self-injury

Depression and Sorrow

Many of the resources and links below are commonly recommended, but it’s always a good idea to carefully—or prayerfully—consider anything you read, even in deciding if you should read it or not. If you are someone who is engaged in self-harming behavior, the information below can be helpful but will never be a substitute for finding people you can talk to and share your story with—people who will listen and care.

For those who are encouraging and supporting someone who is self-injuring, the information will help you understand more about what is happening and how you can help. Still, don’t hesitate to get others involved from your community—pastors who have sought training to understand self-injury or professional counselors.

BOOKS

General Market:

The Scarred Soul—Understanding and Ending Self-Inflicted Violence
by Tracy Alderman

See My Pain! Creative Strategies and Activities for Helping Young People Who Self-Injure
by Susan Bowman, Kaye Randall

Cutting—Understanding and Overcoming Self-Mutilation
by Steven Levenkron

A Bright Red Scream: Self-Mutilation and the Language of Pain
by Marilee Strong

Healing the Hurt Within—Understand and Relieve the Suffering Behind Self-Destructive Behaviour
by Jan Sutton

With a Christian faith slant:

Scars That Wound, Scars That Heal—A Journey Out of Self-Injury
by Jan Kern (see specific information below)

Inside a Cutters Mind—Understanding and Helping Those Who Self-Injure
by Jerusha Clark, with Dr. Earl Henslin

No More Pain! Breaking the Silence of Self-Injury
by Vicki F. Duffy

Self-Injury—When Pain Feels Good
by Edward T. Welch

LINKS

Jan’s Blog – Tips for those in the Christian faith community on helping someone who self-injures

Choose 2 Live Free – Jan’s site for teens and young adults, talking about “living free”; more resources about self-injury are being developed for the C2LF Amplified page

Focus Adolescent Services – Self-injury Q&A, info for parents, and article and resource links

Breaking the Silence of Self-Injury Vicki Duffy’s site, includes helpful encouragement for those involved in self-injury

American Self-Injury Information Clearinghouse – Self-Injury Fact Sheet

Helping Those Who Hurt Themselves – Tips for the support person from psychologist and author, Tracy Alderman

Lysamena Project – A Christian-based site with information, resources, and links

Secret Shame – Self-injury information and support (caution for those who are self-injurying and are easily triggered)

SIARI – “Self-Injury and Related Issues,” information, resources, support (also potentially triggering)

Restored by Love Ministries – Christian online ministry for teen girls ages 12-20 years old

ARTICLES AND DOWNLOADS

Indentifying Kids Who Cut Themselves – Article and video on the signs of self-injury
Understanding Self-Injurious Behavior Thorough article on teen self-injury
LifeSigns Fact Sheets – One-page fact sheets for students, health-care professionals, teachers, and parents, and 50-page booklet (a UK site)
LifeSigns Help Pack and Halt Page – Resources for the person who wants to stop self-harming (Note: help-lines in pack are for the UK)
Teen Self-Injury May Be Common – Includes July 2007 statistics on teen self-injury
One In Six Teens Inflict Self-Harm – A January, 2008 article explaining current research (Canada) that indicates the frequency of self-injury among teens
Conquering Cutting and Other Forms of Self-Injury – A series of articles for the person who is self-harming and those who want to help
Tough Issues, Tender Hearts – A Brio article on self-injury, including an interview with ZOEgirl and the story behind the song, “Scream.” Also includes some alternatives to self-injury.

Scars That Wound, Scars That Heal–A Journey Out of Self-Injury
Standard Publishing, September 3, 2007
A 2008 ECPA Christian Book of the Year Award Finalist

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This book tells Jackie’s story and also includes the true stories of others–both girls and guys.

Read an excerpt

Available through your local bookstores and at Amazon

Jan has written a sensitive approach to a subject more prevalent than most adults realize. Self-injury is driven by a massive amount of pain. This book offers hope and help through the real-life journey of one young hurting woman, and it doesn’t pull punches. It reveals the hidden hurts of many of today’s teenagers, using haunting images and stories that will stir your emotions, cause you to think, and at times make you cry. The book also offers strategies for responding to hurting teenagers. . . . I highly recommend this book to students, parents, and youth leaders.

—Dr. Les Christie, chairman, youth ministry, William Jessup University; Youth Specialties Core Team

More reviews

You couldn’t count the scars that mark Jackie’s arms . . . or the emotional scars that have slashed across her heart. Scars That Wound : Scars That Heal–A Journey Out of Self-Injury tells Jackie’s story and will help others like her begin to believe freedom from self-injury is possible. The unique format of this nonfiction book makes its message accessible to all who are interested in the issue of self-injury—the struggling young adult as well as the youth leader, teacher, mentor, friend, or family member who wants to know how they can help

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