Everyone handles stress differently. But even the most comforting of coping mechanisms may present themselves in an unhealthy way. I strive to work with my clients to create a custom piece of jewelry that fulfills both their aesthetic and therapeutic needs.
I was diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder when I was five years old. During stressful times, I would find comfort in my hair. Rubbing, twirling, pulling. When situations left me feeling helpless and out of control, pulling my hair out gave me a sense of control and comfort.
Obsessive compulsive disorder and anxiety disorders are not something people want to publicize. It's a personal struggle and should be treated as respectfully as possible.
While attending a professional retreat in April 2015, I found myself anxious and unsure, vulnerable due to the forced networking and interaction. Each time I reached for my hair, I was reminded of just how many colleagues were sitting behind me. My comfort could be seen as unprofessional or, worse, a weakness.
I sat there, trying to control my need to soothe, wondering why someone hadn't created a product to assist in just these types of situations.
I began sketching furiously. Maybe a bracelet... discreet enough to not draw attention... cute enough to avoid looking obvious...
At first, I was designing for myself. Then I realized how many people could benefit from such a seemingly simple idea. An accessory. Something you would put on in the morning before work. Something that was already part of your routine.
Then I panicked. This is something I've kept hidden my entire life. Even at five years old, sitting in a psychologist's office, I knew this wasn't something I could share with other people. I couldn't even pronounce trichotillomania but I knew it was something I didn't want to have. Others must feel that way, too.
So I'm taking a deep breath and sharing my truth with all of you.
My designs for therapeutic jewelry are handmade with care. Materials and gemstones are selected based on each wearer's individual needs.
What triggers your anxiety or compulsions? What do you find soothing about these compulsions? What comforts you during these times?
While this jewelry will not replace the need for therapy and/or medication, I do hope it relieves your feelings of helplessness and anxiety.