What do I do if I discover that my friend is self-harming?

What do I do if my friend asks me not tell anybody?

How can I help my friend?  

Should I keep the behavior secret?


By agreeing to stay silent,  you are giving permission to continue self injury. Do not be an Enabler. Your friend needs professional help. The road to recovery begins by breaking the code of silence. You can save a life by reaching out to a trusted adult.

Telling someone about your friend’s secret will be one of the most difficult decisions you will ever have to make. Your friend might become angry when  learning that you have "betrayed them” or “gotten her in trouble" by telling parents, a teacher, a school counselor, or any other trusted adult.

By telling an adult that you are worried about your friend's cutting, you are making an active decision to save your friends life.  Even if your friend gets angry with you--tell her that because you are a friend, you are NOT going to play any part in the destruction of a best friends life.

Most importantly, tell your friend that you love her/him, that she/he is important to you, and that you would want her/him to do the same for you if the roles were reversed.

In the long run, your friend will thank you for caring and helping.


Why does coping with the stress around you have to be associated with pain and sorrow? Well... it doesn't  have to be! You can try doing many other things. We have a few ideas for you to try out whenever you feel overwhelmed.


Educating yourself regarding self injury is one of the most important things you could do - whether it is to help yourself, your friend or your child. 

We have collected a number of valuable resources that will serve to provide you with support, valuable information and a better chance of navigating these rough waters.