“Only teenage girls self-harm.”
This one kills me. Most of you will know why. I hurt myself sometimes. I have scars in various parts of my body that I’m not proud of. My ex-husband has a shoulder covered in scars. Another one of my male friends has scars everywhere but his face. His neck, his hips, everywhere.
The media really likes playing up the image of teenage girls “cutting.” It’s because they can make them look stupid, weak, and overly emotional. But people of all ages, genders, and walks of life self-harm.
People do it in different ways. I knew a man who would punch concrete blocks to break his hands. When people asked, he would say that he got into “a really tough fight.” He told me once that the fight in question was with himself. He also broke his leg by jumping off of his house as a “stunt.” He did it to break himself, no other reason.
I’ve always tended to draw in friends with self-harm issues. Friends in their teens, twenties, thirties, forties, and even one lady that was 85. She was a patient, so I won’t say more.
I’ve seen men put out their cigars on their necks and shoulders. I’ve seen a grown woman’s scars, saying terrible things. “Slut,” “Ugly,” and “Failure,” CARVED into her thighs. I’ve known men and women who have hurt their own genitals. I’ve known women who cut their breasts, and a man who would drop heavy weights onto his scrotum.
Did you know boys under 10 are more likely to self harm than girls that age? Did you know people who self harm are 50-100% more likely to commit suicide? It’s an illness, and it affects everyone.
For those of you who haven’t seen it, I have a 2 inch scar on my right forearm that I will never be able to hide again. It’s embarrassing, but I’ve resolved to tell anyone who asks about it the truth. My kids know why I have it, and they understand that they should talk to someone if they feel like they want to hurt/die. This kind of communication changes lives. I really believe that, or I wouldn’t write all this down for you all.
I self harm because I feel such big emotions inside sometimes. I feel like it HAS to come out NOW! It’s hard to feel all the emotions my brain has sometimes. Part of it is that I feel like nobody understands. I feel like, if I had scars all over, people would know how much pain I had suffered. I also feel like I deserve to hurt. I feel like I’ve earned the pain, and the discomfort. I’ve earned the scars, I just don’t have them all yet.
It’s not logical, and logic doesn’t make it go away. I’ve hidden blades around my house at various times. I’ve cut myself with rusty and dull things. I’ve punched walls, and broken my hands. I’ve shut my hands in the door of my car. I’ve gone into a bar, found the biggest mother-fucker in there, and punched him in the face.
I have found some dangerous ways to hurt myself over the years, and I’m not proud of that. I can’t tell you how much guilt I feel when someone close to me realizes that I’ve hurt myself. Telling my kids what I had done was just heart breaking. They don’t understand, not completely. But that’s okay, because we all know that I’m an open, safe place. I can talk to them about anything, and that has to be enough.
Sometimes, I know I’m not explaining myself completely, and tonight is one of those nights. There is so much to this subject, that I feel like I’m not doing it justice. Please, feel free to ask ANYTHING by messaging my Facebook page. I will respond to you, and update this post, or write another one. Thanks for all the feedback I get, guys. It means a lot. Remember that anyone you know could be hurting, and that’s okay. Carry on, dear reader.
P.S. I don’t hide blades around my house any more. Jenny and I cleaned them all out after the cut on my arm. It’s not okay for me to hurt myself. It’s not bad that I want to, it’s just not okay to actually act on that. I’m trying to be strong for my kids and fiance. I’m trying to be strong for all of you. Most importantly, I’m trying to be strong for myself.