Ella tells us her story about alopecia from a teenager’s perspective.
We are sharing Ella’s story to celebrate Alopecia Awareness Month 2021. We hope Ella’s words of encouragement helps other children and teenagers dealing with Alopecia.
Hey, I’m Ella and I’m 15 years old. In September of 2014 when I was 8 my mam was doing my hair one morning and she found a tiny bald patch at the back my head. My hair continued to fall out for the months ahead and in May of 2015 I was diagnosed with Alopecia Areata. At the time because I was young, it didn’t affect me much. I didn’t care a whole lot about my appearance which now I realize is a time I will cherish.
Obviously as I got older, I started to care more about my appearance. Alopecia is something I had become used to and just overtime, learned to deal with. That’s not to say that I didn’t have my fair share of bad days where my hair loss was everything I thought about. Every time new patches would appear, I would find a new hairstyle to help cover it.
In 2020 I got to the point where I don’t like being restricted to one hairstyle and I felt ready to get a wig. I had known since early on last year that I wanted one because I knew how much it would help my confidence.
Until now I hadn’t seen very much representation of alopecia at all. I recently bought a bald Barbie which made me feel very empowered and beautiful. I’m so glad that little girls now with alopecia can look at things like that and understand that without hair, they’re beautiful and your hair doesn’t make you who you are.
Something I read when I was about 11 that I have always thought about since was a simple sentence. It said, “with or without hair, you’re still you”. That changed my perspective on alopecia forever, because I knew that I didn’t look at myself as a victim anymore but as a strong girl who had the opportunity to grow from this. I learned that alopecia is not me but rather just a part of me.
I hope I can be a voice for all the little girls and boys who have alopecia because I know that when I was younger, I would have loved someone to look up to and to assure me that things would get easier because trust me, they do. I want to remind all the beautiful little girls and boys that having alopecia does not define you and that you are much stronger than you believe.
Ella is a true inspiration for young people with hair loss, and we hope her words give you hope.
If you would like to share your hair loss story with our community, get in touch! Simply email us at [email protected]