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The person I work with self harms

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Myname posted 7/31/2013 20:07 PM

I only have one employee and he has been working for me for a little while now. I have had this sneaky suspicion that he self harms or has in the past. Just based on some things he's said and some of the things he's been through in life.

I'm pretty sure he's noticed my scars on my arms and hasn't said anything. They are noticeable if you are looking for them but not to the casual observer.

So I've looked at his arms in the past and hadn't seen anything but today he had his left sleeve rolled up for a little bit and I saw several scars on his upper arm that are clearly self harm cuts. They weren't recent so I don't know if he is currently doing it.

I know this sounds bad but at first I was really happy. I guess because I didn't feel so alone. I've never met someone IRL that self harms so that is a very isolating feeling.

I guess now I don't know how I feel about it. I feel really bad for him. I'm not sure if I feel less concerned about him seeing my scars now or not. I know I can't fool him and tell him it's not self-inflicted. But at the same time I don't think he will come down on me for it or ask me a lot of questions about it.

Right now he probably thinks it's something I did in the past and I don't do it anymore. I wore a long sleeve shirt the first week he worked which was the last time I cut. But I cut again last night so now he will probably know that I cut and that I'm trying to hide it. Just to say, I'm a landscaper so a long sleeve shirt is not the normal work attire when it is hot out.

ThoughtIKnewYa posted 7/31/2013 20:41 PM

Why did you cut last night? I thought things were going well for you. Did something change?

Myname posted 7/31/2013 21:51 PM

I'm doing better with the cutting. I was cutting 2-3 times per week now I'm able to go 4 to 6 weeks in between cutting.

It's just that the pressure builds and builds. I've tried exercising which helps but I ultimately need to cut to get that release.

I'm not sure what exactly triggered it last night, but I've been pretty depressed lately and have been having urges to cut.

ThoughtIKnewYa posted 8/1/2013 01:00 AM

I'm sorry to hear that, myname. I watch your posts, even though I don't always reply. You've come a long way.

Perhaps your employee saw the signs in you and left his sleeve rolled up??

click4it posted 8/1/2013 01:15 AM

Myname, is counseling something you'd like to consider? How can we help?

As a teen I did this and I did it for the same reason - release. Mainly it was a release of my anger.

Myname posted 8/1/2013 05:55 AM

I don't think that my employee was trying to "hide" his scars. It's something he could have easily kept hidden if he really wanted to. So I'm sure he didn't care if I saw.

I have started going to IC within the last few months and have told IC about my cutting issue. So it is something I'm working on.

jo2love posted 8/1/2013 09:43 AM


It sounds like he is open to talking to you about it and/or comfortable with showing his scars.
I'm so sorry to hear you cut. You have made huge strides in the past year. I'm proud of how far you've come.

[This message edited by SI Staff at 9:44 AM, August 1st (Thursday)]

EvenKeel posted 8/1/2013 15:07 PM

I have started going to IC within the last few months and have told IC about my cutting issue.

Sorry - I was MIA for a bit due to surgery so I totally missed that you opened up to an IC! That is huge. I am so happy for you.

As for your employee, he probably knows (or suspects) you cut. Probably is in the same position you were: feeling like you are the only one doing this and so isolated. Either that, or he knows you cut and feels comfy dressing differently since he knows you will not judge him, etc.

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