How Can I Tell my Mom I’m Cutting Again?

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Q. I went to a therapist for about 3 months last year for cutting because I felt so depressed and no one I knew anything about how I was feeling…It felt like a way for me to be able to control the pain I felt. Like no one could hurt me if I hurt myself first. The therapist said I was okay after 3 months. I thought I was too. But then I had a relapse at the beginning of last summer when my mom said she had a new fiancee and that she was planning on getting married. But she hadn’t even told me about him until they were engaged. Then school was getting to be unbearable…My social life seemed to be goin down hill. My boyfriend I had been going out with for a while, and I felt SO close to him, broke up with me to go out with one of my “friends”. Then my best friend moved across the country and I couldn’t talk to her hardly. I saw a razor one day…I cut my arm one time. I thought I could stop after just one…But I couldn’t. Now my arm is covered, my hips and legs have cuts too. My mom thinks I’m still okay…And she’s really happy and everything and I just can’t stand the thought of making her sad or mad at me because of the cutting…Please help me….

A. You need to tell your mother the truth. She can assist you in getting back into treatment for help with this problem. It seems as though you were helped previously by a therapist for this same problem and it could be that you need this help again. You already know that working with the therapist helped before now all you need to do is to be honest with your mother to get that help again.

I understand you are hesitant to tell your mother about your cutting. Maybe you feel that you are sparing your mother’s feelings by withholding this information but all you are doing is allowing yourself to continue to suffer. You said you do not want her to be sad or mad about your cutting. But realize it is not your job as the child to protect your mother. It is her job to protect you from harm, especially when you are feeling as though you cannot control this aspect of your behavior.

Don’t worry about your mother’s feelings, worry about getting yourself help. Your mother will likely help you with this issue and the proof is that she helped you before to get into treatment when you had previous instances of cutting.

Go to your mother and be honest. Stop allowing yourself to suffer and get the help you know that you need and that has proven effective in the past. This will be the most efficient way to put an end to your suffering and dangerous cutting behavior.

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Apr 2008

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2008). How Can I Tell my Mom I’m Cutting Again?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 1, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2008/04/21/how-can-i-tell-my-mom-im-cutting-again/