Alissa, a 14-year-old from California, battled Trichotillomania for five years. This is how she's Conquering with Keen Awareness, as told to the HabitAware Team.
Alissa’s hair pulling was initially focused on her eyebrows and eyelashes, but then eventually included her head. “Trichotillomania made me lose my confidence. I felt I needed to hide. I was so angry and felt I couldn’t stop.”
Alissa’s mom, Christy, shared, “We felt like we tried everything. From medications, to therapy, to listening to CDs while sleeping. Nothing helped. For me as a parent it was devastating to not be able to find something to help my child.” And then Christy found Keen. “Keen sounded so promising! I wanted to see Alissa happy again and not have her hide behind her hair or avoid eye contact with people.”
After Keen arrived, Alissa and Christy worked on training the habit tracking bracelet. It was a new sensation for Alissa to wear Keen and pay attention to her hair pulling habit. It’s now become natural, and Alissa wears her Keen to remind her not to pull.
“I feel much happier and I don’t have to hide anymore”
“Having Keen has helped restore my confidence as I can see my hair returning. I’m still working on my hair pulling habit, but Keen has really helped me be more aware. I feel much happier and I don’t have to hide anymore. I even went for my first ever eyebrow wax, which was very exciting for me!”
“You are worth everything”
Alissa would definitely encourage people to use Keen to become aware and curb their behaviors. She recommends taking your time and using patience when training Keen, as training is the key to success with Keen. After using Keen for a while, Alissa realized that Keen’s “gentle vibrating reminders can help keep you on track.” She said, “Just remember you are worth everything, and so is your confidence! ❤️”
You definitely are worth everything, Alissa! Thank you for sharing your story and reminding our Keen family of their worth!
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Together with Abbe Greenberg and Maggie Sarachek, of the Anxiety Sisters, and Lauren McKeaney of PickingME Foundation we recorded a podcast to share treatments for body focused repetitive behaviors like trichotillomania and dermatillomania, along with our mental health stories.
It's important that Keen fits snugly. Here's a quick guide to help you decide which bracelet size to order: