Self-harm is a sign that a person is in real distress. It's about despair, sadness, hurt, pain and isolation. Every person will have their own reasons for doing it. Self-harm can stem from negative child experiences, or from distressing, adult experiences. This often results in feelings of low self-esteem, feelings of being out of control and self-hatred.
Self-harm may be a way of managing feelings and numbing their emotional pain.
Self-harm isn’t necessarily about suicide
Sometimes people harm themselves because they want to die, but often it's more about staying alive. People hurt themselves to help them get through a difficult time, to numb the pain and find a way to cope.
People harm themselves in different ways
Some cut their arms or legs; others bang or bruise their bodies. Self-harm also includes burning, scratching, hair-pulling, scrubbing or anything that causes injury to the body. Some people take tablets, not a huge dose, but just enough to blot things out for a while.
Lots of people self-harm
All sorts of people self-harm, even people in high powered jobs. It's a sign that something is wrong and bothering or upsetting you. There's a lot of secrecy about self-harm and you may think that you’re the only one who does it. It can happen once or twice or some people use it to cope for long periods of time.
People do stop self-harming
People stop self-harming when they are ready. They sort out their problems and find other ways of dealing with their feelings. It generally takes a long time and Christian Counselling will often help.