Monday, December 10, 2012

Teen Mutilation Secrets - Cutting More Common In Girls

Self-Mutilation - The Secret Teens Hide

“Emma’s” mom first noticed the cuts when “Emma” was doing the dishes one night. “Emma” told her mom that their cat had scratched her. Her mom seemed surprised that the cat had been so rough, but she didn’t think much more about it.

“Emma’s” friends had noticed something strange as well. Even when the weather was hot, “Emma” wore long-sleeved shirts. She had become secretive, too, like something was bothering her. But “Emma” couldn’t seem to find the words to tell her mom or her friends that the marks on her arms were from something she had done.

“Anna” was wearing long sleeves under her soccer jersey again. She told her friend she was concerned about getting to much sun. But when “Anna” raised her arm, her friend noticed fresh cuts on her forearm. When “Anna” saw that her friend was looking at them, she said something about ‘losing a fight with her mother’s rose bushes’.

Cutting, also known as Self-Injury or self-mutilation is a very common problem and many people are struggling to deal with it. Cutting is a way of expressing and dealing with deep distress and emotional pain. SI or SM can take on a variety of forms, from actual cutting of the skin with sharp objects to burning themselves, punching themselves, or banging their heads against the wall. Cutting has been popping up more in movies, music and other areas of pop culture.

Since cutting is generally done in private, no one really knows how widespread it is, however, the majority, but not all are female teens. Accurate information about rates and trends of self-harm are difficult to obtain since the majority of people who engage in self-harm conceal their injuries and may never come into contact with medical or other services as a result of their self-harming behaviors.

· Self-injury is one of the fastest growing child and adolescent behaviors in our country.

· Nonsuicidal self-injurious behavior usually occurs at age 13 or 14. Adults self-injure as well, but the behavior typically started at some point in childhood or adolescence.

· Self-injury is the act of deliberately destroying body tissue, at times to change a way of feeling.

In Hendry County Next Week:

Hendry County Sheriff’s Office in partnership with LaBelle High School is hosting a very important one night event on Suicide Prevention and Self-Injury Awareness presented by C.A.R.E.S. Parents, students, educators and professionals are encouraged to attend to gain a better understanding of this rising epidemic. Self-injury is a cry for help. Kids engaging in these behaviors desperately need parents to provide understanding and a willingness to listen.

Please join us at the LaBelle High School Auditorium on December 18, 2012 at 7:00 pm to have a better understanding of self-harm among young people - why it happens, how to deal with it, and how to recover from what can become a very destructive cycle.

C.A.R.E.S. (Community Awareness in Recognizing & Educating on Suicide) is an organization focusing on suicide prevention and awareness through education and advocacy. Participants will gain an understanding of suicide prevention and of self-injury and the steps to take in addressing self-injurious behavior in adolescents and young adults.

Guest Speakers are Sasha Navas, MSW, Barry University, Virginia Cervasio, Executive Director of C.A.R.E.S., and Dr. Geraldine Nobles of LaBelle.

Photo credit: Hendrike

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