Self harm

Is a person in your family Self Harming? Does their Self harm?  leave you feeling scared, angry and powerless? Are you wondering how to raise the issue with them because you are not entirely sure what it is all about?  We Self Harm when we need to substitute the emotional or mental pain inside us for a physical, external, pain that we feel we have some control over. We believe we can control the external pain as we are the ones producing the pain. In a very real sense, we are attempting to make ourselves feel better by addressing our anxious or depressed feelings in our own way.

Put simply, if I am feeling bad about an event, and I am unable, or do not know how, to try and change my thoughts and feelings, then I may look for an external cure.

Paracetamol for a head ache, whisky for heart ache, chemotherapy for a cancer, blood transfusion for low iron or heavy blood loss, cigarette for our nerves, anti-depressants for our anxiety and depressions, a razor blade to self harm for our pain and frustration.

Let me expand.

Many of us are gratified by our external world. From the iphone user on The Tube keeping themselves to themselves, to the CEO of a large company enjoying her position of influence, to the Ferrari driver enjoying her car, and enjoying seeing how others enjoy her car….our capitalist society supplies us with the tools we need to feel better about ourselves by using our relationships with other people. This is OK, it won’t harm us and as long as we are having open, honest and loving relationships away from the cars, phones and business, it’s fine.

But, some people take that way of relating to extremes. The drinker using alcohol to feel better, the person having multiple relationships or who is preoccupied with sex, the drug user recreationally using their way into dependence, all of these people use an external source to moderate their feelings in a way that compromises their lives.

Self harm falls into the category. On the surface it seems different to other kinds of stimulus as it involves the immediate application of pain whereas the other forms of external gratification involve seeking immediate pleasure. However, we could argue that the pleasure we seek causes thinly disguised damage and pain to us in the form of spiritual harm, physical injury and mental torment.

As with all bad habits, Self Harmers develop rituals when they Self harm. They use deception and carry out their mood altering in private. It is tempting for the world to distance themselves from Self Harm as being a young person’s problem but in truth if we do this we allow ourselves to deny the seriousness of the problems that afflict the older generations in our society.

If you live Bournemouth, Poole or Dorset and Self harm is part of your life in some way, why not give me a call, send me a text or email me and we can arrange to meet, I have over 20 years experience in supporting people with this kind of issue.

Together we can make a difference.

And finally….

When I work this week in Bournemouth, Poole or Dorset as a counsellor, couple counsellor, teenage and adolescent counsellor, family counsellor, family therapist…


Family counselling and marriage guidance, marriage counselling, teenage counselling and adolescent counselling to individuals and couples with differing forms of anxiety and depression feeling anxious and depressed…

I may use CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy), Attachment Theory, Mindfulness, Psychodrama, Person Centred Therapy, Humanistic Therapy, Gestalt Therapy, Psychoanalysis, Solution Focused Therapy, Integrative Therapy or Family Therapy or Attachment Theory…

I am mindful to that counselling offers us new opportunities and possibilities for all of us to develop our knowledge, commitment and understanding of ourselves and each other.