Tuesday, 22 April 2008
Blog confronts self-harm: doors open
Designer Jon Birch’s wonderful ASBO Jesus Blog, which I’ve encountered from, among others, Ian MacDonald and David Keen, opens the windows on self-harm — something we’d all rather ignore. A few years ago, having come across it bigtime in HMP Reading, I gradually tumbled to the fact that a much-respected adult friend in my parish was self-harming. There’s so much silence around this — Once people began to acknowledge what was going on, my friend found they had friends beyond embarrassment, and gradually began to recover the big picture from the grip of their need for temporary relief. There’s a sense in which this is just the tip of an iceberg — the struggle to love ourselves, commanded in the Bible. It’s a tiger we’re all struggling to ride, and the recognition of a common humanity, one way out, begins with the courageous open door offered on Jon’s blog.