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Black Death

I am turning fourteen in two months. I started cutting myself when I was eleven turning twelve in two months. I had just gotten back from a camp that I went to with part of my sixth grade class. I had made a really big stupid decision there and lost my boyfriend who was one of my great friends. He wouldn’t talk to me at all. I was so down I found a box cutter in my brother’s room. I knew a girl who had tried to kill herself before and she said cutting let all the pain out. So I cut little gashes into my hips. And it helped so much. Instantly I felt better. So I did it more and more. Finally my parents found out and took me to therapy. My parents were so embarrassed with my “problem”. My grandparents don’t even know about it to this day.

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I cut, I burn, I do anything to ease the pain, but for me it’s not… I have tried to commit suicide several times but I can never do it. I am weak and cutting for me is to one day hope I have the courage to just press a little harder and cut a little deeper so i can end my misery. I have been to juvenile hall. I have been to the psych ward. I am a very suicidal and hurt person and I don’t know why I harm myself. I love my skin. Skin is beautiful. I just don’t know how to cope. Just writing this letter brings me to tears. All this pain hurts, it really does. I think cutting is a way for me to make this pain I feel inside apparent on the outside. Life is hard and somtimes you think you need a way out.

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For a long time, I didn’t know that a lot of the things I do were self-destructive or self-harming. I had never been a cutter and I thought that my wishes to be hurt or really, really sick were just attention-getting thoughts. Not that I ever shared them with anyone, so I didn’t get attention for having them. But I guess it was drilled into me as a child by my grandmother that I wasn’t allowed to be sick. She always called me a hypochondriac if I had a cold and didn’t feel better by the second day. I never told my grandmother if I was hurt physically, I’m not entirely sure why. I did some pretty stupid things as a kid, so it was natural that I got hurt a time or two. Like when I tried jumping from a stack of boards into a garage of a house that was being built in my neighborhood. I “forgot” or didn’t realize that the garage had an overhang and I slammed my forehead into it at full jumping speed. Or the time I stepped on a nail, screamed “Oh Shit!”, then brought my other foot down onto another nail. I hobbled home with each foot tied up in a sock. But I never told my grandmother about it. So I guess I wasn’t really looking for attention. Those are silly examples, I realize, but it illustrates my point I hope that I am not and have never been a hypochondriac.

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I’m 26 years old and have been cutting myself since I was 12. I find myself asking why I do this. I come from a good family. I was never abused as a child, so why would I do such a thing to myself? I remember the first time I ever cut myself. I was on the phone talking to my friend and I was crying (upset; about what I can’t remember) and holding an X-acto knife. By the time I got off the phone I had cuts up and down my left arm and was bleeding bad, but the emotional pain inside me was gone and in a weird way I felt a lot better. My arms, shoulders and stomach are covered with scars and I’m still no closer to figuring out why I would do such a thing to myself.

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I started SI’ing when I was 12, it was meant to be a homemade tattoo. When my best friend died the following year, I remembered how it felt. So in the days after she died, I cut several times, many from which I still have scars today. I stopped for a little while when I started going out with my first boyfriend.

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I’m 20 now, and started cutting myself a week before my 17th birthday. Before that I had tried to kill myself three times in the past three years.

I don’t remember what put the idea of cutting in my head, but I do remember the first time that I did it. I made one cut, near my left thumb, and I kept a bandaid over it for the next two weeks. After I took it off, I started cutting myself a couple of times a week, and before I knew it, I was cutting myself everyday.

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