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How to Help Someone with Self Harming Behavior?

How to Help Someone with Self Harming Behavior?



Many who do harm themselves are very clever in hiding or pretending around others. To help the person who has self-harming behavior in a caring and understanding way, it will be useful for you to learn and know what is self harming behavior and then what are the signs to see in your loved one. Useful resources are given below.

Make sure you recognize and learn the warning signs where you can act on them. But never feel responsible for any harm one may do to themselves.

What do you mean by Self Harming Behavior?

“A behavior wherein a person has the tendency to harm oneself. It may be either direct or an indirect result of their actions; that is frequently marked by an impulse, but also includes chronic injurious behaviors.”

Self Harming Behavior

Warning signs of self-harm in adults

Self Harming Behavior

  • Using phrases like “I’d be better off dead” or “I wish I had never been born”
  • Accessing lethal means of harm such as gaining access to pills, knives, or guns that could lead the person to attempt suicide
  • Being preoccupied with thoughts of death
  • Exhibiting signs of hopelessness and helplessness
    Exhibiting signs of shame, guilt.
  • Getting their affairs in order and making out a will, giving away possessions, or making final arrangements “just in case”
  • Saying final goodbyes to family and friends
  • Withdrawing from society and isolating themselves from family and friends.
  • Exhibiting self harming behavior such as using drugs and alcohol or participating in unsafe sex
  • A sudden sense of peace and happiness after being in a depressed state.

Self Harming Behavior

These warning signs are a collection of the most common signs that people give when contemplating harming themselves. Someone may or may not give any of these self harming behavior signs to tip you off.

How to help someone with self harm issues or self harming behavior?

Self Harming Behavior

How can you help someone who is depressed and may be on their way to feeling there is no help? Remember these simple things in mind to help someone who is showing self harming behavior.

  1. If a family member or a friend shows the above warning signs of self-harming behavior, firstly, do not ignore any of these warning signs in them.
    Secondly, Don’t leave them alone.
  2. Don’t leave them alone.
  3. Remove any lethal threat they may be able to use to hurt themselves.
  4. Have a plan of action ready in case you feel that their plan of action may be imminent.
  5. Offering help and support is the best way to help, but stepping in to stop them is the best way to prevent it.
  6. Encourage them to make some healthy lifestyle changes like getting plenty of sleep, eating a healthy diet, getting out and being active, getting plenty of sunlight.

If you feel the person isn’t in immediate danger, you can say things like, “I can tell you’re really hurt”, and “I care about you and will do my best to help you.”

Then follow through – help them find a mental health professional. Getting counseling is crucial for the most high risk and severe risk cases. Be by their side when they make that first phone call, or go along with them to their first appointment. It’s not a good idea to leave it up to a person to get help on their own. Being supportive can mean so much to the one who’s in pain.

It is important that you continue on with your support over the duration. Don’t start supporting them then let it dwindle off and stop. The warning signs of suicide may return and no one will be there to notice.

For more information on how to help someone with Self harming behavior, more insights about how to overcome suicidal thoughts or help for self-harm prevention or to ask any questions related to how to prevent self harm in an adored one, visit us at Cadabam’s or contact us at 9611194949.