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Epidemic of self-harm grips pupils


Warning: This post was published more than 12 years ago.

I keep old posts on the site because sometimes it's interesting to read old content. Not everything that is old is bad. Also, I think people might be interested to track how my views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have mellowed and matured!

But given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views might have changed in the 12 years since I wrote this post.
  • This post might use language in ways which I would now consider inappropriate or offensive.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken; embedded material might not appear properly.

Many thanks for your understanding.

Epidemic of self-harm grips pupils (Guardian)

Not the headline I would personally have chosen: ‘Grip’ as a verb doesn’t sit well with the idea of self harm to my mind.

The content of the article, though, certainly gives cause for concern.

Some studies estimate that as many as one in 10 children will harm themselves at some point and anecdotal evidence suggests the problem is increasing.

I think we urgently need to investigate where we, as a society, are going so badly wrong that our children are harming themselves on a massive scale. I personally find this more concerning than the idea of children hurting each other, especially when the size of the problem is brough into focus. I know that many of my medical colleagues would disagree, I don’t think antidepressents are the answer, and they clearly cannot be a long term solution. We need to address the root cause of the problem, not the symptoms.

Perhaps this particularly harrowing quote gives us some indication of where the problem may lie:

In one case, a child of mixed race kept scratching his skin to ‘make himself white’.

This 210th post was filed under: News and Comment.

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