This afternoon I got a phone call from one of the counselors at Leo's school (the school and the head counselor were told about Leo's hospitalization). She wanted to let me know that she heard these nasty, damaging rumors about Leo around school, and were so bad that one of Leo's friends actually went to her to talk about it because Leo was reacting so badly. Somehow it's gotten out that Leo was at an adolescent psychiatric hospital. Both Dr. Wonderful (his psychologist/therapist) and I urged him repeatedly to tell people, if they asked where he was, that he had been in the hospital and leave it at that. I'm not sure if Leo told someone where he actually was and they decided to spread it around, Leo accidentally let that information out, if one of my younger kids told one of their friends (my daughter Sophie goes to the same school as Leo) and it got out that way, even if it got spread around by our neighbors, who are known to be gossipy and have kids that go to Leo's school. The worst rumor, I was told by the counselor, was that Leo and his friend were gay lovers and had a suicide pact. Now, I myself would not be upset if Leo was gay but I know these insinuations, as a teenage boy, are really embarrassing him. Leo's a popular kid, very concerned with his image. I'm afraid this is really going to hurt him, because one, boys are supposed to be these emotionless creatures and Leo being "weak" will probably be looked down upon; two, there's a ton of stigma around mental health issues, especially in teenage boys; three, his masculinity may be questioned because of all of that, and since he values himself as a manly man it could be damaging. Also, he's on the varsity soccer team and some of the boys on that team, excuse my language, are the biggest, douchiest, as*holes on the planet. I know they're going to bring hell upon Leo. In a lesser issue, Leo missed a week and a half of school and was there at school physically but definitely not mentally the three weeks after his friend's suicide. He's in mostly AP classes and the AP exams are in three weeks. Leo is definitely NOT prepared for these at all after missing basically a month of school, and if he does take the exams, he says that he'll get very low scores on them, which would ruin his college applications and scholarship opportunities. I know he's really stressing about this and Leo does not do well under stress at all. The result of all of this is not good at all. I rolled up Leo's sleeve as he walked past me at dinner and sure enough, he's been cutting again. From what I could see in the second or two they are very fresh and recent, but he's been known to cut all over his body and so I don't know if there's more, older ones or how long he's been doing it again. I'm tentatively saying he's not in immediate trouble because he's nowhere near the catatonic state he was in when I made the decision to admit him to the psychiatric hospital and he's eating normally. But I am doubting myself because Leo has HAD to be affected by all of this and since he hasn't shown any outward signs of it, he's had to have been internalizing everything, which is how we got to the whole awful hospitalization situation in the first place. And we also had to put our dog to sleep on Tuesday--none of us are doing well with it, Leo especially, because of the loss of another close and special friend. Dr. W said they talked about it in their Monday session, but I don't think Leo was really prepared for it. What is your take on this? Leo doesn't have another appointment with Dr. W until Monday, which is when his spring break starts (which is also good because he'll be able to get away from the rumors and the people). Should I try to reschedule it for a closer day? What should Leo himself and me as a parent do about all of this? I knew that Leo's journey in recovery wasn't going to be bump-free but I didn't imagine that an outside force would be the thing to start a downwards spiral.