Content Warning: This blog post contains explicit descriptions of the author’s personal struggles with issues of self-harm, depression, and related trauma.
This will probably be the most difficult thing I will ever write, and definitely the most difficult blog post I will ever write. The original title for this blog was “Self-Harm”, but I couldn’t bring myself to name it that. In past blogs, I have spoken at length about healthy escapes – and have intentionally avoided the topic of unhealthy escapes. I have avoided it because of the memories that it brings back.
I first want to talk directly to a specific group of people: those who love and care for people who commit self-harm. I had a conversation with my Mom a few years ago, and she was very distraught over a loved one who was a cutter. She just couldn’t understand why anyone would do that to themselves. I listened to everything she was saying, and I became very emotional, and when there was a pause in the conversation, I told her: I know exactly why someone would do that to themselves because… because I’ve done it myself.
I can’t tell you why every single person commits self-harm, but what I know is this: for the most part, one self-harms because the mental and emotional pain becomes unbearable, and by hurting oneself physically, it numbs the other pain. People who don’t experience the urge to self-harm will never be able to understand that, but I assure you, it is true and it is real.I first began cutting in the late 90s. It started small at first; one or two cuts; and over time that increased dramatically. What was frightening wasn’t the number of cuts, but the amount of blood. The more I bled, the more the emotional and mental pain seemed to go away. I became addicted to the blood. At times I knew I had bled too much, and all I could do was cover the cuts and hope everything was going to be alright. I realized rather quickly I couldn’t continue down this path, so my form of self-harm changed. I became what I call a bruiser: I would use some random object and hit myself with it over and over again, usually on the thighs. My object of choice became a coat hanger; it was well-suited for what I thought were my needs at the time. I bruise extremely easily, and before I would finish, a black-and-blue mark would already begin to show. By the next day, the mark would be enormous. The bruise took the place of the blood, and all I had to do was look at the bruise and any mental pain I was feeling would fade away.
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I rarely bruise myself anymore as I have found other escapes – healthy ones that I have mentioned in previous blogs. I won’t lie to you and tell you I never commit self-harm anymore: a little over a month ago, I was going through an extremely emotional and painful period, and I lost the fight and bruised myself. It was the first time in well over a year, and once again I promised I would never do it again.That was way more emotional that I can ever describe, so it is more than enough for this post. If you ever want to contact me, never hesitate, you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org
. Always remember, there is someone who understands, who empathizes and sends their love.
Talking about self-harm can be extremely difficult for anyone, so thank you Anonymous Prime for sharing.
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