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Title: Self-harm and help-seeking: client and helper perspectives
Author: Long , Margaret-Ann
Awarding Body: University of Ulster
Current Institution: Ulster University
Date of Award: 2013
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Aim: To understand the experiences of self-harm and the process of seeking and accessing help for self-harm from the perspectives of counselling clients, gatekeepers and counsellors. Method: A qualitative study which focuses on the ideas and experiences of (1) current counselling clients who have a history of selfharm, (2) community gatekeepers in a range of ro les who are often the fi rst point of contact for people who self-harm when they seek help, including community workers, youth workers, helpline supervisors, clergy and the partner of a person who selfharms, and (3) counsellors who have experience of working with people who selfharm. Semi-structured interviews were carried out with 10 participants from each sample group (tota l n = 30). Data analysis of the three sets of findings was conducted using Strauss and Corbin's (1 998) Grounded Theory and facilitated with NVivo 9.0. Findings: Each set of findings yielded six major categories, all of which inter-relate to form the core category, 'The journey through self-harm: Developing a healing reconnection with self and others". Discussion: The three perspectives were synthesised and areas of convergence and divergence with the existing evidence base were identified to provide a composite portrayal of the helping process for people who self-harm. Implications: Core and critical implications have been deduced from the find ings in relation to practice and research. A pertinent implication of the study is that it is possible to recover from self-harm, with the support of helpers who can relate with compassion and humanity and thus promote the individual's capacity for self-healing. Conclusion: There is a need for individual helpers and the organisations in which they work to seek to listen to, understand and respond to the individual life story communicated by every person who self-harms.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available