A year of extraordinary losses.

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Q: My dad has been an alcoholic now for about a year. I tell him how much hes hurting me etc but he thinks hes not doing anything and is in denial. He will call me abusive names, he tells me he hates me and wishes i was dead. Although this might be the drink talking, i cant help but think he is speaking the truth. He is not physically abusive, although hes gone to hit me before but never actually done it. He thinks because he doesnt hit us hes a great dad… But words can be alot more painful than a punch.

My mum was bolemic last year, it was really difficult seeing her in the state she was and everytime she went to the bathroom i knew what she would be doing. She managed to overcome that and is on anti-depressants now. I forgot to mention my dads on anti-depressants aswell. Anyway shes recently been saying i feel fat etc. I`m rlli worried.

Last year i watched my nanna die in hospital, then a months later my grandad passed away and then my cat got ran over. You might think nothing of the cat issue, but you dont realise how much you can miss something like that. When i watched my nan die in hospital as she passed away blood poured out her nose. I was really not in a good state, just none stop crying.

Anyway I dont cope with things in a good way. I cut myself when i get angry and inhale aerosol fumes through a cloth now and again. No matter what anyone says i do not get the relief from my anger and pain from anything else but doing these things.
I know i`m doing damage to my body. But right now i couldnt careless. My mum is trying to get me to see some teen counsellor… i just dont like the idea of talking to a complete stranger about my life story.

A: You already know that you are in serious trouble. This past year has been a relentless series of losses and worries. Very few people could handle what you are going through without having some problems themselves. The events have overwhelmed your ability to cope – and it’s no wonder!
But here’s the thing: You already talked to a complete stranger. Me. You might even feel a little better for having done so. Telling your story and having someone listen sympathetically is probably just what you need right now. A good teen counselor will know how to do that and will also know how to help you figure out what you can change and what you can’t. What you are describing is just too hard for any kid to handle alone. Your mother has made a loving and wise suggestion. Now that you have broken the ice with me, I hope you will take her advice and at least try to talk to a professional who can really be there for you.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 4 Nov 2006

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2006). A year of extraordinary losses.. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 23, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2006/11/04/a-year-of-extraordinary-losses/