How/Should I talk to my friend about her cutting?!

Question: How/Should I talk to my friend about her cutting.?
A friend I've known for about 18 months recently mentioned in a casual conversation that she's a cutter. I acknowledged that I knew what that was, then we continued on to other topics. I feel like the cutting is too serious a thing to just ignore and let her continue. I know I can't talk her out of it or swoop in and save her, but is there anything I can say to let her know that...I'm there for her if she wants help...or someone to talk to or whatever.? I don't want to be one of those friends who watches their friend self-destruct cuz they are afraid to get involved.Health Question & Answer

You could try what D said and invite her to church, but being an "ex-cutter" and a church goer myself, I can tell you that chances are slim that it'll work.

You need to find out what it is that is causing her to cut. People don't do it because they're bored. It can also become an addiction. You become so addicted to that "relief" from the distraction of pain on the outside from the pain on the inside, that when you begin to hurt emotionally.. your arms or where ever you choose to cut will begin to tingle. It's hard to break, I know.

The easiest way to find out why she is cutting is to somehow "casually" bring it up again, if she's comfortable enough with you to be able to drop it in casual conversation with you - then she will probably be comfortable enough to talk a little more about it. Don't push it, but seem interested and show her that you care. Don't judge her and don't tell her that she's stupid for doing it. And do not, I repeat, DO NOT threaten her - she will just lie to you and tell you she's stopped and begin to hide it more.

Maybe you can talk to her about finding different ways to distract herself or deal with whatever it is causing her to cut and if you care that much - ask her what you can do to help her. If nothing else, talk to your parents or your priest or preacher and tell them about it - only not using her name - get their perspective on what you should do.

Just some advice from someone who used to cut: do not judge, do not threaten, and do not make her feel stupid. Be understanding and caring and open. Some examples of what you could say to her:

"I'm here for you if you want help, or just want someone to talk to.. at anytime, you can call me and I'll be here for you."
"It's just, I don't understand why you cut - could you tell me why.?"
"Have you ever thought about talking to your parents about it.? If so, would you like me to be there with you when you do.? Maybe you could talk to the guidance counselor, I could go with you if you don't want to do it alone."

Just be supportive, yet not encouraging the behavior. also, this site seems to have a lot of good advice. Question & Answer

really its her choice to make if she wants to do this to her selfbutits nice of you to want to be there for her. if you nitice that she has done it again sit her down talk to her about why she did it and just basicly show her your there for her. Whatever you do dont tell anyone else coz she will lose trust in you and then she want talk to you about it ever again!!!Health Question & Answer

I hope that she will go to church with you, it might help a lot. D made a very wise choice in his answer.

If she continues this behavior even with church, you might need to threaten her with "tough love." You may have to threaten to tell her parents (if she is a minor), or another authority figure.

You are a good friend for caring, but you can't feel responsible if she can't stop. She might need professional help to save herself. You could probably research places that would see her for free online or in your local phone book.Health Question & Answer

Cutting isnt self-destruction. Its self-rehabilitation. You should be all for cutting, especially if your friend is overweight.Health Question & Answer

Get her into a church. She needs individuals that will embrace her and not judge.

DHealth Question & Answer

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