball hats and cute matching workout clothes so if my hair turns out bad I can just “disguise” myself as a sporty girl. I’m a stay at home mom so I can wear this every day if I need to.
7. Buy a wig. Visit a wig salon. The people there are so nice because they have either gone through it themselves or work with people every day going through it. I instantly felt prettier when they put the wig on my head. I’m not at the point of wearing it in public yet but I like owning it. I feel like I have a safety net, a plan for the day when I do need it.
8. Refuse to shrink from life. Shrinking from life (not going to things, staying home all the time) will only deepen your depression. Be brave. I’m trying to be.

Well, I hope I didn’t give the impression that I’m perfect and I’ve got this problem perfectly under control or anything. This is just stuff that I’m currently trying and that seems to be helping. God bless you and hang in there!

Lynnie June 21, 2008 at 10:40 pm

To me, hair loss is not my identity nor is my beauty measured by it. Hair loss is a circumstance–I try not to give it more power than that (somedays, like you, I am a puddle of tears!). Not only have I struggled with Alopecia but for many years I lived with an abusive, controlling and mean spirited person who used my hair loss as a means to degrade me and attempt to break my spirit. Seriously, if I ever did anything to improve my appearance, the man took credit for it–or made it so he was the only one who could “save” me by controlling the money or by assuming that I lived only by the worth he put on me.

After escaping abuse, for the first time, I could really look in a mirror and see me. Not see the woman I trying to survive a difficult situation by appeasing and pretending. ME. I began to appreciate my life, even my struggles because I gained a new perspective of FREEDOM. In so many ways, I gained freedom after escaping abuse. I began to enjoy life for the first time and found a way to be grateful every day. I found that being optimistic is a strength for me–rather than being a victim, I see myself as blessed.
This is what I am thankful about my hair loss:
* I can try on new styles and have fun inventing a new look
* I have a rare beauty that is not measured by any standard other than my own
* Hair loss caused me to evaluated my own opinions, judgements and views of the world more critically. I am more sensitive in how I speak to others. More compassionate. And have begun to care for myself better–less demands, more fun!
* I am honored to become a teacher when people ask questions. I know my answer will leave an indelible impression.
* My children love me–and seem not to notice if hair is there or not.
* I met wonderful new friends on Women’s Hair Loss Project
* I’m becoming more assertive–I cry, I speak my mind, I flirt, and I’ve become a real diva in the hair store!

My thoughts and prayers go out to all of you ()-:) There will be joy in the morning. So keep your head up and know that in all things you truly are blessed.
You have my supoort & friendship all ways.

Lynnie

Alie July 20, 2008 at 9:51 am

Hi all,

I am so grateful to have found you all (and sorry for what you are all going through)! I have been dealing with hair loss since my teens – around age 17 (am now in my mid-30s). Like many of you, after several series of blood work, nothing has come up to suggest a reason for the hair loss.

I have tried all kinds of topical Rogaine/Minoxidil mixes over the years. I had about a year of a really good experience with Rogaine mixed with Retina A (but not all doctors will prescribe this and not all Pharmacies will mix the two – I think it leads to increased irritation; also, after about a year, it didn’t work as well and I started more shedding, anyway, but I had experienced significant regrowth with it prior). I am someone who avoids medications as much as possible, due to all the potential side effects (and would really love to find some natural remedies that actually work), so have not been thrilled about being on Rogaine/Minoxidil but a bit happier about that than oral medications.

I also had 2 hair transplants but, as my current dermatologist/hair specialist told me (and a lot of you probably know), women really are not good candidates, due to the usually diffuse hair loss (I think the hair from both transplants fell out a long time ago).

I’ve tried a laser brush (am currently trying it again). I also tried Saw Palmetto to block DHT (thought it would be safer than actual meds since it is herbal) and it helped my hair a little but I ended up with some acne (usually my skin is great, other than close to my period) and a lot of in-between menstrual bleeding (and even ended up having to have minor gynecological surgery to stop the bleeding and, a couple of months after the surgery, ended up with the worst hair loss I ever experienced – might have been the anesthesia, might have been a sudden change in hormones after the surgery and getting off the Saw Palmetto prior, when the bleeding had gotten bad).

At that stage, my mom found me a really good hair loss specialist (my current dermatologist/hair loss specialist) in NYC. He is expensive but takes women’s hair loss very seriously and has a good sense of humor – makes the appointments easier to deal with (his name – Dr. Michael Lorin Reed, M.D.). The problem (besides expense) is that I don’t live in NY so I can’t just easily make an appt. whenever I want/need to, which has been frustrating. I first went to him in May 2007; he put me on his Minoxidil mix (that only needs to be used once a day – at night!). Within a couple of months or less, a very noticeable filling in of my hair occurred and within 6 months, my hair dresser (who comments about my thinning hair at every visit!) said that my hair looks absolutely normal and asked what I was doing! We both know that I will never have thick hair again but “normal” suited me just fine!

Unfortunately, my “happy hair world” was just “turned on its head” (no pun intended!) about a month and a half ago when my same hair dresser told me how red and hot my scalp was at my last visit. My doc told me to take a break from the Minoxidil mix for few weeks (which then turned into longer). When I got back on it, I noticed more redness. I tried the Men’s foam for a short time, per his advice, but that also irritated my scalp. My hair has been falling out like crazy again and I’ve had a week of major anxiety, depression, and insomnia so far. I’m back to using the mix at least every other day, along with the laser brush, until my next visit with my doctor in about a month. I have a strong feeling he is going to suggest spironolactone next. I know that many of you have tried it but, after my last “menstrual bleeding” experience, along with my apprehensions about meds, in general, I am very nervous about giving oral meds (and ones that mess with hormones) a try. I just truly don’t know what to do at this point.

Although I’ve been dealing with this for so long, it is actually more depressing to have found a solution and then have it “taken away from me” – although I am very grateful for the last year of enjoying my hair again, don’t get me wrong)! If I was retired, I think I would just go the wig route but I just don’t want to go into work one day with everyone knowing that I went that route!

Like a lot of you, I find hair dresser appointments and washing my hair stressful; avoid allowing anyone to see me with wet hair; hate rainy and windy days; adjust my seating, etc. to avoid people looking at my scalp (and always think they are looking directly at it when talking to me!). I also find that this affects my dating life, at least from my perspective (although, I have had long-term relationships and the guys never mentioned a thing – I’m sure they noticed, though!). I wear my hair up in barrettes a lot to try and hide showing scalp as much as possible, although, when my hair is in better shape, I do like my hair better down (and don’t feel like I can wear it down and feel good about it at this point).

Anyway, thanks to all of you for being here, sorry for the long message, and I wish everyone the best!

-Alie

Ally August 7, 2008 at 5:58 am

I just realized that this is a serious problem and not just a “phase” of hair thinning out. My hair falls out with the folicle, so I know it’s not breakage. I’ll be sitting at work, and I’ll feel hairs falling out and landing on my arms and it makes me so upset. I feel like I must have done something to cause this even though I’m sure this is not the case.

I am glad that I found this site but also now I feel discouraged because it seems like so many of you have not found a permanent solution which I thought I had a good chance of finding. Like many of you mentioned, I used to have thick beautiful hair and get a lot of compliments. Both of my sisters have thick healthy hair and I’m jealous of that. I think that my hair is less than half as thick as it used to be. Nobody compliments my hair anymore. I’m afraid it’s going to keep getting worse. I am an obsessive type of person so I am constantly thinking about it, worrying, noticing other people’s hair, etc. I just want it to stop and grow like it used to. I hate running my hands over my hair and discovering about 15 hairs in my hand. Thank you all for not making me feel so alone.

Lisa August 28, 2008 at 10:41 am

Dear Ally,

I think I’m at the same place you are. I’m going to do some research. It is a devastating thing and I believe that barring a medical condition it can be addressed. I will report back. I am glad to know I am not alone either. I have always been so proud of my thick hair and my mom’s stayed thick through her 80’s so I can’t understand why this is happening.

It could also be a thyroid (over active) condition. A friend at work had to take something to balance this and her hair came back. Get a blood test Ally and find out. I will keep you posted.

Lisa

Lauren September 3, 2008 at 6:16 pm

Oh I am just crying reading this …. everything you wrote is what I feel and tell myself daily. Shaving my head, telling myself if this is the worsth thing that can happen to me, so be it … everything you said I felt. I have been losing my hair for about 5 months now – Dr’s are baffeled. My Thyroid, Hormones, are perfect. Lupus cleared, etc. Stress fine. (well not now, cause I am losing my hair) … they have no idea, and I am so scared. I read all these stories of strength, but I am getting worse, I am losing my hope and I am severly depressed. I wish I had answers for you, but I hardly have them for myself. I wish and pray for you. Good luck.

admin September 3, 2008 at 6:40 pm

Dear Lauren,
I think so many women have these feelings. We try to cope, deal, rationalize and do everything we can do just keep our sanity. When we run out of answers there is just this sense of devastating hopelessness. But the truth is, you, me, and all the other women read this… we have so much to be thankful for and we need to try and focus on that. I work on reminding myself of that daily, of the things I should be appreciative of and just TRYING to continue living my life. I’m about to take a shower right now and I fear and loathe it. But I’ll do it, comb my hair out straight into the toilet, tie it back and watch the The Greatest American Dog TV show while eating dinner :)

How long have you been losing your hair? I’m so so sorry for your sadness, I understand your pain and fear, if I could I’d give you a big hug. I’m here if you need to talk.

All The Best,
~Y

Lauren September 3, 2008 at 7:31 pm

6 months, 6 of the worst months of my life. I feel so stupid for feeling so bad … I know I have a good life, but I cannot help the way I feel. This is the worst thing that has happened to me (thank the lord I guess) – but I just don’t understand WHY ME. I have no reasons, understanding or answers. Its not stopping, its just NOT stopping.

tish November 17, 2009 at 5:04 pm

I am a 29yr old hairstylist ,and i have been struggling with hair loss and hair thinning for as long as i can remember.I have cried myself to sleep i have also aviod big crowds of people ,because i always think that the focus will always be on my hair.But as i have gotten older i have learn to turn it over to god and leave it there.Because there are so many people struggling with situtations worst then mind. So what i do to make myself feel better is buy wigs all different kinds some short some long some with color . Look at it like this.We women with thin hair can have a different hair style 7 days a week.If we buy a wig.It may not solve the thinning process but it sure will make u feel better at least that works for me.

Kaye November 19, 2009 at 2:41 am

Good for you ;o) I want to be like you. I just need to trust someone to help me make the right choices. I don’t know where to go.. Proud of you!!!

Alyssa November 25, 2009 at 8:48 am

I am new to this site but I was hoping to get some feedback. As I was reading all your stories, I am still wondering how some of your hair loss started. Was it sudden? About three weeks ago, my hair just started shedding like crazy. I had one week where it improved, and then it started coming out like crazy(about 250-300 hairs) again for the past two days. Is this how your hair shedding started? One day your hair is fine and the next it is not? I am so confused. I am going to several doctors next week but I would just like some insight from you all. Thank you and stay strong.

Lisa December 5, 2011 at 3:58 pm

This hair loss also makes me extremely depressed. I’m so thankful to hear I am not alone and others are going through the same thing. I will not look in the mirror anymore and I feel like other people will not think the same of me because of my hair loss. I’ve been battling this for nearly 30 years. I’ve used so many products that I’m sick of spending money on them. Haven’t been to a hairdresser for 7 years. I cut my own hair because of the embarrassment. For a while there I was doing okay with covering it up but now it’s definitely noticeable. I hate it and have to struggle to get through life.

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