14 and hurting

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

I’m 14. My dad got divorced my mother, then my step mother, and is now going to marry someone again. I neeed help with how to tell my parents how i feel. I am not very comfortable with telling people how i feel. I have now developed an eating disorter and am facing depression. I don’t tell them how i feel becasue my mother gets angry very easily. I have tried to talk to her but it ended wit me crying and her screaming. My dad never listens to what i have to say. How can i tell them how i feel in the most comfortable way. I don’t want to see a therapist so i have resulted in asking and not confronting. I thank you if you may or may not help.

A: When people are hurting this much, they often start to hurt each other – even when they don’t mean to.Your dad keeps looking for love and failing at it. Your mom seems so overwhelmed with her own troubles that hearing another problem coming from you sends her over the edge. You are hurting so much, you are starting to hurt yourself, maybe hoping that that will get through to your folks when words don’t. Everyone is hurting.

You are right to not want a personal therapist. The problems you are having are not just your problems. They are family problems. Even though your parents are divorced, they still are both parenting you. We need to see if we can get all of you in to see a family therapist who can help your folks do a better job of it.

As much as you don’t want to see a therapist, the route to getting the help you all need is probably to do just that. I found 3 marriage and family therapists in your city by going to the website for the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists.
Go to Then do a search for family therapists near you.

Once you have a name, it’s time to figure out how to get your parents’ attention. Talking to them doesn’t work. Showing them (with an eating disorder and depression) doesn’t seem to work either. It sounds to me like you need reinforcements. Think about whether there is a relative, or a school counselor, or a clergy, or a favorite teacher who can help you tell whichever parent you live with the most that you all need help learning how to communicate so your teen years can be happier ones.

If even that doesn’t work. Please reconsider and go yourself. A therapist can help you learn how to talk to your folks so that maybe you can get them to listen. Therapy can also help you learn the things you need to learn so that you can focus on making friends, doing well in school, and getting on with life, regardless of what your parents are doing.

You made an important first step in writing to me. Now please take the next one. You can do it.
I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

Photo

 

 

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 26 Jul 2009

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2009). 14 and hurting. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 26, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2009/07/26/14-and-hurting/

Want a more immediate answer from others like you?
Use your Psych Central account in our self-help support community.

Subscribe to Our Weekly Newsletter


Find a Therapist
Enter ZIP or postal code



Users Online: 6076
Join Us Now!