Self Injury links, sites and resources
The very name of this page is controversial, so I wasn't sure what to call it. A cursory inspection of the literature from those who self harm will quickly show that the terminology is open to some debate. Some object to the term 'self mutilation' - on the grounds that it is overly graphic, and tends to medicalize and pathologize of those who engage in this behaviour.
There's also a list of papers with some resources online
The material on this page is in approximate alphabetical order. This list is by no means complete. I've tried to include sites where there is a reasonably large range of material, but there are a number of initiatives for self harmers which I know are going on in the UK which don't seem to have websites - if anyone can find more material which deserves inclusion please let me know. Likewise, if you find any of the material objectionable please let me know too. Self harm is a contentious area and like many issues in mental health the relationship between self harmers and health professionals has often been a fraught and unhappy one. Self harmers contend that they have often been subject to coercive and dehumanising treatments, been patronised, told their problems are manipulative, attention seeking or evidence of a potentially stigmatising diagnosis like 'personality disorder', 'paranoid schizophrenia'. Furthermore, there are many complaints that staff in casualty A&E and 'Emergency Rooms' (US) have been unsympathetic when dealing with injuries and have treated sufferers inhumanely and Thus, it's particularly crucial that the accounts from sufferers themselves are taken seriously.
As usual with lists of links, these tend to get out of date quickly. I will be checking and updating them but sites do go offline sometimes. Don't worry, try another. Many of the sites on this subject are linked together anyway. There has also been an enormous expansion in sites relating to this issue just over the last year or so that I've had this page live and running
I have tried to set all these links so the open a new browser window. if you get into trouble or the site won't load, just close the window and you'll be back here as if by magic.
Here's the list so far: Please note that some of these sites have recently gone down or moved I'm still looking for them to see where they've gone. If I find them updates will follow shortly.
Blood Red - part of the healthy place self injury community. These sites have an informative and interactive theme - visitors are encouraged to put their own stories in - there's a comprehensive archive of visitors personal experiences. Well worth a look.
Bristol Crisis Service for Women - probably one of the UK's original helping and campaigning groups - the most authoritative and best loved who have done an enormous amount to put self harm n the agenda. They also publish a load of useful practical materials on the issue, for sufferers, their friends and family, volunteers and health professionals and anybody else. All down to earth, feminist inspired and thankfully free of US happy-humanist mawkishness. All at affordable prices too. Great. Imagine my delight on discovering they had a website.
CYC-Net.org's self mutilation reference section contains a useful bibliography on the subject.
Mirror-mirror.org: This site s mainly about eating disorders but it does have some useful stuff about self injury and some suggestions as to how sufferers can help to reduce their self cutting - "Self-injury is probably the most widely misunderstood forms of self harm and there are many myths associated with it, which can make it difficult for people to reach out and ask for help."
The National Self Harm Network says "Our priority is to support survivors and people who self-harm. We also support the people it indirectly affects, like family and friends, they can discuss the issue and gain effective support in our forums"
The National Children's Bureau is taking an interest in self harm and has a number of pages with useful information and links and other resources which seems to be pretty detailed. Well done NCB! There are also some other parts of their site that are worth visiting.
www.selfinjury.org.uk seems to have expanded dramatically lately and calls itself Lifesigns now. A huge collection of pages, attractive graphics and lots of useful information, video clips to download, and all done very tastefully in the kind of style I would do if I could actually use some of the webdesign software that's sitting on my computer rather than grotty old Front Page. Incidentally I knew the person responsible before I saw this site and I was even more impressed. Lots of useful links too. When I looked at it they were all live too!