What is it?
When we don’t express our emotions and talk about the things that make us distressed, angry or upset, the pressure can build up and become unbearable. Some people turn this in on themselves and use their bodies as a way to express the thoughts and feelings they can’t say aloud. People often harm themselves when this all gets too much. If you self-harm, you might find that when you feel angry, distressed, worried or depressed, you feel the urge to hurt yourself even more.
People often link self-harm to suicide but for some it is their alternative to suicide, and their way of coping. When a few of these issues come together they can quickly feel overwhelming and become too much for one person to deal with. As one young person said, many people self-harm to ‘get out the hurt, anger and pain’ caused by pressures in their lives. They hurt themselves because they didn’t know what else to do and didn’t feel like they had any other options.
Having suicidal thoughts is more common than you think, and you are not alone if you have them. People have such thoughts for many different reasons. Sometimes they can come from a place of guilt or extreme stress. These thoughts are a sign that something in your life needs to change, but it does not need to involve taking your own life.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help whenever and however you need to. Talking about your feelings isn’t a sign of weakness. It shows that you are taking charge of your well-being and doing what you need to stay healthy. Sometimes, talking about these feelings will help you share the burden and lighten your load. Speak to your teachers and the school counsellor or any other trusted adult. They will be able to help equip you with strategies to cope with the issues in your life that are leading to suicidal thoughts.
It isn’t always easy to express how you are feeling. If you can’t think of one word to describe a feeling, use as many as you need to illustrate how you feel. The most important thing is to reach out.
When you are emotionally stressed, you may not be able to see other options, but there are many avenues for help available.
These are some places you can call for immediate help:
Samaritans of Singapore (24 hour hotline): 1-767
CHAT@*SCAPE: 6493 6500, 6493 6501
CHAAT@*SCAPE webCHAT: https://www.imh.com.sg/CHAT/Get-Help/Pages/default.aspx