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Thread: Why Can't I Register if I'm Under 16??

  1. #1
    DarkApril Guest

    Why Can't I Register if I'm Under 16??

    Hey there everyone. I have a quick little question about this forum that I need to be answered before I decide to join. If anyone could please answer me then I would really appriciate this. First of all, here's a little bit of info about me. My name is April and I'm fifteen years old. I struggle with cutting myself, my parents are alchoholics, and I've gone through bullying at school for over ten years now, beginning when I was in pre-Kindergarten. I was wondering...is this forum only for people who have been abused? I don't consider myself as ever having been abused. I would feel bad joining this forum if it's directed toward people who have been abused because I would feel like I'm stealing help from other people who need it more than I do. Anyway, I really need a place to go where I can talk about the stuff in my life that's bothering me with other people who are going through the same situations that I am because I don't have anyone in my life who understands. My parents are too drunk to help me, my sister believes that I'm suffering because of teen hormones that aren't serious, and all of my friends think horribly of people who cut themselves, which means I can't tell them anything. If someone could answer me, I would appriciate it. Thanks and have a good day, everyone.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    14,151
    hey april

    first of all, so sorry to hear of your struggle. self-harm is a painful issue, and a hard one to resolve. however, recovery is indeed possible - i myself have stopped it, and know a few people who also did. its a tough road, but doable.

    fort refuge is a peer to peer support group for people who have been (or still are) abused in some form: physically, sexually, verbally, emotionally, etc. in no way do we believe that abuse survivors deserve more help than anyone else - we dont compare pain and emotional turmoil people are in for any reason. everyone deserves help they need. however, the form of this help would vary depending on what specifically the problem is, and fort offers help for abuse-related issues. its not that we reject everyone else - just that we dont know much about other things. abuse we have personal experience with, and can share our thoughts/feelings/insights regarding it. there are sites that focus primarily on self-harm, so those can offer a lot better support for self-harm issues than we can - because this is what they are dealing with.

    we also are only open to those who are 16yo and older. again its nothing personal, not that we dont like teens and refuse to talk to them, or feel that they dont deserve support. not at all. just the support for minors is very different from support for adults. for example, its a fairly common thing for our members to suggest each other to get themselves into therapy, to talk of their struggle with a mental health professional. for adults its a matter of simply choosing to do so. while for a teenager its a lot more complicated, as you cant just go get a therapist for yourself, you need to ask your parents to get you one, explain to them why you feel you need it, etc - which is a whole other can of worms, as many teens arent comfortable disclosing their self-harm problem to mom/dad. our members, mods, admins, etc arent qualified mental health professionals, all we can offer is our personal experience/thoughts, and so we won't know what to suggest for specific teen issues such as how to talk to your parents, how to get counseling at school, how to handle classmates, etc. so a site made specifically for teens might offer a lot better support than we can. also, since most of our members are older, they mainly discuss their specific adult struggles: work-related issues, spouses, children, etc. so a teenager might feel left out in our group, not able to relate to what people talk about, and not having other people relate to what s/he is saying either.

    what we do have that could be helpful for you is a few library articles regarding self-harm:

    - page of helplinks and hotlines - you can browse the sites for more info, and you can call a hotline to talk to someone, this is very helpful.
    - page with basic information on what self-harm is and isnt, why people do it, etc. - might not sound very interesting, but its good to know what exactly youre dealing with, in order to figure out how to resolve it.
    - self injury bill of rights page - people who self-harm often are confused about what they can and should expect from other people. while, self-harm or not, we all deserve fair treatment, and all have the right to have our boundaries respected. so this page lists some of these practical things you have the right to.
    - a great page that lists tons of techniques on battling the urges to self-harm. a very useful thing imho - when you're in the middle of a crisis it can be hard to think straight and come up with other alternatives. so this page lists things you can do to battle the urge.

    i hope you find some of this info helpful, and that you'll find the help you need and deserve - its available, just need to find it. a good place to start might be talking to a trusted adult - i hear that your parents arent really the adults you want to talk to, so maybe someone in school? maybe a parent of a friend? a distant relative? theres nothing horrible about people who self-harm, it just shows you're in a great emotional pain and havent learned good coping skills yet - it doesnt reflect bad on you, just means you need someone to help you out with this. we all need help at times, nothings wrong with that.

    very much hope you find the help you need and deserve...
    for you
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  3. #3
    DarkApril Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Manya View Post
    hey april

    first of all, so sorry to hear of your struggle. self-harm is a painful issue, and a hard one to resolve. however, recovery is indeed possible - i myself have stopped it, and know a few people who also did. its a tough road, but doable.

    fort refuge is a peer to peer support group for people who have been (or still are) abused in some form: physically, sexually, verbally, emotionally, etc. in no way do we believe that abuse survivors deserve more help than anyone else - we dont compare pain and emotional turmoil people are in for any reason. everyone deserves help they need. however, the form of this help would vary depending on what specifically the problem is, and fort offers help for abuse-related issues. its not that we reject everyone else - just that we dont know much about other things. abuse we have personal experience with, and can share our thoughts/feelings/insights regarding it. there are sites that focus primarily on self-harm, so those can offer a lot better support for self-harm issues than we can - because this is what they are dealing with.

    we also are only open to those who are 16yo and older. again its nothing personal, not that we dont like teens and refuse to talk to them, or feel that they dont deserve support. not at all. just the support for minors is very different from support for adults. for example, its a fairly common thing for our members to suggest each other to get themselves into therapy, to talk of their struggle with a mental health professional. for adults its a matter of simply choosing to do so. while for a teenager its a lot more complicated, as you cant just go get a therapist for yourself, you need to ask your parents to get you one, explain to them why you feel you need it, etc - which is a whole other can of worms, as many teens arent comfortable disclosing their self-harm problem to mom/dad. our members, mods, admins, etc arent qualified mental health professionals, all we can offer is our personal experience/thoughts, and so we won't know what to suggest for specific teen issues such as how to talk to your parents, how to get counseling at school, how to handle classmates, etc. so a site made specifically for teens might offer a lot better support than we can. also, since most of our members are older, they mainly discuss their specific adult struggles: work-related issues, spouses, children, etc. so a teenager might feel left out in our group, not able to relate to what people talk about, and not having other people relate to what s/he is saying either.

    what we do have that could be helpful for you is a few library articles regarding self-harm:

    - page of helplinks and hotlines - you can browse the sites for more info, and you can call a hotline to talk to someone, this is very helpful.
    - page with basic information on what self-harm is and isnt, why people do it, etc. - might not sound very interesting, but its good to know what exactly youre dealing with, in order to figure out how to resolve it.
    - self injury bill of rights page - people who self-harm often are confused about what they can and should expect from other people. while, self-harm or not, we all deserve fair treatment, and all have the right to have our boundaries respected. so this page lists some of these practical things you have the right to.
    - a great page that lists tons of techniques on battling the urges to self-harm. a very useful thing imho - when you're in the middle of a crisis it can be hard to think straight and come up with other alternatives. so this page lists things you can do to battle the urge.

    i hope you find some of this info helpful, and that you'll find the help you need and deserve - its available, just need to find it. a good place to start might be talking to a trusted adult - i hear that your parents arent really the adults you want to talk to, so maybe someone in school? maybe a parent of a friend? a distant relative? theres nothing horrible about people who self-harm, it just shows you're in a great emotional pain and havent learned good coping skills yet - it doesnt reflect bad on you, just means you need someone to help you out with this. we all need help at times, nothings wrong with that.

    very much hope you find the help you need and deserve...
    for you
    Oh...well, I understand it all clearly now. The problem is that I'm only fifteen, so I can't join, but I have nowhere else to go. I've been on a number of different forums for self-injury help and I ended up having to leave all of them because I got treated badly by all of the other members, even though I was nice and tried to be helpful. But, I understand why you guys wouldn't allow me here, because that's a whole new set of problems to deal with. And I know that if I joined, you guys would have a hard time helping me because I ask my parents for therapy, but they never make any appointments or anything, so I'm stuck without help. The problem is that I can't find a forum specifically for teens that I haven't already been a member of and treated badly on. Can you offer some with nice members? Thanks.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    14,151
    hey again april

    i personally am 35, so obviously i dont visit teen forums/chats, that just would be wrong, you know. i did browse around though, and looked rather deeply into virtualteen.org - seems like a solid site to me. there can be mean people at any site, cant avoid them online really, but i personally judge sites by how admins/mods act there, and how they address problems. i spent about two hours reading through various threads on virtualteen.org, and got a very good impression. it is run by teens themselves, and admins/mods seem very professional to me. they have many forum folders for various issues (including a busy self-harm folder), and chat. the site is open to anyone between 13 and 19, been around for 12 years, got 7K active members and 10 mods. best shot i can give regarding teen forums/chats...

    however, it is of course up to you, but i personally believe that, aside from forums, a 3d, irl, professional help would be a very good idea for you. doesnt mean youre crazy or anything like that, just sometimes its a good thing to talk to an adult too, and trained professionals can be a lot better than some random adults who have no clue what they're talking about. i understand your parents arent very helpful/supportive - been there myself. yet - you arent really stuck with them. you are a minor, in custody of your parents, but you're also a citizen, a valid human being, and do have rights. it can be tricky to get what you deserve when your parents arent cooperative, but it can indeed be done. try talking to other adults around, honestly. there are teen services in every country - you have a right to all this help, and if your parents dont want to support you - you can either get support bypassing them, or you can have someone have a talk with your parents about it all. try calling hotlines, talking to someone in school, or any other adult you trust. i heard of a few teens getting help after they spoke to a neighbor, remote family member, etc. just some adult who can help you research what options are available to you, and pick and chose which ones might be a good fit. you are in custody of your parents, but you are also a part of a larger society too, and that society does care...
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  5. The following 2 users say thank you to Manya for this useful post:

    Chrissy76 (10-13-2012),Liddels (11-09-2013)

  6. #5
    Unregistered Guest

    Self-harm is never the solution.

    Hey April,

    So sorry to hear about your pain and suffering. You are young and bright no child should have to go through such pain. I used to harm myself starting at the age of 12. Self-inflicting pain stopped when I turned 18. I realized that what am i gaining by hurting myself. It isn't healthy, you are only loosing yourself on the way. You shouldn't have to deal with such pain, it isn't fair. Please see a counselor, who will be able to talk to you and help you.

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