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Research Topics / Study: Exploring Identity
« Last post by identity_res on May 01, 2024, 10:48:13 AM »

We are psychology researchers at the University of Amsterdam. We're running a small study online, and we are particularly interested in hearing from people who participate in online communities. You can access the study here:

The study takes between 5 to 20 minutes depending on your answers, so donít worry if you finish the study too fast :) 

Please only participate if youíre 16 years or older, and do the study once. You can take the survey in either English or in Dutch.

Your participation is entirely voluntary and anonymous. If you have some spare time and would like to help us out, we would really appreciate it. For information about data protection, ethics approval and direct contact with the principal investigators please see the informed consent letter at the start of the survey or feel free to contact me on here.

Very many thanks!

- Kianush & Deniz
**content warning: this post and attached survey talk about self-harm**

Survey responses needed from anyone aged 16 to 24 who lives in the UK.

Chance to win £40 voucher!

Researchers at Edinburgh University would like you to take part in SASHAR, a study into relationships and mental health, for example self-harm. The survey takes 20-25 minutes to complete and your answers are anonymous. If you take part, you can choose to enter a draw for one of two £40 One4all vouchers.

For more information and to find out how to take part please visit:

Amy  :waves:
Research Topics / Re: Looking for consultation on self-harm and Social Identity
« Last post by Vermilion on April 30, 2024, 05:12:44 PM »
I'd describe self harm as a symptom rather than an identity. For an identity to revolve around self harm would be akin to an identity surrounding diabetes; I have diabetes but that's not who I am. I use this forum to communicate with others who understand the struggles rather than forming an identity.

I think that forming an identity linked to self harm would detrimental. People may continue to self harm and not get the treatment that they need out of fear of losing their identity. A pro recovery forum is very different in that regard, some users here haven't self harmed in years and others may not be harming at all but seek understanding of it.
Survivor Room / Re: Pissed off and fed up.
« Last post by Vermilion on April 30, 2024, 04:56:44 PM »
That's essentially what my instructor said and why we agreed to do some 'intensive' lessons. I've actually been having lessons for a few months, since December, and the whole idea of 'intensive' lessons was to help overcome the anxiety. I've easily spent £1000 so far so I really, really hope it works.  ::-\:
Part of the problem is that my usual 'stimming' things have to be suppressed when I'm driving (I can't just start clapping or rocking while driving, for instance). I could probably benefit from speaking to occupational health, someone there would probably know something that could help. I don't think medication would be an option though, the side effects would likely render me unable to drive..

Old CC didn't get back to me so I'll have to find another way to get help. I'm not taking it personally but I'm not sure how to get the help. I don't know if I'll be able to phone GP nor CMHT because I don't know what to say. I'll have to figure something out though.  ::-\:
Survivor Room / Re: Pissed off and fed up.
« Last post by Rob on April 30, 2024, 03:00:01 PM »
I think when youíre really anxious about something, like driving, itís going to be something that reduces the more times you do it- thatís why youíve paid all of this cash up front: to reach the point where youíre not as anxious and become confident instead. So keep doing exactly what youíre doing and eventually youíll get through all of the lesson without feeling any more anxious than any other learner driver feels.
Survivor Room / Re: Pissed off and fed up.
« Last post by Vermilion on April 30, 2024, 02:31:25 PM »
Thanks PB  :hug1:

I feel exhausted, I'm just lying here doing nothing, and hating myself for it.

I've messaged old CC out of sheer desperation but she hasn't contacted me yet. It might not even be the right number so I might not hear anything at all.

I'm in two minds about karate class tonight, maybe it'll help but I might feel even worse. No one is forcing me to go nor stay so I can leave anytime I guess. There's only one session this week because the place where we train is being used as a polling station on Thursday, so it would be a shame to miss it.

I have another driving lesson tomorrow; I'm trying to go rather than cancel, what DBT calls 'opposite action'.   ::-\:
Hi all!

Thanks to the admin team for letting me post on this forum.

About me: I'm a psychology researcher studying at the University of Oxford. Iím in the process of developing a study on self-harm and I would love to have some input on it from the people on this forum.

A little about the study: it aims to investigate the effect on wellbeing of seeing yourself as part of a community or group of people who self-harm. There are an increasing number of supportive communities and social groups centred around self-harm. Many of these communities are on social media sites, such as Instagram, Twitter or Tumblr. It's possible that some individuals involved in these communities may come to understand their identity partly through their membership of these social groups. My aim is to investigate whether having a social identity related to these kinds of groups could have positive effects, negative effects, or a combination of positive and negative effects.

Before going ahead with this study, however, I would really like to consult with some people or organisations with particular knowledge of this topic. In particular, I really want to ascertain whether the idea of a "self-harm community" or "self-harm identity" as described above is something which actually resonates with people who self-harm, or whether it is not really something which most people who self-harm would recognise. If it is something which is recognisable, then I am interested in seeing what the accurate term or term(s) for such a community would be.

If you have any kind of view on this topic, please feel free to reply to this post or DM me. Alternatively, if you'd like to have a more involved 1-to-1 conversation, please drop me a line and we can set up a chat. I'm able to pay a consultation fee of £15/hour for the latter option. Thanks for taking the time to read this!

Best wishes,
Survivor Room / Re: Pissed off and fed up.
« Last post by purplebutterfly on April 29, 2024, 11:35:27 AM »
Hearing you.
Canít offer more, but hope an ear helps a bit.
Survivor Room / Re: Pissed off and fed up.
« Last post by Vermilion on April 29, 2024, 10:16:08 AM »
So, I've managed about half of a driving lesson this morning before I got too overwhelmed and started to cry. Why I get so overwhelmed I don't know. It's frustrating when you need/want to do something and get irrationally upset, and it's b***** expensive too. I've paid upfront for about a month worth of intensive lessons purely to try and get over the anxiety which cost me £660. Then I'll need more lessons to actually drive properly. If I can't drive then I'm buggered since there aren't any jobs here and I can't afford the rent in the city and public transport is crap. Well, I talked about that in my last post so I won't bother repeating myself too much.

I've looked in to private counselling but I really can't afford it right now, everything is just so expensive. Uni only offers support related to studying, which isn't something I'm struggling with that much. I really don't know what to do. Not just regarding driving but my mental health in general. I know it's on the decline, and I'm trying so hard, but I really do need professional help.
Survivor Room / Pissed off and fed up.
« Last post by Vermilion on April 27, 2024, 02:28:10 PM »
Ostensibly, everything is great. Since DBT (about three years ago, I think) and some counselling for SA issues Iam, on the surface at least, doing very well. So lets start with the positives:

  • I'm just completing my first module of my OU degree
  • I've been in a great relationship for about a year and a half. It's going really well, and is a huge achievement for me as someone who could only manage FWB at best.
  • I'm managing to go to karate classess. Again, a huge achievment from a social aspect. I could never have gone to a group of any sort prior to DBT)


Of course, theres's quite a lot that I'm struggling with too.

I've been referred back to the hospital because the VIN (pre cancerous cells on the vulva) may have come back. I was supposed to go for a review in September but my symptoms have been bad for a few months now so GP had it brought forward and it's next month instead. I'm scared shitless. There is the physical pain of the biopsy but also the emotional aspect. I've tried to explain it the doctor  but she doesn't seem to get it, I get that she looks/prods whatever at 1000's of vulvas but I bet she'd feel different if she was the patient. She never understands why I'm so anxious. Gee, I don't know doctor, maybe because your literally sticking a needle in my f**** and slicing it with a tool? Or because I'm naked from the waist down with everything exposed with a hospital gown that also exposes every scar that I have? Or perhaps because of the history of SA that I've repeatedly explained? It's like talking to a brick wall. So, just deal with it I guess.
There's another aspect to this too. The fact is that this affects my sex life too. I've worked b***** hard to get a 'normal' sex life back and it's like it's being taken away again. People always ask, "Is [my bloke] ok with that?". Yes, he is but I'm not and it's my sex life too. 

That's probably the main thing but I've been feeling a sort of mental decline over the past few months. I haven't had any contact with CMHT for months. They can't sort out a prescription never mind any actual help. I find myself resorting to mild forms of self harm but not to the extent that I used to; it mostly results red marks or bruises that last a few days rather than to the extent that requires A&E or b**n units. I just worry about things escalating and feel powerless to stop it. CMHT can't organise a p** up in the pub so they aren't an option. They may attempt to help if I put myself in hospital again, but I don't want to get that severe again.

I'm sick of being autistic too. It's making driving difficult and will likely cost me 1000's because of the difficulties I have that will take a long time to work around. The daily masking is exhausting and just makes me stay at home most of the time; at home I can wrap myeslf in blankets, clap my hands, hide under the bed, rock back and forth etc whereas in public I'm just seen as 'weird'. No one believes that I have autism because I don't look autistic and I also have a boyfriend. Oh, and I'm not Sheldon Cooper or Rainman so clearly can't be autistic...  ::) So, I don't bother telling anyone these days unless its absolutely necessary, like my driving intructor for example.

I'm also frustrated at the lack of support to help get me into work. I've tried many organistations that just signpost me to other organisations. Even the one's who claim to support 'neurodivergent' people are either unhelpful or chronically underfunded. I'm genuinely frightened about the upcoming changes to benefits; I have no choice but to rely on them atm and if I take just any job I'll end up back where i was a few years ago. Don't get wron, I want to go back to work but how about some f*****g support instead of shoving me in to a job that I can't do? Locally, there are no jobs and I'm struggling to drive, and the bus/train service is unreliable and overwhelming for me anyway. It reinforces the beliefs that I've been feeling for a long time; that I'm a burden. Society doesn't want nor care about disabled people, especially when it comes to so-called invisible disabilities like autism or mental health. I frequently think that I should just end things and then I'll no longer be a burden. It's awful to know that society views us this way.

Sorry for the essay, but I have a habit of bottling things up and then letting it all out at once.

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