WebProtectMe believes every family should have the tools and opportunities to protect their homes and loved ones from inappropriate or dangerous content online.
From pornography to violence to hate speech, WebProtectMe is dedicated to making these subjects unavailable on your mobile device or tablet.
Recently, WebProtectMe has made an effort to reach even further and help families who suffer with self-harm related issues.
Self-harm can be a very private activity, and is most often done in secret. However, information on how to propagate self-harming behaviors can be found easily online.
According to Karen Conterio, ”Self-harm typically starts at about age 14. But in recent years we've been seeing kids as young as 11 or 12. As more and more kids become aware of it, more kids are trying it." Conterio founded a treatment program for self-injurers called SAFE (Self Abuse Finally Ends) Alternatives at Linden Oak Hospital in Naperville, Ill., outside of Chicago.”
We want to help make sure that families are safe online, and that parents know what warning signs to look for if they are worried about self-harming behaviors in their home.
Dr. David Rosen, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Michigan and director of the Section for Teenage and Young Adult Health at the University of Michigan Health Systems in Ann Arbor, offers parents tips on what to watch for:
- “Small, linear cuts. "The most typical cuts are very linear, straight line, often parallel like railroad ties carved into forearm, the upper arm, sometimes the legs," Rosen tells WebMD. "Some people cut words into themselves. If they're having body image issues, they may cut the word 'fat.' If they're having trouble at school, it may be 'stupid,' 'loser,' 'failure,' or a big 'L.' Those are the things we see pretty regularly."
- Unexplained cuts and scratches, particularly when they appear regularly. "I wish I had a nickel for every time someone says, 'The cat did it,'" says Rosen.
- Mood changes like depression or anxiety, out-of-control behavior, changes in relationships, communication, and school performance. Kids who are unable to manage day-to-day stresses of life are vulnerable to cutting, says Rosen.”
Remember that the best thing we all can do is continue to talk to each other.
If you or a loved one feels like they need help, please contact someone immediately.
We are all here to help each other, and WebProtectMe is devoted to providing families with resources they might need in difficult times.