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Question for an assessment question - update/edit!

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Question: Would you take away all aspects of your child's privacy if they were cutting/self harming themselves?




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I was having coffee with a friend and she told me that her DD17 is doing a health class. They have a part of the class where they study mental illnesses. Today the class was apparently having a debate today about what a parent should do when confronted with self harming. Some of the class believed that if it was "obvious" that the child was doing it for attention that the parent should force the child to be ashamed of the behaviour by making them give up their bathroom privacy, bedroom privacy, limiting what clothes they should wear; etc. Other members believed that (regardless of whether it's for "attention" or not) the parents should not humilate the child further and make sure the child feels safe and secure. The teacher decided to have them write a report on what they think, what their parents think and what their parents would do BESIDES counselling. For some reason this report greatly interests me and now I'm turning it over to you moms, what would you do if your child was self harming? (besides counselling) Would you limit their privacy? One child asked "well shaving is a right, so wouldn't the parents be harming them further by disallowing them this basic right not to have hair on their legs/armpits/bikini line?" What do you think?

Well, I showed my friend's DD this post and she said that she thought taking away privacy/rights was shaming. She said she can understand no more electronic privacy, even limited normal privacy (i.e only being allowed in the bedroom to sleep) but never bathroom privacy being taken away. "THAT'S A RIGHT!!!" she says annoyed. :P she's a long way from being a mom. She now wants to know whether you guys would also take away having the right to choose what music/books the young person listens to/reads?

by on Mar. 20, 2013 at 11:32 PM
Replies (51-51):
by Member on Mar. 25, 2013 at 9:44 AM
My daughter is 21 and out of high school now :( unfortunetely the school suggestions are a bit late. But thanks anyway! She's got her last free session with her psychologist this week so I might suggest to the psychologist that she talk to her about group therapy. DD doesn't talk about her problems; the psychologist does think she has a genuine case of depression but obviously cannot disclose specific examples which frustrates me to no end which is why I'm hesitant to allow her to go to group therapies. I don't know what she's already seen/had happen so I don't know what behaviour she might 'learn'. DD though is rarely popular wherever she goes because she is 'weird' and laughs at the wrong times so I'm also hesitant to send her for that reason too

Quoting lazyd:

My daughter was sent to an "alternative" school for troubled teens and teens who just couldnt/cant handle regular schools.  I still have my doubts about the school, cuz she hangs around the "high schoolers" on the school bus and I think they are a bad influence.  They school is for 7th-12th graders.  She is in the 8th grade, but the school has the 7th & 8th graders separate from the "high schoolers".  There are two separate halls, and the grades do not mix.  There are a couple of classes that my daughter has to take in the "high school" hall, but there are teachers that watch that the kids do not talk to each other and the kids get written up if they talk to each other and have to spend time in the "Tank" (detention) for a little bit if they talk.  It reflects "poorly" on a kids "record" and the kids dont get to do fun stuff during the school year if they have a poor record.  So a lot of the upper class kids dont talk to the lower class - they dont want to get in trouble - plus you remember how it was in high school - not many seniors talked to freshman!  :)

I still am up in the air about the school.  The class sizes are smaller and the school has helped my daughter (she's a straight A student), and my daughter actually met all her "bad" friends at a park that is nearby who do drugs, etc.  But I think that she has met some "bad" kids at the school to.  The one good thing about this school is that it is almost like a private school (that you dont have to pay for) cuz the school sends out "letters of intent" and has to "invite" the students back.  The school is actually looking out for my daughter and has told her to stop talkin to certain older kids or they will send those kids back their "neighborhood" school.  The kids are not talkin to my daughter anymore now!  This school is serious.  Even the bus driver writes up kids - gives them a referral that the driver turns into the school - if a kid gets off the bus at the wrong stop (to probably hang out with someone they shouldnt).  

My only suggestion is to talk to your kids' dean or counselor to see if your school district has this type of school somewhere in the district.  If the "alternative" school "accepts" your daughter - than the school has to provide the transportation.  That's different than "open enrollment" where you wait to see if they have the space - than you would have to provide the transportation.  

The thing with the group therapy i agreed with too.  The kids that go to group make my daughter look "normal"!  LOL!  And i dont know what these kids do in their off times, but none live close to us, so my daughter hasnt wanted to actually hang out with any.  BUT surprisingly, the kids speak their minds and a lot of the kids (im told by the therapist who attends group is also my daughter's individual therapist) that a lot of the kids DONT like my daughter and that my daughter is the "bad" and rude one.  I think my daughter was just bragging about things she wasnt really doing so she looked more "cooler".  But the kids talk about problems they each have and all the kids offer support and their opinions.  The therapist actually dont talk much - its all about the teens to vent amongst their peers in a safe environment.  

We are going thru our city/county "mental health" department, so maybe this might be different from what your kids' health insurance recommended (I dont know what type of insurance, if any, that you have).  My daughter is on the "states health ins plan".  If your insurance allows - see if you can get a second or different opinion?  I think group is actually good and puts my daughter in her place.  It is something that you can try - its not "mandatory" and you can quit at any time.  

I know this is long - but the last side note - before my daughter could get into her new school - she was allowed to leave each of her classes a couple of minutes before they ended so she was in the halls by herself and could not interact with the kids (she waited by the door and waited until all kids were out of the class before she entered) - that way she was "first" to all her classes.  If your daughter goes to multiple classes throughout the day - see if the school will allow your daughter to do this.  Limits the social interaction with kids she shouldnt be talkin to. 

Good luck.

Quoting GleekingOut:

We got told group therapy wasn't an option for our DD because (of her autism) that the doctor was worried that she might learn new behaviour and get worse. And just curious; how do you limit who she can see when she see's them at school? We've tried limiting our DD to people when she was having "stalking issues" (in the schools eye) but we chose to stop because the school was encouraging her to speak to the teens and hang out with them at school but wanted me to keep her home outside of school 24/7 and take away her phone and the rest. I couldn't understand why they were putting up such a huge fuss but refusing to help us >.>

Quoting lazyd:

Its not like we were ignoring our daughter, but as a teen we didnt think she wanted to spend any time with us!!  :)  But she actually did, mind you, not a lot!  My daughter and i do more things together, even if it is shopping and i have to buy her things!  LOL!  Nothing big, just small things that make her happy.  And we watch tv together, gladly we like the same shows.  My daughter is in individual therapy and group therapy and we have better established rules and consequences.  You dont think that teens want structure, but they do!  Our daughter just had to realized that we DO care, thats why we call the cops to help look for you when you runaway.  My daughter is getting better, she hasnt cut in months, hasnt run away in months.  Friends are important to my daughter (some teens like to be "loners"), so we try to keep the "good" friends in her life and get rid of the bad.  We limit who she can see and who she can text/talk to.    

Quoting GleekingOut:

Were you giving her one on one time? Are you worried she might do anything else? I kinda guessed when my daughter started cutting because she wouldn't be able to look me in the eye. She would smile at me if she did; and be really happy in her facial expressions but she said to me 'I don't want to be smiling, my face is making me smile'. (She's mildly autistic so I believe that)

Quoting lazyd:

Because of what my daughter was doing and how she was acting.  Her SN brother was getting all the attention and she wanted it too.  My daughter was cutting, running away and doing a lot of other things to get noticed by us and her classmates.  My daughter wanted people to see the scars on her arms because she would wear tank tops and you could see all the cuts on her forearms.  Yes, the school made us go home and get a jacket for our daughter so she covered her arms up and so her classmates wouldnt talk, but they did anyway, cuz my daughter was telling her friends what she was doing.  

Quoting GleekingOut:

How did you and the school know it was for attention? But if that was the case perhaps the school made her to wear long clothes so she couldn't get the attention she wanted?

Quoting lazyd:

When my daughter was doing this the school actually didnt want to humiliate my daughter anymore, they made her wear long sleeves and pants even when it was hot.  I agree the cutting was for attention, but we didnt do anything to further "hurt" her and we made sure my daughter was safe and secure.  We locked away all knives and checked her room/belongings every day for things she could cut herself with.  We never really limited our daughter's privacy.  We just made sure there was nothing in her room she could hurt herself with.  We still allowed our daughter to have "alone" time and privacy, by having her door shut when she needed/wanted it, but we checked up on her frequently.  Just talking to our daughter and spending time with her, even if she didnt want it was the best.  Our daughter decided that she didnt want to talk to a therapist, so we told her she better "shape up" and talk to us about her problems and stop cutting for attention or we were going to commit her.  

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