Self-injury Awareness Day – today!

After months of hard work and preparation, Self-injury Awareness Day (SIAD) is here at last.

SIAD is an annual international event to raise awareness about the difficult subject of self-injury, and although at FirstSigns we do just that every single day of the year, the 1st March is of course special to us.

What people do

Everyone has their own way of supporting SIAD and our members have been brilliant as always. Our posters have been downloaded, printed and displayed all over the country and some people are holding events, with stalls in their schools, colleges and groups.

During February we sold 206 wristbands and 88 key rings and every single person who bought one is helping to raise awareness, while finding a subtle way to talk about self-injury. And talking about self-injury is so very hard, isn’t it? Wedge and I are so used to talking about it that it almost becomes an ‘every-day’ subject. But it’s really not. It’s so very difficult to say:

I’m suffering. I’m in emotional pain and distress. The only way I can cope is by physically hurting myself. I’m causing myself physical pain and injury as it’s the only way I know how to gain relief and release from my overwhelming distress. But I hate that I do this to myself and I need help.

Can you imagine how hard it is to say those things? That’s why so many suffering people remain silent.

Just as those things are hard to say, they’re also hard to hear. Especially when coming from a loved one. That’s why at FirstSigns we care about everyone affected by self-injury; the people who hurt themselves and also the people who care about people who hurt themselves.

And that’s why our slogan for SIAD this year is ‘Breaking the Silence‘.

It’s not too late to download our posters and fact sheets, so please help us break the silence surrounding self-injury and stick up a poster today.

You can also show support for SIAD and FirstSigns by clicking to virtually ‘attend’ our event on Facebook.

Thank you

Of course we want to thank everyone who has supported us, not only today but throughout the year.

But I also want to add a personal thank you to my dear friend and colleague Wedge, who works so very hard for FirstSigns.

Wedge founded FirstSigns (aka LifeSIGNS) in 2002. We’re 9 years old this year! Wedge led the way in talking about self-injury in the UK back when there were no other UK self-injury organisations. He’s far too humble to say so himself, but Wedge broke the initial silence!

Tell Someone Month

Whereas SIAD is a global event, Tell Someone Month is a FirstSigns project we started in 2008. Throughout every March we hope to empower people to ‘tell someone’ about their self- injury so they no longer have to suffer in silence. Our fact sheets for friends, family and teachers are a valuable resource for people during Tell Someone Month and we’ll be talking more about it over the coming days and throughout March.

We’ll be blogging and tweeting all day today, and we wish everyone a happy and successful SIAD. Let us know what you’re doing!

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