difficult child frustrated - cut her hair off!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by daralex, Jun 24, 2009.

  1. daralex

    daralex Clinging onto my sanity

    difficult child had a frustrating day yesterday (she was set off by a "friend"). She was very upset and went into her room. I knocked on her door to see if she was ok and she said yes. She texted me a while later to come into her room as she didn't want my SO to see her without any hair - she cut it almost to her scalp. (she actually left her bangs in tact?!) but the rest is about 2 inches long compared to the original 10-12 inches that were on her head when she started.

    She said she wanted to hurt herself but the scissors weren't sharp enough so she cut her hair instead.

    I was so sad for her hair! But the messed up part of this is that she is now on 40mg of Lexapro and if she weren't the whole house would be destroyed. I am certainly not ok with how she was feeling or what she did to herself, but it was confirmation that the Lexaprto is helping. Instaed of crying for hours as she normally would, she re-shaped her hair and said "gee, it's not that bad".

    We are working to get to the root of what happened yesterday and try to not have it happen again.

    It was just such a surreal moment - I was all kinds of upset/sad about what she did to her hair, but saw the medications working at the same time.

    I was really sad and relieved at the same time. Is it crazy to think that way?

  2. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Dara, isn't it strange how a choice is seen as positive with one difficult child and the same choice is seen as negative with another. Our 18 yr. old difficult child shaved his head this week because he didn't like the way the barber (his personal favorite) did his hair. For us that was the final indicator that he should not be on Lexapro any longer. He's being weaned off.

    In your case it sounds like your difficult child coped well with her choice by adapting to it quickly. What contrasts we see on the Board. DDD
  3. Jeppy

    Jeppy New Member

    The good thing about hair is it grows. I guess she'll be nice and cool for the summer.

    I think your mixed emotions are normal.

    I chopped my hair off once, but I was younger than your difficult child.
  4. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    Honey, I think you missed the really important thing here:

    She grabbed the scissors to hurt herself!!

    Since that was her first choice, and she took her aggression out on her hair instead....I think you can be relieved....

    BUT--I would make sure this gets addressed. What happens if the next time she is this upset, she finds a pair of scissors that are sharp enough to do what she really wants?

    In the meantime though, funky, short haircuts are IN....

    Sending ((((hugs)))) and support.

  5. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Looks like she is learning to redirect - which is good - but the hurt herself part should be addressed!

    I did this once. Not to that extreme, however - but I hated it for months. I was 14.
  6. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Dara and DDD, I agree, it makes sense to be disappointed, alarmed and relieved all at once. Perfect sense.

    Sigh. So sorry about her hair. It will grow back. When she perks up and feels better, you can tell her she may have a calling as a hair dresser ... ;)

    I'm glad the Lexapro is smoothing the edges.

    I remember cutting my hair as a kid. I think a lot of kids do it, out of frustration. Usually, we start with-Barbie dolls. :) I remember that my mom was ragging on me about my long hair hanging in everything, and it made me so angry and hurt my feelings so much, I ran upstairs and cut off my hair. "THAT will show her!" I thought. And I truly didn't care what I looked like--I just wanted a response. I got it. :)

    Did cutting her hair make your difficult child feel better? It sounds like she's handling it well.
  7. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It


    It shows a really big change in how she handles things. Feeling worried and happy and somewhat relieved all seems normal given life with a difficult child.

    I would be very very worried about her wanting to hurt herself to deal with the pain and frustration over whatever happened.

    I would make that a top priority with her docs. And now you know to be on guard for the impulse to hurt herself.

    Hugs. I am happy she is better able to handle things, sorry she wanted to hurt herself, and hopeful it can be turned into a fun summer haircut.
  8. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I always KNEW Britney Spears was a difficult child...

  9. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Nothing new to add but want to send supportive hugs your way.
  10. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    I'm wondering if your difficult child's Lexapro dose is too high or if she should be weaned off of it. SSRI antidepressants can help with anxiety and depression, but at the same time, they can also cause disinhibition and suicidal ideation. I suspect that's what you're seeing with your difficult child.

    When my then 8-year-old daughter was taking Prozac, her anxiety and depression did improve. But then she became obsessed with wanting a third hole in her already pierced ears -- and pierced it herself! She was taken off Prozac the very next day.

    Please call your difficult child's psychiatrist to talk about how Lexapro might be affecting her. In your shoes, I'd be concerned.
  11. daralex

    daralex Clinging onto my sanity

    Slight problem with docs right now - our insurance LAPSED!! She was seeing a psychiatric to monitor her medications, but we cannot afford to go see her without insurance paying for it. It will be at least a month and we have just about enough pills to make it through.

    I know the medications are helping to a certain degree - but they are making her care less about everything - not just what the anxiety brings on.

    Unfortunately we are kind of stuck at the moment until we are insured again which hopefully should be less than a month. But right now we are on our own.

    I'll get over it, but I am so sad now when I see her hair. Funny thing is I bought difficult child a wig for her birthday (at her request) because she thought it would alleviate the stress of trying to get her real hair to do the "right thing". This way when she is getting ready to go some where she just throws the wig on. At this point I am REALLY glad we have the wig.

    She used to cut herself many years ago and had stopped. I thought that would be the last of it. I just didn't anticipate cutting herself to include her hair (which I much prefer over her arms - don't get me wrong). It's the first problem we've had since she's been on the medications.

    It just feels like we lose either way.
  12. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Although it's certainly better to cut your hair than cut your arm, she really did self-mutilate in her own way. I'd watch the Lexapro. in my opinion it may not be helping as much as you think. These SSRIs can be a Godsend or can cause impulsivity, hypernness, anxiety, even psychosis. I've experienced ALL of that on various SSRIs until one finally worked. If she escalates or seems to be getting more easily irritated or angry, be sure to contact any doctor you can! Good luck. I hope this medication is her magic key. I don't know how long she has been on Lexapro but many of my SSRI issues started two months or so after using them.