My name is Karen, I’ve been cutting for seven years. I wrote this a few months ago.
Why do I Cut Myself?
Why do I do it? Why did I start? How am I ever going to stop? These are the questions that I ponder everyday. The challenge is, telling myself I’m not going to cut myself today, and trying to deal with things in a more sane manner.
I can start out a day fine. Be happy, everything will be fine. Then sometime that day something will happen to break me. (Up until recently, I would automatically just run for the blade.) But, lately, since I’ve been trying to quit, I’ve just been depriving myself of my way of releasing emotional pain.
Cutting yourself is like a drug. It’s an addiction. Just like cigarettes, alcohol, or drugs. It’s very highly addictive. Everyone thinks you can just stop, just like that. But you can’t. Imagine trying to quit smoking. It’s no different from that. It’s all a form of self harm.
Before you cut yourself, you feel quite anxious and/or upset. Unexplainable. Cutting yourself helps to relieve all those tensions. It’s a way of calming yourself down. Smoking does the same thing. You can be totally stressed, then you can light up a cigarette, and it just calms you. Same with cutting. Before you go under the blade you can just be so far gone and spaced out, but after you cut, you quickly calm down, and begin to feel alive again.
So basically, now I’ll just sit there trying to calm down, crying, desperately wanting to slice myself. Before, I would run immediately to the razor blade… It’s like my best friend when I need it. Sometimes I cut deeply, other times it’s not as bad. It all depends on how fucked up I am, how sad I am, or how much emotional pain and stress I feel.
About a week ago, I was really upset, shaking, and crying, I couldn’t calm myself. I was outside with some friends, and I was in my pajamas… (I usually carry a razor blade in my pockets, or wrapped in a tissue, and stuffed in my bra.) But I didn’t have one on me… Desperately I asked the boy to let me see one of his knives. (It wasn’t too good for cutting, cause it wasn’t very sharp.) But man… I was able to take the thing, and with all my might stab my leg four times. It was deep, bled badly, and is still bruised, with no intention on fading.
I look at my arms and legs now, and trace the scars… Remembering vividly where each and everyone came from. Who broke me, who hurt me, what I did to fuck up, who I let down.
I started when I was eleven. I was abused as a child… I wasn’t the happiest, kinda shy, kinda quiet. Kept to myself, and didn’t have any really close friends I could trust. My dad had hit me one day, with a stick that had nails in it. He hit me two or three times with it, and I got pretty gooned up. I still have three scars from it.
Anyway, I concentrated on the blood, and how good it felt to bleed. It was like all the pain and sadness of him hurting me, just was bleeding away. After that it just became a condition.
Every time someone hurt me emotionally/physically, I would take a knife, and cut myself. It was a way of revenge. Getting back at the people that hurt me, without hurting anyone, but me of course, and without them having to know. It was a way of self punishment. I did something I regretted, or made a fool of myself, I would punish myself. While dragging the blade across my skin, I would tell myself I was stupid, worthless, I couldn’t do anything right, and I deserved to be hurt. I think when I punish myself, those cuts are always the worst, and the deepest.
Sometimes I’ll cut out of boredom. If I haven’t needed to do it in a while I will, just to feel the pain, the relief. Other times it’s just little things. If I feel I let someone down, or someone is a little mad at me. If someone hurts me, or makes me feel worthless.
In time I realized that razor blades were sharper, and easier to cut with and hide, than knives are. Knives are big, and dull, usually. And I’d have to push down really hard. And they weren’t the easiest thing to hide/carry on you when you might have an uncontrollable urge in public. Razor blades are tiny, and very sharp. You can hide them almost anywhere. In your purse, pockets, or even as I do, wrapped in a tissue and stuck in my bra. Just so it’s always with you… Just in case.
Being a cutter, you’ll never know when an urge will come on. Mostly they’re uncontrollable… When you become a cutter, some say they cut to be in control of your own pain. But, I believe I am way out of control.
I guess, the control part comes in where you can be in charge of how much pain you can cause yourself. Or how much you can hurt yourself but refuse to feel it. I can completely numb myself out to physical pain. (But only if it’s self-inflicted.) It only hurts, if I want it to. (Like when I’m punishing myself.)
When the urge becomes so strong, there is no longer anything you can do to fight it. You become desperate, and will do anything, inflict any kind of pain, to make the pain go away. It’s replacing emotional pain with physical pain. I’d rather feel physical pain, than emotional pain.
Cutting yourself numbs your mind to the emotional pain, and only enables you to concentrate on the pain you inflicted upon yourself, the blood you bleed out, and the relief you feel after doing so.
It’s in indescribable high. Any non-cutter would never understand the way we feel. All your problems… They just bleed away… It’s great. It’s an ingenious solution to all your problems, and it doesn’t hurt anyone, but yourself, so… What’s the problem?
The problem is… It really does hurt people besides you. When people who care find out… (And yeah, believe it or not I have found people that care.) When they find out that you can mutilate your own body, every time you do it, it’s like cutting them, too.
But they can never understand how good it feels. It’s such a relief. I don’t mean to hurt other people by what I’m doing, but I just can’t control it. I can’t stop it. When people find out, it starts a whole new list of problems. Having to be even sneakier, and hide them even better.
I hate the summer time. (I can usually wear pants all summer long, and get away with just wearing an occasional T-shirt.) But sometimes my family gets really bitchy about it… So it causes a fight until I give in, and put on shorts.
In the summer it’s very hard to hide the cuts. You resort to cutting other places besides your legs and arms. You have to cut under your bra, or panty line. (But that’s just if you’re planning on going swimming, or something, actually.) It’s not that hard if you’re just going to wear a baggy t-shirt and some shorts. You can cut your upper thigh, your stomach, upper arms, or ankles. (If you can hide the cuts under your socks.)
I’ve been doing this for nearly seven years. I’d say this has come up as being a major problem in my house four times. But mostly they say I am just doing it for attention. They say it’s stupid. They’ll threaten to ground me until I stop. (OMG, why do they think it’s so easy?)
They don’t understand. I need more support to stop this. I need them to be willing to realize this is a problem… And it’s not just in my head. And for them to want to help me.
I don’t think I would have ever started this if things at home were better. My dad hates me. He’s never been a real father to me. He’s just been horribly abusive mentally/physically/sexually, and pushed me this far. (And farther.) To make me actually want to mutilate my own body just to get back at him.
I hate him. I wish I could look back and say, “okay, yeah my dad’s really not that bad. Everything he did was out of love. And deep down, I know he really did love me.” But I can’t. Cause he’s never told me he loved me. Nicest thing he says to me on a daily basis is he hates me, and I’m a rotten little bitch. And he doesn’t do things cause he cares. He does things so I can see he’s in charge. He can control me, and there isn’t a damn thing I can do about it. It’s a fucking game to him. A game he thinks he’s always going to win… (But yeah, when I cut too deep, or get pushed too far and OD again, we’ll just see who wins.)
Actually, in reality that made no fucking sense. Because I am letting him win. Every time I let him make me feel like nothing, he’s winning. Because that’s what he wants. He’s getting the best of me. Every time I cut over him, that means he won. And if I were to succeed trying to do something more permanent than a scar, over him, then he’d win. Ugh. “I hate the way I hurt myself just to get back at you.”
I’m eighteen now, and that scares me. I used to think that after I was out of this house, and away from my family, and my dad that always brings me down, that I could just stop. Because my dad is the reason I cut myself, and I can safely say 95% of the scars/cuts on my body are just from him alone.
But, then there’s the other 5% of the cuts and scars… That come from outside relations, and/or self hate. That means I’ll still have to deal with people that don’t like me, and that will bring me down… And I still have to live with myself, who I’m not too fond of. How am I going to deal with that? And what if that 5% of cuts go way up, because I’m not so sheltered from the outside world anymore?
I have a hard time dealing with social interaction. I get totally stressed, and usually cut because of it. Being eighteen means I’m on my own, with decisions to make, and all kinds of new (more important) problems/dilemmas. I really don’t think that I’ll be able to stop, and I fear it’ll just get worse.
So, there’s really not a second that goes by in my life that I don’t want to just reach for a razor blade to calm myself. But I’ve really been trying. In all honesty… I really can’t remember if I’ve cut myself today or not. There appears to be newer cuts on my leg, but they could’ve been from last night. I do it so much, I just can’t place them all anymore.
I want to get better. I’m sick of cutting and burning my skin. I’m sick of trying to hide/explain scars… But then, on the other hand. I’m afraid to let go. I can’t imagine a life without cutting myself. I just don’t think I have the strength to deal with life on my own, without having the blade as my backup tool.
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