Depression and Self-Harm

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

I’m 16 years old and for about three years now I have been really depressed. I have self-harmed quite a bit, and now have a lot of trouble sleeping. I am constantly arguing with my family, and have real problems when it comes to friendships. I like to keep myself to myself, and mostly because I have been bullied for the past five years of my life. I feel really isolated and secluded from anybody, and am constantly finding it hard to cope with minimal friendships. I find it terribly difficult to talk to anybody about how I feel because I hate to have attention. I am just trying so hard to cope, but nearly every day I break down. No one knows, because I keep myself to myself. I have a lot of trouble showing my emotions and people see me as a careless, selfish person. I really don’t think I am a good person, however I know it’s all in my head. I hate talking about myself because I do not want anyone to guess what is wrong with me, although I really want to tell someone. I constantly feel hopeless and even more helpless, ever on the brink of self-harming. I seem to have no control over my emotions, and can explode at anyone, although it seems to always be a family member. I just feel no one understands me and I really want to know how to deal with my problem. I hate living with these feelings, but I can’t help myself. I do sometimes just want to die, and I honestly believe that no one will care, as I have next to no friends and I feel that my family doesn’t like me. I am really scared that I will do something that will take a turn for the worse.

A: Since it has often been your family that you have lashed out to, perhaps you can enlist their help in making an appointment with a therapist. My guess is if you explain that you know you need to change and want some help in making that happen, then they will be able to help.

I would certainly seek this help sooner rather than later. You did the right thing by reaching out here — now take the next step and ask for help from your family. If they are not able, bring your concerns to your school counselor or a trusted teacher. They should be able to get you on the right path.

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 Sep 2013

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2013). Depression and Self-Harm. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 31, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2013/09/05/depression-and-self-harm-2/