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Self-Mutilation What we don’t know might kill someone…

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1 Self-Mutilation What we don’t know might kill someone…

2 Choice of Topic To raise awareness of an upcoming issue in my local area (we are always a bit behind). As we have discussed in class, teachers are not trained in this area, but at least we can make them aware of what is currently going on and raise awareness in order for them to refer these children in the right direction.

3 Materials Pencils Erasers Broken Pencils Song/Video Handouts of Resources/Websites Powerpoint, projector with A/V

4 What is Self-Mutilation? Cutting Burning picking or interfering with wound healing Infecting oneself Inserting objects into skin Bruising or breaking bones Some forms of hair pulling Punching or hitting self or objects (To write love on her arms, 2009)

5 Why self-mutilate? Children are smart, they will find alternative methods of coping with their skills that is “socially appropriate”. View the clip of Concrete Angel

6 Concrete Angel Not exactly the same issue, but this is the type of lives that many of our children face. Depression has run ramped. - Between 20% and 50% of children and teens struggling with depression have a family history of this struggle and the offspring of depressed parents are more than three times as likely to suffer from depression. -2/3 of those suffering from depression never seek treatment. (To write love on her arms, 2009), (Concrete Angel, 2001)

7 Pencil Based on research 13 of you view this object strictly as it’s intended purpose, as a pencil. Whereas, 10 of you suffer from depressive circumstances and contemplate ways to cope. 1 of you is taking the eraser and burning your skin as I talk to you. 10 of you represent the inpatient students who are burning your skin while I talk. (To write love on her arms, 2009) (Simpson, 2001)

8 Perspective One doesn’t seem like a lot does it? Think about one in each classroom in your school… Now think about those students that are sitting around the one student who is self-harming.

9 Age A common age to begin cutting is around 11 years old and tends to only become more common in the mid- teens. (Moyer and Welch, 2005)

10 What students report "I just never felt I could do it” -she learned from her peers that self-mutilation was helpful. "My stepbrother's friend recommended it to me. He was like, well, why don't you just cut yourself. It feels great.” She saw cuts on a friend's arm at school. "I asked what happened, and she told me." She remembered her first cutting experience occurring shortly after talking to her friend and learning about self-mutilation. (Moyer and Welch, 2005)

11 Coping Skill "Like some people fight to let out anger. I don't do that. I hurt myself." She indicated that cutting helped to "take your mind off the, I don't know, my emotions, I guess.” It is something that she did to keep herself from crying, screaming, and yelling. "I don't scream and yell anymore. I don't like screaming and yelling and making other people feel bad."I don't know. I just started like my mom used to say, I'd try not to cry, so I pinched my arm. After a while, the pinching didn't do it, you know, so I just cut up my arm instead of crying. I don't cry. (Moyer and Welch, 2005)

12 Misconception The purpose of Self-harm is not always to commit suicide. "When I see the blood, it's like, I don't know, I just zone out into it, and I imagine just being like in my own little world with it, just like puddles, jumping in puddles of blood." Even though it stung, "it's helping me feel better." Ian claimed that "it just makes me happier than what I really am." "I couldn't imagine how people could inflict pain on themselves. And after I did it, instead of hurting, it actually felt, like better, instead of pain.” (Moyer and Welch, 2005)

13 Resources Teens Help Information includes cutting, Substance abuse, Sexual health and a pleathora of related teen issues. tml To Write Love on Her Arms Information includes resources for many national hotlines,treatment and counseling references, self-injury, eating disorders, addiction and more.

14 As the Teacher Responsible You are the one who is supposed to help For you to even understand why However, you are the front lines, you are the ones who often will observe the child more than most adults and can be a great reference.

15 Appropriate Treatment Effective treatment may include Art therapy Active therapy Individual counseling Support groups (Simpson, 2001)

16 Question and Answer Please feel free to ask questions and explore this topic.

17 References Concrete Angel (Music Video). (2001, September 18). Greatest Hits. Retrieved from itunes. Moyer, M.N. and Welch, Kaye (2005). Investigating and understanding Self-Mutilation: The student voice. Professional School Counseling, 11(1). Retrieved on December 29, 2009 from Simpson, Chris (2001). Self-Mutilation. Eric/CASS Digest. Retrieved on December 30, 2009 from Teens Health (2009). Retrieved December 28, 2009, from To Write Love on her Arms (2009). Retrieved December 28, 2009, from


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