Sharing personal experience

The NICE guideline contains 152 recommendations about how care can be improved for people who self harm. One of these recommendations is staff training. 

Both clinical and non-clinical staff who have contact with people who self-harm in any setting should be provided with appropriate training to equip them to understand and care for people who have self-harmed.

People who self-harm should be involved in the planning and delivery of training for staff.

At Harmless we work in partnership with organsiations and services to deliver bespoke training packages. We want everyone to develop the skills to respond appropriately and effectively to someone in distress.  An important aspect of our training is that the development of the content involves the input of people who have self harmed. This ensures our training delivers the most poignant and significant messages.

To show you how important sharing personal experience can be, I wish to share with you a small part of me:

“I have a loving family and a very fortune upbringing however, when I was 14 yrs. old I started to self harm. You might wonder why someone like me would feel the need to turn to something like self harm and for 14yr. old me it made little sense.

Now I am older having hindsight is a wonderful thing. During my adolescence I had to live with myself as I slowly changed from being this confident and independent young girl, into this fearful and dysfunctional young woman. I hated myself so much, I wanted to be anyone but me. Self harm was my only option in order to punish myself for who I had become. I genuinely believe that without it I would not be here writing this today.

My adolescence was a difficult time and as I grew older it also became a difficult time for my family. If you are experiencing similar feelings or thoughts then please don’t feel alone. You are not a self harmer, you are first and foremost your name and so much more as well. Self harm does not have to be all of you. I am a psychologist, a trainer, a basketball fan, an artist, a baker, a gamer and so much more. I write this because I want to spread hope to others. Recovery is possible, recovery is real!”

Sarah Kessling, Specialist Trainer for Harmless

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