My Disaster

Copyright, Riley

No one really truly understands why a cutter cuts, it may be a comment in school, or spilling a glass of juice. Even talking about cutting, is a trigger. I get this craving, almost like an addiction for a cigarette. What normally drives me to do it, is talking about it or my parents, or even boys. I don’t exactly know why I am inclined to do this, but I just have to. It’s a pain hiding scars, hiding lies, and bandages.

The first time I did it I was a scared thirteen year old girl afraid of getting in trouble. My parents had yelled at me so bad it left me crying for hours. Searching for some way to calm myself, I found it in a pin. The pin was in a leftover sewing box, left by my mom, who was sewing something the night before. I took the pin out of the pin cushion, and stared at it. I imagined bloody wrists and bandages, lots of them. I imagined what one cut would do to me. And after pain and suffering, I came up with freedom from anger, calmness, and the ability to breathe again. And the later three was what mattered more to me.

From the very first time I dragged the cold hard metal against my quivering wrist, I knew I couldn’t stop. When I first held the not so innocent looking pin in my hand I never knew you could get addicted. I believed you only could get addicted to drugs and boys. And at the time it was both for me. And that faithful life stopping second, I added a third to my list. It took three blood gushing scars to calm me down. After I had done the deed, I looked. I examined my handy work at every angle. I started to cry, not because I was hurt, but because I had finally found something that helped me cope, which helped me forget what was going on. And it was different from everything else; it wasn’t like when my dad told me to smash my foot with a hammer when I had a headache. In saying this he meant that my foot would hurt more than my head, I wouldn’t worry about my head. It was different. Cutting was a different kind of pain, a release pain, a happy pain.

The next day, my boyfriend of a year and I got in a fight. I sought out my nepenthe in a cold razor in my garage. That was the first real, serious cutting session. I did about six deep cuts on my forearm. I was angry, and cutting was my Balm of Gilead. It made me forget my flaws. It made me forget my misdoings. It made me forget I existed.

I had a thick rubber band that I took to school with me. And with the pressure from my parents to do exactly well in school, I used the rubber band to inflict pain on myself. Whenever I would get a question wrong on a test, or get in trouble, I would draw back the rubber band and let it go, leaving big bruises on my wrist. I had a point system worked out, two hits for every question I got wrong on a test, one for getting a wrong answer on homework or in class. One day, after I got a 50 on a test, my wrist swelled up so bad that I had to switch my watch to the other hand because it wouldn’t fit.

Cutting had not become a hobby, hobbies you can stop at any time. Although, like a hobby, cutting was for pleasure. You might think I’m crazy, but I’m just like every other teen that has felt this way. I just choose to handle it differently. Soon I had to face that I was addicted.

One night, at a Taco Bell by the mall, some friends and I were stopping by for a bite. While I was refilling my drink, my best friend’s older sister walked in with her boyfriend. My sweater sleeve dropped back to expose one of my many scars. She walked by to say hi, and her mouth dropped open. She grabbed my wrist and dragged me into the bathroom. Then she showed me her wrist and there was a big scar. She said she had gotten really angry because she had found out she was pregnant, the scar had almost sent her to the hospital. She said she wouldn’t tell her younger sister, I believed her.

In the next couple of weeks my friend walked up to me and asked me if it was true, I said yes. She said that she understands, because she lived with it. She just didn’t want it to go too far. I promised her it wouldn’t.

This one girl who I used to be really close with slit her wrists in the middle of school. She was sent to a mental hospital for two days. Her counsellor said the slit was a cry for attention. I believed it was something more, something that can’t be explained to anyone. Not with all the words in the world could I begin to relate the rush, the feeling that I get from cutting, and I’m sure she couldn’t either.

Now, I don’t want you to think that I like getting hit in the head with a hammer, or something. Cutting is something you can control. You can control the pain, the self punishment. This, in essence, is what cutting is. Self punishment, whether you realise it or not.

A week or so after the school incident, My friend’s mom was yelling at her on the way back from cheerleading practise. I was angry; I was scratching my arms, hard. It started to bleed really badly. My mom looked away at me for a moment, and she noticed. What are you doing? I hadn’t even noticed I was even scratching, so it was just as much of a scare to me. Why did I have the impulse to do that? Was I so addicted that I had no control?

I finally decided I had to quit, and after counting over twenty-five scars on one wrist, I decided to try and cope. I haven’t exactly kicked the rubber band habit yet, still reaching for it when I’m wrong. And I am nowhere close to quitting cutting. It is the hardest thing to do ever. This is why I wanted to get my story out, so that no one will ever start. I hate thinking that I thought it was a way out, and I hate thinking more that I still do. I don’t want anyone to ever think that again, or go through the self mutilating thoughts that pour into my head every second. In fact as I’m writing this, I’m thinking, “Man, this is taking so long, where is my razor at? After I get done with this I’m doing a star on my stomach, cool!” Which is so not healthy, but I can’t help it. I don’t want anyone to be as unhealthy as I am. And even though I am trying, it is still very hard. So I’m throwing away my razors and leaving you with this: The rush is false, but the pain is real.


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