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Author Topic: Forum newbie, 12yo daughter SH  (Read 1211 times)
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loveherso
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« on: April 02, 2012, 02:34:07 AM »

 

Hi there I hope I am posting in the right place, my daughter self harmed for the first time a week before her birthday, and again less than a week ago, just as the first marks were starting to fade.
If the scale of the first incident shocked me, the second blew me away as this time she used a range of ways

I haven't seen for myself yet as she is living with her Dad, he wants her to move back to me having fought me for custody some time ago. I am of course desperate to have her back with me but also terrified that I don't have the answers and there are no guarantees against another incident. I have to try and find a school place mid year for her and we don't have any family nearby.

I tried to get a referral to CAMHS - the school nurse at her current school has got the ball rolling but as it was the last day before the Easter Break and her Dad wants her to move here (different county) this week I suspect I will have to start the process anew. Have spent the last few days fretting, researching schools, reading more about SH and trying to figure out how to best accommodate her in my small flat. Tomorrow I'm back to work early and can't make personal phone calls to action anything, which is frustrating to say the least.

So, that's me, I look forward to learning more and developing a sensible approach to dealing with this, staying calm and resisting the urge to daub vitamin E on her constantly...I'm so scared for her, how she feels now, the future and the negative judgements she'll have to deal with.

rob arrow Slight edit regarding details of SH method - Gerard
« Last Edit: April 10, 2012, 10:09:41 PM by Gerard » Logged
justine
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« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2012, 08:09:03 AM »

Hi and  welcome

Yes you are in the right place, and I'm glad your hear because it sounds like you need some support Smiley

I'm afraid it's gonna be a tough ride for you, and your going to need a lot of strengh. Keep posting here though, not just about your daughter but anything you need to let out or get advice on.

Make sure you are open and understanding of your daughter. Perhaps talk to her about what she uses as well? Broken glass is really not good, as there is a risk of infection. At least using tools or something is clean. Try recommending elastic bands to her? They hurt and leave a mark, but bruising is the worst thing, no risk of infection.

Try and encourage her to talk to you about what she is going through, and don't react to anything she does say, keep calm and deal with your reaction when you are away from her. But don't push her to talk to you, just let her know she can and wait for her to come to you. I know there is another mother on this site who has a self harming daughter, and her daughter is open and talks to her, perhaps you could read through the posts in the family and friends bit and see if you can find her and send her a message? support each other Smiley

I have been the child that self harms, and the friend that supports the self harmer, so if you have any questions about anything, feel free to ask x

 big hug
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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
loveherso
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« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2012, 10:05:41 AM »

Thanks so much for your reply and all the sound advice. Exactly what I needed to hear and I hope for the most part I've stayed calm and kept the lines of communication open. It's hard to completely conceal my emotion - especially as since the first post the situation has completely changed.

Her father discovered the extent of the scratching and called me to say he didn't think he could cope with it. He brought her back a few days later.

Things seemed to be going very well, her mood was fine and she's eating well, but somehow she found a small piece of ~ and carved her midriff area extensively yesterday night. I discovered it soon after as I was tucking her in. After talking to her about it I called 'First Steps' and they spoke to both of us, and it was after that that I first felt really hopeless. I am a single parent with a full-time job and no local family and few friends (other than workmates). I'm due back at work tomorrow and all I want to do is take her to the Docs and push for a referral to CAMHS.

Can an out of hours doctor make a referral or does it have to be her GP? I've just registered her with the local practice I use where I've never seen the same GP twice anyway.

She doesn't know what made her do it this time, she said "it's addictive" and that there's no point taking all sharp objects out of sight as she'd find something else to do it with. I've explained about the risk of infection and the signs to look out for. The cuts seemed OK but she does look flushed. (I would take her to A&E if there was any doubt.)

Once again, thank you so much for reading and giving me some practical advice (you knock spots off the NHS direct MH line!) I am greatly reassured knowing I can at least come here to talk and learn ways to help her (and me) get through this.

rob arrow Slight edit regarding details of SH method - Gerard
« Last Edit: April 10, 2012, 10:14:21 PM by Gerard » Logged
justine
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« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2012, 10:20:36 AM »

of course your always welcome here  big hug

Yes it is tough being there for someone and being strong, pushing your emotions to the side. Try imagining yourself like a bold lion, that tends to help me Smiley

Maybe it's better that she is with you, as you know your doing your best to help her, and her father may not, especially if his attitude is to pass her on to you.

Yes self harm is addictive, and can be incredibly hard to resist. She needs to find a safer tool really though, as ~ isn't a good idea. Better to set her up with a safe tool then try and stop it, than to let her use ~. Yes if you take her tools away she will do anything to find more. I've known people to snap pens in half and use the jagged end, which is really not good. If she's going to do it she might as well do it safely.

Perhaps she could give ice cubes a go? and elastic bands? Worth a try at least. Elastic bands are really good Smiley

rob arrow Slight edit regarding details of SH method - Gerard
« Last Edit: April 10, 2012, 10:15:20 PM by Gerard » Logged

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
loveherso
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« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2012, 06:25:48 PM »

 bump

Hello again, thanks again for your message and sorry I didn't reply sooner.  Since I first posted on here my daughter has been back with me just over 3 months. We had some progress initially - about 2 months with no incidents, only to fall right back to the first stage again - there have been at least 3 more occasions in the last 6 weeks. She now has the CAMHS referral but not appointments as yet. She's on the waiting list to see a counsellor, I have a social worker coming to talk to me on my lunch break tomorrow and there is a family support worker at her new school, meeting with her once a week to work on her self-esteem issues.

The problem now is me...thanks for the suggestion about thinking of myself as a brave lion, that certainly helps.

As I first feared, removing her from the situation that was apparently the cause of her distress has done little to break the habit - now there are new reasons to keep doing it. Where do we go from here? I'm really struggling to stay focussed at work, quitting or reducing hours is not an option. The summer holidays are about to start and I have no one to keep an eye on her, she still insists she doesn't want to see her Dad and I'm having to placate him endlessly. I've tried elastic bands, drawing a character on her arm, talking about it, not talking about it...Just had to pause there to take another call from the school (2nd of the day) to ask if I can discourage her friendship with another girl who has just started SH...

Apologies again for my long absence after your thoughtful reply, I think I've just been tired of talking about it what with all the outside agencies now involved in our case. I realise that was a big mistake and I will endeavour not to repeat it!

Thanks xx

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goodbyepast
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« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2012, 11:25:18 PM »

it took me a while to get an appointment but i personally found it was worth the wait Smiley .... i would say make sure your daughter and her friend dont exchange ways to self harm.... ice works well by the time the ice has melted hopfull the need/ temptation has gone from her mind.... if shes going to do it make sure what ever she uses is cleen  .... hope this helpped Smiley
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