Any social network worth its salt these days allows its users to use hashtags. For the uninitiated hashtags are keywords that allow users to find other posts with similar interests and are usually preceded by the pound sign (#). Unfortunately, some of those interests may be detrimental to the user.
In the past, I’ve talked about certain self-harming behaviors like the pro-ana movement. That’s where people, mostly young girls, believe that eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia are lifestyle choices and use ‘Thinspiration’ or thinspo for short as their rallying cry. Other self-harm behaviors I have not talked much about before are self-cutting or self-mutilation and the ultimate self-harming, suicide.
In the past, some social networks have banned certain hashtags that promote self-harm such as Tumblr and Instagram. However, those in the self-harming community are supposedly using new and supposedly secret hashtags like #sue and #secretsociety123.
This is all part of a much larger problem than just teens on social sites. In this day and age of alleged social enlightenment, there is still a stigma on mental health treatment. Just because your son or daughter may need mental health treatment that does not make them broken or any less of a person. And if you are a teen and you know someone who is seeking or receiving mental health treatment you should be giving them your support. Self-harm in any way shape or form is not normal or healthy. If you are self-harming please get off of the social sites where there are triggers abound and ask your parents or school about finding resources to get help.
There is no shame in wanting to get better.