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To Sam


I have hurt myself before but not in such a way as ot actually cut my skin. I have scratched my skin to the point where it is red and sore for a few days but that is it. I am afraid that it could get worse once I start back at school and my stress levls increase. I have to help my mum around the house and with my siblings when my dad is at work and my grandad is ill so he needs more care than before so I am helping out with that as well. Is there anyway to reduce my stress so that I don't feel the need to self harm any more?
Ask Sam


Hi there,

Many people use self-harm as a way of coping with their feelings. It can be a way of expressing the pain they feel on the inside on the outside of their body.

You’ve recognised that stress sometimes makes you want to self-harm, and you describe things at home and school that you are finding hard. I’m wondering if you’ve spoken to anyone like a family member or teacher to explain how you’re feeling. Talking to them about your feelings can be difficult, but we have some tips on our asking an adult for help page

Some people find that writing things down in a diary can help, too. Other distractions that people find helpful are listening to music, drawing, exercise, talking to friends. You might want to look at our self-harming coping techniques page and our message boards to see how other young people are coping.

Self-harm can happen in different ways. It’s not just cutting the skin. But whatever you do when you self-harm, it’s important to keep yourself safe. You can do this by cleaning your wounds. Doing this reduces the risk of the wound becoming infected. It’s also important to know that if you ever need emergency help at any time or if you cut deeper than usual or you are worried about bleeding, you can call 999 for an ambulance. Sometimes it can be important to get help quickly.

Remember that you can always talk to a ChildLine counsellor, who can listen and support you and help you to look at other ways of coping.

Take care for now,

Need help straight away?

You can talk privately to a counsellor online or call 0800 1111 for free.

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