Celebrities Who Pull
This year, in the first week of October, the hair pulling community, along with the other body-focussed repetitive behaviours (BFRBs) such as skin picking disorder, observed BFRB awareness week. Many people with BFRBs are never diagnosed and never receive any help or support due to lack of awareness that these behaviours are classified as a disorder. Trichotillomania or hair pulling disorder can also be a source of great shame and embarrassment, so those who suffer with the condition often suffer in silence. So when a celebrity, who is admired for her beauty comes forward with the revelation that she too suffers the compulsion to pull her hair, it offers a sense of acknowledgement that trichotillomania can happen to anyone and that it is not something to be ashamed about.
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Olivia Munn shares her experience
American actress, model, T.V personality and author Olivia Munn recently spoke openly about her struggles with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety, and trichotillomania in an interview for Self magazine, for which she also graced the cover. Olivia attributed her compulsive hair pulling to the OCD she experienced since childhood, which although clinically different to trichotillomania, is very closely related and caused her great anxiety. Olivia is not the first celebrity to admit to being diagnosed with trichotillomania.
Other famous trichsters
Beautiful co-star from the Transformers movies Megan Fox has been hospitalised three times because of compulsive hair pulling, while South African born Charlize Theron also admitted in 2012 during an Australian radio interview that she was diagnosed with the condition. While hair pulling disorder appears to be more commonly diagnosed in women, male celebritites coming forward is an indication that this condition has no bias toward gender, with stars like Justin Timberlake revealing that he too was diagnosed with hair pulling disorder in 2008.