I’m a fully self-actualized bald man. What does that mean? That means I’ve gone through all five stages of grieving for my hair loss and come out the other side. When I finally stepped back into the light of the real world, I needed a little sunscreen, but I can breathe easy again.

It breaks my heart to see how many of us never make it past that evil first stage of grieving for hair loss—denial.

Ever since my reawakening, I’ve made it my mission to help other balding men. I wrote The Balding Handbook: The Five Stages of Grieving for Your Hair Loss because it breaks my heart to see how many of us never make it past that evil first stage—denial. If you think you might be there, you probably are. If you aren’t sure, I’ve put together a list of six signs.

1. Your closet contains more than seven hats, including but not limited to a huge sombrero, a jaunty golf cap, an Abe Lincoln stovepipe hat, a foam cheesehead, a Jughead hat, a Gilligan hat, a Jack Sparrow Pirate hat, a Brimwood Topper, a top hat and a crown. An Indian headdress is OK as long as you’re part of a Village People tribute band.

2. Your medicine cabinet contains any of the following items: hair in a can, a laser comb, Dead Sea mud or Emu Oil.

3. You read about how they do hair plugs and thought: “Hmm, drilling ten thousand tiny holes in my head sounds like a great idea. And hell, it’s cheap, only fifteen grand!”

4. You spend more than ten minutes a day rearranging your remaining hair into the Flip, the Frontal-Tuft Fluff Up, the Soft Serve or the Trump.

5. You show up to work one day suddenly sporting a new head of fake hair and expect to hear something like: “Hey Bill, you look different. New sweater?”

Not fooling anyone.

6. Your name is William Shatner, Burt Reynolds, Elton John, Marv Albert, Greg Gumbel or Sam Donaldson.

I’m sorry to do that to you, I really am. Balding Denial is a rough place, and the last thing I want to do is add to your misery.

But I’m here to tell you that once you get past denial, good things await. For instance, the next stage of grieving for your hair loss (balding anger and rage) can be a lot of fun. Just make sure to hold back on defacing the graves of relatives who may have passed on the defective hair gene. Those cemetery security guards are faster than you think.