Drawing on her own experiences, Leia McMahon is showing young people, who are facing emotional struggles, that self-harm is not the answer.
The 16-year-old from Lowestoft in Suffolk wants others to see that talking about their feelings and seeking help is the key to recovery.
‘I had been feeling sad for a while and blamed a lot of things in life on myself,’ explains Leia.
‘I tried to keep my self-harm a secret, but one day my mum saw the cuts on my arms and found out.
‘Thankfully, I did get help after that, but now I want young people to know that whatever they’re going through, self-harm isn’t the answer.’
With Fixers, Leia has helped produce a film urging young people dealing with mental health issues not to self-harm.
Loosely based on her own story, it uses a poem to encourage others to embrace who they are and be open about their feelings.
Watch Leia’s Fixers film ‘There’s No Answer in Pain’ at the top of this page.
‘It’s turned out really well. I’m very pleased,' says Leia.
‘It was tough facing old emotions, but if I can help someone, then it will be worth it.’
Hoping the film resonates with others her age, Leia plans on sharing it in local schools and colleges.
‘High school is a time when young people are discovering who they are, which is why we need to support them as much as we can,' she adds.
‘My message to others is that while a situation may seem hopeless at first, things do get better.
‘Never give up.’
For more information and support, visit www.selfharm.co.uk.
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Sarah Harmon from Powys in Mid Wales is using a radio play to help increase
understanding of young people’s mental health. Click here to listen.