Self- Harm why do we do it as women?

Self -harm?? Lets try to understand it.. 

Self-injury is not attempted suicide, they have an intimate relationship but are different. Self-injury often represents the prevention of a suicidal period and is one way of averting suicide. Self-injury may actually be a survival strategy and is frequently the least possible amount of damage and represents extreme self-restraint. A diminishing sense of worth may culminate in suicide as its ultimate expression. People who self-injure are statistically at a greater risk of going on to commit suicide.The majority of women who self-harm say the self-harming immediately follows feelings of either emotional pain (sadness, grief, hopelessness and desperation), self-hatred (shame, guilt, dirtiness) or anger (frustration, powerlessness). Self-injury can be a way of achieving a sense of power and control over these feelings. Women who self-harm say that it is easier to cope with the physical pain than their emotional pain.


What will help me?

  • Self-injury can seem difficult to overcome. Yet it is possible to stop hurting yourself, as you gradually learn to understand, and deal with your situation and feelings.
  • Somewhere to go to feel safe and supported when things get difficult. What women who self-injure say they need is for others to accept their self-harm and to see “the person behind the scars” who is in pain.
  • An understanding of what is underlying your impulse to self-harm and self-injure. A counsellor or therapist will help you talk about your self-injury and what lies behind it. As you gradually uncover and resolve the roots of your distress, you can learn other coping strategies.
  • Support groups can be valuable in providing a place for you to explore your self-injury with support from others who understand your experience from the inside.
  • Kindness, support and acceptance from friends, partners and relatives. This also needs to come from Accident and Emergency Departments and other staff who are willing to try and understand your distress.

How Can I Help Myself?

  • Find other ways to vent your anger and relieve tension: Slam doors, throw pillows, exercise…
  • Try to share the pain with someone you trust, a friend or counsellor. Ask someone to visit you until the desire to self-injure passes. Reach out to someone rather than the razor blades.
  • Tell yourself ‘I am safe’, ‘I am loveable’, ‘I am not alone’, ‘I will treat myself kindly.’
  • Draw on your body with markers or paint instead of cutting yourself.
  • Make use of phone help-lines.
  • Keep busy. Try to distract yourself.
  • Hold something that feels comforting.
  • Meditate or use other stress reduction techniques as a way to calm yourself, e.g. relaxation courses, alternative therapies.