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Cutting self-harm

(7 Posts)
ButlerThompson Sun 16-Nov-14 21:02:42

I found out this week that my dd14 is self-harming by cutting & scratching herself. I feel stupid for believing her excuses and devastated that I must have let her down. I just want to break down & cry about the thought of her so sad & alone hurting herself. I have called our family doctor and we have an appointment on Wednesday. How do I help her? She said she is sad but she thinks all teenagers are. She has had a rough 6 month with friendship issues, being left out, had a boyfriend who dumped her and was with someone the next day. These are things that a teenager may face but not all self harm. I'm struggling to get the balance right. I have given her a leaflet on distraction techniques and an elastic band on her wrist. I'm struggling.

itsonlysubterfuge Sun 16-Nov-14 22:09:45

Hi there,

When I was your daughters age I was self-harming as well. I'm really sorry you have to go through this as I know it must be difficult. It's hard to explain why or how my own self harming came about, I can't really pin it down except that I remember doing it for a very long time.

I don't think it was just sadness that caused me to self-harm, but I difficulty in expressing and feeling my emotions. I was depressed as well, which sometimes aggravated the situation. I do think that sitting down and having a conversation will probably be hard for both of you.

why don't you ask her if she'd like to talk about, tell her you don't want her to feel like she has to talk about it, but if she wants to talk about it you are there for her? Maybe if you notice she isn't feeling happy talk to her about what exactly she is feeling and why. I had a very hard time expressing my emotions and I tended to lash out against myself or others. I'm not saying she is feeling the same, but it might be a reason.

I personally found cutting like an addiction. So I suppose you could treat it the same way you would any other addiction and that might help give you some ideas on ways to do something.

I hope I've given you a slight idea of something to do or say to your daughter. I do think, if your daughter wants to, you could go to the GP and ask for advice there and see if you could get her in to see someone other than family that she could talk to about her feelings, in case she might not feel comfortable doing it with you.

Sending positive thoughts your way.

ButlerThompson Sun 16-Nov-14 22:37:59

Thank you for replying. I just feel so desperate for her. I just want to take all her pain. She is such a beautiful sole but friendship groups and social media have taken their toll. We have spoken about different ways she can express herself & I hope when we go to the doctors she will talk to him & I can arrange counselling. I love her so much this physically hurts. I don't want to be selfish & make this about me. I've not told anybody so I am using Mumsnet to try & make sense of it.

ButlerThompson Mon 17-Nov-14 07:44:17

I look at the marks on her hand & I keep crying. Things will never be the same. They have got progressively worse. Why did I believe her they were a thorn bush? Got to go to work & I just want to stay at home & cry.

itsonlysubterfuge Mon 17-Nov-14 08:24:16

I'm very sorry you've had to go through something so difficult. If the marks were on her hand, she may not have been trying to hide it. Maybe she wanted you to notice? You asked what was wrong and your daughter told you a story and you believed her. I think there is nothing wrong with that. You believe in your daughter and she was purposefully trying to hide something from you. Try not to blame yourself for thinking your daughter was being truthful, it shows you have a good relationship.

I would maybe try and help her to find a hobby or something she enjoys doing that can help build her confidence, but also keep her busy. Sometimes having something to focus your attention and energy on is really helpful.

Have you told her how you feel about her? Tell her you think she has an amazing soul and that you love her so much. Try telling her that it all seems so important right now, but it won't seem so important in a few years times. Maybe something will stick in her mind and give her comfort when she is thinking of self harming.

I hope it will get easier for you and your daughter. It does take time.

PeterSpots Mon 17-Nov-14 21:19:52

Than you. I bought some rescue remedy today but we went out & I noticed a tiny scratch & I just broke down in the middle of boots. My poor other dd18 she doesn't know what's going on. I just feel overwhelmed by it & the worry she will be left with scars which are a memory of her 14 year old self not the beautiful woman she will become. I'm so scared of her future if she resorts to this at 14

PeterSpots Tue 18-Nov-14 17:52:00

I've come home & I just want to be in her room but it doesn't work. We have the doctors appointment at 5.30 so I hope it helps. There is a priory hospital in my town. Does anyone have any experience of these

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