Well, since difficult child

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by klmno, Dec 17, 2008.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    has taken such an interest in reading my threads and changing my setting to require a password still allows him to read posts here, would it be alright if I pm'd a couple of people to get opinions for a brief period? (I can delete those)
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2008
  2. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    It's kind of stupid to hurt yourself purely to "get at" someone else. "I'm angry with you - look, I just punched myself in the face to prove it." Yeah, right. So what's the point, kid?

    However, a kid who is cutting or similar, is a kid who is hurting inside so badly, he wants to see the physical evidence match. If he can see blood then he knows he has a right to feel the pain, somehow. But that is all about what is inside the person, it has absolutely nothing to do with anybody else. Blaming someone else doesn't come into it, all he is trying to do when he blames you, is try to make you (or anyone else) share his pain. Maybe because it feels too big for just one person?

    Again, stupid. Because there are MUCH better things you can do when you feel in so much pain.

    Don't ask him to put alcohol or peroxide on it - all you are doing is giving him the wrong sort of attention. Instead, force him to own his own pain and not try to foist it onto anyone else. part of that is to drag him to the doctor everyt ime he does this, and ask the doctor to help.

    His cutting is not your problem. It is HIS problem. Of course you care, but what on earth can you be expected to do?

    easy child 2/difficult child 2 and difficult child 1 used to cut a lot, especially easy child 2/difficult child 2. She was secretive about it and now has permanent scars. One day she hopes to be a teacher; I wonder what her students will think when they see the narrow white lines on her wrists.

    We never intervened medically; I wasn't permitted to know, she would have refused to admit to it (even in the face of such obvious evidence). we could have helped her, but she would have refused to acknowledge.

    What you refuse to acknowledge, you cannot change.

    My kids have grown beyond the need to cut. I wish we would have helped easy child 2/difficult child 2 sooner, but we WERE able to help difficult child 1 - he takes Zoloft (which I know a lot of people don't like) but he found to his surprise it helped him in other ways he hadn't expected. His anxiety was causing him a lot more trouble than any of us realised, he really does need those medications, they help him cope with a great deal. He has grown so much, achieved more than he ever thought he would and is really enjoying life now. He finally is off disability, he is working, he has just married a lovely girl who understands him well. And his medications have made this possible. Plus his own efforts, once he could see his way out of the confusing mess he felt he was in.

    It's horrible being a teen. It's even worse when you have problems you don't want to let anyone know about, or problems you feel ashamed of. That's when you feel nobody understands you and that only makes the pain worse.

    Your difficult child needs to know that there are better ways to deal with the pain, than to deny that it is HIS problem.

    You do not deserve any of this, klmno. It is NOT your fault. In fact, it isn't anybody's fault. Sometimes blame just shouldn't come into it. Sometimes people just hurt inside, and need to ask for help to make the hurt go away.

    Feel free to PM me if you want. Let's hope it isn't long before your difficult child wakes up to himself and does the mature thing and asks for help, instead of trying to find someone else to take responsibility.

  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Thanks, Marg!! I needed that reminder!
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2008
  4. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    Anytime you need an ear I'm a pm away. I'm dealing with a niece who has apparently started cutting this week. Spent the day at school emailing counselors and trying to get some help for her and my sister ASAP. Maybe we can bounce some ideas off each other.
    Plus, I have survived gfgdom. And I can listen really well.
  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Feel free to PM me. I actually hadn't meant the alcohol wipes to increase the pain, but simply to keep the cutting instruments used when kids share this experience clean and keep them from getting blood borne diseases. And even to clean the skin PRIOR to cutting, just as they clean the skin prior to getting a shot.

    I am sorry your difficult child is hacking your posts. That stinks.
  6. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Susie, it's a good idea for a kid to keep cutting implements clean. However, if you remind them, chances are they will consider the risk of getting a blood-borne disease to simply add to the experience. While cutting isn't about suicidal ideation, it IS about self-harm and therefore staying healthy isn't exactly high on the agenda.

    It's like my easy child 2/difficult child 2 - she didn't plan ahead, in terms of keeping herself free from infection or permanent scarring. She's no longer hiding her scars, which is a good thing since the wedding dress she has picked out is going to leave them wide open to view; we're just hoping that guests will be NOT getting much chance to look at her wrists on her wedding day (usually they look at the back of her hands to admire the ring, for example). They hopefully will be dazzled by the overall package; she IS beautiful, breathtakingly so, although there was a time when she felt very ugly and unlovable. Her wedding day will announce to the world that she IS lovable; their eyes will tell them that she IS beautiful.

    It's such a pity she didn't realise that when she was cutting, when she was 14 to 17.

    Blood-borne diseases - the main ones to worry about are ones that are transmissable from person to person, and it's highly unlikely that a difficult child cutter is in a position for this to happen. The biggest risk is of bacteria already on the skin of the cutter, being transferred either to the bloodstream or to the tissues surrounding the cut. This happened with easy child 2/difficult child 2 as well as difficult child 3 (although he is technically not a cutter or into self-harm as an outward display of inner pain). easy child 2/difficult child 2 got a coupe of her cuts infected, although she treated them herself. Some of her scars happened that way; other scars were simply due to the cutting itself, even though the cuts were clean and healed well. difficult child 3 on the other hand had surgery on his wrist for a ganglion. He is an obsessive picker, and once the stitches were removed he picked at the scar until it began to open up. We had to keep bandaging it and finally, after six months of it breaking down and getting infected because he couldn't stop picking, we got those soggy waterproof gel-type dressings (difficult child 1 hates them, he says they're weird, they smell, they make him feel like the wound is going gangrenous). It did wonders for difficult child 3's wrist, we needed two of these in succession. We left them on until they began to fall off, usually after a week or so. After two weeks of continuous gel dressings, the scar had healed enough to withstand difficult child 3's picking.

    difficult child 1 is currently "wounded" - a belt sander at work kicked back and gouged his wrist badly. We picked out some dressings and peroxide for him after seeing the pediatrician on Tuesday. It's a worry because he comes home from work literally covered in dirt, the dirt and sawdust is ingrained into his skin, so the sander probably drove some bugs into his tissues. We just have to rely on his good immune system to do the job.

    If you're worried about a kid risking infection, you can point out that a good workman looks after his tools. All knives need to be kept sharp but sheathed and ALWAYS cleaned after use.

    Increasingly, however, EMO is being seen as SOOOOO yesterday...

  7. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Thanks, all!!
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2008
  8. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    klmno, I just wanted to offer support. {{{hugs}}}