Title: Why Can’t I Stop?
Writing Prompt/Inspiration: Since I was about 11 or 12, I’ve had what is known as Trichotillomania (aka: Trich, TTM, compulsive hair pulling). Until I was 19, I had no idea what I was doing had a name. Until I was 19, I was embarrassed and ashamed. I had bald spots from the areas I pulled my hair out. In tenth grade, it was at its worst. I remember taking a history exam in tenth grade and looking down at my backpack and seeing it covered with all the hair I had been pulling out. This story shows some of the thoughts that went through my head that day. Now, of course, I know what I have and I know how to avoid the urges to pull my hair. If you, or some one you know, may suffer from compulsively pulling out your hair, you are not alone. I’m more than happy to talk to any one about this.
* * *
I should have studied.
This wouldn’t be happening if I had studied.
Probably no one studied.
This is happening because I am not normal.
I’m a freak. A weirdo.
By the end of this test I’ll be a bald freak.
Oh, God, look at it. We’ve only been in class for fifteen minutes. I have to stop. I don’t know the answer to this question. I can’t stop. Why is this an essay test? Why can’t it be multiple choice?
I can barely see my backpack. Maybe if I push it beneath my chair casually, no one will notice.
Maybe he won’t notice.
He probably won’t.
If he hasn’t noticed me by now, he probably never will.
But I can feel his eyes on me. He’s wondering why I’m pulling out all my hair.
They’re all wondering.
The teacher is looking at me. Does he notice his floor is covered with my hair?
Why am I doing this? I need to stop.
I can’t stop.
I wish the bell would ring.
Normal people don’t pull out their hair. Why do I have to be the only one that does it? Why can’t I stop?
I want to stop.
I can’t stop.
Why Can’t I stop?
I just want to be normal.
I’m not normal.
I’m just a freak.
A bald freak.
Why can’t I just stop?