Cutting and Self-Harm: How You can Stop and Save Your Teen

Teen cutting is usually associated with a desire to commit suicide, which is wrong as it is actually a way of coping with some painful or troubling situation or circumstances. There has been a lot of debate on why teens cut as the whole idea of giving pain to one own self seems incomprehensible. There are several underlying reasons for self-abuse, but that’s beside the point right now. What’s important is that you realize how serious the situation is and understand that you can help them escape the agonizing labyrinth they’re trapped in.

Control Your Emotions

It is normal to feel shocked, sad, depressed, disappointed, surprised, and scared upon discovering that your teen is cutting himself. You might be assuming the worst and blaming yourself for not being a good enough parent. This is not the time to panic. You need to remain composed and clear your head. Just take some time off, cry if you want, call a friend, go for a walk, or do any other thing that can make you feel better. Calm yourself so that you can get down to helping your teen.

Find the Root Cause of Self-Abuse

Learn everything you can on cutting , like the possible reasons behind teens behaving this way, how to help them, when to get professional help, etc. Some of the most common reasons for teens indulging in self-injury include are as follows:

  • To relieve stress, depression and anxiety,
  • To overcome peer pressure,
  • To release anger,
  • To vent feeling of helplessness,
  • As a reaction of any tragic incident like sexual abuse, death of loved one etc.

It’s your duty to find out which of the above-mentioned feelings may be serving as the cause in your teen’s situation.

Confront the Teen

It is equally difficult for you and your kid to talk about this sensitive issue face to face, but it is really important you both do. He may resist in the start due to fear or embarrassment, but you still have to try talking to him on this issue. It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it. So, just straightaway tell the teen that you know about his cutting habit and that you just want to help. Chances are you kid may not know why he does this or he may not be ready to spill the details to you just yet, but don’t give up trying. To help your teen overcome the problem, you first need to unearth the underlying causes.

Patience is a Virtue

Remember, it is just the start of a long journey, so be patient and do not lose hope. Teens may not quit this habit right away as they may not be mentally ready or aren’t able to control it. Introduce him to other ways of releasing stress and negative energy like playing sports, performing exercise, spending time with friends, etc. With your love and continuous support, he will surely be able to overcome the urge to inflict injury on himself and start leading a healthy and safe life again.

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