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Author Topic: confused, upset and bewildered mum  (Read 2376 times)
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annemh
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« on: March 16, 2012, 02:29:21 AM »

Hello this is all so new to me I don't really know how to put things down in words,
The last few months my 16 year old daughter has had terrible mood swings, her school grades have dropped dramatically and she is isolating herself more and more, this has led to blazing rows in the house and at school and as much as people told me that it was typically 16 year old behaviour it all seemed a little extreme. Anyway on tuesday night things came to a head in a blazing row and my daughter broke down and showed me her legs, they were cut to bits, she told me that she has been cutting herself on and off for a couple of years and also that she has been binge eating then starving herself. I think I was pretty successful in not over reacting though it took all my self control and after a long chat she agreed to go to the doctor with me the next day, which we did. The GP was really nice and calm and is referring her to CAMS, he also convinced her to see her head of year at school, which we did, they were also very good and we spoke about alternative ways in which my daughter could continue at school without any pressure. OK so this all sounds good but now my daughter is so upset, she says she regrets telling me or anyone and cant understand why the school has to know and is refusing to talk to anyone about it especially any councillors because according to my daughter there is no way out and talking will not help and she likes to SH she says it feels right and normal. She seems to be fixated on the idea that only tablets might help if at all and she hates life and has a lot of thoughts about ending it.
I just don't know what to do now, it could take a couple of weeks to get an appointment with CAMS though we have GP support and i am scared stiff, I am trying to keep calm and hold it together but I am falling apart inside, I am scared to leave her on her own but I will have to at some point because I have a younger daughter to run round as well, I don't know how to handle the horrific mood swings which seem to have got worse now, I don't know what to do about the extreme negativity because she cant see an end and she's convinced she's worthless.
I just feel so lost and alone.
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Lily Kym
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« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2012, 10:38:50 AM »

 welcome to the forum. 

I dont think there is much you can do until the CAMS appointment, apart from what you are already doing.
Important thing is for you to not make yourself ill through the stress of it though. Need to look after yourself, as well as your children.

Do you have someone in real life who you can talk to? Partner/husband/best friend?

Your daughter is maybe not quite ready to stop the coping mechanism that's sh and knows that with talking about it, bringing it all out in the open, it's what she'll have to do.

Keep talking on here there are lots of helpful friend people, many of whom are in a similar situation to you.

littlehug1 littlehug2
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justine
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« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2012, 09:12:17 AM »

firstly, I have been a sixteen year old who self harms and hides everything from my parents, and I have been the friend of a young person who self harms, so I can see it from both perspectives. It sounds as though she has a big problem, especially with her self confidence. It's really hard at that age, as you start getting new feelings such as guilt, and start to wonder where your place is in the world/ feel worthless that you don't have one. It can be a real struggle, hense the mood swings. She may feel like she can do this all on her own, and that her ways of coping are the best ones. Of course she is wrong, but that might be how she feels. As grown up as they are (and feel!), 16 years olds still have quite a bit of child in them.

Really well done on not reacting, the most important thing is that you don't react badly. A lot of parents who of course want to help, end up making things really bad for their kids. Your daughter is really lucky having you being so understanding and supportive of her. Only two things I would say, one, never force her to show you her self harm. My mum did this to me and all it did was make me angry with her, and hide things from her even more. Second, unless it's an emergency and your daughter is doing SERIOUS damage in front of you, don't ever try to take away her methods or force her to stop. A clean tool she is used to is much better for her than a broken pen that she grabs in desperation. Taking away the method never works, especially as she may be feeling like her life is out of control.

By the way, my friend/young person I helped also used to starve herself, that's a tough one I think too.

It's really good you've taken her to get support, as that is the best thing to do. she needs the support of professionals, as well as you.

She is probably saying she regrets telling everyone because she is scared, and feels it has been taken out of her control. The most frustrating thing is when people don't accept help. The other thing, is self harm can be a lot about control. If she stops, she may feel she doesn't have any control anymore, or anything to make her feel instantly better. When I stopped self harm, I did it for my friends and family, and now I don't do it becuase I know its not good for me. If I had a real choice, I would still do it now, because I enjoyed it too.

Keep trying with CAMS and the GP, make sure you yourself have support. Here is a good place to get your feelings out and just talk things through with others. You can PM as well if you want. Believe me, I KNOW how tough and frustrating it is trying to support someone so young.

Leaving her on her own won't make much difference. If she wants to hurt herself, she will, whether you are there or not. However, having you around may calm her a little. The not being able to see and end to it and feelings of worthlessness i've seen so many times before. She clearly has low self esteem as well, which is something you can do a little bit about. Try not to be negative towards her, and try to be positive. 10 positive comments may make her feel perhaps she is a little bit worth something, but it only takes 1 negative one to knock it all back again. Try and encourage her to do things that will make her feel good about herself, perhaps take her away to the beach for the day or something too.

You are certainly not alone with this, in fact there are loads of people (a lot of which are on this site Smiley ) in both you and your daughters positions.

Could you suggest your daughter uses this site for support? she needs support, and as much as you and professionals can do, she will be much more likely to accept it from others. Not sure what it is, but teenagers seem to just rebel against parents and profesionals. Like anything they say is a bad idea.

You are doing all you can for her at the moment, especially by asking for help on this site.

Good luck, and let us know how its going x x
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If you feel like life is a dark, worthless place, please know that you have just fallen down a hole and that impossible as it seems, you can climb out again, and see that life is really a beautiful place to be

http://www.nshn.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=74073.msg1702918#new
PrettyLittleLie
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« Reply #3 on: April 01, 2012, 07:25:56 PM »

Only two things I would say, one, never force her to show you her self harm. My mum did this to me and all it did was make me angry with her, and hide things from her even more. Second, unless it's an emergency and your daughter is doing SERIOUS damage in front of you, don't ever try to take away her methods or force her to stop. A clean tool she is used to is much better for her than a broken pen that she grabs in desperation. Taking away the method never works, especially as she may be feeling like her life is out of control.

Leaving her on her own won't make much difference. If she wants to hurt herself, she will, whether you are there or not.

^ I think these are really important points....

It seems like a really hard situation to be in. I suppose I am on the other side to you, I am 17, self harm, and have gone through stages of starving myself. I also find it very hard to talk to my family and push people away a lot..... it may be really hard to understand things right now, but I think it is important to never force your daughter into speaking about things. If anyone tries to force me to talk, I don't and I push them away, I think it is important to let you know you are there to listen, however let her open up to you in her own time.

When my parents first found out, I hated it. I wished they never found out. However a child hating people knowing isn't a reflection on you or your relationship with her necessarily, feeling the control slip through your fingers when someone finds out can be so difficult. I also felt like my parents would stop treating me normally and felt very awkward around them for a while. I spent a few weeks trying to get out the house as much as possible. Just give her a bit of space, and let her adjust to things a bit.

Maybe you could write her a note saying you are there to listen if she wants you and a list of some websites or phone numbers which she can ring to get support? It is probably the hardest thing to explain how you feel and why you are hurting yourself to someone who loves you and is emotionally involved, for both people, and helplines may help her to start to express how she feels, without worrying about how someone will react.

This must be really difficult for you, and CAMHS can often offer some support to the family as well. My parents see a family therapist- I don't go to those sessions, it is mainly for my parents to gain some support, because if they are supported it makes them more relaxed and puts less pressure on me.

I think with mood swings comes that 'I want help' 'I don't want help' thing.... she is likely to have very mixed feelings about CAMHS, just remind her she has nothing to lose by going, and if she feels meds will help, CAMHS are the people to talk to that about.

With the eating, just make sure CAMHS are aware of the situation, especially if it gets any worse. My first CAMHS worker was hopeless (getting on with a worker is really important, so make sure your daughter knows she can ask for them to be changed if she doesn't get on with them), and by the time she realised the extent of my eating issues, and the impacts it was having on me, I was on the verge of having to have a blood transfusion. Not saying this would be common, just saying with eating problems, it is always good to make sure the physical side is monitored (blood pressure, pulse and blood tests), just in case.

Good luck with your daughter, I hope things improve for you both soon. Hugs, feel free to PM me if you want.
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annemh
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« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2012, 01:08:11 PM »

Thank you everyone for your messages of support. We have been to CAMHS and they have been very supportive, my daughter has been put on Prozac and has been taking it for 2 weeks but in all honesty things seem to be getting worse at the moment. My daughter has had 2 breakdowns and I am sure the cutting is getting worse, she is freaking out about too many people knowing and says the pain inside is unbearable and she wants to end it all, CAMHS are now in everyday to see her but she is struggling to communicate anything except to me. To say that I am at my wits end is an understatement, I just don't know what to do anymore, school is totally out of the question now because it just triggers everything and I think my daughter is about to lose her job because she won't tell work what is wrong. I feel like I am on 24 hour suicide watch and I am screaming inside. All I can think is why why why my baby girl why us.... 
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shortcake74
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« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2012, 01:49:30 PM »

Hi, I wish I had the right words or experience to tell you it will all be ok  littlehug1
I'm fairly new to all this but am finding being on here is helping.
Are CAHMS supporting you as well as your daughter? Whilst it's difficult, at least she is communicating to you and hopefully once her trust builds with CAHMS she will start opening up to them too then they'll be able to give her the right help. My daughter opens up to me  but more recently tells me her head is messed up but is struggling to put into words what is going on. We have an assessment appt with cahms next month and whilst I know this will not be an end to it all I'm hoping it'll at least be the start to a long road to recovery.
Stay strong and keep offloading Smiley
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justine
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« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2012, 06:54:55 PM »

I think it's normal for people on antidepressents to react strage at first, I think they can feel more suicidal than usual as well, but then after a number of weeks it passes and things get better. A bit like a curve, where before they start they are feeling low, after they start they are suicidal, then weeks later they are quite a bit better, better than they were before (before they were feeling low, somewhat normal).

I agree with shortcake, that it's great news she is talking to you, I would encourage this and be as supportive as you can.

Hopefully this shouldn't last too long, and the prozac will settle down and your daughter will start to feel a lot better x x x
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If you feel like life is a dark, worthless place, please know that you have just fallen down a hole and that impossible as it seems, you can climb out again, and see that life is really a beautiful place to be

http://www.nshn.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=74073.msg1702918#new
annemh
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« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2012, 12:59:34 AM »

 Cry thank you again to you all for your messages of support, unfortunately things have taken a turn for the worse. My daughter is in hospital at the moment and is having a psychiatric assessment tomorrow, on Thursday afternoon after a visit from the nurse I left her in peace for a while in her room as she seemed ok, 30 mins later she walked into the living room looking like she was in shock, I asked her what was wrong and she just held up an empty packet of ibuprofen, she had took all of them! Needless to say I called 999 and she was taken straight to hospital, luckily she had not done any significant damage to herself by taking the tablets, but all she could say was she would do it better next time. Last night she managed to self harm in the hospital and is now classed as high risk and under 1 to 1 observation, I just don't know what will happen tomorrow, I am so frightened, I want her with me but I don't think I can cope with this alone at home now, I also have a 12 year old daughter, I am scared that if she comes home she will just kill herself but if she goes into a hospital I'm frightened that she will learn worse ways to hurt herself and the hospital will be miles away because of where we live and I don't drive .... I just want my daughter back and I am terrified I am going to lose her !!!
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justine
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« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2012, 02:35:11 PM »

hey hey, calm down  big hug all is not quite as bad as it seems x x

What your daughter is going through is pretty bad, and she needs a lot of professional help. Hospital is the best place for her to be. You can only do your best, but you are no expert, and can't stop her from spiralling downwards. Having the assessment they will decide how is best to help her, and perhaps diagnose her with a condition that can be recognised and appropriate support put in place for her.

One thing to note, do not blame yourself for anything. There is nothing you could have done differently that would have stopped this or made it any better. I'm sure the pills will be removed from her system before any harm is done, and she will be sorted out and made better again, in time. Her being at home right now would not be a good idea. If she's tried killing herself once, she'll try again, and you can't always be around. She won't learn worse ways to hurt herself at the hospital, so don't worry about that. If she stays at the hospital then they will protect her and stop her from hurting herself until she is well enough to come home again. She's not gone forever.

There is this book I read, based on a true story, about a girl who had a lot of issues, and she tried killing herself. She was admitted to hospital, and at first she hated it there. But they stopped her from hurting herself, and pushed her to take part in therapies, and after some time she began to make friends who she felt understood her, as they had problems too, and she got a bit happier. At the end of the story she was a lot better, she still had issues but she was able to leave the hospital and carry on with her life.

I know you must be going through hell right now, and it must feel like the worst thing in the world, but I think it's whats best for her. A lot of teenagers, and even adults refuse help, and they just get worse and worse, but she will be looked after and get help.

Keep talking to us x  big hug x
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If you feel like life is a dark, worthless place, please know that you have just fallen down a hole and that impossible as it seems, you can climb out again, and see that life is really a beautiful place to be

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billy
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« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2012, 03:53:34 PM »

hi

i am on Prozac and i hate to tell u this but the first 3 mounths on Prozac r horrid but after that it is really worth taking  littlehug1 so just try and get ur daughhter to sick with it< it will be heard for u and her
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