"There are millions of people going through the same thing as you right now. You are not alone".
I find that this statement, can be both helpful and detrimental, despite being given as a supportive statement and it’s honesty. Some people respond to this with what they regard as "hope" and others respond with feelings of, "it’s the end of the world."
Well, if you’re on your own with a condition and a person says that sentence, then all of a sudden, you feel a part of something! You know that others out there are fighting along side you! It’s an eye opener into a world you may not even be aware of! "Come and join the community", so to speak.
The counter side to saying this statement is that for some people, hearing this statement can make them feel so low and hopeless.
"There are millions of people in the world just like me, all suffering?! Being made aware that millions suffer with this till their dying days is not making me hopeful. It’s just confirming my belief that this condition will be with me for life and all this evidence is proving that regardless of how hard I try, I will never be free".
Being (made) aware of a world of Trichers, for some, can be a potentially damaging and overwhelming experience or feeling.
I admit there are times when I wish I didn’t know about everyone else and their Trichotillomania:
I wish I was the only one, for then I wouldn’t be aware of the endless battle, the future traumas, I wouldn’t be scared every time I hear of someone relapsing after years of growth, I wouldn’t feel uncomfortable every time someone says they are pull free - because deep down I know that the chances of relapse are incredibly high and upcoming, I wouldn’t feel pressurised to cure myself in order to help others, I wouldn’t be categorised/placed into groups (such as BFRB’s) and treated like a number, I wouldn’t be treated as a case study….. I wouldn’t live in fear every single day of more hair loss and distress because I wouldn’t know that relapse is just waiting for me around the corner… because of the evidence of thousands of Trichers before me.
I want more awareness for all, but more awareness, means more people coming into the community and more people means more stories and experiences, more of those equate more encounters of life damaging/traumatising ongoing life battles with Trichotillomania…. It makes me feel so hopeless! :(.
I don’t know what is better, being alone with this (despite the upsets loneliness and misunderstandings it can bring), or being subjected to thousands upon thousands of Trichers all never-endingly suffering with their conditions…. and me not being able to help.