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Hair pulling

No, I’m not pulling my own hair over life’s challenges…

I am sitting on my couch thinking about Emily’s progress…

She is in her bedroom, watching tv while playing The Sims while eating something…

This is so typical of a teenager that sometimes we forget. We forget about the challenges.

Today, I am thinking about a little 18 months old girl who started pulling her own hair out of frustrations.

She couldn’t talk, she couldn’t tell us what was bothering her…

She didn’t and still doesn’t feel pain the way we do…

Something was bothering her…

As a mother (or as a parent) it is hard to see your child suffer or struggle and not know what to do.

I didn’t want her to pull her hair and hurt herself.

We didn’t have much therapy available where we were. The Internet wasn’t as full of useful information like it is today so I went with my gut feeling once again.

Every time I saw her reach for her hair, I sat my baby in our comfy living room chair and put my head on her legs while I sat on the floor.

I put her hands in my hair.

If she was looking for a tactile stimulation, I had more hair for her to play with. I also could feel pain so when she pulled, I told her she was hurting me and she would stop pulling… Sometimes she didn’t stop fast enough for my liking but she would eventually be gentle.

I did this with her for awhile.

She appeared to like to play with my hair and slowly stopped pulling hers.

To this day, I haven’t figured out how to make her stop biting her fingers, trying to pull off her nails or stop scratching herself till she bleeds but somehow, she’s not pulling her hair of anyone else’s!

To this day, I can’t let Emily touch my nails as she tries to pull them off and they aren’t fake nails so pulling them off means a lot of pain for me. I wish I had a brilliant idea in how to stop her from doing that….

Any suggestions?


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