Eeeee!!!! I'm so so proud of you!!!! One of my friends has trichotillomania and I just showed her how much you've overcome and she's so impressed and hopeful now, so thankyou!
Because this made me very very happy and also a little bit sad, I did the unthinkable and delved into my Tumblr archives (I like to call this ‘walking into Mordor’) and have found something which I believe may help your friend.
My hair 4 years ago:
(Yes, I am fully aware that I look like a baby)
My lustrous locks today:
So, to your friend, there genuinely is hope!
All I did was be kind to myself. Honestly, for years I tried the ‘you will not pull, you shitbag’ approach. Every time I pulled a hair, I reproached myself and told myself that I was going to be bald, that I was failing, that I was letting trichotillomania win. And then I literally just woke up one day and I thought to myself ‘I cannot keep doing this. I cannot keep punishing myself for something I can’t control’, and just like that, I accepted trich as a part of me rather than as something I had. Yes, that sounds corny as shit, but it’s helped me beyond words.
Now, I pull maybe 15 hairs a day, and if I have a bad day where I pull >100, I’ll just go and make a cup of tea or buy myself a bacon sandwich or read a bit of my favourite book, and the pulling stops. The key to hair growth with trichotillomania, in my experience, is not to say ‘I have failed if I’m not pull-free’; it’s to say ‘I am more than the hair that I have and I am more than the hair I’ve pulled’.
So, to your friend - there is absolutely hope! There will be days when you think that you’re going to relapse, that you’ll never be happy with how your hair looks, but trust me, these days are only days, and it’s the days in between - the days when you realise that you’re so much more than the hairs on your head or your eyelashes - that will make them pass.