Alex's Answer

I can't tell my mum I've been self-harming

Your Question

Hi Alex, i have been self harming, and im realy stuggling. i wanna tell my mum, but im so scared. my mum thinks that people who do that are looking for attention and are just ungrate full. im realy struggiling. and i just dont knwo what to do


Hi there,  

You are very welcome to Ask Alex.  

Thanks for reaching out. This first step can often be the scariest. Although it’s not very easy to do, we know that talking about what is going on for us is very important.  

It sounds like you are worried about any preconceived ideas that your mom might have with regards to people who self-harm. Sadly, comments like “people who do that are looking for attention and just ungrateful” can be commonplace in our society and pop culture. These comments generally come from a place of fear. Understanding self-harm is very complex as there many different reasons as to why people self-harm. Most often, young people self-harm because they use it as a coping mechanism or a way to distract from the emotional pain that they are experiencing. It’s important to remember that you are not alone. Why not have a look at this article on the Childline website? 

We think it’s a good idea to tell your mom. If you are worried about telling your mom by yourself, do you have another trusted adult in your life whp could support you in having this conversation with your mom? This could be an older sibling, cousin, aunt/uncle, a teacher, a neighbour or a sports coach. Self-harm can sometimes lead to  unintended but serious consequences. Therefore, it is important that you are aware of how to keep yourself physically (and emotionally) safe. This is why we advise talking to your mom or another trust adult and with their support, getting into contact with medical professionals such as GP or a nurse. These medical professionals can also give your mom support around understanding self-harm.  

If you cannot think of anyone who you could talk to or if you don’t feel comfortable bringing it up with them, know that Childline is always there for you to listen and support you, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can call for free on 1800 666666 or use the Live Chat on the website: 

If you ever feel that you are unsafe or in immediate danger at home, or anywhere else, you have the right to right to call emergency services on 999 or 112. These calls are free and can be made from any mobile phone or landline.  

You have the right to get the help and support you deserve. Childline is here for you when you are ready to contact us; you are not alone.  

We hope to hear from you soon.  

Take care,  


Ask me a question

You can ask me about anything you want, there’s nothing too big or small.