"How will you know I am hurting, If you cannot see my pain? To wear it on my body Tells what words cannot explain." -C. Blount What is self-mutilation? It is the deliberate act of hurting yourself, for many reasons, some of which could be, to release release stress, pain, fear or anxiety, to express feelings that could not be covered in words, to"take charge" of an out of controll situation, to show people what is happening inside. How is self-Injuring done? There are many ways. Ways of self-injuring include cutting, burning, hitting, biting, breaking bones, interfering with wounds, picking at skin and more. What do self-injurers use? Often the urge to self-injure becomes a compulsion, and the person will use anything they can lay their hands on. Some weapons of choice include, glass, knives, razorblades, safety pins, blunt instruments, scissors, lighters, hot metal, lighted cigarettes etc What are some signs that a person is self-injuring? the presence of fresh, healing and/or scars from old injuries, carrying a knife, lighter or matches around for no logical reason, making excuses for injuries, wanting to do own laundry all of a sudden, locking self in room for a long time with no apparent reason/ having new injury when venturing out, blood or burn stains in clothing, becoming overly upset or defensive when questioned. Keeping Safe + Alternatives to cutting Keep Safe --> Keep a List of mates you can call, even just to touch base. --> Keep dangerous things out of your room ie/ Painkillers, Razorblades... --> Make a tape of music for those bad times... ((Some people benefit from listening to happy music, some from depressing music... )) --> Focus on what is real, and around you, right then. # Get down to the basics. ie/ The couch is green. The light is on. I can feel my shoe pinching my foot. ((This helps to 'ground' you.)) --> Call a crisis line. --> Create an internal safe place where you can go. It can be real or imaginary... add as many details as you can. --> Get a warm drink, a dvuvet, and a stuffed toy, and curl up somewhere. --> Try not to be too hard on yourself for feeling this way --> Remember that there is a scared little child inside you who is likely confused. Alternatives to Cutting. --> Use a toothbrush instead of a razor. --> Use a red marker, and draw lines where you wish you could be cutting... ((Careful, this could be a triggering exercise)) --> Hold Ice. ((Painful but harmless)) --> 'First Aid Box' - Fill a box with meaningful, positive things ((Such as a letter from a loved one)) and bring it out when you are upset. --> Try putting an elastic band around your wrist and ping it ((This is good if you cut for pain)) --> Sounds weird, but dying your hair red can be satisfying. --> Sexual release ((By yourself if you don't want to complicate matters)) --> Scribble on a piece of paper or the pavement with a red crayon or piece of chalk... This helps to expend both energy and tension. --> Rip up paper, or fabric. --> Pain your nails dark red, or even black. --> Write all your thoughts/feelings on a piece of paper, and rip it up/burn it. --> Bite your nails. O_o --> Make lots of noise ((Choose a suitable place for this)) --> Set yourself targets for not cutting. ie/ Two days, a week etc... # Reward yourself with a little treat every time you reach that target.