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Recently Suffered From A Terrible Loss

Published: May 11, 2006
Dear TeenHealthFX,

 

I recently suffered from a terrible loss. My mother was killed in a car accident. Ever since, I've been able to hide my emotions, I mean, I haven't really felt sad about it, I came to realize how much of my life was dependent on my mother. Because I don't have her to lean on, I began cutting my wrists. It started as a practice to see if it would make me feel better, and when it did, I never stopped. My dad doesn't seem to notice any change in my behavior from the point when my mom was still alive. I want him to notice, I want him to know that I am in pain, but he just won't pay attention. He's always out drinking and staying out past midnight. He's like a teenager. I think he needed my mom, that's what kept him stable. I am a 15 year old female desperately needing help. I emailed you a few times, even though I didn't really expect an answer, it still would've been nice to have a little advice. Now... I think I need it more than ever, Please Help Me. I'm afraid I am going to do something really stupid very soon. I'm not ready to die, but I'm also not ready to get rid of the one thing holding me together...my razor. Please help. Signed: My Razor Blade

Signed: Recently Suffered From A Terrible Loss

Dear Recently Suffered From A Terrible Loss,

 

TeenHealthFX is so sorry to hear about your mother’s death. Dealing with the death of a parent is an extremely hard thing to endure – especially when you are feeling like you are all alone in coping with the pain. It sounds like your father is having a very hard time, himself, dealing with his feelings about losing his wife – which is making it very hard for him to be there for you.

 

Mourning a loved one can take time, and people can often find themselves going through different types of emotions as they grieve. It is possible that part of the reason you have wanted to “hide” your emotions about your mother’s death is that to connect to the feelings of loss, anger and sadness about losing her would be too painful. At some point, when you feel ready, FX does think it would be helpful for you to meet with a therapist individually, or to meet with a support group, where you can begin to work through your feelings of loss.

 

FX also thinks that it would be very helpful for you to expand your support system right now so that you have different people whom you can go to and lean on during such a difficult time. Here are some ways to do that:

 

  • Find a trusted adult in school – such as a teacher, school social worker or guidance counselor – and see if it would be possible for you to check in with that adult during days at school when you are having a hard time and need someone to talk to.
  • Check with your school or local mental health agencies to see if there are any grief and loss therapy groups available for people in your age range. Very often it can be helpful to have the support of your peers when going through such a tough time, and to have people around you who truly understand what you are experiencing.
  • See if there are any extended family members whose help you can enlist – a grandparent, older sibling, aunt or uncle. That person could be another source of support for you, and could even intervene with your father so that he can also seek out help for himself during this time.

 

If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area.

 

 

 

 

Signed: TeenHealthFX

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