Last week we talked about self-harm, what is it and why do people do it, so if you missed that video, go back and watch it! Today, were going to talk about counseling and self-harm, you have options! If you’d tried counseling before and it hasn’t helped, keep watching.
I’m Angela Howard, my passion is to break the stigma of mental illness among fellow Christians. I’m here to help you live a more purposeful life with God, and with one another. Don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel so you can get the first updates of new content.
If you or someone you love is self-harming you might feel hopeless, like you are stuck in a trap that you can’t get out of, no matter how hard you try. Please don’t believe that lie! There are effective treatments for self-harm, so even if you feel like it’s the only way that you can manage your emotions, there is hope for recovery.
Ideally, the first step is to get into a psychiatrist. They will be able to do a full health evaluation, and determine if there is a mental health diagnosis and order blood work. It’s important to give your full medical history so that they’ll have a picture of what’s happened in the past and what’s going on with you currently. As I mentioned last week, self-harm is often a secondary symptom.
Depending on the primary diagnosis, medication might be helpful in the overall treatment, but counseling is critical. You might be sitting there thinking—I’ve already tried counseling and it didn’t help. I’m sorry that’s been your experience, but the good news is there are options, and it might be a matter trying a different type of counseling treatment. The truth is you’ll have a better outcome when you reach out for help.
Options for Counseling…
Dialectical behavioral therapy: This is designed to help you learn positive coping methods. DBT focuses on four main areas: mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotional regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness—helping you with your communication skills within your relationships.
Psychodynamic therapy: This focuses on exploring past experiences and emotions. This is powerful in the treatment of self-harm because so many times we have unconscious processes that are manifested in our present behavior. The purpose of therapy is not to dwell on the past, or stay in the past, but to help us become aware of and understand the influence of the past on present behavior.
Cognitive behavioral therapy: Which focuses on recognizing negative thought patterns and increasing coping skills. It’s a more goal-oriented treatment that takes a hands-on, practical approach to problem-solving
Anytime you or a loved one struggles with a mental health issue it can impact your spiritual life. You might feel distant from God during this time of upheaval. I want to encourage you that you are not alone, and even when our emotions are inconsistent there is one thing that remains unchanged.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Hebrews 13:8 (ESV)
Have you tried counseling for treating self-harm? Comment below, let me know your thoughts, I’d love to hear from you!
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Connect to a counselor: https://hisheartfoundation.org/request-a-counselor-referral/