The Queen of My Self


May is the month of the goddess, the Great Creatrix and all other mothers. The mothers of children, mothers of invention, mothers of causes, mothers of endeavors, mothers of one’s Self.

Reprinted from “The Queen’s Court” section of The Queen’s Chronicles
Dear Mama Donna,

I am a woman in my Queen years with a thirteen-year-old daughter who is into “Emo” and cutting herself. She is in therapy, but I feel so alone and isolated in this situation. Are there any Queen readers of your letter who have or are experiencing this in their families? And how do you help your child and keep your sanity in the process? I am hoping someone your letter reaches has had some experience with this and from what I’ve read there are one in fifty people (usually teen girls) who have a problem with “cutting.” My other hope is that this may help others who are going through this! Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you,

-Morgan, OH

Dear Morgan,

Please know that you’re not alone, although I know the feeling of helplessness and confusion. My daughter was also cutting at the same age. She has just turned sixteen. I don’t know for sure that she has completely stopped cutting. But lately she wears a spiked collar around her neck. I don’t understand the violence and darkness. I cannot explain it to you. I believe there is intense emotional pain, which is somehow met in the physical pain. In my daughter’s case, the cuts are superficial, although they leave scars, which she hides. But I do not think she will ultimately destroy herself. I am trusting that she is on her path with her own Divine Guidance. I can’t protect her from pain. She went to therapy for a year and I don’t know how much it helped. I certainly felt better that we were getting some help, but she doesn’t think it had any effect on her. She’s very strong and determined. I have chosen to believe in her, whatever it looks like. My main goal is to communicate, to stay open for whenever she will talk to me. I want her to know she is not alone. I try to reflect her worth to her, to listen, and to let her know I love her. If I have advice it’s to trust that she will come through this and to be very compassionate to yourself. All your feelings around this are allowed, and you cannot control her path. You can model self-respect, self-love, self-honor, faith in your Divine Guidance, valuing life, honoring your own body, expressing feelings openly. Thank you for reaching out! Sending comfort and understanding,

-Andrea, ME

Regarding the self-destruction of the reader’s daughter, I believe flower essence therapy would be very helpful and is of course, totally natural, without side effects. I would be happy to discuss the options with the mother or she can find a local practitioner at

-Cheri, NY

Re: Self-destructive daughters, I recommend a book by Brad Sachs, When No One Understands: Letters to a Teenager on Life, Loss, and the Hard Road to Adulthood.

Karen, NJ

A dear British friend, Dr. Judith Reece, a feminist, a mental health nurse and nursing professor, a magistrate, and an authority on females self-harming wrote her doctoral thesis on self-harm.

Judy also co-ordinated the first and second international conferences (in England) on self-harm.

-Marjorie, Dundas, Ontario.

In the January 2008 issue Queen Morgan from Ohio wrote for help with dealing with her self-destructive daughter. I printed several responses in the last issue. Here is one more.

Dear Mama Donna, thank you for the kind replies and information from your readers. Just wanted to let you know my daughter is doing much better and seems to be coming out of her “dark night of the soul” a stronger, more mature person. I know there’s a reason for everything but when you’re right in the middle of a crisis it seems it will never end. It certainly helped to know there are kind, caring people out there keeping you in their thoughts.  Bright Blessings, Morgan
Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She offers counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity. Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to

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