Harmless is a user led organisation that provides a range of services about self harm including support, information, training and consultancy to people who self harm, their friends and families and professionals.

Harmless was set up by people who understand self harm and at the heart of our service is a real sense of hope. We know that with the right support and help life can get better. We hope that you find this site a safe and helpful resource.

Feel free to look around and we welcome your thoughts and feedback about our site and services. We would also encourage everyone who feels able to complete our self harm questionnaires as this will help us develop a better awareness of who is accessing Harmless and the kind of difficulties they face.

Self harm is the term used to describe when someone deliberately hurts themselves as a way of dealing with their emotions. They may do this in a number of ways, including:

  • cutting or scratching themselves
  • burning themselves with a flame or something hot
  • causing bruising to the body by hitting themselves
  • throwing their body against something that will hurt
  • taking overdoses of tablets or medication
  • inserting objects into the body
  • hair pulling (also known as trichotilliomania)

This is by no means an exhaustive list.

Why do people self harm?

Self harm is a coping strategy that helps people to manage their emotional hurt or stress. It is important to remember that it is not attempted suicide, but it is something that people do in order to survive. Often people self harm to try and feel as if they have more control over their emotions, or to get immediate relief from high levels of distress. Sometimes people harm themselves because of self hate, or because they want to punish themselves.

Who self harms

There is no straight forward answer to this. The truth is - anyone is at risk from self harming at some point in his or her life depending on the experiences they have and the way they feel about these experiences. People self harm for a variety of reasons and in a variety of ways, and what can cause one person to harm themselves, may not create the same level of distress in another person.

Popular culture would have you believe that young girls predominantly self harm but the research suggests otherwise. Findings suggest that in fact for the age range of mid 30s, men represent the majority of people attending Accident and Emergency for the treatment of self harm.

What causes people to self harm?

There are many things that can cause distress is someone that can in turn lead them to harm themselves. Such issues that may trigger the onset or a period of self harm might be bullying, trauma, abuse, school or work pressures, bereavement and difficult relationships but no experience can be disregarded. There doesn't always need to be a triggering event in someone's life that makes them turn to self harm, sometimes individuals just experience a period of decreased self esteem or increased distress that leads them to harm themselves.

Self harm is NOT

  • attention seeking or manipulative; self harm is neither of these things
  • a mental illness; it is a symtom of internal stress or distress
  • just a young person's problem
  • a suicide attempt, but is about staying alive
  • the problem but would suggest that the person is struggling with something else, it is a symptom of emotional distress
  • a problem that cannot be solved, people can learn to manage their emotions in a different way
  • for the pain, but for the respite people gain from their emotional pain or stress
  • a behaviour that is risky to others

The severity of self harm is not directly related to the level of distress that the individual is feeling. The fact that someone has harmed themselves is what is significant, not what they did or how severe their harm was.

The language that we use…

It is advisable not to describe the person who self harms as a 'self harmer', as this defines the individual only in terms of their self harm, and leaves little room for other areas of their personality to be described or explored.


There is also information available for family and friends. Please download the fact sheet at http://www.harmless.org.uk/downloads/factSheet2_AdviceForFriendsAndFamily.pdf


Also, there is downloadable information for young people who self harm at http://www.harmless.org.uk/downloads/factSheet1_AdviceForYoungPeople.pdf

Oxford University Guide for self harm



This guide was developed from talking to parents and carers of young people and

is aimed at helping parents, carers, other family members and friends cope when a

young person is self-harming. It includes information on the nature and causes of

self-harm, how to support a young person when facing this problem and

what help is available.

Please download the guide on the link above.

Alternatives to self harm


Alternatives to Self-Harm and Distraction Techniques

These are some ideas for helping people delay or avoid self-harm that you might wish to

consider – they’ve all been suggested by people who self-harm. Some ideas might seem

ridiculous, but others might work. Different people find that different things help, and it isn’t

failure if you try something and it doesn’t help. You will be able to add things which you have




Get Self Help

(Dave-This one is for you.)



There are times in life when we might feel totally, hopeless, helpless, overwhelmed with emotional pain.  It can seem like there is no other way out of our problems, we've run out of ideas, possible solutions.  Our problems seem unfixable.  The pain feels like it will never end. We believe we've run out of options, and suicide is the only answer left.

Maybe the suicidal thoughts come to mind, you might have mixed feelings about them.  They're frightening and confusing. 

For some people, suicide may be a way of getting back at others, or showing them how much pain you're in.  But after suicide, you won't be there to see that they feel guilty, or finally understand your pain.


Please visit https://www.getselfhelp.co.uk//selfhelp.htm for more information and resources on how to manage many different aspects of negative behaviour and thoughts such as anxiety, anger and bulimia, just to name a few.


Also, please visit https://www.getselfhelp.co.uk//freedownloads.htm for lots of information and downloads that may help with a multitude of problems.

Calm Harm


Calm Harm app - helps you manage the urge to self harm

Why not try the Calm Harm app?

Calm Harm provides tasks that help you resist or manage the urge to self-harm and it’s completely private and password protected.

What does it do?

  • The four categories of tasks target the main reasons for why people self harm:
    • Distract helps to combat the urge by learning self-control;
    • Comfort helps to care rather than harm;
    • Express helps get feelings out in a different way;
    • Release provides safe alternatives to self-injury.

How does it work?

    • The app is developed for stem4 by Dr Krause, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, using ideas from an evidence-based therapy called DBT. The focus is to help learn to identify and manage your ‘emotional’ mind with positive impact. The app enables you to track your progress. Please note that the app is an aid in treatment but does not replace it.
    • The stem4 Calm Harm app is available as a free download:


Find out more

Watch our Calm Harm video to find out more about the app.

What people are saying


  • “Awesome. It’s a great way to help yourself if you can’t speak to anyone. I find the countdown especially helpful :)”


  • stem4 A brilliant little app it’s helping me battle my depression and self harm urges…stay strong everyone who is battling depression”


  • “A year ago, I was diagnosed with major depression and I went into therapy. During the past year I had to deal with suicidal thoughts, panic attacks and sadness every day. I started cutting myself and it became an addiction: I couldn’t stop. I cut myself every day. But then I discovered the app of stem4: Calm Harm. This was the solution for my self-harm! Every time I felt the urge to cut myself, I opened the app and I did some activities. The urge faded! I am clean for a month now and I am very proud of that. But it’s because of the app I can stay clean, so that’s why I want to thank stem4 so much for this fantastic invention!”


  • “I had a young person who was referred to the service, who said that her reduction in self-harm was due to using your app. Whenever she felt the urge to self-harm she would open the app and use the distraction techniques provided. I have had a look at your app and downloaded it to have a look myself, it would be great to tell the young people who are referred to the programme about it, and if they wish they can download it.”
  • – Project Co-ordinator for Breaking Silence, a programme for young people and their families affected by self-harm

An award-winning app

  • stem4 won the Digital Innovation award category for Calm Harm at the National Positive Practice in Mental Health Awards 2016 and was a finalist in the AXA PPP Health Tech & You Awards 2017.

Calm Harm resources

  • We will soon have a variety of Calm Harm promotional resources available such as posters, postcards and business cards. If you are interested in ordering these then please contact us at admin@stem4.org.uk.

Suicide headlines BBC

The city that wants to stamp out suicide

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust in Liverpool has pledged to bring its suicide rate down to zero

The number of people taking their own lives is "unacceptably high", MPs say. Does one city which plans to eliminate suicide altogether have the answer?

Is it possible to reach even a day when no one kills themselves?

A mental health trust in Liverpool - which pledged in September 2015 to bring its suicide rate down to zero among its patients - thinks so.

The commitment, the first of its kind in the country, was inspired by a health centre in Detroit, Michigan, which has reported not losing a single patient to suicide in two-and-a-half years. In 2015, the centre saw 74,000 patients.

Dr David Fearnley, Mersey Care's medical director, admits it will take time to see change, but says: "The first step is to accept it [a zero suicide rate] is possible. This is something that actually can happen."


He says measures including new suicide prevention training for staff and offering on-the-spot therapies to patients in A&E who have self-harm injuries will help the trust, which supported more than 41,000 patients in 2015/16, achieve this.

Other trusts are following suit, with the east and south west of England trialling the policy.

Indeed, MPs say the number of people taking their own lives in England - 4,820 in 2015 - is "unacceptably high".

They say GPs need more training in spotting people at risk of suicide and there should be more support after psychiatric patients are discharged.

A government plan for preventing suicides is expected in the New Year.

'Making a start'

For Rebecca Gibson, whose husband Andy, 54, took his own life in October 2014, the answer is simple.

"He didn't need anti-depressants - he needed somebody to talk to," she says.

"I never, never thought my husband would take his own life.

"If my husband had spoken to somebody [who had been in a similar situation]... I think my husband would still be here."

Image caption Rebecca Gibson's husband Andy, 54, took his own life in October 2014

Rebecca and her two sons - who were 14 and 18 when their father died - live in Liverpool, but she is sceptical of Mersey Care's zero suicide policy.

"I laughed when I heard it - it is like saying there is never going to be another traffic accident," she says.

"It is all very well them having this policy, but how are they going to implement it?

"They [Mersey Care] are making a start but I think it will take a good 20 years."

UK statistics

  • A total of 6,188 people were recorded as taking their own lives in 2015
  • The suicide rate in the UK rose slightly to 10.9 deaths per 100,000 people, up from 10.8 in 2014
  • In England, Yorkshire and The Humber had the highest suicide rate at 11.6 deaths per 100,000 and the East of England had the lowest at 9.3 deaths per 100,000
  • Across all age groups, the rate for men was about three times higher than women
  • The highest number of deaths was in the 45-49 age group, at 721 - 545 men and 176 women

Source: ONS

Can suicide rates be reduced to zero?

The inspiration behind Mersey Care's policy, the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, screens every patient for risk of suicide, not just those who have mental health problems.

It began the programme in 2001 that included improved staff training, increased contact with patients and better education for the families of people who were deemed to be at risk.

The suicide rate among its patient population fell by 75% within four years and by 2008 they had stopped all suicides among the group's patients.

This inspired Mersey Care - which provides specialist inpatient and community mental health for adults in Liverpool, Sefton and Kirkby - to:

  • Launch a new suicide prevention course for staff
  • Give every patient who has had a history of intent or self-harm a personalised "safety plan" and a specialised team continually monitors the highest risk people
  • Aim to complete post-suicide reviews within two weeks
  • Offer patients who have self-harm injuries therapies on the spot at A&E and follow up with them when they go home
  • Develop a suicide prevention mobile phone app with Stanford University, which would provide round-the-clock support. The trust hopes to trial it in 2017

The policy is funded from the trust's existing finances and it hopes to continue funding it through savings from preventing suicides.


Dr Fearnley says Mersey Care loses about 30 people to suicide per year. A total of 135 deaths were recorded on Merseyside in 2015, 39 of those were in Liverpool.

Samaritans CEO Ruth Sutherland says the term "zero suicide" raises "unrealistic expectations".

She says the "signs are encouraging so far" from the pilot programme and believes the government should roll it out across the country if it is successful.

The "intensive follow-up care" provided by Mersey Care after patients have been discharged was important in preventing suicide as that is a "particularly high risk time", she says.

Samaritans: Call 116 123

HOPELineUK, for under 35s: Call 0800 068 41 41

Stamp out suicide

(David, Thank You for inspiring me to improve and update this page. I would never have done it without you.)



Ensuring better life

Research has shown that there are common signs that someone is intending on ending their own life. Most people are not aware of these signs until after a loved one had died by suicide but it is possible to spot the signs.

  • Self harming or a previous suicide attempt.
  • Changes in one mood or behaviour.
  • High stress levels.
  • Greater amount of alcohol intake.
  • A sense of being a Burdon to others.
  • Depression.
  • Sleep problems.
  • Low level of coping with what would usually be regular day to day things.
  • Despair, negative attitude.
  • Giving away possessions ( jewellery, books, CDs etc)

Having spent over six hundred days on the road visiting so many families in every single county in the UK and Ireland, I've learned a lot from the people I've met from every walk of life. One thing for sure is that suicide can, and does, come knocking on absolutely anyone's door. Believe me; when it does come to your doorstep it's like a tsunami and leaves a rotten trail of destruction in its wake.


I met a person that attempted taking her own life. She spent four hours in A&E and then was given a prescription for antidepressants and put on a waiting list for counselling which was eight months later. Unfortunately for her there was none of the free counselling services available in her area. In fact the nearest service available to her was 135 miles away. If she were to avail of this service she'd have to miss one day a week from work plus the cost of her train was £60 return. She simply couldn't afford it and this put her health at greater risk.

This is where the idea for Stamp Out Suicide came from.


We have set up a free phone line counselling service that will be accessible to anyone in the UK and our aim is to support as many people as we possibly can.

I've spoken to some people about this and all have offered their support in different ways from financial to volunteering their time. I'd like to say thanks to you all.

Any support is absolutely more than welcome and much appreciated, so please don't hesitate in contacting me if you would like to help out in any way from doing an event , sponsoring one of our phone lines, making a donation, if you have any ideas you would like to contribute or if you have the qualifications to provide counselling.

Please visit http://www.stampoutsuicide.co.uk/index.php  for more information and follow them on twitter at https://twitter.com/sos_fme2012


Self Harm ins and outs




This leaflet is for anyone who wants to know more about self-harm, particularly anyone who is harming themselves, or feels that they might. We hope it will also be helpful for friends and families.

The leaflet looks at the different sorts of self-harm and why someone might do it.

 It discusses:

  • some of the help available
  • what you can do to help yourself
  • what friends or family can do to help.

At the end of the leaflet is a list other publications which can give you more information.

What is self-harm?

Self-harm happens when you hurt or harm yourself. You may:

  • take too many tablets – an overdose
  • cut yourself
  • burn yourself
  • bang your head or throw yourself against something hard
  • punch yourself
  • stick things in your body
  • swallow things.

It can feel to other people that these things are done calmly and deliberately – almost cynically.  But we know that someone who self-harms is usually in a state of high emotion, distress and unbearable inner turmoil. Some people plan it in advance, for others, it happens on the spur of the moment. Some people self-harm only once or twice, but others do it regularly - it can be hard to stop.

Some of us harm ourselves in less obvious, but still serious ways. We may behave in ways that suggest we don't care whether we live or die – we may take drugs recklessly, have unsafe sex, or binge drink. Some people simply starve themselves.


Other words that are used to describe self-harm

These terms were previously used to describe self-harm, but are now going out of use:

  • Deliberate self-harm (DSH): the word 'deliberate' tended to blame people for their self-harm.
  • Suicide/Parasuicide: these suggested that harming yourself is the same as wanting to kill yourself - which is often not the case.


How common is self-harm?

  • About 1 in 10 young people will self-harm at some point, but it can happen at any age.
  • The research probably under-estimates how common self-harm is. It is usually based on surveys of people who go to hospital or their GP after harming themselves. However, we know that a lot of people do not seek help after self-harm. Some types of self-harm, like cutting, may be more secret and so less likely to be noticed.
  • In a study of over 4000 self-harming adults in hospital, 80% had overdosed and around 15% had cut themselves. In the community, it is likely that cutting is a more common way of self-harming than taking an overdose.


Who self-harms?

It happens more often in:

  • young women
  • prisoners, asylum seekers, and veterans of the armed forces
  • gay, lesbian and bisexual people: this seems, at least in part, due to the stress of prejudice and discrimination
  • a group of young people who self-harm together: having a friend who self-harms may increase your chances of doing it as well
  • people who have  experienced physical, emotional or sexual abuse during childhood.

What makes people self-harm?

Research has shown that many people who harm themselves are struggling with intolerable distress or unbearable situations. A person will often struggle with difficulties for some time before they self-harm. 

Common problems include:

  • physical or sexual abuse
  • feeling depressed
  • feeling bad about yourself
  • relationship problems with partners, friends, and family
  • being unemployed, or having difficulties at work

You may be more likely to harm yourself if you feel:

  • that people don’t listen to you
  • hopeless
  • isolated, alone
  • out of control
  • powerless – it feels as though there's nothing you can do to change anything.

It's more likely to happen if you are using alcohol or drugs – it may feel that these are as out of control as the rest of your life.

You may feel like harming yourself if you want to show someone else how distressed you are or to get back at them or to punish them. This is not common – most people suffer in silence and self-harm in private.

How does it make you feel?

Self-harm can help you to feel in control, and reduce uncomfortable feelings of tension and distress. If you feel guilty, it can be a way of punishing yourself and relieving your guilt. Either way, it can become a 'quick fix' for feeling bad.

Does this mean I'm mentally ill?

Probably not. However, you may be depressed, have personality difficulties, find it difficult to get on with other people or have problems with alcohol and/or drugs. You could still do with some help.

Is self-harm the same as attempted suicide

Usually not. But if you start to harm yourself, the risk of killing yourself is greater than for people who don't self-harm. So anyone who self-harms should be taken seriously and offered help.

Getting help

A lot of people who self-harm don't ask for help. Why not? You might be aware that you have some serious problems, but don't feel that you can tell anyone – so you don’t talk about it. You may not feel that you do have a serious problem, but see self-harm as a way to cope with life. Unfortunately, at the moment, if you do go to hospital after self-harming, you've only got a 50:50 chance of being seen by a specialist in this area.


Danger signs

You are most likely to harm yourself badly if you:

  • use a dangerous or violent method
  • self-harm regularly
  • don't see many people
  • have a mental illness.

You should really see someone who has a lot of experience of helping people who self-harm, and who knows about mental health problems.

What help is there?

  • Talking with a non-professional

You may find it helpful just to talk anonymously to someone else about what is happening to you. Knowing that someone else knows what you are going through can help you to feel less alone with your problems. It can also help you to think about your difficulties more clearly – maybe even see ways of solving them that you wouldn't think of on your own. You can do this on the internet or by telephone. Some helplines are listed at the end of this leaflet.

  • Self-help groups

A group of people, who all self-harm, meet regularly to give each other emotional support and practical advice. Just sharing your problems in a group can help you to feel less alone - others in the group will almost certainly have had similar experiences.

  • Help with relationships

Self-harm is often the result of a crisis in a close relationship. If this is the case, get some help with sorting out the relationship - it may be more difficult in the short-term, but it will be better for you (certainly less dangerous) in the long-term. 

  • Talking with a professional

One-to-one talking treatments can help, such as:

If you are still living with your family, it may help to have a family meeting with a therapist. This can help to relieve the tiring, daily stress for everyone in the family. It is not always appropriate, for instance, if you are the victim of physical or sexual abuse within your family.

  • Group therapy

This is different from a self-help group.  A professional will lead (or facilitate) the group to help the members to deal with problems they share, for example, in getting on with other people.


What works best?

There isn't much good evidence yet of which therapies work well for people who have harmed themselves. However, what evidence there is, suggests that problem-solving therapy and cognitive-behavioural therapy are useful. A health professional will make suggestions based on your individual problems and on what is available locally.


What if I don't get help?

  • About 1 in 3 people who self-harm for the first time will do it again during the following year.
  • About 3 in 100 people who self-harm over 15 years will actually kill themselves. This is more than 50 times the rate for people who don't self-harm. The risk increases with age and is much greater for men.
  • Cutting can give you permanent scarring. If nerves or tendons are damaged by cutting, this can lead to numbness or weakness.

How can I help myself?

When you want to harm yourself

The feelings of self-harm will go away after a while. If you can cope with your distress without self-harming for a time, it will get easier over the next few hours. You can:

  • Talk to someone – if you are on your own perhaps you could phone a friend. Some helplines are listed at the end of this leaflet.
  • If the person you are with is making you feel worse, go out.
  • Distract yourself by going out, listening to music, or by doing something harmless that interests you.
  • Relax and focus your mind on something pleasant – your very own personal comforting place.
  • Find another way to express your feelings such as squeezing ice cubes (which you can make with red juice to mimic blood if the sight of blood is important), or just drawing red lines on your skin.
  • Give yourself some 'harmless pain' - eat a hot chilli, or have a cold shower.
  • Focus your mind on positive things.
  • Be kind to yourself – allow yourself to do something harmless that you enjoy.
  • Write a diary or a letter, to explain what is happening to you – no one else needs to see it.

When you don't feel like harming yourself

When the urge has gone, and you feel safe, think about the times that you have self-harmed and what (if anything) has been helpful.

  • Go back in your mind to the last time when you did not want to self-harm, and move forward in your memory from there.
  • Think about where you were, who you were with, and what you were feeling?
  • Try to work out why you began feeling like you did.
  • Did your self-harm give you a sense of escape, or relief, or control? Try to work out something to do that might give you the same result, but that doesn't damage you.
  • How did other people react?
  • Could you have done anything else?
  • Make an audio recording. Talk about your good points and why you don't want to self-harm. Or, ask someone you trust to do this. When you start to feel bad, you can play this back to remind yourself of the parts of you that are good and worthwhile.
  • Make a 'crisis plan' so you can talk to someone instead of self-harming.  Being able to get in touch with someone quickly can help you control your urge to self-harm. While you are talking, your wish to harm yourself may start to go away.

What if you don't want to stop self-harming?

If you decide that you don't want to stop self-harming, you can still:

  • reduce the damage to your body (for example, by using clean blades if you cut yourself)
  • keep thinking about possible answers to the things that make you harm yourself
  • every so often, re-consider your decision not to stop.

Self-harm can be very damaging physically and psychologically –  in the end, you'll do better by stopping.

There are a number of questions to ask yourself to see if you are ready to stop. If you can honestly say YES to half of the questions below, or more, then why not try stopping?

  • Are there at least two people who are willing to help me stop?
  • Do I have friends that know about my self-harming who I can go to if I get desperate?
  • Have I found at least two alternative safe ways that reduce the feelings that lead me to self-harm?
  • Am I able to tell myself, and to believe, that I want to stop hurting myself?
  • Can I tell myself that I WILL tolerate feelings of frustration, desperation, and fear?
  • If necessary, is there a professional who will also give me support and help in a crisis?

If I harm myself and need treatment?

You have the right to be treated with courtesy and respect by the doctors and nurses in the  Emergency Department. Many Emergency Departments now have easy access to a health professional who knows about self-harm, such as a psychiatric nurse, a doctor, or a social worker. They will be able to talk with you about how you are feeling, and to see if there are any ways of helping you. They should be able to properly assess all your needs, whatever they may be. You should be able to go through your assessment with them. Staff may want to go through a questionnaire with you, to try to judge how at risk you are.

What can I do if I know someone who self-harms?

It can be very upsetting to be close to someone who self-harms - but there are things you can do. The most important is to listen to them without judging them or being critical. This can be very hard if you are upset yourself - and perhaps angry - about what they are doing. Try to concentrate on them rather than your own feelings – although this can be hard.


  • Talk to them when they feel like self-harming. Try to understand their feelings, and then move the conversation onto other things.
  • Take some of the mystery out of self-harm by helping them find out about self-harm, perhaps by showing them this leaflet, or by using the internet or the local library.
  • Find out about getting help - maybe go with them to see someone, such as their GP.
  •  Help them to think about their self-harm not as a shameful secret, but as a problem to be sorted out.


  • Try to be their therapist – therapy is complicated and you have enough to deal with as their friend, partner or relative.
  • Expect them to stop overnight – it's difficult and takes time and effort.
  • React strongly, with anger, hurt, or upset - this is likely to make them feel worse. Talk honestly about the effect it has on you, but do this calmly and in a way that shows how much you care for them.
  • Struggle with them when they are about to self-harm – it's better to walk away and to suggest they come and talk about it rather than do it.
  • Make them promise not to do it again.
  • Say that you won't see them unless they stop self-harming. 
  • Feel responsible for their self-harm or become the person who is supposed to stop them. You must get on with your own life as well. Make sure you talk to someone close to you, so you get some support.

Self-help and support

Childline: Free national helpline for young people, free confidential advice on all sorts of problems: 0800 1111.

Samaritans: Telephone and email support for anyone who is worried, upset, or suicidal; 08457 90 90 90; ROI 116 123; email: jo@samaritans.org.

PAPYRUS HOPELine UK: a professionally staffed helpline providing support, practical advice and information to young people worried about themselves, and to anyone concerned that a young person may harm themselves. Tel: 0800 068 41 41.

Get Connected: offers help by telephone and email for people under 25 who self-harm. Tel: 0808 808 4994.

Selfharm.co.uk: a project dedicated to supporting young people who are affected by self-harm. Email: info@selfharm.co.uk.

Self Injury Support: provides a young women's text and email service, any age helpline for women who self harm, UK-wide listings for self harm support and self help tools. Email: info@selfinjurysupport.org.uk.


Self harm UK


selfharmUK is a project dedicated to supporting young people impacted by self-harm, providing a safe space to talk, ask any questions and be honest about what's going on in your life. These pages will tell you a bit about us as well as pointing you in the right direction if you need to contact us or find out more about our policies and procedures.

If you need to ask anything else, you can contact us and we'll do our best to help.

selfharmUK is part of Youthscape, a registered UK charity that's been working to support young people aged 11 to 19 since 1993.

Emergency Help



We can’t be there in person to help and support you in a moment of crisis, but there are other options available to you if you can’t turn to someone you trust. By giving us your postcode (or one nearby to where you are right now) we can let you know about services in your area. Remember: this moment will pass; you won’t always feel the way you do right now. 

If in doubt always call 999.




The national Association for People Abused in Childhood

Helping rebuild the lives of people abused in childhood.

Freephone Support Line: 0800 085 3330 or visit http://www.napac.org.uk


Self Harm



Support to women in emotional distress, and particularly to those who self-injure. Range of leaflets about self-injury and issues relating to self-injury and sexual abuse (can be printed off from their website). Available in various languages. Newsletter for young women.

Helpline: 0780 047 2908

 Email form (use the on the Bristol Crisis Service for Women website)

Website: http://www.selfinjurysupport.org.uk/


 Tel: (support helpline): 0800 622 6000 Best time to telephone is between 7 pm and 11 pm

Provides information, contacts and workshops on matters relating to self harm.

Operates a postal and Email network of members who self harm; write or email for details.

Address: NSHN, PO Box 7264, Nottingham, NG1 6WJ

Email: info@nshn.co.uk

Website:  www.nshn.co.uk

  • ZEST

Telephone counselling and other support services for individuals who self- harm or attempt suicide.

Tel: 028 7126 6999

E-mail: zestni@yahoo.co.uk

Website: http://www.zestni.org/


Self Harm

Help for Women in Distress
Help and support for women, especially for those who self injure. Friday & Saturday, 9 pm - 12.30 am., Sunday, 6 pm - 9 pm.

Tel: (0117) 952 1119

Project SPEAR
Telephone information and support for people whom self harm and those with stress related illness.

Tel: 01793 520111

Self Harm Alliance
Volunteer run group and help line providing information and support to people affected by self harm, including friends, family and professionals who work with them.

Tel: 01242 578820