November 24, 2014

Article by : Nicole Bentley Griffith college Dublin student



The Silent Killer


Many people suffer in the silence of their own bedrooms with no one able to help. Silence can be a daunting thing, especially to those of a vulnerable disposition. Most people don't tell anyone about their struggles. Usually they are afraid to talk about it, because they feel weak, they think their reasons aren't good enough. However, if their parents had more knowledge on the subject, perhaps knew how to help, knew the signs of it, maybe then, it would be easier to help their children beat the Silent Killer, self harming.


One out of every ten people resort to self-harming by cutting themselves, taking tablets, piercing or swallowing objects. It is more common in young people, some teenagers self-harm regularly and it can become almost an addiction.


Self-harming can happen at any time, usually when feeling distressed. This can be triggered by feeling depressed, physical and mental abuse, lack of self-confidence or relationship problems. Many teenagers who self-harm may feel hopeless, isolated, alone and out of control. Self-harming tends to give you that feeling of control back.


As it normally occurs in the privacy of their own bedrooms, it is really hard to spot and stop. Being alone and feeling low, is a hard thing to cope with, and receiving urges to cause harm to yourself is very difficult to ignore especially if you don’t have anyone to help you through it. For many people they think self-harming helps them, its what they need to do to cope, to feel better, to feel a release, when really it just causes more mental damage.


Normally you see people, smiling, joking, laughing, having the time of their lives, they looks happy, right? People who self-harm are hurting and tired of not feeling good enough, tired of life. They don’t want to look weak and be labelled an attention seeker. They keep it all inside, put on an act like everything is perfect but they cry at night. You may think they are the happiest people you know, they may long for you to know the truth, but are scared to open up.


There is a lot of help available but it needs to be put out there for everyone to be aware of. Many people who are a victim of self-harming are not aware that this help exists.

Talking is one form of help, talking can help you feel less alone, to get another person’s view on your problems and enable you to think differently about them.

There are self-help groups where people with similar problems can help each other and support one another. Similarly there is group therapy which helps you to work on your relationships and problems with people.


Many people who self-harm don’t necessarily want to open up and struggle to win the fight against themselves. But they can help themselves. When they feel like they want to self-harm, they need to try and wait it out, the feeling should leave after a few hours ( that’s a long time, I know). Go out, run or sing. Write out how you feel and when the feeling have gone, rip it up or burn it and let all the pain and worries flow out of your body, draw pictures, squeeze ice cubes, draw red lines on your skin if it helps, give yourself the sensation of harmless pain.


Pieta House work to help prevent self-harming and suicide. Mary, a worker from The Pieta House, offered some great advice for parents. If parents knew their child was enduring these horrible struggles and offered some advice and support it would take a lot of stress away.


In order for parents to help they need to be aware of the signs to look for, if there child is depressed some signs are ; "lack of interest, sleeping more, lack of interest in being with their friends. Loss of appetite".

Finding out if there child self-harms is harder to spot according to Mary ; "not always easy to spot as thy would normally do this in the privacy of their own room. It is most definitely not attention seeking as most of the time it is hidden. If they discover their child is self-harming support them in getting help and do not get angry/annoyed with them. Never ask to see the wounds"

If you, as parents find out your child is self-harming you should ; "be honest and supportive to them. Let them know it is ok not to feel ok and that there is help out there for them"


Focus on getting better, focus on moving forward, focus on being positive and happy with yourself. Be proud of who you are and how far you have come and how far you will go. Focus on your recovery.


R- realising that you are worth it.

E- experiencing life and its happiness.

C- caring about yourself and well being

O- over coming your own troubles.

V- validating your worth.

E- eating without regret.

R-relapse its going to happen, and that’s ok.

Y-you can do it


You Can Do It,

Beat The Silent Killer.


Info Credit to:

Pieta House Website

Find your nearest Pieta House contact details below.

Pieta House Ballyfermot

Canon Troy House
Chapelizod Hill Road, Ballyfermot
Dublin 10
Phone: 01-6235606
Centre Manager: Joy Grehan

Opening Hours:
Monday to Friday: 9am to 9pm
Saturday: 9am to 3pm
Sunday: 9am to 2pm

Pieta House Cork

Highfield Lawn, Model Farm Road
Phone: 021-4341400
Centre Manager: Sylvia O'Driscoll Wong

Opening Hours:
Monday: 9am to 8pm
Tuesday: 9am to 6pm
Wednesday: 9am to 8pm
Thursday: 9am to 6pm
Friday: 9am to 6pm
Saturday: 10am to 2pm

Pieta House Finglas

2 Grove Road
Dublin 11
Phone: 01-8140774
Centre Manager: Linda Murray

Opening Hours:
Monday, Tuesday & Thursday: 1pm to 6pm
Friday: 1pm to 9pm
Saturday: 1pm to 6pm
Sunday: 9am to 12pm 

Pieta House Kerry

County Kerry
Phone: 066-7163660
Centre Manager: Mary Casey (Acting)

Opening Hours:
Monday: 9am to 3pm
Tuesday: 11am to 5pm*
Wednesday: 9am to 3pm
Thursday: 11am to 5pm
Friday: 9am to 3pm

*Finishing time may vary depending on availability of therapists on that particular day.

Pieta House Lucan

Lucan Road
Phone: 01-6010000
Centre Manager: Avril Mansouri

Opening Hours:
Monday to Friday: 9am to 9pm
Saturday and Sunday: 10am to 2pm

Pieta House Midwest

Phone: 061-484444
Centre Manager: Nora Conway

Opening Hours:
Monday, Wednesday & Friday: 9am to 5pm
Tuesday and Thursday: 9am to 8pm
Saturday: 10am to 2pm

Pieta House Roscrea

The Glebe, Ballyhall,
Phone: 0505-22568
Centre Manager: Martina Leamy

Opening Hours:
Monday: 2pm to 7pm
Tuesday: 9am to 2pm
Wednesday: 9am to 2pm
Thursday: 2pm to 7pm
Friday: 9am to 2pm

Pieta House Tallaght

Mount La Salle
Ballyfermot Road
Dublin 10
Phone: 087-9368633/01-6200020
Centre Manager: Patricia Errity

Opening Hours:
Monday to Thursday: 9am to 9pm
Friday: 9am to 7pm*
Saturday: 10am to 2pm
Sunday: 10am to 2pm

*Finishing time may vary depending on availability of therapists on that particular day

Pieta House West

Bishop Street
Phone: 093-25586
Centre Manager: Marie Moran

Opening Hours:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday: 9am to 5pm
Wednesday: 9am to 8pm
Saturday: 10am to 2pm