mental health word cloud, including words like trauma, grief, stigma, genetic, clinical, bipolar

Self Injury Awareness 2012

So today is self injury awareness day. It’s been so well publicised that I didn’t know until today and it was through Mood Panda I found out! But anyway…

I used to self harm on a regular basis. I’ve shared my story a million times before though so I’m a bit stumped for what to write today so I put out a call for guest posts and kindly Reality Hide and Seek has allowed me to repost her daughter’s guest post. Massive thanks to both of them.

This year will mark 10 years of self-injury and the longest period of sobriety I’ve been able to keep has been 6 months. The first time I self-injured I carved a boyfriend’s initials into the side of my wrist using one of those cheap mechanical pencils. I did it because he did it with my initials. I don’t remember how I got hooked. After that I used to use erasers, push pins, safety pins and such to carve or rub layers of flesh away. It wasn’t until recently that I started cutting with a blade. I feel like a big kid now. 

I no longer cut because I’m depressed. I cut because it’s an addiction, a compulsion. I do still hate myself. I fucking DESPISE myself. Every fiber of my being from my mind to my body. Especially my body. When I was on the Latuda I was worse, not better. Since my OD I didn’t refill the Latuda and I’ve been fine. But I cut because I wanted all these scars. I wanted to deform my body so no one would look at me. I wanted people to hate me, to be disgusted with me, as much as I am with myself. But at the same time I’m very self-conscious about my scars.
I have ugly red scars all up and down my legs. Very light pink ones up and down my arms. Yet I cannot cut deep enough. I cannot cut enough. I don’t have enough scars. For me it’s not about the bloodshed, it’s about the scars and the pain, and the throbbing. I’m a masochist, I do enjoy pain and do get pleasure from it. I don’t want to stop cutting, but I suppose that’s what every addict says. I am an addict. Heh.
Hi, my name is Rachel and I’m an addict.
The last time I tried to stop cutting cold turkey I got 7 days before I started getting withdrawals. It eventually passed but it was still miserable. It’s interesting to be addicted to something your body naturally produces. It will always be there. You won’t ever build up a resistance to it because your body will automatically adjust itself. You’ll never run out of it. You don’t have to pay for it. It’s fucking wonderful. It’s the best feeling in the world. You giggle watching the blood droplets form. When I see those layers of flesh from cutting deep I get lightheaded but it’s still so wonderful.
But I can never cut deep enough. I will admit that it has been for attention, it has been a “cry for help” at some points. But it’s never been enough. I used to be embarrassed and shy about my scars and self-injury but I did want someone to ask about them. Now I laugh about it. I’m candid about it, I don’t give a shit anymore. It’s out in the open. People know I still do it and there’s nothing they can do about it. I’m not going to stop because someone asks me to. I don’t REALLY understand why it’s bad for me. I only know it hurts other people. That was the only reason I would try to stop. But now I don’t care anymore. Because if I can’t stop for my own sake then stopping for other people is not the way to do it. I can’t rely on other people to keep me under control. It’s also strange to be triggered by your own scars. It’s kind of unfortunate, really. You can’t look at your own body without wanting to cut more.
After I got home from the hospital this last time I gathered up all my blades and utensils and walked them out with my mom to the trash compactor. But I forgot two blades in my bathroom. It was so hard to resist using them. Eventually I caved in and used them. I went to Wal Mart and got a new set.
It’s been ten years. I can’t see myself stopping anytime soon. I don’t know if it’s a good thing that at least it’s not out of self-hatred and only because it’s an addiction.
Hi, my name is Rachel, and I’m an addict.

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