The Latest on Kids and Self Harm

Over the years you’ve heard me from time to time mention self-harm and its prevalence among a growing number of children and teens. The kinds of self-harm we are talking about here includes things like cutting or burning of one’s self, banging one’s head against a wall, pulling out their hair, or even attempting suicide as a way to cope with emotional pain and difficulty. Researchers have found that boys ages ten to thirteen who have ADHD, bipolar disorder, or autism are at the highest risk. For our girls, those ages fourteen to seventeen who have depression, anxiety, substance abuse, or a history of trauma are most likely to engage in serious self-harming behaviors. Parents, be diligent in monitoring your kids. Adding smartphones to the equation might expose them to self-harm as an option. And always seek the help of a qualified Christian counselor where there is evidence of self-harm. We need to point our kids to the hope of the Gospel, and the Savior who promises to carry our burdens.