Personal Story

Copyright Sabrina

I’m almost fifteen and I have this problem since one year now. It started everything with an idea to have a letter on my arm. I was in love with someone who was hating me in this time. I can’t really remember how I came of this idea, but it really changed my life. Now I have more problems than before and nothing is good. I’m in trouble now with my best friend because of this. She doesn’t understand why I do this and why I can’t stop this. I have to do this, I can’t live without cutting my arms, or my belly or whatever. It started with small cuts but now I cut myself very deeply.

Nobody understands me and I could throw my life away. I think I’m maybe addicted of hurting myself. I don’t know.

Well, if you noticed some mistakes in my letter, sorry, I’m from Germany and my english isn’t the best.


Copyright, Sabrina

The first time I cut was with a compass in a science class when I was 12. I’d tried to overdose a few months before and my best friend was sitting next to me. I was trying to tell her that I felt mentally unstable. She wouldn’t believe me & suddenly there was a compass in my hand. I can’t even remember why but I started scratching my arm with it. I guess it was attention seeking. I just wanted someone to believe what was going on with me. I had to go to counselling because I’d tried to kill myself but I couldn’t talk to them. No way. But talking to my best friend should’ve been different. I thought that this was at least one person who I could trust, who would believe me & let me talk.

I couldn’t help but smile as I scratched my arm, as little spots of blood appeared. I’d never tried anything like this before but it just, just seemed to help so much. It was kind of a relief. Yet I’d only do it very occasionally. I think I knew that if I did it more that I wouldn’t be able to control it. For a few years after that I was ok. Well, not ok. I got more depressed. Tried halfhearted attempts to kill myself. Only halfhearted because I knew I had to live really. I’d gone to hospital the first time and I couldn’t do that to my parents again. But I enjoyed taking maybe 10 paracetamol over the limit. Just to feel in control. I got a little more withdrawn though I knew I had to control myself. I made myself smile sometimes, made myself appear normal & so I stayed close to my friends. I just didn’t tell them much anymore. Just listened & tried to help. That did actually make me feel a little better. If I could help someone else. I don’t really remember much about the time between I was 12 & 16. I know I did a good job of appearing normal, of very rarely cutting (though I had moved to using razors when I did). I know I dated & I did well in school, but mainly all I remember were the feelings of panic and the fear over the fact that I felt I desperately wanted to die. I didn’t tell anyone. Once or twice I tried to tell my best friend but she ignored what I had to say, didn’t want to believe what I was saying, I guess. I think that’s why I began having panic attacks. I wouldn’t allow myself to deal with how I felt and my body just started reacting.

When I left secondary school everything changed. I don’t even know why I started to cut that summer. I think maybe I just couldn’t handle that everything was changing. In September I’d be going to college & doing A levels. I knew my friendships could change & the work would be harder. I started cutting quite shallowly at first in the shower with a razor but within a couple of weeks I was cutting deeper & more. Soon, I moved onto knives that I found in the kitchen. I liked the feel of the metal touching & entering my skin. I liked the control the pain gave me, the relief of feeling something other than panic & sadness. I turned 16 that summer and almost as soon as I had my student ID to prove it, I bought a knife so I could cut whenever I felt like it in my room. I no longer had to worry that someone would notice a knife was missing. I kept cutting deeper & scarring myself more throughout the next two years.

During the first summer I began really cutting it was really hot & I must’ve rolled my sleeves up too far once because my friend found out. She promised not to tell anyone & a little while later experimented with it a little herself (she stopped as soon as her mother found out so she’s OK now). Once she knew I have never really bothered hiding my cuts or scars (except, of course, my family). Some people may view this as meaning that it’s attention seeking. But as far as I’m concerned my scars are mine. I try not to let people affect the way I dress or what I do & I only let the people I care about affect the way I feel. So, I guess I just let people see my scars because I didn’t really care too much about how they’d react. I certainly aren’t ashamed of them & surely it’s better that I can be honest. The only ones I hide are the ones on my legs. For some reason I just feel more of a need for people not to know they’re there. If they knew it would seem less like I was just cutting for attention. I don’t want people to know I’m actually all screwed up in my head.

I’m now almost 18 and I’m slowly starting to stop cutting. I’m dating a person I love very much and I think that’s helped. It makes me feel a little safer and more able to let someone help me, at least a tiny bit. Whenever something goes wrong and I start to panic, I’ve started trying to do other things before I cut, though I often need to cut anyway. But I’m slowly making progress, and I feel a lot less like I want to die. I always thought I’d be dead before I was 18. I’ve got 5 weeks to go now, and so I think I’ll make it. Not sure if that’s a good thing though. But at least I’m beginning to imagine a future. Even, just, maybe, without self injury.


Permanent location: