It's ok to let the cat out of the bag!

Once again I am very sorry for the lack of updates on my blog recently, I have been so busy with everything I just haven’t had a chance to sit down and write but that is all going to change! Ok so this post is going to be a bit different and I related to something with is very important to me.

 When a person is suffering from self-harm they try to keep it a secret, they keep it hidden, an internal secret that they cannot trust anybody with. I know this because I was like that when I was self-harming. I would do everything and anything to hide my cuts, I would not tell a soul and I would avoid any awkward questions about why I wanted to wear long sleeves all the time especially in good weather. I went through all of the thoughts about what my family and friends would think, how people in society would judge me and what would happen to me if people found out that I was self-harming.

 People think that often people who are self-harming are looking for attention but that is not the case, they are keeping it a secret, keeping it hidden and carrying the burden themselves for fear of hurting others around them, being judged and looked down on by society. For many years when I was self-harming on a regular basis that is exactly how I felt. One day though when my secret came out the reaction I got was something I was not expecting. People were supportive, carking and kind. Yeah for a few close family members it was a shock and it took them some getting used to and they struggled to understand why I would do such a thing to myself but after a while they slowly began to try and understand. Once my family found out it spread like wildfire. My school, my clubs and my friends all found out and while I thought this was a bad thing and I hated the fact that people knew it was actually a good thing, if it wasn’t for people knowing I wouldn’t be here today because it was them that prevented me doing something that would have guaranteed my life would have ended because I was in such a bad place that my self-harm was leading me to have suicidal thought.

People knowing about this was a good thing, a good thing because they challenged my thoughts around self-harm, I had people to turn to when I was in a crisis and most of all it opened up conversations about mental health and self-harm that would never have happened otherwise. Their support allowed me to become more confident, to develop ways of coping and most of all it helped me to realize that I didn’t need to take my thoughts, emotions, frustration and anger out of myself, it showed me that there are more positive ways such as talking.

 If my secret didn’t spread like wildfire I would still be caught in a viscous cycle of self-harm that was getting worse leading to needing treatment in A&E. So for anybody out there who is self-harming and your secret is out do not think of it as a bad thing, your secret being out is the first step, which is needed to help you overcome your self-harm. If I can gain control over my self-harm then so can anybody!

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