Self-harm is a broad term. People may injure or poison themselves by scratching, cutting or burning their skin, by hitting themselves against objects, taking a drug overdose or developing an eating problem (such as anorexia or bulimia). These responses may help someone to cope with feelings that threaten to overwhelm them; painful emotions, such as rage, sadness, emptiness, grief, self-hatred, fear, loneliness and guilt.
It’s a means of communicating what can’t be put into words and has been described as an inner scream. Afterwards, people feel better able to cope with life again, for a while.
A person who self – harms is likely to have gone through very difficult, painful experiences as a child or young adult. At the time, they probably had no one they could confide in, so didn’t receive the support and the emotional outlet they needed to deal with it.
Someone who self –harms may doubt whether they can deal with these painful experiences in any other way. Counselling will help you move forward, to grieve over past events or a lost childhood and work through fears and confusion surrounding them. With support you can learn to cope with the pain, anger, and rage, and learn to manage these feelings in a different way.