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Question I think my sister is cutting herself? - September 23rd 2012, 08:29 PM

EDIT: This is a long one, i am sorry about that :/

I just created this account, just to talk about this. Also, English is not my first language, so I apologize in advance by any mistake or confusion.

I'm 19, and my sister is 16. All started when i logged in her computer just so i could fix some pc related problems. I saw that her tumblr page was open, so i decided to see it, when I came across a private conversation between her and another person, (i don't know how tumblr works) but in a comment where there was her photo and a balloon above it, i could read something like this: "Just do what i did last time i was suicidal, think about other things... etc" something like this. I never though anything like this, ever, about her, but i didn't say anything, since she was talking in the past, and i didn't know what to say... This was less than a week ago.
Today, i was alone when i came across a notebook in her room (a normal writing book), and i started reading it. I notice that it was her diary, and unfortunately her handwriting is worse than a doctor, so i had to read each thing like two or three times to understand it. I came across things like: Problems at school, with friends, she doesn't like her body (she thinks she is too slim, i believe it's just genetics cause my mother when she was her age was also like her) but in school they say thinks to her about that. She is currently on 11 grade, and i could read about how she says she was really depressed on the 7 grade (i believe it was the time she was talking on tumblr about), and that till today she had days where she were feeling happy then sad, and this goes on and on (the diary went since the 8 or 9 grade till today). Till i came across something like this "Today i cut myself", i was like what? i had to read it multiple times because of her handwriting but i found +- 4 or 5 more entrances about that, i think it started, i don't know, maybe may or June this year, and what she felt about it.
She was talking about my parents, they don't understand her, they don't take her seriously (normal stuff for teenagers, sadly). She talked about me, sister stuff, good and bad things... she sometimes had entrances that said she was starting to feel like she did in the 7 grade... She hides her true self, she hides her thoughts,... Honestly, i read it like 5 hours ago, and it´s starting to become a blur.
This really caught me by surprise, cause she is really good at hiding her feelings. She never talked about herself, she is very reserved (like me). Most of the time she is on the internet (in the living room, i can see her monitor), laughing at youtube videos, sending me links to watch... Everything is fine. I have to say that we never said to each other what we felt about each other, i honestly assume she sometimes didn't like me (when she was younger i was a little mean, it got better, but there is of course those normal sister hate days till today). Till i came across this old entrance in her diary (maybe some years ago, don't remember) "I especially seek approval from my sister", this kind of broke my heart, cause I never really thought she cared about me, I don’t know, this seems like a bad thing to say but it's only because she never said she liked me (but now that i think about it, i never said it to). The problem is, some of you will probably say “Just have a talk with her, say what really goes in your heart about her”. I understand this, but I am the type of person that doesn’t talk about my feelings, I seriously am mortify if I have to have that talk, especially with my sister (don’t ask me why, I don’t know).
I don’t know what do, I don’t want to be the person to talk to her (by fear), but I know that I have to talk at least with my mother (I don’t know anyone from her school, not even an adult that isn’t part of my family). Cause this can have two outcomes, the first is I don’t say anything and this goes away (of course this is very rare to happen), or she does something worse and I will live my life with guilt. (I kind of wish I never read it, damn you! curiosity!). I never saw any marks on her.

I was thinking tomorrow when I am alone with my mother to tell her this (I already created a conversation in my head): “Mother, I think we need to find a psychologist for Mary (fictitious name), I have to show you a book and what she wrote”, and then convince her to talk to her by saying she was the one that found the book and started reading it. From here I don’t know what to expect. I good outcome, would be to find a psychologist, but we are so seriously bad economically, that I don’t know (but I assume they will try to spend money they don’t have). A second outcome would be that they are the ones to talk to her and not a psychologist…. I really don’t know what to do. The minute my mother will read the words “cut” this family will never be the same, this is the family that before all this, I thought it was a functional family; I never once heard my parents fighting, about anything. So I am kind of in a shock. It’s like my sister has two personalities. But of course I have been reading this type of thing for years, I love psicology.

Should I do this last scenario?

What should I do? I am definitely not the one that will talk to her. So should I keep this to myself forever? Because I really am not sure of this 100%, her handwriting was really bad, I would need a second opinion reading that… and i have this thing were if something horrible or shocking happens I started to lose grip of the reality of what happen to the point where I asked if it really happened… ...So my sister isn’t the only one that needs help…

What should i do?
Thank you.
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Re: I think my sister is cutting herself? - September 23rd 2012, 08:54 PM

First off, let me say I'm sorry you and your sister are going through this. Depression is unbelievably hard on those who have it, and to find out a loved one might be struggling with it must be devastating.
I would definitely talk to your mother first, maybe show her the journal. But here's the truth- whether your mother says she read the journal or whether she makes you own up to it, your sister will probably angry. But would you rather have your sister not be angry at you, and suffer, or have her be angry at you but recovering? The anger won't last forever, and once she recovers, chances are, she'll be thankful you went into her journal.
I know you're scared, but I do think it's important someone else finds out, someone that you trust, so your mother is definitely a good person to talk to. Make sure your sister isn't around or isn't in the house, because it might be harder if she catches you two talking about it beforehand.
Like I said, either way your sister will (most likely) be angry that whomever she is told looked into her journal. But don't be so hard on yourself- by "snooping," you've potentially saved her.
About the economic troubles- does your family have insurance? Maybe they'll be able to find a psychiatrist their insurance covers.
Hang in there, and best of luck to you and your family.

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Re: I think my sister is cutting herself? - September 23rd 2012, 09:24 PM


First off, do not worry that we cannot understand you. For having English as a second language, you write very well.
I know this is a really hard place to be in.
I can suggest things to you from the point of view of someone that has been in yourr sister's position.

I would really recommend you be honest with your sister about you being the one that found the journal, you can tell her your mom read it but at the end of the day if she knows that you would be more likely to go in her room and if she knows you were in there she would find it suspicious that your mom read it and probably live with doubts of who it actually was.
Be honest with her and tell her that you were curious as to what was in the notebook.
She probably will be very angry with you and your parents when she finds out that her journal has been read.
People usually keep journals as ways to vent what they are feeling, thinking, doing, wanting to do etc.
You can have your mom talk to her about what is in the journal and have your mom tell her that you are concerned and care about her which is why you did not keep this to yourself and why you told your mom so that she can get help from a psychologist or psychiatrist.
If your mom suggests looking for help for her without talking to her first about reading the journal, make sure your sister knows what is going on and that her journal has been read. She could be contemplating how to communicate to you how she is feeling and that she wants help and she just may have not gotten to the point of bringing things up to your parents. Also, getting her help without her wanting help and forcing it on her will do no good because no matter how much help she gets she has to want to stop this, to change her behavior and improve her life using resources that may be offered to her.
I know my family thought that getting me into counseling would help stop me from being how I was however I half wanted to be there but mostly I didn't and I didn't start actually utilizing the counseling for a while because I didn't want to change but over time I began learning new things about myself and got to the point of wanting to change. I still struggle with my issues however I now want help and seek it out on my own. Basically, she has to want the help and if she doesn't she will fight it and refuse it.
Hopefully I have been helpful and that all goes well for you and your sister.
You are an amazing sibling for being able to reach out for her and for wanting to get her help and speak with your mother.
I will be thinking of you and hope all goes well.
Also, if you ever need anything, you can send me a VM or PM on here and I will be glad to help or give you any advice you may need.
Take care.

"i don't care your intentions. I just want you to know my self-hatred never took me where I wanted to go. At the end of the day...I can pick at the pain but I can't cut it away."
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