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How can I help a friend who cuts?
Posted 3/14/14
Today, I saw the scars on my friend's arm.
I really don't know what to do, how to help her.
It makes me so upset, I've known her for so long.
Please give me some advice to help her and your own personal stories.

Thank you.
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It doesn't matter.
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Posted 3/14/14
tell her school councilor

or

give her antiseptic.
Posted 3/14/14
Talking to her about it is a good place to start.
Posted 3/14/14
Talk to her about it and if that doesn't seem to get you anywhere inform her parents or guidance counselor at school. It might hurt your friendship(hopefully not permanently) but she needs help. Most likely from more than one source and so the more people that know of the issue the better.
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Posted 3/14/14 , edited 3/14/14

Valkyerie wrote:

Today, I saw the scars on my friend's arm.
I really don't know what to do, how to help her.
It makes me so upset, I've known her for so long.
Please give me some advice to help her and your own personal stories.

Thank you.


Is your friend is the US? I can give you an information phone number for referrals and support if you don't know where to turn.

S.A.F.E. Alternatives (Self-Abuse Finally Ends) – Organization dedicated to helping people who self-harm. Includes treatment referrals, recovery information, and an information helpline: 1-800-366-2288. (S.A.F.E. Alternatives)

Mind Infoline – Information on self-harm and a helpline to call in the UK at 0300 123 3393. (Mind)

Kids Helpline – A helpline for children and teens in Australia to call at 1800 55 1800. (Kids Helpline)

Kids Help Phone – A helpline for kids and teens in Canada to call for help with any issue, including cutting and self-injury. Call 1-800-668-6868. (Kids Help Phone)

Hope this helps.

Also, forgot to include a website http://self-injury.net/

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Posted 3/14/14
be there for her, no matter what. Listen to her problems, figure things out, if someone's giving her a hard time tell them to back off. She's your friend it's what friends do. My boyfriend had that habit for the longest time but I'm here and I listem, I have a friend who goes through depression for a week every month and one time he did cut and I told him that's not the thing to do.

My advice is the be there by her side and tell to that you'll be there for h
er I hope she gets better
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26 / F / USA
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Posted 3/14/14
Talking to her is definitely the best first step, if you feel comfortable approaching her about it. There's probably a lot of things that will be difficult for you to handle just by yourself, since you're not trained in this area, but as a friend, you may be able to help convince her to seek the help she needs. Generally, people who cut are doing it because of problems in their lives that are difficult for them to face alone. It's not just physical pain from the cutting, but a sign that they're really suffering emotionally/mentally.

People who self-harm need a lot of support from their loved ones to be able to deal with the source of their problems and be able to stop hurting themselves. If you don't think you can talk to her about it alone, you should talk to an adult in your life who may have more expertise in this area. A counselor or therapist would be best at helping your friend, but she does need to have the motivation to help herself as well. For that, she'll need good friends like you at her side.
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20 / M / Tórshavn
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Posted 3/14/14 , edited 3/14/14
I think trying to talk to her and figure out what is causing her to do this to her self. I say talk to her, push her into saying what, I know that pushing her might be a bad thing in the present, but if you figure out the problem and the two of you are able to fix it, it will be a bond like no other.
The other way of doing this is talking to professional help, as someone posted above, there are many that have experiences in these cases and they will know best how to handle this situation.


I would recommend the second solution (talk to professionals) Because I have no experience with this what-so-ever, so please do that.
Posted 3/14/14
That stuff's all internal. The best you can do is to help her help herself.
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27 / M / United States
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Posted 3/14/14 , edited 3/14/14
Don't lecture her...last thing she wants is a lecture. Try asking her about it and give her the opportunity to open up but be ready/prepared to be burdened with her problems. Be understanding but let her know it hurts you when she does stuff like that. Let her know you are there for her if she needs you. Then if her parents are not part of the problem let them know so they can get her help (make sure they are willing to understand her though and not just get mad). Also try calling a professional hotline or psychatrist and see what they suggest. However not every situation is the same so use your own judgement when taking advice from others.

Hope this helps your friend.
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Posted 3/14/14
Just talk to her and listen be that shoulder she needs.
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21 / M / The Void
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Posted 3/14/14 , edited 3/14/14
She may just be a masochist. I know pain can be fun, so I'd recommend asking her if she's serious or not.
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29 / M / NY
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Posted 3/14/14 , edited 3/14/14

Valkyerie wrote:

Today, I saw the scars on my friend's arm.
I really don't know what to do, how to help her.
It makes me so upset, I've known her for so long.
Please give me some advice to help her and your own personal stories.

Thank you.


I used to help out a particular none profit organization that is FOR helping people like your friend... http://twloha.com/vision/story that's a link to the organization and the story that started it all. There is plenty of links on TWLOHA's website to help you AND her. I used to cut myself. TWLOHA helped me and millions others. it could help your friend as well... hope this helps!
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39 / M / Florida
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Posted 3/14/14 , edited 3/15/14
Do what everyone above said to do.
Be a friend and talk, if that doesn't work, get some professional attention to it.
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Posted 3/14/14
Hi can everyone please stop just saying to 'talk to her'? It's not always that easy.

Also a special place in hell is reserved for those of you who think that a lot of people enjoy cutting.

Cutting is a form of self harm. Obviously. Its sometimes done because they believe pain is the only way to cope. They sometimes believe that they deserve pain. Its usually a byproduct of depression, and often times leads to suicidal thoughts, but not all the time.

The thing people don't understand is self harm can become as addicting as drugs. Even when you're not sad, you'll feel compelled to self harm. Its a bad habit. Very bad. Once you start its hard to stop.

As for how to help your friend, it depends on her situation. She may not want to discuss her reasoning. She may just need a shoulder to cry on. She might need all the support she can get. Just keep an eye on her. Please make sure shes okay. Self harm is hard to get over.

My advice is, if you ever notice it getting too bad, please report it to someone. Especially if shes contemplating suicide. It may land her in a mental hospital for a while for recovery, but its much, much better than losing a friend.

Self harm is a painful addiction. I should know.

So, I really hope I helped. I know if she needs someone to talk to, there's suicide prevention hotlines. Don't pressure her into talking if shes not ready. Don't even point out her scars. Help from the sidelines. Call her. Text her. Just be there for her. Be a friend and wait to see if she opens up to you. If she doesn't, like I said: do not push it. Some people don't like to talk about their self harm.

If this seems a bit rambly, I'm sort of still flippin out over the person on the last page who said ""If she enjoys cutting herself, I don't really see how you can see trying to stop her from doing it."

Iggy out.
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