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how to deal?

Discussion in 'Living with Androgenetic Alopecia' started by hairlosshelp, May 20, 2015.

  1. hairlosshelp

    hairlosshelp Established Member

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    I know that I rant in here a lot but I don't have any other outlet for this. The only other people who I can speak to about this is my parents and even they get afraid to even ask me about this anymore to prevent me from crying. I can't really get help from a therapist and I don't want to go on antidepressants because of their links to hair loss...but this is what's going on.

    I finished school on April 27th. I'm currently unemployed/not looking for work and studying for a qualifying exam which I will write in July...so I haven't been obligated to leave the house. And I haven't. In 1 week, it will be 1 month since I last left the house.

    There are people out there who are going through much worse than I am and I know some of them too. My uncle lost his leg in an accident when he was very young and for over 20 years he's been on crutches. I haven't really seen him on a wheelchair even though his entire leg is gone. He's still had relationships, participated in bike races, etc.

    I just want my zest for life back. I feel like a shell of the person I used to be. I want to be able to travel again and enjoy the things I love. I'm determined to get as much of my hair back and I really think I deserve it. I deserve at least a few years of life filled with enjoyment and lacking difficulty.
     
  2. kathy99

    kathy99 New Member

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    Hi...I know exactly how you feel. But just try to remain positive! A big hug to you!
     
  3. Noalani

    Noalani Established Member

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    Hi hairlosshelp: Sending you a giant hug right now. And, a question: Are you exercising at all? Exercise can help release endorphins in your body that will give you a natural "high." I really think you need to do something that is going to take your mind off of your hair loss, even if just for an hour or two...and you need some serious endorphin release!! Please consider doing this if you don't want to go on antidepressants.

    If it's almost a month since you left the house, you NEED to get out and smell the roses, so to speak. Put a hat on, and take a walk, or meet a friend and go for a walk, or take yourself out to a favorite place--park, shopping district, local cafe, bookstore--and just live for a few hours without the distraction of your hair. I tell my kids (and myself), "Sometimes you got to FAKE it to MAKE it." Think of your uncle....if he can do it, so can you!!

    Wishing you all the best,
    Anne
     
  4. DistressMistress

    DistressMistress New Member

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    CBT

    hairlosshelp - it sounds like you are suffering from depression, and when people start to shut down and stop doing everything, that provides an ideal environment for depression to spiral even worse.

    Please leave the house. Even if you just go for a walk; it is proven to help. When I don't leave the house for a few days I get miserable about my hair. I can only wonder what it must be like for you, having not left for weeks! Why can't you get help from a therapist? Antidepressants aren't the only way depression is treated. Have you heard of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy? It is designed to change the negative pattern of thinking that occurs in people with mental health problems and has been proven to really help with depression and anxiety. You need to talk to a professional, about this, and only then can your outlook change. (then again, here in the UK we can do all of this for free with our healthcare, so I would understand if you're in a place that doesn't offer the same!)

    You said you deserve a few years of life filled with enjoyment - and you can absolutely have many years filled with enjoyment! The fundamental problem here is you associating your hair loss with a complete inability to enjoy life anymore. And I understand that completely - being 21 with Androgenetic Alopecia means I feel unfeminine, and that I've lost my youth. It devastates me, but I try to think positively. Don't compare yourself with your uncle; these are two very different problems, and hair does have a massive psychosocial impact, you're allowed to be upset about it. But you should also think of it this way...you are a fully functioning, educated human being in a world where that in itself is a privilege. Don't let your life pass you by. Of course, we all deserve a full head of hair back, God knows I'd do anything to get mine just for 10 more years. But you deserve to let yourself be happy. Let yourself pull through during times of adversity.
     
  5. Blahblahblah

    Blahblahblah Member

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    It sounds like you are avoiding the very things that may help you feel better. We all deal with this on our own terms - I know I had some dark weeks and months but eventually I was able to put it in perspective and while I will hate hairloss with every fiber of my being, I refuse to let it prevent me from living a normal life.
    Have you tried therapy? What about cosmetic solutions? It's ok to grieve but have faith that you *will* eventually come out on the other side. Big hugs!
     
  6. Wolf924

    Wolf924 Experienced Member

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    Would getting a great topper or extensions maybe make you feel more confident? I suffer form depression too but I started taking anti-depressants because hair loss or not, I could NOT walk around like a zombie any more.
     
  7. JKSZ

    JKSZ Established Member

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    I took antidepressants in the past and never experienced hair loss. I was on Prozac for a short time a year ago, and it didn't cause me to lose any more hair. Although they didn't help me, that may not be true for you. I'd give it a try. I really don't think they'll exacerbate your hair loss. Exercise is a good idea too. I lift weights at home in my basement, put on some loud music and get lost in sculpting my body. Our hair loss may be out of our control, but we're still the boss from the neck down--well, at least until you start working against gravity!
     
  8. hairlosshelp

    hairlosshelp Established Member

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    Thanks for all the support everyone!

    I was on antidepressants before (Prozac) and even though it didn't really cause me to lose hair I had high anxiety as a side-effect and I had never really experienced anxiety before it (aside from the typical scenarios like pre-exam time). So I had to go off it and things got better on its own a couple of months later. But I've always dealt with falling into depression easily before so this has really exacerbated it which is frustrating because around last September/October I was in a pretty good place in my life deciding to make the positive changes and working on my goals and then the shed happened so I really have spiraled downward since my diagnosis of Androgenetic Alopecia and have to rebuild myself up again with an added challenge and I would feel much better if I just got my hair back to at least how it was in 2012/2013. I'm scared to do the trial and error with other anti-depressants if I end up getting a bout of anxiety because I had thought about suicide several times over the past few months and I know I don't want to do it but I don't want to get into an anxious state and do something dangerous. Sorry about the darkness of this reply but depression was something I "overcame" in 2012 and I had still been fixing the damage from that (friendships, especially and also self-esteem) and this has negatively impacted both even worse than 2012. I feel like the only thing that would help now is getting my hair back because I've already accepted so many past struggles (poverty growing up, and a whole bunch of other problems I don't want to get into).

    I had plans to travel around this year and that's why I'm really, really hoping something actually works so that my life can become normal again by the end of this summer so I can enjoy the next year.
     
  9. Nerak

    Nerak Established Member

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    I agree with Noalani about getting out of the house and getting some exercise

    At the same time my hairloss was at its absolute, un-hidable worst I got involved in a walking group. We met and exercised together every week in the lead up to a big event and, although we talked about EVERYTHING (as groups of women do), not one of them knew I had hairloss. We never even saw each others hair as we all wore caps to exercise.

    Its great to have an outlet that does not focus on appearance, any sport or activity that requires a hat or helmet will do, as long as it gets you outside and out of your own head for a while.

    Now, 10 months later, when firm friendships have been formed my friends do know what I was dealing with and, funnily enough, I was not the only one!
     

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