Self Harming and Me (Taken from the book, Losing the Hate, by Simon Palmer
*Self harming is NOT the answer, whether in the short term, or for any longer periods. I'm of the opinion that talking about things is by far the best option. It is NOT my intention to advise people to harm themselves. I'm simply speaking of why I did it, and how it made me feel.*
I began to harm myself on a daily basis, while staying in a local authority home. (Although I had experimented with it before this).
The only way i can describe the feelings inside of me at that time, is to say it was like having thousands of starving ants crawling beneath my skin. It felt like i was being eaten alive, and the only way to ease this horrible sensation was to cut myself. I used all manner of implements, anything really, from razor blades to broken beer bottles. When my blood flowed, the feeling was one of utter relief. All of the hurt and anger was released from my body by the pain of the cutting, and it actually made me feel happy.
I remember hacking rather than cutting myself on one particular occassion in the middle of a shopping centre. I had been having an absolute nightmare of a day, and hated myself for just existing. I remember looking at my reflection in the shop windows, and really loathing the person which was looking back at me.
I made four of five wounds with a great deal of force, and although it wasn't my intention, I cut through the muscles of my forearm. The pain was astronomical, and I'd never seen such a huge amount of blood; my blood. But it felt good. it felt good to have so much physical pain, and the ants beneath my skin vanished, albeit only for a short while.
The end result was being taken to theatre at the local hospital, and recieving just over 200 stitches, including internally.
I'm pleased to say that I don't use this method any longer, but I have to be honest; it is, and always will be just below the surface. It used to play such a major part of my world, that i don't think it will ever leave me, but these days they are just thoughts rather than actions.
I have come into contact with many people in my life; people who are ready to label self harmers as crazies, foolish people who cut themselves for attention. Well I'm here to tell them in no uncertain terms that they're very very wrong.
When I look at my many scars, I see them as my survival marks. For I know, without any shadow of a doubt, that had I not ever done those things, i would more than likely be dead now.
However . . .
If you are experiencing feelings of self harming, please, don't follow through with it. Speak to someone, anyone, they are only a free phone call away.