‘Freed From the Secret’: Rep. Ayana Pressley Discloses Alopecia Diagnosis
Rep. Ayana Pressley (D-MA) revealed her bald head Thursday and disclosed she has alopecia, a condition that causes sudden hair loss, in an interview with The Root. Pressley first noticed that she was losing hair last fall while getting her signature Senegalese twists re-done. In the days following, she was waking up to “sink-fulls” of hair coming off her head. Pressley recalled that she lost her final piece of hair the night before the House vote on President Donald Trump’s impeachment and on the anniversary of her mother’s death. “I was missing her. I was mourning my hair. I was mourning the state of our democracy,” she said.
She had a wig created for her hours before the impeachment vote, but said she felt “naked” when she put it on. “I exited the (House) floor as soon as I could and I hid in a bathroom stall,” she said. “I felt embarrassed. I felt ashamed. I felt betrayed.” Pressley now says she’s “making peace” with her condition and said her decision to speak out about it was about “self-agency” and “acceptance.” “I want to be freed from the secret and the shame that that secret carries with it,” she said.