Self Harm

On my previous blog, I had mentioned I was a reformed cutter, and had been just about 8 years without really hurting myself. (I don’t count the pinching or nail digging, I was taught they are acceptable replacements). I could sit here and post about all the reasons I caved after so many years. What I did, said, what someone else did, said, the weather, finances…but does any of that matter? All our problems are relative to only our own lives, so me sitting here and listing all the reasons I decided to pull out the old razor are useless.

 

What I’d like to share instead, is why I SHOULDN’T have done it.

I first cut at the age 11. I didn’t really know what I was doing. I had never heard of self harm before. I knew people tried to kill themselves by cutting their wrists, and I wanted to die, so I did it. But I was 11, so the “attempt” more or less just left me with a new coping mechanism: bleeding. Burning, punching, bruising, that never did it for me. From the first moment I saw blood, I developed an unquenchable thirst. It no longer mattered if I bled to death or not, I just wanted to make myself bleed. My wounds were light and superficial. I thought I could tell a friend about what I was doing. She told her school she was worried about me, now age 13, so her school called mine. This was the first time I was ever called into the guidance room for cutting. But certainly not the last. I was forced to show my wrists and asked to leave school until a psychiatric institution gave me “clearance” (in retrospect, what a crock of shit) so off I went. Fortunately, my first time to the psych ward did not end up in hospitalization. Got my clearance after 8 of the worst hours of my life, in a psych ward all alone. I’ll never forget that day…albeit 14 years ago. Got some therapists, some medication, a year or two of things going “smoothly”…by the time I hit High School, the cuts were too bad to hide anymore. And I didn’t even try to hide them at that point. I was miserable and didn’t care if the whole world knew. I overdosed on 50+ extra strength Tylenol and told no one. I just started puking uncontrollably for days, unable to eat. I was brought to doctors, tests were done and the only thing that showed were sky rocket liver enzymes. But nothing else. Eventually, my body healed, but there’s another few days I’ll never forget. I should’ve died, and I didn’t. I just got sick and made everyone around me upset and worried. By the time all that blew over, school asked me to leave again because of the cutting. I fessed to my therapist about the Tylenol, and off to the hospital it was. This time, inpatient. And it was only upon admission that I realized how bad my cutting had gotten.

I saw the nurses first, and when they were done with me they brought me to my room. I was bandaged from wrist to shoulder on both arms. My legs were covered in gauze. To this very day, I am still covered in scars, despite all the scar treatment and vitamin E I used (vit E works the best, the gel pills, just pop em open and rub them on the scar!). And I will never be able to make those scars disappear, they will live with me forever. People will ask about them FOREVER. I can never wear a short sleeve short to work again, for the rest of my life. There was only one girl I met who was cutting worse. It was a shame, she was one of the sweetest girls I had ever met. She was beautiful, thin, talented, she acted and sang. She always seemed happy and made everyone around her happy. And she was in danger of having her arm amputated because of infection.

I have moments where I want to die. But I do not want to lose a limb (even if it’ll bring me to my UGW heh). I do not want to make everyone around me concerned and worried again.

But the scariest part is, after I cut myself last week, I needed to do it again. I had an extraordinarily rough night mentally…and cutting seemed like the only option. So that’s what I did.

Now here I am, 27 years old..and I realize I am still struggling with my eating disorder, addiction…and now I am going to add cutting back into the mix? I might as well be 16 years old again. Have I not grown up at all?

I am embarrassed. I am disappointed in myself. I have no self control.

I am living here in America in a wonderful apartment, with a wonderful boyfriend, and two amazing kitties…I have a great job, I love my family, I am in decent health and have a decently running car (okay decently might be a stretch but it still gets from A to B so far!). I am not horribly disfigured nor disabled in anyway.

I HAVE EVERY AND ANY OPPORTUNITY IN THE WORLD TO FULFILL ALL MY DREAMS.

And yet I sit here, unable to sleep because I’m so hungry because I’m starving myself..I smoke cigarettes and drink caffeine and don’t work out.

All we have to do is survive and I’m doing everything I can to lower my chances.

Okay lemme stop the pity-train before it takes off full speed.

I wonder, friends…Where does the impulse for self destructive behavior come from? I mean, we are biologically programmed to do everything in our power to preserve one’s self. So why would an impulse for self destruction exist? Where does it come from? Does it mean we have inefficiently evolved? Or perhaps, OVERevolved to a level of thinking so high we create new problems and new solutions, including self harm? What do you think?

Oh my goodness, dear Kava tea, please fill my belly and let me sleep.

Goodnight & Sweet Dreams,

Anna

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2 thoughts on “Self Harm

  1. A very powerful post! I think that the impulse for self destructive behaviour is because we are over evolved, although there is evidence of self harm in some animals! But I’ve read books on the theory that we evolved from species that were puzzle solvers. Our brain needs to have a crossword or what have you to work on it needs to have a problem to focus all it’s energy on because that’s how we got to where we are today. That’s how we studied what our bodies do and came up with things like in-house plumbing (it’s crazy that the inner workings of your house are much like the inner workings of your ventricular and nervous systems!)

    Our mind is constantly trying to find problems to solve it can’t help itself, it casts a critical eye at all times. The inner voice doesn’t mind what it destroys as long as it can over power us and keep itself alive which is no longer a key aspect of our survival as much as it used to be. I’m kind of rambling I hope this makes sense “/

    Meditation includes a lot about being “in the present” or just “being” which is a way of turning that inner voice off. No matter what, we have the capabilities to do that were just so distracted that we don’t ykno?

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