She’s cutting …
It’s difficult to say these words to my husband, again.
Just speaking the words aloud makes my spirit ache and releases a fresh outburst of tears reflecting my confusion, pain, fear, and worry. We have been down this path before. It was a season full of pain for our family, as our daughter struggled to articulate her thoughts and feelings, and self-harm became her silent one-sided conversation.
We had cried out to God to give us strength for our feeble arms and weak knees because we knew the battle for our child’s identity, her story, and her healing would be hard. Satan’s whispers into her adolescent spirit had taken root and as the lies grew they stole her voice, her confidence, her relationships, and her family.
As parents, it was tremendously hard to watch our daughter suffer through the battle of cutting. We could not understand her internal conflicts. Most days, I wanted to grab and shake her. I wanted to scream at her to use her words, that she would never know how much more it hurt me to see her body marred.
Counseling helped our daughter and us to address the marks that scarred her body. The silent secretive path Satan had taken her down with so many twists and turns mentally and physically were being made straight. God was restoring her storyline, her voice, her relationships, and her trust in His love.
One day as we walked side-by-side, my daughter reached over and laced her fingers between mine. Looking at our interlocked hands in this physical moment of touch and trust, I knew God had corrected her path and provided her with healing. This time my tears were those of rejoicing. Our God heals.
Flash forward three years.
Our daughter has cut again. This time her mind is so conflicted, her throat so constricted, I watch her as she holds herself in a ball rocking and shaking because words won’t come. Satan is using anxiety to overwhelm her, to steal her voice, and to isolate her, even as I sit next to her, physically touching her, gently speaking to her, and praying over her. Satan has snared her body again with a blade.
This time as parents we are more prepared. We know this season of pain is not forever. We know God’s power can build our daughter up again. As parents, we recognize God as our strength in our physical bodies, spiritual prayers, and emotional blunderings. This season will have an end. For now, we come alongside Him knowing His promise to fully heal the lame so they may not be disabled, but rather healed.
The author of this article has chosen to remain anonymous to protect the identity of her daughter.
For more information and ways to get help if your teen is cutting, visit: www.teenhelp.com/teen-health/cutting-stats-treatment.html