My circle of friends consists of both boys and girls, but I spend most of my time with boys. It’s because they “understand me better”. There’s no case of “attraction”, but my parents see our friendship in the opposite way. They don’t want me to be with boys and I can’t understand why. My parents are very orthodox, while I am quite modern. I am a “go-with-fashion” type and try out all the new fashion trends. But my parents oppose this and are putting restrictions on my clothing sense. My relatives add fuel to all this. It has affected me badly and I feel like committing suicide. Whenever such things happen in my house, I harm myself with a blade. This has made me feel very depressed. Please help me.
You are feeling overwhelmed, under pressure and depressed by the standoff with your parents and relatives, and you are turning against yourself. Perhaps you also feel a bit guilty and ashamed that you are not what your parents want you to be?
While harming yourself may make you feel better able to deal with your strong emotions for that moment, in the long run it is not a good way to cope with problems. By using a blade, you are putting your life at great risk. I strongly recommend meeting your school counsellor or approaching a trusted adult/teacher to seek face-to-face help for your feelings of depression and wanting to commit suicide. Please do this at the earliest.
When your feelings become strong and agitated, instead of harming yourself, calm yourself by channelling your energy and feelings into something soothing. You can exercise, listen to calming music, colour mandalas, dance or focus on a hobby if you have one till you become calm again. Decide on 2 to 3 methods that you can use.
Later, when you are ready, you can sit with your parents and understand their concerns and views about your friends and your dressing. Perhaps, their concern is not so much about ‘attraction’ but about your ‘safety’. The only way is to talk maturely to them and come to an agreement on boundaries. The counsellor/teacher/trusted adult can help in this discussion.
Right now, it is important that you deal first with your feelings of tension, depression and your desire to harm yourself.
Nasreen Hashambhoy is a Counsellor, Life Coach and a Facilitator of training programmes for schools and corporates. Through a combination of coaching, counselling and facilitation techniques based on cognitive science and positive psychology, she helps clients achieve their true potential. She is the author of the series Values In Action published by Better Yourself Books.