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Self Harm If you or someone you know is struggling with self harm and needs advice or alternatives, we're here to help.

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Daryla Offline
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Unhappy How can I help a friend at school who is cutting herself?‏ - February 20th 2011, 06:59 AM

Hello,

I am in Grade 9. There is a girl in my school who speaks to me occasionally. I know her a bit, but not well. She has been cutting herself and keeps showing me the scars, but doesn't want to talk about it.

This all started when I put on a party with a group of other friends and I invited a guy I like. But for some reason, that guy doesnt want to be the only boy for this event, so I asked this girl to invite his best friend which is also her best friend to come. Somehow, that boy got mad at her, so she was really sad for losing a "best friend". That night, she post a status saying "it hurts so much" and things like that.

She keeps implying the whole thing is my fault on me and showing me the cuts. She says the second cuts are not about the guy, but she will not tell me what it is. She keeps updating her status to say how much her cuts hurt, but she won't respond to my replies about it.

What can I do to help her? I don't think she will call any help lines?
   
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Re: How can I help a friend at school who is cutting herself?‏ - February 20th 2011, 03:16 PM

Hey there.

You sound like a really lovely person and this girl is lucky to have you looking out for her. I want to make sure you know that her self harming isn't your fault. I don't want you to blame yourself.

As for helping her, perhaps you could try and encourage her to talk to someone about the self harming and the issues which are causing her to feel the need to harm herself. You could suggest her talking to a school nurse/counselor, a teacher, a parent or a doctor who will all hopefully be supportive and try and offer advice and further help if it is needed. You can even offer to go and talk to one of them with her if she would want you to.

You could point her in the direction of this site if you feel she would benefit from it. Also suggest some helplines for her to ring if she needs to talk about something, shes feeling low or has any urges. Here is a link to a list of helplines ... http://www.teenhelp.org/forums/f3-general/t22-hotlines/. Or you could print of this list of alternatives to self harm ... http://www.teenhelp.org/forums/f12-s...ves-self-harm/.

Remember at the end of the day though shes in control of her own actions and what she does or doesn't do is in her control. And always remember to look after yourself as well!

I hope this helps. Keep smiling
Jessie'Lou


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Re: How can I help a friend at school who is cutting herself?‏ - February 20th 2011, 07:01 PM

Hey Daryla,

Like Jessica said, I want to emphasize one thing: this isn't your fault. And I totally understand that you want to help her. At the same time, I'm getting the impression from your post that you really don't know her that well and aren't the best of friends, so I would try not to come on too strongly.

I've been in fairly similar situations in which I didn't know the other person very well, and what I did was send them a message on Facebook. Really take some time to think about what you're writing. Something like "Hey, I've been seeing your statuses and I'm a bit worried about you" is a good way to start off. Tell her everything positive you think about her, forgive her for anything she may or may not have done to you, let her know that she can talk to you and that you're there for her.

And I definitely agree, try to get her to talk to someone else about her self-harm. I know from personal experience that the more people there are behind you supporting you, the easier it is to get through and rise above it. I also agree with what Jess said about pointing her to TeenHelp if you think it would help her at all.

Good luck. I hope everything ends up okay.


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Re: How can I help a friend at school who is cutting herself?‏ - February 20th 2011, 08:05 PM

Thank you Jessie and Diaminohexanoate!

I will try to talk to her about this. Like you said, we are not really close friends. But I know she was a really nice girl before, and I just wish I would knew more about her and her past. (It seems like she's struggling about her past.)

Today I saw her wrote a letter to her friends saying, "When I saw the blood comming out, I finally realize all these things won't really matter anymore." She is still doing the same thing I guess.

I will convince her to talk to someone she trust, and should I ask her about her past and what she's so sad about?

And don't worry about me, I know she's in a bad mood, that's why she blame it's my fault. Sigh, no matter what happened, I know I will never never hurt myself or others!

Thanks again for the suggestions!
   
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Re: How can I help a friend at school who is cutting herself?‏ - February 20th 2011, 08:13 PM

No problem.

Someone's past can be a really thorny subject. (I know this one from personal experience; I found out some things from someone's past by accident, and if they hadn't been the wonderful person they are I almost certainly would have lost a friend.) Ask her about it if you think it would help, but definitely don't put any pressure on her to tell you any more than she wants. If she wants to tell you zero, be fine with that.

And that is good. I do agree with Jess, you do sound like a wonderful person.

Good luck!


"Want to know a secret?

You are beautiful.

Black, white, gay, straight, bisexual. Whether you are smart or quiet or impossibly in love with your best friend, someone out there cherishes your smile and gets butterflies when you walk into a room.

Someone out there can't stop thinking about you. You Are Beautiful. Don't ever believe differently."

If you ever want someone to talk to, about absolutely anything, feel free to inbox me!
  Send a message via Skype™ to Irinya 
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Re: How can I help a friend at school who is cutting herself?‏ - February 21st 2011, 01:43 PM

Hey there. You sound like a really awesome friend. I know that when I SH, the things I want most aren't usually advice or someone to listen, because I know I have people in my life to do that. What helps me are simple things that make a difference: hugs, cards, and things that will otherwise brighten up my day. For my friend who self-injures and has an ED, I won't directly talk to her about her problem all the time, but I'll give her something, or offer her a hug, to make her feel better. It makes her genuinely smile and I think that can be more healing than any sort of therapy, in some ways.


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Re: How can I help a friend at school who is cutting herself?‏ - February 23rd 2011, 12:08 AM

Thanks, Diaminohexanoate and BECCALICIOUS for giving me these awesome advice!

My friend and that guy, from what I see, they are together again. But I am still a bit worried about her because she has lots of problems to deal with in her life. But on the other hand, at least she is not so depressed now.

And I think you are right, maybe I should just give her a little hug or a gift instead of pressuring her to speak to someone. I mean, it is her own choice. I hope she would be fine after today.

Thanks for all you guys' help! It really made me feel better when I wanted to help her alone!
   
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