Does Cutting Really Mean Suicide?

Yep, you read that correctly…this is my topic for today.  It seems that any person connected to an adolescent these days is faced with the issue of cutting.  There are many forms of self-mutilation, but I want to focus on cutting today.  Cutting is one of the most difficult issues for parents to face.  Yes, it is a call for help.  Yes, it is an indication that something internally is going on with your child.  No, it does not always mean that they are suicidal and want to die.  Yes, it is important to follow up with a professional to see if further services need to be pursued.  One of the biggest things parents need to keep in mind is:  DON”T FREAK OUT!!  If your child tells you they are cutting, DON’T FREAK OUT!  By freaking out, you are sending a message that you are not capable of handling his/her emotions.  Teens want to know that their parents can handle whatever is laid in front of them. Parents, call a professional and ask for guidance.  Check with your child to make sure that they are safe, not going to commit suicide, no plan for suicide. LISTEN to what they have to say.  They are probably sorting out their emotions and may not have the words in their vocabulary to describe how they are feeling.  Less emotion and less words from you, as the parent, will lead to your child opening up and talking more about what is happening to them on the inside.  This is an opportunity to connect and be IN a relationship with your child.

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