My Daughter is Cutting

cutting self harmYesterday, I found out my daughter has been cutting herself. When I saw her, wounds I just covered my face with my hands and my eyes immediately began to tear up. As quickly as my tears began to flow, I somehow managed to stop and just talk to her. I just wanted to be supportive to her and figure out what to do next.

She asked me if something happened with her father all those years ago and my answer was that I just do not know. I do not have any evidence that nothing happened anymore than I have evidence that something did happen. The fact is I do not have all the pieces to the story, and my daughter does not remember. Clearly there is a big problem here, and her emotions seem to be coming out sideways.

So I called the counselor we used to see a few years ago, and she remembered us and the backstory. She also happens to specialize in adolescence who cut. The good thing is my daughter and her counselor already built up a rapport and my daughter likes this counselor. It sounds like my daughter is ready to deal with the pain.

It was huge that my daughter told me, and I know that is the first step towards healing. My feelings are so mixed, between feeling like it is somehow my fault or that I should have figured this out sooner. I know the relationship with her father is extremely unhealthy. About three weeks ago I wrote a post titled An Abuser Doesn’t Change His Spots that detailed a recent encounter my daughter had with her father. She said it was that day she started cutting again. Her relationship with her father is very emotionally abusive.

Apparently she has been cutting off and on for about three years. Right now she has about 20 cuts on her upper thigh. It was awful seeing all those cuts because I know they represent her pain. I truly wish we hadn’t stopped going to counseling when my ex-husband started harassing us a bit less. I was under this impression that we were all healing, but I was wrong.

We found some razors in the bathroom that had a portion of them removed to expose the blade. This is how she was cutting herself. The wounds are not terribly deep, but they do look painful. We are going to see a doctor tomorrow to see what we can use to heal these visible wounds. Perhaps she can start the journey healing her inside at the same time we heal her outside wounds.

It is huge that she made the decision to come forward and admit what she has been doing. I know that is the first step towards recovery.

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