Bullying is main reason behind child self-harm

Burton Mail, 27/2/2014, UK

A NEW poll has revealed that one in four youngsters who self-harm in Burton and South Derbyshire started due to bullying.

The shock research, released ahead of Self-harm Awareness Day tomorrow, also showed that 61 per cent also said they do it because they feel alone.

ChildLine, Selfharm.co.uk, YouthNet and YoungMinds collaborated to gather the research which saw a total of 674 children and young people from the area take part.

Ziv Israeli, acting ChildLine services manager in the area, said: “There are many reasons why young people might self-harm.

“It’s a way of dealing with overwhelming feelings that can feel very difficult to cope with and young people tell us that physical pain helps them cope with the emotional pain.

“We have seen a significant rise in the amount of children contacting ChildLine about self-harm.
“Although self-harm is not a new problem, sharing images of self-harm on social media sites is a worrying new development.

“I would urge young people seeking advice or support on this issue to contact ChildLine, which is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 0800 1111 or go to ChildLine.org.uk.

“Calls don’t appear on telephone bills.”
Feeling ‘alone’ and being ‘bullied’ were highlighted as the key triggers that lead young people to self-harm for the first time.

More than 38 per cent of respondents admitted that, other than online, they had never spoken to anyone about their self-harming.

ChildLine has seen a staggering 41 per cent increase in counselling sessions where self-harm was mentioned.

Rachel Welch, from Selfharm.co.uk, said: “By bringing self-harm into the light and speaking about it openly we send an important message.”