I am 21 years old and have been pulling out my eyelashes for the past 10 years. I never understood why I did this or what it was called. Recently I discovered Trichotillomania and when reading the description quickly realized this was what I was suffering from. My pulling is partial to only my eyelashes, I do not pull from any other area.
When I first started pulling I would pull only at school. I figured the stress of schoolwork was the reason for my pulling. Now in college, I have noticed pulling during classes, at home when working on assignments, or sometimes even when I am relaxed and laying in bed. Realizing I pull in all of these situations has brought me confusion especially since now I cannot blame school stress on my pulling if I pull when relaxed before bed.
I am very close with my family and friends. Only my family and closest friends know of my eyelash pulling. My friends do not seem to mind or treat me any differently because of my pulling and in fact try to help me deal with it. However, my family does not seem to understand why I pull or how pulling makes me feel. Often they tell me to just stop, that I look beautiful with eyelashes and how I shouldn't pull them out. They don't understand that it isn't as simple as just stopping and I get a satisfaction from pulling that sometimes is a greater urge than the shame I feel once I see that I created big bald spots in my lashes.
There are times when I feel that I have my lash pulling under control. During the summer I usually am able to stop pulling and grow a whole set of eyelashes back over the summer break. Every time I go back to school I revert back to pulling. I have used coconut oil on my eyelids to speed up the regrowth of the hair, but this has not stopped me from pulling. Sometimes I will pull based off the texture of the lashes and will not stop until I pull a specific lash out that has a coarse texture, however once that lash is pulled I often will then find another coarse lash to go after next pulling out most of my lashes in the process.
I am self diagnosed with trich and have not sought any professional help with my condition. I have never met anyone who experiences similar urges as me so I am using this forum as an outlet to find others who are experiencing the same urges as me. I have accepted the fact that my pulling is part of who I am, but I would really like to try and stop. Any advice that anyone can give me to try and help my eyelash pulling are greatly appreciated.