Our second hurdle with Hair Pulling….

Shortly after our 4 year old daughter came to us last year at the time 3-I started to notice she was pulling on her hair and  and would find her with hair in her mouth.  After a few months her pulling her hair we realized it wasn’t just a every now and then thing but was becoming evident that this was becoming something more serious.  So after some research and talking to her doctor and counselor she was diagnosed with Trichotillomania.  This is a compulsive disorder of pulling hair.  Trichophagia is the disorder of eating hair.  Many times these go hand in hand.
While working for months with her we worked on things to distract her hands so they wouldn’t pull her hair.  She worn mittens on her hands,  we put hats and special head bands on her head, we gave her squishy things to occupy her hands.  We also know that some of her stresses were family situations and once we figured things out, the pulling hair and eating it stopped.  We than began a year of growing hair out.  The day that I could pull her hair back into pony tales was a big day.  But it came to a point where I knew that the hair had to be cut to even things out.  We did cut it, about 5 inches (who knows more cause it is so curly!)
But now in the last couple of weeks she has started pulling her hair and there is a bald stop on the top of her head.  So now to figure out the trigger….I have to travel away from her for the first time in over a year.  She was away for a week shortly after they came, but since then she has always been with me.  This Friday I leave for 6 days for the National Youth Gathering.  Then a week and a half after that Dan and I leave for Hawaii.  So she is having anxiety of me leaving.  Dan travels all the time and when I planned to go I planned for him to be here, so there was little transition for them.   But Dan’s travels had to happen and he has to gone the day I am to leave, leaving the kids in need of a caretaker.  Luckily my dad was able to come up to help with the transition and Dan, so Dan lucked out.
But AnQuenette is still suffering from anxiety.  If you back up in her tiny life she has had many “moms” with the promises that I will be back, don’t worry.  And while AnQuenette knows we are her forever family, I have to keep telling her that I am coming back.  We are going to make a calendar so she can mark off the days I am gone and she can see when I come home.
So here is hoping that this first trip will show her that this mommy comes back so she won’t be as anxious with the second trip.


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