So awhile ago, I used to cut...It wasn't a big problem--I didn't do it every day and I never cut really deep. I just did it when I was stressed or feeling completely overwhelmed. I know it's not healthy, and somehow I managed to get myself to stop for a little bit and use other techniques. . .Someone told me about wearing a rubber band around your wrist and snapping it every time you feel the urge to cut...
Anyway, I was so good about not doing it during the summer. I think I maybe did it only twice over a period of 3-4 months...But recently I started again. It's a long story why, and it's really kind of dumb--just a lot of things adding up. I'll spare you the details.
The problem is that this time, it's different. Before I would cut and then I would feel better. Now I cut, and I feel better but then I feel the need to do it again right away. . .I don't know how to describe it; it's like it's more addictive this time around, if that makes any sense. I don't know why it's different this time, but it is.
I don't know how to stop feeling like I need to cut. And I'm currently in a foreign country, so even if I wanted to talk to someone, there is a language barrier. . .I feel really stupid about not being able to fix this by myself. Really stupid. But I'm here until the end of the year, and I don't know what I should do...Any suggestions are very much appreciated.
No need to feel stupid at all. Those who seek help aren't weak; they're the strongest of people, because they're humble enough to realize that no one is all-mighty.
I never actually got to cutting, although I almost did once, if it wouldn't have been for the fact that my dog started barking incredibly I would have. What I used to do was dig my nails into my arms, to the point where my nail marks would stick around for a long time. I personally got really scared when I did it once when I was horribly depressed and I almost started bleeding (the marks stayed purple for a week, and stayed for two weeks after). I freaked out because something I thought was so harmless could leave a mark for that long.
I understand what you mean by it being addictive. I would cry to my boyfriend and say "please, just one more time, I promise it'll just be once" And he would shake his head and say "You know it won't be just once". The best thing here is not do it AT ALL, just like any other addiction. Don't think "I'll just do it once and then i'll be ok". You have to understand, just like me, that you have to take a solid decision about not doing it again, and admitting you have a problem. It's no wonder why the first step in AA is admitting to yourself that you have a problem. You have to do this before you can begin to think about getting better.
I also know from personal experience what it was to say "It's not that bad, I'm in control". But my psychologist told me "I don't care if you're just pinching yourself lightly, because I know that even if you don't do too much to yourself, you want to do more". This applies to the rubber band. You're still hurting yourself, it's just disguised because there're no permanent marks (boy, do I know about that one). Trust me on this one. Don't do it.
I found it useful to sing. I sing "My favourite things" from The Sound of Music every time I feel down or angry. I also play the piano; nice angry/sad pieces like Chopin's Nocturnes are good. You could also get yourself a punching bag, or play tennis (terribly therapeutic to wack a ball), or do any kind of physical activity, really. Art also helps. Put your emotions into images. That way you can also have something to be proud of later. Or you could write; journal, poetry, even just random angry scribbles on pages help. I realize you're in a foreign country, so you may not have a friend to talk to face to face or access to a councellor; but I strongly suggest you look up a local 24 hour crisis hotline to call when you feel down.
Remember little happy things. Like chocolate, or your favourite song, or a great happy movie! I know it sounds silly, but when you feel like life is overwhelming, it's comforting to remember that there are still things you can enjoy.
And very importantly (at least in my opinion), if possible, make sure you have no access to knives or other sharp objects. And keep your nails short. My cousin has a huge cut on her forearm that she gave herself with one of her swiss army knives from a collection of hers. Her mother very wisely took her collection away from her and doesn't let her have them. Seeing them would only tempt her.
And another tip from AA, take one day at a time. If it's too hard for you, don't think "I'll never do it again". Just wake up everyday and say "Today, I won't cut myself. Just for today". That's why one never says one is a recovered addict; one is always in the process of recovering.
I really hope this helps. I would be very interested in hearing again from you, and don't be shy about posting I'll be sure to check up on you.
P.S: I am sooo sorry I didn't see this post earlier I hope you've been doing ok these past couple of weeks. If I would have seen it earlier, I would have replied.
I do suggest that you go to see a therypst. I have the same problem, and I understand when you say it just becomes more addicting, is because it is addicting It's like the only way we know how to cope, and that reassurance is addicting, having everything feel better is addicting. And in my case, as may be yours, you allmost feel stupid for thinking you shouldnt cut yourself, because you feel you should be able to control it. I found it really helpful to have someone to talk to one on one. Also, they can prescribe medication. I have been taking a mood stabilizer which helps me from getting to the point where i feel i need to hurt myself.
Before then, I would make sure i had to sharp objects around me, and also, i would stash some money away so that whenever i felt the need to cut, i could just go get coffee or something
Posts: 19 | From: toronto | Registered: Oct 2006
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Cuttings a hard topic to tackle with and with out help. it becomes so addictive, so nessissary to face normal life, to act normal in every other way that it takes over. There's a line from a goo goo dolls song ' you'll bleed just to know your alive' and it describes the feeling so well. I know what your going through, Two and a half years ago i started cutting while my life fell apart...things got better and i thought i had too, i could finally be honest with my friends and i told a few close people what had happened to me. They opened up and offered any help they could give...but honestly, I've started cutting again, recently, and it's harder to control each stroke, harder to releive the pain. Come here to talk to some one was a good idea...I've been talking with friends... and i think the best way to avoid the self inflicted injury is to remove your self from the problem, look into why your cutting, and find other solutions, take up a sport, run or play soccor or something to keep you busy, your body active and your mind at ease...I know it's helping me.
Posts: 47 | From: New Jersey | Registered: Jul 2006
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Hey you guys--Thanks so much for taking the time to respond. I really appreciate it.
I just want to clarify that in my first post I didn't want/intend to imply that those who seek help are "weak" people. I fully recognize that actually going to talk to someone is something that requires a lot of strength. I think that, since I was able to get myself to stop cutting the first time, I figured I should always be able to fix it...Though I suppose since I've started again, I never really fixed it the first time...Anyway, I know I'm rambling now, but basically I didn't mean to sound rude or condescending or anything. I just choose my words wrong sometimes.
As for everything else, I have good days and bad days. I had been doing a little bit better--I had thrown out sharp objects, and listened to music, wrote in my journal, went for runs, etc. It was working really well, but then this weekend has been kind of not so good. I tried really really hard not to, but...yeah.
It's kind of hard to say why I felt like I had to cut again. And not even because it's something really traumatic happened. It's just difficult to explain.
But thank you so much for your suggestions. When I get back home I'll look into talking to someone if it's still an issue, and until then I'm going to keep trying all of your suggestions.
For cutters, cutting is like air, water, or food. You feel you need it to live. I was a cutter, and as Nailo said, I am a recovering addict. I cut for 4 1/2 years. Stress mainly and I told myself, "This isn't hurting anyone else, it's not really hurting me, it's helping me." It wasn't helping me. It was making me crazy. But I got help- talking to anyone who knows what's best is better. We are here to help if you need it. As are others in your community I'm sure. Just keep telling yourself, "Cutting is NOT an option because I am stronger than that." This is what I did.
*Also- the rubberband thing. Yea I did it, and it worked, or so I thought. It only got worse. When you can't feel the same as you do when you really cut, you snap it harder leaving welps and painful marks. I have a scar from a rubberband, so they aren't good recovering tools.
-------------------- Fact: Many teens in the US have pregnancy as their main worry- which is only one risk to worry about when you're sexually active. If you are sexually active, it's healthy to have STI tests. Please, get tested. Posts: 65 | From: Missouri, US | Registered: Jan 2004
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You know, if an age perspective helps at all, I simply grew out of cutting.
I cut when my life was hell, and the better it got, the less I did it, to the point that once I was out of deep crisis, I simply didn't have the need anymore.
So, it can be helpful, rather than just looking at what to do instead of cutting, to look at what is bringing you there and the first place, and start to see what you can't do to change, manage, or be rid of the stresses and pains that make you want to self-mutilate.
-------------------- Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen About Me • Get our book! Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead Posts: 67076 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000
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I cutt...well not anymore...but people call me emo and **** cause of it...and its stupid...but go to a therapist and maybe that will help..and when i asked for help finally, i got it...it doesn't mean that i still don't have the urge to cut but when i do i call someone...anyone who knows that i used to cut and they help me out...also let out ur emotions on other people u can trust like friends...and a therapsit is ALWAYS a good idea...my therapist has really helped me
-------------------- "I am the face in the mirror. Only not." Posts: 7 | From: California | Registered: Oct 2006
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I used to cut. One thing I founf helpful was www.recoveryourlife.com . They have suggestions for disractions, first aid information, and things like that. More inportainly, they have a live chat room, and there is always someone there to talk to. It has gotten me through many difficult situations. Good luck to you:)
Posts: 45 | Registered: Mar 2005
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