Check this out...
The latest "My Turn" in Newsweek was written by a librarian/school media specialist, Jami Jones. It describes how an experience in her personal life helped educate her to the need to get better involved in teens and their emotional needs.
The practice she refers to, cutting, is common among borderlines. I had reached a point where I was starting to cut myself, and I've done other self-destructive things as a way to distract myself from emotional pain or remind myself that I was still here, still flesh, still capable of feeling physical pain. In essence, I became my own abuser. Something like 1 in 10 borderlines will succeed in suicide. I count myself as one of the lucky ones, because I had someone who reached out to me before it was too late.
I commend Dr Jones for reaching out to teens and for presenting this topic in such a widely-read magazine. I'm sure many, many parents out there would be shocked at what their children might be doing to themselves. And, unfortunately in many cases, the parents are either abusive or incapable of giving the child the love and support necessary. It's up to the rest of us to help.
I had never told anyone--not therapist, not any of my family or friends, the things I did to myself, the feelings I had of suicide, the pain I felt. Finally one day, when I had been acting out and was generally irrational, I broke down, and it came out. It was a shock to those who thought they knew me. I shocked myself. It became obvious, even to me, that I had to seek professional help, and I embarked on a year of dialectical behaviour therapy as a result. It turned my life around, and while I still have to work every day to maintain my newfound health, a lot of the pain is gone. I have hope for the first time in years. Other people deserve that, too.
I've e-mailed Dr Jones to include me in a list of contacts interested in building resiliency in teens. I've long wanted to get involved in something along this line, ways to build self-esteem so they might avoid abusive relationships, underachievement, depression, etc.