Those Scars On Your Arms Tell Your Truth; A letter to my Grace, things I wish I could say

Dear Grace,

I look at the skin that has grown up and around the wounds you have all along your arms and legs. I see your truth. I see your pain and those emotions you have expressed in your own way. Although who am I to say I know your truth when, for so many years, I buried mine in alcohol and antidepressants. I know this, my Grace, I have taught you to keep it all in. And as a result, your pain kept all deep inside of you has built up into tremendous heat. You have found a way to relieve yourself of this pain by taking those razors you hide under your bed or carefully placed in the books on your shelf  into your hand. You slash your arms and legs to let out the pain, to release the heat of all those emotions.

Saying sorry to you seems unjust, ugly and so little of me, but those are the words that slip from my mouth quietly moving quickly through these hands and onto this page.

I am sorry, I am so sorry. I am sorry for hurting you through my angry words. I wish I could do things differently. I thought I was. My reactions to act as a caring mother have led to unruly, unkempt expressions of  control and rage when all it really was – was fear, my fear, fear of losing you or fear of you getting hurt.

So today, my Grace, I am going to hit that pause button and listen, listen carefully to you and get out of your way. Today, I am going to honor your strength, to acknowledge that you have lived the toughest year of your life. I honor that you have found your own way of letting go of those emotions with those razors hidden under your bed. You have found your way to heal and your wounds that are more visible than most people’s. I will gaze at those scars with love and amazement because those scars tell me your truth. I trust in your path. Just stay alive, just live.

 

A Story: A Person Writes About How They Stopped Self Injury

A Story: A Person Writes About How They Stopped Self Injury

Leaving no stone unturned! As a mom of a beautiful child who injures, I intend to continue researching ways that help my Grace.  Today I have decided, instead of looking to those “experts” who

Age-standardised disability-adjusted life year...

Age-standardised disability-adjusted life year (DALY) rates from Self-inflicted injuries by country (per 100,000 inhabitants). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

treat our children who mutilate their bodies, I am reading stories of hope and recovery. Therefore I will turn to those amazing experts who injured themselves and found ways to recover.

This article is just one of many telling the stories of strength, the ability to overcome depression and how self-injury was a tool that helped them fight their way through their depression. It is not a recommended form of practice from this mom. However, it is critical that I find ways of looking through my daughter’s lens. This article deepened my understanding and pushed me to ask; how is cutting a form of treatment when one in so deep inside their heads that they need to bleed themselves? What does my Grace get from this practice? Lastly, how did others find their way out of self-injury?

Mommy Breaks Up With Her Therapist, a Rant

Life lines for parents with teens who injure can be costly. So how is a parent to find support in this dark world of self-injury without it breaking the bank? We have been with our parent coach for over 4 years now. I can hear her voice when I tell her the funds have run out, “Before the plane crashes, you put the oxygen mask on first before you put it on your kid.”

Day 3: flight to Yazd - inflight safety card

Right? Its stressing me out to think that  I am so dependent on this therapist for parenting a challenging teen.  She does not talk with my teen’s therapist, so what is the point?  I paint half a picture, my teen paints her half of the family dysfunctional picture and these therapists don’t share notes? What is up with that?

I am terrified of letting go of my therapist, but honestly – my medical credit card has reached its limit and it is ONLY June!  My husband is out of work and we have got to continue my teen’s therapy.  Twice a week, sometimes three.

I hate depression in teens – meds have not worked, talk therapy is slow and I often question how well that works. I hate my own depression and anxiety. At times, it feels as if my brain has gotten a life long sentence. Will my own anxiety depression ever end? I have been on antidepressants going on 5 years, with a therapist and coach for going on 5 years and life has only become more challenging as my child moved from a kid who self-injures to a teen who self-injures.

When I lay it out like that, I wonder how truly effective talk therapy and drugs are at getting rid of the the dreadful depression. Aside from all that wondering…I just want to find a cure.  I have read about people who have cured their depression. Going on 5 years of depression in both my kid and in me? Come on!  Enough is enough. This depression has gone on for far too long. And, because we aren’t in a parent support group and exiled to therapy, we know of absolutely no one else who struggles with these issues, therefore we just continue our isolation.  This isolation is depressing in and of itself.

So on to bigger things, I have got to find a place to get support where I no longer feel like some alien from outer space. And what about my teen – I wonder if she, too, feels the same?

Embarrassing parents - swan duckling

Embarrassing parents – swan duckling (Photo credit: @Doug88888)

Ah…What would it be like to find parents out there who have kids suffering from anxiety and depression? Would we be able to side step the “shame” and “guilt” and actually move forward and have honest talks? More importantly, not feel completely alone? Community, support, how about that for therapy and building parenting skills.

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SELF INJURY – WHAT IS A PARENT TO DO? Parenting teens who are addicted to the maladaptive coping strategy of self mutilation

Doing the best she can

Doing the best she can (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The number of teens who self injure in the United States is on the rise. What is a parent to do? Therapists, social workers and such have a wide array of suggestions. I have followed them all with little to no results. Truth be told, my teen’s self injury is only getting worse.  Partial hospitalizations, family therapy, individual therapy, medication, parent coaching-you name it, our family has been there and done that.

What is a parent to do?

This site is dedicated to those parents, friends of those who injure and professionals who struggle to find answers.  Why do people mutilate their bodies? Why are there so many children and teenagers taking up this painful behavior? What does the research say? What have parents found to be helpful? What can parents do to help prevent relapse?

So many sites out there are for the person who injures. We welcome those who wish to share their stories.

However…This site was created as a space to discuss and support those of us, who live in constant fear of their loved ones who injure their bodies as a coping mechanism.