Trigger warning: this post contains details and pictures about self harming.
There’s this idea that people who self harm are all angsty teenagers looking for attention. Or that the person really just wants to commit suicide. Also, that its something we can just stop, just decide (or be told) to stop doing, and that’s it. I wish.
I wish I could be “normal” in that regard. That when something upsets me or bothers me, instead of it going straight to my core, burrowing itself inside until I let it out, that I could purge it some other way, some healthy way.
I’ve been doing this since I was 14, in various ways. I try not to, it really is a last resort. It’s also the healthiest of the things I could do that make me feel better. Some might think I’m not exploring all my options, I’ve explored plenty. I’ve done therapy, anti depressants, xanax, crying, talking, meditation, everything I can think of. When it comes down to it, there are a handful of things that make me feel better: cutting, binge drinking, and xanax (sort of). If I have to choose between fucking up my arms/legs/hips, drinking until I black out, or burying it inside xanax, only for it to still bother me once it wears off, I’m going with cutting.
There are only two things I am ever ashamed about when it comes to my cutting. The first is that although I feel better when its done, I hate the remnants. I don’t want these marks, I don’t want people to see them. I don’t like waiting for them to heal, feeling the pain while they heal. I wish I was like Wolverine and I could heal instantly. The second is that it makes me feel like a child or crazy, this is something you hear about teenagers doing, not adults, especially ones in their thirties. Or that no sane person does this, why would any sane person cut themselves when they can’t deal with crap from the world.
My cutting ebbs and flows. Sometimes I do it once a week, sometimes I don’t for years. When it happens its unexpected, and I try to fight it. I tried today to find someone to talk to, to cry until it didn’t hurt anymore, to think of other things, to be so distracted I didn’t keep hearing those things I read over and over. I don’t cut because of a general depression. I have triggers, one thing that will set me off until I can’t stop, or think about anything else. When I cut, its a purge, a way of physically letting out the emotions I feel. I feel drained and relaxed afterward, and usually better. If not completely better, enough to function. Whatever triggered me might still bother me later on, but for the moment I’m past it.
I cut myself on the arms usually. Not because I want attention (if I haven’t made that clear already) but because its the easiest place to reach, and doesn’t brush on clothes while its healing. I’ve done other places, like my hips, because of having to be in public. I know the risk if someone see’s them and decides to be nosy, especially one of my doctors. In a sad way I’m lucky now that I’m too sick, so I don’t leave the house more than every couple weeks.
I’m not asking for help, but in all the writing I do, maybe this is a piece of understanding of where things I write come from. I don’t have an answer on how to stop, but maybe someone else will feel better when they read this that they’re not crazy, or alone, or stupid.