There are so many aspects of mental health that we ignore. One of the most common among teenagers is cutting and self mutilation. We see the scars. We see the outward signs of an inward problem.
I've heard many people say, it's a parenting problem. The parents aren't paying enough attention, but I'm here to tell you that if someone is cutting - they're also hiding it. Cutting is for them, not for anyone else.
Today, I'd like to share a guest post from the lovely Sarah at The Momisodes. This is a very personal post, which she posted last December & has graciously given me permission to share with you all.
Thank you, Sarah, for opening yourself up and sharing your story. You may follow the links highlighted to go visit the Momisodes and this link. Thank you all, in advance for the read!
Monday, December 3, 2012
I hid my cuts as best as I could. If they were noticed, I blamed it on one of the cats. It worked and I hid it for a long time. Several years in fact. Then one night, I cut myself so bad that I couldn't hide it.
I'd just broken up with my ex, a different guy I had feelings for was playing with my emotions. I was a single mom of twins, I was struggling and I was feeling overwhelmed. I was trying to relax, so I lit some candles and started listening to music and that ultimately made me feel worse. I found a box cutter that I'd had hidden (at this point, I'm escalated from using a safety pin to using knives and razors). I held out my arm, pulled the blade across my skin and just felt relief.
Then I felt fear.
I'd cut myself deeper than usual and I was bleeding a lot. I didn't cut across my wrist, but I cut across a vein and I thought I hit it. I wrapped my arm in a towel and it bled through that. I called my friends Justin and Kymmi, in tears, because I was scared and ashamed. They came over and we talked. By the time they got to my house, the bleeding had pretty much stopped. I bandaged it up with their help and, after they left, I went to bed.
The next morning, I told my mom about it and confessed to her. Here I was a 23 year old mother of two, still living with my mom, crying on her shoulder. She started crying and begged me not to do it again. I told her I wouldn't and I lived by that. I gave her all my cutting material at that time. She, in turn, agreed to be there when I needed to talk. She even paid for me to get my nose pierced when I was feeling low one day. That helped a ton!
I'm almost 30 now and it's been at least 6 years since I cut (maybe a little more). I'm married to an amazing man and I realize that my kids are where they need to be...with me. They are the reason I wake up every morning and I don't turn to something like cutting anymore.
I still get depressed, but it's not near as bad as it use to be. A lot of it is tied to my weight and self esteem. But I have better control over my depression now and I know that, while I may be down right now, I'll get through that storm.
If you or someone you know is cutting or even thinking about suicide, please listen to them. Talk to them and let them know you are there for them. For more information on hotlines, please check out the USA National Suicide and Crisis Hotlines.