Self harm in kids: Is it just attention seeking?

(6 ratings)
girl teen sad depressed lonely stress_jupiter
When you have no experience of something it can be easy to write it off as 'just a phase' or 'attention seeking'. As we talked about before, self harm is incredibly serious and should never be taken as anything other than that. Some people will self harm once or twice in their lives and never do it again. Some might do it repeatedly over a period of time and then stop and never go back to it but some people continue to self harm for years.

If your child comes forward and reveals their wounds to you, it can be shocking and very distressing. The fact that they have so openly shown you what they have done to themselves may lead you to think that they have just done it to upset you or get your attention but it's more likely to be a cry for help. This again leads back to the reasons behind self harming.

If they talk to you about how they're feeling (which is a very positive step and one that all parents won't be lucky enough to see) but they can't pinpoint any one particular event or thing that's happened to make them do it, you might feel like they're just making a fuss or not be able to get your head around it. It's likely they just don't understand the motives themselves, let alone be able to explain them to you so try to have patience with them.

Continued below...

Often people that self harm will be embarrassed and ashamed of their problem and try to keep it a secret at all costs by hiding their scars under clothes or just pretending to be OK in public. It can be hard to know that anything is wrong and in this case, attention is probably the last thing they want.

Your rating

Average rating

  • 4
(6 ratings)

Your comments

comments powered by Disqus

FREE Newsletter