Hurting young adults, both men and women, sometimes use self-harm or self-abuse as a way to cope with overwhelming feelings of self-defeat. But there is hope, and there is help... if you act before its too late the self-defeating self-destructive behaviors can be arrested and replaced with a positive self image and hope for a strong future.
At The Crossroads specializes in the effective treatment of young adults who have demonstrated self-harm as their mode of coping with difficult life situations. We provide immediate therapeutic support for young adults who have been harming themselves in order to navigate the tumultuous years of early adulthood.
Self-harm and self-abuse are terms used to describe self-defeating behaviors and patterns of self-detriment. These term are used when someone injures or harms themselves on purpose, rather than by accident. Common examples include substance abuse, self-poisoning, hitting, cutting or burning oneself, pulling hair or picking skin, or self-strangulation.
Self-harm is a sign of extreme emotional distress, emotionally immaturity, and emotional instability... something is seriously wrong in the life of young adults who practice self-harming behaviors. Therapeutic intervention is necessary to help the young adult who is using self-harm as a way of dealing with their internal struggle with doubt, shame, and disappointment.
Unfortunately some young adults, both men and women, use self-harm as a way of trying to cope with unrelenting negative feelings of doubt, anxiety, and self-hatred. Shame, remorse, guilt, and hopelessness are feelings used to describe "why" young adults display self-harm. Unfortunately, self-harm and any form of self-abuse is extremely serious, and can be life threatening. Most of the time it is a cry for help.
• Feelings of being "trapped" - Self-injury helps them to feel more in control.
• Feelings get bottled up inside - feel like exploding. Self-injury helps to relieve the tension.
• Feelings of guilt or shame may also become unbearable. Self-harm is way of punishing oneself.
Young adults that practice self-abuse describe feeling 'numb' or 'dead'. They share feelings of being detached from the world and their bodies. They claim that self-injury is a way of feeling more connected and alive.
Some young adults use self-harm because they want to end their lives by committing suicide. At the time, many people just want their problems to disappear, and do not believe that they can get help. They feel as if the only way out is to kill themselves.
An act of self-harm can be triggered by a fight with a parent or close friend. When an young adult has a history of abuse, neglect or rejection, they are more likely to use self-harm as a coping strategy. Young men and young women who are depressed, or have an eating disorder, or another serious mental health problem, are the type of people who use self-harm to navigate through difficult emotions. Most likely, men and women who "self-harm" also, abuse substances, or addicted to drugs, or heading toward alcoholism.
Sometimes young adults who have a vast history of negative circumstances (school, home or with the law enforcement) are those who seek relief through self-harming and self-defeating behaviors. Most likely, those that have practiced self-destructive behaviors have sought help, but to no avail. Sometimes seeing a counsellor, psychiatrist, or therapist is not enough.
At The Crossroads is a therapeutic transitional living program that helps young adults who have struggled with self-harm. Our success working with troubled young adults is known throughout the behavioral health industry. If you are a struggling young adult, or a parent of a troubled young adult, call At The Crossroads and begin the pathway toward wholeness and health.