Friday, January 20, 2012
I don’t think it will come as a surprise to anyone reading this that, yes, I do in fact cut myself on occasion. I get the question rather often as to why. My response has remained stagnant over the last few years regarding this. No, I DO NOT WANT YOU TO DO IT!!! However, for me, cutting myself while dealing with a load of emotional chaos allows for that emotional stuff to become real. Suddenly, it is tactile, it is visual, the blood leaving my body and dying is very symbolic to me. It is a representation of a life I once had and no longer live. It expresses the pain I have on the inside that I can’t get out with words, or sometimes where words just aren’t enough. I used to cut myself very often. Now I do it at fairly set points throughout a year. Usually around traumatic anniversaries that people don’t care to hear about and I feel all alone.
How did this start? I was raped when I was 12 by a guy in his early 20’s. I was wrestled down in the snow in a very built up neighbourhood and he forced himself on me. After, he carried me into the house (yes I knew him) and he bathed me. I will never forget the burn of that water on my ice cold flesh. Then he brought me to the couch and laid my head in his lap and stroked my hair and I really did zone out. I couldn’t wrap my mind around any of this. Had I really been raped? Why was he being so nice?
Shortly thereafter I had no idea what to think. I felt guilty for not saying anything and for not really understanding what had happened. I began to burn myself with heated up magnets. I realized quickly that the marks they left only lasted a few hours and although the pain felt good it just wasn’t what I needed. I don’t know when I had the AHA moment with cutting myself, but I do know I started doing it with a nail file. I would even do it in school while listening to teachers talking. Yet, I vanished into the background and no one noticed.
Going unnoticed went on for years. I finally confessed to my mom about it in a fairly heated phone call when I was 17. She had no clue. I was outraged that a parent could NOT notice this in their child. That said, I did a really good job of hiding it. I still do. My parents have come to understand my state of mind now by explosive emotional outbreaks and by the change in my overall demeanor. Back when I had started this though I was doing it so often that there really wasn’t a change, not one that I noticed the way I do now.
I have been drowning in pain one way or another, my entire life. It seems like when things can’t get worse they do.
Now if you don’t know me you are likely questioning why I haven’t received therapy. The answer to that is I DO! I have been seeing a doctor and therapist for about 5 years now. I am not really sure how much they help, but they do make a good sounding board that doesn’t discredit my raw emotion the way the average human does. I have never been hospitalized because I have never injured myself badly enough to require medical attention and since I am not a risk to my life or the lives of others there is nothing a doctor or therapist can really do. I am also on medication to deal with PTSD.
Right now, I agree with the song by Evanescence that uses the term “crimson regret” because that is exactly what my blood is, crimson regret.
I am going to end this by saying that if you are feeling the urge to hurt yourself in ANYWAY you need to seek emergency medical assistance. If you are too scared to go to the hospital look in the phone book and find the anonymous crisis support hotline. Those people are wonderful and there is NO risk of you getting in trouble for calling them and talking to them about how you are feeling. They truly are wonderful. If these thoughts are continuous or often go get a therapist. Many places offer free therapy, especially if you have a diagnosis. Shocker, but not everyone is in it for the money. Lots of people really just want to help people. They have been in your situation and want to help you out of it.
This is my story. I hope it isn’t yours.