The butterfly project – Cutting: Part 3


Since my last post on cutting I received many comments.

Some of them were not easy to read for me, increasing my awareness to this difficult issue of self-injury.

Thank you all for sharing your personal stories or general knowledge.

According to “”, approximately one out of every eight people engages in some form of self-injury, it’s most popular among adolescents, and many people are introduced to it through social media and peer groups.

I find this to be amazing!

This post is for all the readers interested in this subject:

I will not dive any deeper into what you can all read in the internet yourselves, however for those of you who are new to this I would like to share with you “the butterfly project”.

I am not sure how or when it started, it may be a personal initiative of a Tumbler blogger, but if anyone has different info I will love to know.

The butterfly project suggests the following, to cope with a strong desire to cut your body:

1. When you feel like you want to cut, take a marker or pen and draw a butterfly on wherever the self-harm occurs.
2. Name the butterfly after a loved one, or someone who really wants you to get better.
3. NO scrubbing the butterfly off.
4. If you cut before the butterfly is gone, it dies. if you don’t cut, it lives.
5. If you have more than one, cutting kills them all.
6. Another person may draw them on you. these butterflies are extra special. take good care of them.
7. Even if you don’t cut, feel free to draw a butterfly anyways, to show your support. If you do this, name it after someone you know that is suffering right now, and tell them. It could help.

This project seems to have crossed countries virally, and in many countries teens are drawing butterflies on their bodies if cutting, or in order to show support in their friends who cut.


I wish you all, and myself, a good job in this parenting duty we have chosen… Good luck!



Filed under Teens & Tweens

75 responses to “The butterfly project – Cutting: Part 3

  1. Pingback: Self-Harm Specifics – ADD girls at greater risk « ADD . . . and-so-much-more

  2. Wow, I have a 25 year old daughter and a my son will be 14 on March 1st. They don’t cut and I don’t know any of their friends who cut or have cut but I am aware that this is a growing concern for many parents!
    I first clicked on this post becuase of the title “The Butterfly Project” and being a creative stamping coach I immmediately was drawn to it without noticing the cutting part!
    What a lovely idea about the butterflies! I love the picture you have on the post it’s beautiful and sad at the same time.
    My heart and well wishes goes out to all that have to deal with this terrible ordeal, the cutters, their parents, siblings and other loved ones.
    Have a creative day!

  3. Reblogged this on One Girl and a Dream and commented:
    I am very privileged to live in such a sheltered life, but I am also aware that there are many people out there that need support. I started reading through this blog, (it’s really interesting!) and think that this particular article or post is very significant for today’s day and age. Do check it out! It might help a loved one, someone close to you… even, perhaps, you! I love you all, if you have a person in your life that’s self-harming, this is a beautiful way to attempt to relieve the issue…

  4. LandK

    we think it’s very important to spread the word about the butterfly project. Being teens (and a recovering cutters) the butterfly project has worked in the past. we don’t think parents should shout and scream, they should offer help and suggest projects like this one. It really does help! along with the elastic band method and other distractions. But getting angry doesn’t work. Self harm is a way to cope not some silly cry for attention, of course there are teens our age who do that, but they need to snap out of it.

  5. Hi thanks for stopping by and giving me a like. I think the Butterfly project is a fantastic idea. I worked for several years as a residential social worker with children in care, many of whom (mostly girls) would self-harm. I wish that back then I had something like this to try with these young people, I am sure that some would have taken well to this idea.

  6. Brazen

    I am a cutter, have been since I was 11 I am now over 30. It is a very sweet idea this Butterfly Project but I can’t see how it could work. If you cut the butterfly dies…Pleeeeese! Sorry to sound so cynical, but with all the concerned people out there, could they not have come up with something better? BTW Cutting is NOT for attention!

  7. Very needed topic to address….so thanks for stepping out into this! I have a friend that has a very strong and effective ministry speaking to youth who struggle with SI (self injury), as well as informing their parents of the influences and culture surrounding it. You can check out his website-

    I would say one thing about one of the comments…Brazen…although I agree cutting is not solely about attention, it’s about control…the control someone feels when their living a life they feel is out of control, and cutting/SI is the one thing they feel they can control. It does bring about a a cry for attention, whether consciously or subconsciously, but the act of cutting/SI leaves a trail of attention…at least to those who see the outward signs. In the end, it’s a sign someone needs help. love, encouragement and support…and I really think this can only be wholly found in the love and grace of Christ…everything else is only partial and systemic, dealing mostly with the external symptoms. Only the power of God, through Jesus Christ, can deal with the inner struggles, baggage, and bring the real healing we’re all craving!

    Anywho, didn’t come here to preach, but felt, as I was typing, I needed to share that!

  8. This is so incredibly beautiful!

  9. Jen

    I started cutting as a teenager and now I’m 43 and still dealing with cutting so it’s not just teenagers. I learned about the Butterfly Project about 5 years ago but I wasn’t ready to stop cutting. However with the help of a good therapist I’m learning ways to overcome this behavior. Drawing butterflies on my wrists has really helped. More than I ever thought it would. As my scars are starting to heal I have decided to get small butterflies tattooed on each wrist with my kids names on each. In case anyone decides to get judgement my children have never seen the cuts or scars. I make sure they are always covered.

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