SPOILER ALERT: specific talk about self injurious behaviors. If you feel you may be triggered PLEASE do not continue. Thank you. xx
If you feel you are currently in danger of hurting yourself please seek a professional or call your emergency number available in your country (such as 911) This is not written by a doctor, it is meant as an explanation of my experience, not an informational tool today. This does not include advice on how to stop. But if you have advice to get me to stop, let me know.
Sometimes in the past I have heard self harm defined as an injury to oneself causing lasting damage or injury. This is very vague in my opinion. I never understood why my old therapist would tell me that instead of cutting I should hold an ice cube in my fist. I guess at least that doesn’t leave a scar. But how is that any “better”?
Okay, the point I wanted to eventually get to is this: I thought I was out of the woods, losing my thoughts of cutting and burning and banging all the time and I was hardly ever doing it. Yesterday, instead, it evolved into a new form of self harm.
Warning: Following is going to be gross to some people, you have been warned.
Yesterday I grabbed a pair of tweezers and began picking at blackheads on my face. Then more. And more. I have a lot. I couldn’t stop myself. I was literally yelling at myself to stop and I could not put the tweezers down. Now I am covered in scabs. I have always been able to cover up my cuts and burns etc. I can not cover my face. I have over three dozen scabs that have been randomly bleeding. It’s disgusting (to me). Why can’t I stop?
Why was/am I doing it? I have no idea. Insomnia. School stress. Withdrawals. Boredom. Loneliness. Nerves. A need to punish myself. A need to be numb. I really wish I knew. I do know it’s not depression or suicidal tendencies though.
I can not understand why every time I give up a negative coping skill, I pick up a new one. This is not a good new one. Well, they never are really. I do sometimes pick up good coping skills of course.
First (16 years ago) there was the scratching, then the cutting (complete with many stitches), then burning, then using pills, then shooting up, then drinking and cutting and burning and now picking and doing that hair pulling thing (not quite trichotrillomania)
Why am I going into the depths of this with you? Simply a warning to watch yourself. Just because you are trying to stop self injury does not mean it won’t try to pop up somewhere else in your life.
What am I doing about it besides whining?
I took everything tweezer-like from my bathroom and gave them to my mom. I treated my face with ointment. When I went out I used foundation (I hate make up btw) and I am trying to not look in the mirror because it’s too tempting.
I will get some food, sleep, relaxation, coping skills, and support and I will carry on. This time I will keep a better watch out for the next tricky behavior to pop up. I know it will try. Makes me a little worried. But I did open up to my mom about it and will try to stay accountable with her. That usually helps a bit.
If this continues my psychiatrist will be in the office on Friday and I will try to get in to see her or her partner. Or I can always go talk to someone at Crisis Care (in person or on the phone)
The thing that freaks me out the most is that I am causing myself to bleed. My blood is toxic. I can not allow myself to do this anymore, I could be putting others in danger.
Positive thoughts, love and support. Thank you,
(btw, say it how you will, self-injury, self-harm, cutting, etc. it’s all the same in this story, very general)