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Why is it so hard to tell your family that you self harm?

17 Answers
Last Updated: 11/17/2020 at 10:02pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
United Kingdom
Moderated by

Tanyia Hughes, Adv Dip Psy


I have been through a lot in life too, which helps me to be able to empathize with situations, thoughts and feelings that we have. Sometimes, it's not easy just being human.

Top Rated Answers
April 7th, 2015 4:34pm
I feel like if I were in that situation, i didn't want to let them down or put extra burden on them when I can just mask or hide everything
May 4th, 2015 3:43pm
Because you may be worried that they will judge you or you don't know exactly how they will react towards you
June 6th, 2015 7:13pm
Its hard because they love you and they will be hurt knowing that you're hurting yourself. Its hard to see someone you love hurt themselves. I can see that you love your family too so don't hurt them and don't hurt yourself.
August 4th, 2015 11:50am
Sometimes it's the hardest thing to open up to the people who are very close to us. Telling your family about harming yourself means that you need to open up about everything that bothers you. Some might also worry about disappointing them or making them feel guilty and helpless, but talking to your loved ones about your problems is the only way to let them help you and it will set you free in some way too.
November 12th, 2015 8:24am
Cause you know that your family will freak out because they care. And you are afraid to see what it will do to them and how they will react to it.
December 29th, 2015 9:46pm
Because they may over react or they may not know how to handle it which will lead to fighting and they will never think of you the same way
March 29th, 2016 4:03am
I think it's hard because people are afraid to disappoint their families. Self harm is such a huge source of shame to a lot of people that they don't want to have to burden their families with knowing how much pain they're in, or they're afraid of being judged for the way that they're coping with their pain and stress.
May 3rd, 2016 12:02am
You're worried about how they'll react when you tell them. What if they absolutely break down? What if it really hurts them? What if they don't understand? What of they don't believe you?? It just seems so scary and so impossible that sometimes we just hold it in and don't tell them. There's so many "what-ifs" and iit's absolutely terrifying!!
August 23rd, 2016 6:31am
Because you're scared of their reaction and you are afraid they might get angry and kick you out or that they won't understand what you are going through and won't take you seriously and many other reasons
August 30th, 2016 7:07pm
Self harming is such a personal thing. You do it to yourself in order to make yourself feel better emotionally. Even though you are physically hurting yourself it helps ground you and you feel better emotionally. But it is very difficult for other people who have never experience this feeling of 'euphoria' and quiet so thats what makes it so hard to tell them. Through a fear of being disowned or no one understanding. What you have to realise is that your family will support you no matter what and even if they don't there are people who can help you. No matter how hard it is to tell them, if you think it will help you then do it.
September 4th, 2016 2:39am
I feel like it's hard enough to admit that you self harm to yourself, so telling people who love you so much makes it hard. Family wants the best for you and they don't necessarily understand why you self harm. Yoy don't want to have to tell them something and have them nit understand. No one wants thay reflecting feeling.
March 6th, 2017 7:26am
Sometimes we just don't want them to know that we are struggling. We may think that they'll think that we are weak for doing it. Or maybe you don't like people worrying about you and that is why you don't want them to know. Sometimes it's hard for people to understand what we are going through if they have not been through it themselves, so there is always that fear of them saying something ignorant. You also may be scared that they might think that you're crazy.. That's always a fear that I had. It's human nature to hide our weaknesses, but often times it is good for the people around us to know what's going on with us.
June 27th, 2017 3:31am
It can be hard to tell someone who you know loves you and cares for you because you would feel bad if you hurt their feelings. Just note that seeking help is the best thing you can do and if your family cares about you, they will more than likely help you get through it instead of shaming you.
September 25th, 2018 9:28pm
I remember the day my mum found out i self harmed. She cried. I cried. It was painful to see her cry, it was painful for her to see me hurting. It's a painful and difficult situation and should be handled carefully. I wouldn't suggest going to your parents and blurting it outright, instead i'd suggest doing something like what i did. Putting your feelings in a letter. It's difficult and can seem impersonal but it is much easier. Explain your feelings, expalin why you want them to know, explain what support you need and explain explicitly that it is not their fault.
April 15th, 2019 9:49pm
It’s hard to tell them because you know deep inside that it is wrong, or that you could’ve made a better choice. You don’t want them to be disappointed in you or worry too much or worry too little. Telling your family means that they know your feelings, and all the things you maybe have been hiding are now revealed. You want it to be perfect and have the best scenario, yet you may be scared. Maybe they’ll send you to a hospital, or you’ll be forced into something you don’t want. Telling your family that you self harm is very hard.
July 9th, 2019 10:24am
I think that it is so hard to tell them as this is something private and personal. Its something your dealing with and not them . they may not understand why you do this . i myself has had a personal experience with self harm. My little sister used to selfharm and when she finally told us i was so shocked as i never thought she was the type of person to do this. But after talking it out with her my family finally understood how she felt . they set her up with groups where she could socialize with people and she also attended counselling.Self harm is quite a difficult and lonely thing to go through and if you feel you need to talk to someone with more experience we have trained councilors on our site.
November 17th, 2020 10:02pm
Fear of judgement and them thinking you are crazy. Sometimes people need to be heard and not judged right away. People need to make time to listen to their loved ones and let them talk about whatever it is they are feeling. Just because you think about self harm once does not mean you will do so again. In that moment you just need to find the fastest route out to disappear sometimes without thinking of the consequences. Family needs to show love and by love it does not mean materialistically. When someone comes to you we need to learn to listen mainly without judgement or give advice. People just want to heard.