Aug 30, 2012

Does My Daughter Need a Therapist?

Category: Children
Posted By: Heather

Question: My 8 year old daughter has a bruise on her upper arm.  She says she bit herself but claims she does not remember when, where, or who she was with.  I didn't see the bruise before a sleepover at her friends, but it could have happened before.  Do I continue pressing for details, or let it go?  Do I need to take her to a therapist?

Answer: Hello Heather, thank you for your question.  You haven’t given a huge amount of information so its difficult to know exactly how serious the situation is.  You are likely to know if your daughter was just being vague because she didn’t know how the mark came to be on her arm or was protecting someone who caused the injury during the sleepover.  It is possible that there was all sorts of rough and tumble play at the sleepover that resulted in the bite mark which would be upsetting but possibly not too worrying in the long run.

However, if you think that she really has caused herself harm during a time of distress then that’s a different situation.  If this is the case then at the very least I would pay careful attention to your daughter’s emotional state at the moment and see if you can see any pattern to harming herself or ongoing signs of distress.  If there are any such signs then it would be advisable to seek advice from a child psychotherapist.

The best advice I can give is to trust your instincts, if you feel that your daughter is behaving differently or there have been changes in her recently then it is worth further investigation.

I hope this helps and I wish you luck in getting to the bottom of the situation,

Ryan



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