New testimonial just in
My name is Megan Llewellyn, and from the age of 12 I have suffered with various mental health issues; the initial problem being trichotillomania. Trichotillomania is a disorder where you compulsively pull out your hair in order to relieve stress and anxiety, I have also suffered from depression and general anxiety, and the Thrive program has helped me to overcome them as well as make many other positive changes to my life.
Having been under the care of CAMHS (child and adolescent mental health service) for a few years, I had managed to overcome the worst of my anxiety and depression, yet my hair pulling remained. Eventually my weekly therapy sessions became extremely frustrating to me, as I had no faith that CAMHS could help me with my trich since they had no success in the past 4 years of me being a patient. I was desperate to move on from therapy, and instead my family and I turned to the Thrive program for a different (and far more successful) approach.
Thrive has been a benefit to my whole family, we signed up for weekly skype meetings, and bought two of the thrive books to complete outside of the video calls. My parents completed the adult book and I completed the teenage book, and my mother was present during the meetings so she has directly benefitted by this as well. The thrive program is NOT therapy, and it works much differently to the CBT and IPT that I have had in the past. With the thrive program, we didn’t spend all meetings talking about my hair pulling, it was brought up but it wasn’t the main focus. Instead, we focused on my self esteem and the way I saw the world, this helped me cope better with so many issues in my daily life that I didn’t believe I could.
For example, I was very afraid of running into a certain person who goes to my college, and would panic if I saw them. I assumed that this was normal considering the fight we had, but after completing the thrive program I feel like I could handle any situation with them, even if they directly came up and talked to me. My confidence in college went up, and since I stopped comparing my achievements to my classmate’s I believe that my work has improved.
About halfway through the program I did end up shaving my head, simply because a lot of hair wasn’t growing back and any further pulling (intentional or unintentional) could lead to more damage. With my hair now short I cannot pull it out, but thanks to the thrive program I don’t feel the urge to do so in class or during normally stressful situations.
My family has seen a great improvement in my coping skills and attitude, and the whole family has benefited from the thrive program, and we work together to support each other. I would definitely recommend thrive to friends and family, even reading just the book can have a hugely positive impact on people’s lives; and is well worth the effort.