Depression and Self-harm

By Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

I’ve been cutting myself for a while now. Usually the cuts are small and the bleeding stops after 2 minutes. But today I cut until I saw white flesh. The bleeding was more severe, and lasted 4-5 minutes. My problem is that I don’t know when I should see a doctor for my scars? And my other problem is that my father is a doctor, and I’m so scared that he will find out if I have been to the ER. I know that the doctors don’t have the right to tell him, but I live in a small town, so I’m sure that he will find out if i have been to the ER.
I try to take care of my scars, but know I am not sure if I can…. Please help me.

I’m seeing a therapist and I’m on medication (Cipralex), but none of this seems to work.

A; I am very glad that you were seeing a therapist and taking some medication already. I think that is a very good start. I would encourage you to show the therapist these scars and get his or her opinion about treating them. It may be possible for you to get treatment without your father knowing. But what is most important right now is that you make this decision in concert with your therapist. He or she has been with you trying to sort all this out and now is the time for you to rely on that relationship to figure out what to do next.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 5 Aug 2013

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2013). Depression and Self-harm. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 30, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2013/08/05/depression-and-self-harm/

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