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Emotionally hurting one's self

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I wasn't sure if this should go here or in NOS. I won't be offended if this were to get moved.

I was talking with someone the other day, and she told me that she likes to make herself feel bad emotionally. I've been like this before as well. I got through it by going to therapy, taking meds, and working on my self-esteem. I sometimes fall into the thought patterns, but I fight it.

The reason why I'm posting in self-harm is because when I did it, there was a pleasure in it. I did like making myself feel bad. It was a self-punishment thing, I think. Much like the reason why I physically self-harmed. Anywho...

Does anyone find ways to harm themselves emotionally? If so, why?

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All those reality shows get to me after a while. The who done it murder-crime scene one's that I like, well like is not the word, make me think the whole world is terrible.

My mind stays in a negative loop and it's hard to enjoy things so I read about people with issues and feel less alone I suppose. But it can't be good for me to be around negativity all the time.

Now that it is spring and I see people outside enjoying life, it surprises me that there are happy people. Why is that so strange?

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I call it self-torture, self-abuse. I can't even allow myself to be happy in my fantasies. When I feel too happy, sometimes I go to websites that hate people like me and proceed to bring myself back down. If I were my own SO, friends would be telling me to run without looking back. Unfortunately, we're kind of stuff together, myself and I.

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I do this...just never thought of it as akin to cutting.

I do it because...I feel like I deserve it? For screwing up.

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I wasn't sure if this should go here or in NOS. I won't be offended if this were to get moved.

I was talking with someone the other day, and she told me that she likes to make herself feel bad emotionally. I've been like this before as well. I got through it by going to therapy, taking meds, and working on my self-esteem. I sometimes fall into the thought patterns, but I fight it.

The reason why I'm posting in self-harm is because when I did it, there was a pleasure in it. I did like making myself feel bad. It was a self-punishment thing, I think. Much like the reason why I physically self-harmed. Anywho...

Does anyone find ways to harm themselves emotionally? If so, why?

I "love" to harm myself, emotionally. I think because it's easier to deprecate myself than it is to suck it up, take responsibility, and actually change? Or maybe that's more self-deprecation.

I don't know. It's just sort of, completely reflexive for me. To say hurtful things to myself, to assume I'm not worthy. I actually sometimes set myself up for insults or criticism, even though I totally can't take it well.

In some ways I like to feel like I'm "hoarding my pain". This is the best way I can describe it. It's like, if I hurt myself... emotionally... without giving myself any sort of healthy release, then I always "know where all my pain is". In which case, it seems more manageable???

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Yeah, I found the best way to harm myself in that manner is to upset someone else, as bad as it is. Say SO and I are already in a fight over something I should be guilty for. Well I am, and to make matters worse, I think I punish myself by saying something incredibly mean to him I could never take back and will always feel guilty over.

This doesn't happen often, it's rather rare, but I think the best way for me to hurt myself is to hurt someone else. I hate hurting other people.

I don't even know if that made sense.

And yeah, I've watched terrible things before and obsessed over them.

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I totally do this. I also overeat, overdrink, oversmoke, etc. as a way to punish myself, because sometimes I think I don't deserve to feel good. I just graduated from college, so I'm kinda in a post-grad slump right now...really struggling to give a fuck about my life.

But yeah, you're not alone.

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Yeah i do this.

This thread is scary because again it makes me wonder how much of what I go through is self inflicted and an actual choice.

Why do I do this and how can I stop? Do I want to stop? Am I just using sadness and misery and negativity as a blanket to protect me from dealing with the real world or feeling truly accountable for everything. If life is miserable then what's the point in anything? There's some strange comfort in that, a kind of familiar inertia.

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yes I have definitely done this... :/

when I get the urge to self harm the thoughts running through my head are "what the ___ is wrong with you? youre so ____ing stupid! why do you bother even trying to act normal. youre sick! you make me sick. i dont know why anybody cares for you at all. maybe all your friends just lie to you" etc etc. this is normally at the point where I am almost self harming. it is really weird to be talking to myself as if it is another voice. it is defintiely my thoughts haha it isnt like I am hearing voices :P

its almost worse than the cutting itself. because it happens before and then a little bit after because I am so disapointed with myself. it is always a resigned kind of thing like, " why did you do that....? your body is going to have scars on it...." then my thought response is "sorry...."

I do not normally talk to myself I promise you I am not ....lol I was about to say I am not crazy but I guess I am. im just in denial :P

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yah this is definitely the worst, what you really can't see is how it looks towards otehr people, such as in other people's eyes. they see you doing this, and I'm pretty sure they themselves, don't want you to feel this way, so you get trapped in this cycle. the trick to getting out of this cycle is looking into reasons you feel bad, or guilty. and not just saying to yourself that you should allow yourself to feel this way, but also there are some reasons behind why you feel this way. some are completely rational and some completely utterly and totally irrational, and not worth thinking aboutl. for the most part 90% of what you feel isn't true, and 10% maybe true, but you hafta look into that. cause that big chunk, that 90% is what 's making you feel bad.

it's basically like a puzzle and if you use your mind you can easily find reasons and figure it out.

Edited by Blart752

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I always think I am stupid because I lost touch with reality at age 19, and as a consequence made myself depressed. I had no insight whatsoever in the early days of my illness (it actually took years to recognise the absurdity of what I had done), though now it is only in the middle of one of my episodes that I lose insight. I used to believe that I could control the time of the day, to the point of acting on it and running myself into the ground. Plus on top of this my grades suffered quite a lot. Now I wished I was able to get help at that time and I would not have had near half of the consequences I've had over the last few years.

But a friend told me the other day that the definition of stupidity is 'to do something whilst knowing better against doing it'. OK, but I didn't know any better and should have known that it is impossible for anyone to add hours out of thin air into the 24-hour day that is determined by the laws of physics. So yeah, I am stupid. How the fuck my pdoc determined that I am 'intelligent' and let such absurdity excuse my alleged delusions, I will never know.

But I only think I am stupid because I am stupid, and not with any intent of hurting myself emotionally.

:dunce: :dunce: :dunce:

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Sometimes I think I'm hurting myself emotionally by posting on this board. Laying my feelings bare

when I'm not all there intellectually. Laying it all out there when I haven't really thought it through.

Being silly when it's inappropriate. Going into chat when that's really a younger person's venue.

Except for this board, I think I basically have an avoidant personality. I don't want to interact with people.

There are other ways I mentally, and perhaps spiritually, self hurt. These are too private, which

I won't get into.

Someone said on this board that a couple of my posts were "deep." I don't feel deep. Actually,

I feel very shallow and silly. I don't even want to be deep, because I can't swim well in deep waters,

and because in shallowness there is more transparency.

Rowen,

if therapy helps, I hope it will help me. I have an appointment in a couple weeks that I am

thinking about breaking. It's like I really don't want to get more well, but prefer to remain

a bit fugged up. That is, to remain my natural self.

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i don't think i create bad thoughts on purpose to punish myself. but i think once i'm far enough down i'll stop fighting the bad thoughts because "i don't deserve to feel better". which is kind of punishing myself for being nuts i think. kinda like someone keeps punching you in the arm and after awhile you stop telling them to quit it because you figure you deserve it anyway. my arm's just about broken from this right now, so i think i can relate.

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thankyou blart752. what you said has a lot of truth to it. it is true that this is all a twist of our minds. in reality most of what we punish ourselves for is completely unnecessary and the things we tell ourselves are mostly lies.

"But a friend told me the other day that the definition of stupidity is 'to do something whilst knowing better against doing it' haha so true. it really is. its very self destructive at times.

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I feel like I have to hurt myself emotionally.

Physically, I'm afraid, is actually a comfort.

But emotionally hurting myself feels like something I absolutely must do.

And I haven't figured out why.

Unless it's to keep me from hoping. Hoping is very dangerous.

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I catch myself doing this all the time. Especially when I put myself on 'auto pilot' during common tasks like taking a shower or brushing my teeth. Ill think of memories where I did something that hurt someone else accidentally, or when I got angry and lashed out at someone even if its justified. And remembering that stuff hurts because I feel less than perfect I guess.

I have a couple theories about this. Maybe its a control cheat, where I feel helpless about something and Im hurting myself to regain some control. Or maybe some part of my psyche is pushing these memories to the surface (when Im not thinking of much and they come to the fore easily) in order to remind me not to do these things that trigger me.

Ive had other instances where something triggers me and I re-experience and ruminate over and over again. But if I think about the experience and ask myself 'what is the goal of this part of my psyche.. what does it want?' sometimes I can provide for that in the present and break the cycle.

So in the case of accidentally hurting someone I re-assure myself that Ill be careful of this in the future and the rumination stops. This doesnt address the underlying hurt thats being triggered, it just satisfies the protective mechanism that Im assuming is the cause of the memories.

I did some internal family systems therapy awhile back, and it really opened my eyes and made me re-conceptualize these defenses and triggers. Now I think of them as discrete parts of the self with protective functions that have split off because the conscious Self wasnt ready to protect itself when they formed. I think that different people respond best to different therapy styles, so this may or may not be helpful to you.

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I find myself doing this, and I think most people at one point in thier life. Like putting them selves down or insulting them selves. I tell myself I am too stupid or too ugly . I think I do emotinal hurt myself in the sense I have bad releaship. I guess another way of looking at this is under eat which is what I do.

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Wow...I got called out on this by one of my best friends AND my therapist a couple weeks ago.

My friend called me an "emotional cutter" because I live in my bad memories, in my heartache and in my pain...refusing to allow myself to get past it.

I told my therapist about it and he had this "no shit?! You're just getting this" reaction to it.

I am a physical self injurer (haven't done so in quite a while though) but it was a real eye opener to be described as an emotional cutter...and now to see this thread about it is quite impactful.

Thanks for starting this thread.:)

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We have an introject of the abuser. He's also Rosie's emotional boyfriend (because we have a real-life significant other) - Rosie being the one who is out most of the time.

It's rather the same concept. She needs to love him, even though he causes her pain.

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I'm glad this thread was revived, because I was thinking about posting this very same topic a few weeks ago. I've always known it isn't healthy to have my mind in a constant negative loop, but I hadn't put it together that it is SI that actually causes me so much more pain and lasting injury than the physical SI. I spend most of my time hating myself for pretty much everything I do, hating my physical body, hating the world around me, thinking of how fucked up everything is. It's all encompassing, swamps me, and doesn't let me come up for air often enough to take a look around and see what bullshit all of those thoughts are. Which makes them almost impossible to conquer, because they MAKE SENSE. Yes, if I weren't mentally ill, my life would probably be easier. Yes, if I spent more time planning, I could make better meals (w/work, four kids, being actively sick with MI). Yes, if I just took a long walk every day, I would lose weight. Oh, this all makes so much sense, can't argue. How about-- if I hadn't screamed so often at my children years ago, they would be happier now. It doesn't matter that I don't have a time machine to go change that, it's ALL MY FAULT. EVERYTHING is. And the thoughts never stop, I even dream about how horrible everything is. ETA: I should add that this looping negativity often leads to the physical SI-- sometimes to hurt myself more, sometimes for the relief-- and it usually gives me a brief respite from the thoughts-- I don't give myself grief for the physical SI, oddly.

Which is making me grateful that lithium seems to be helping this time around (plus all of the other pills). My brain is quieter, I can sit still and not *think* so much, I can just be. Of course, it comes at the expense of feeling like a zombie (for me), but I prefer a zombie state to how my brain usually is.

Speaking of which, I'm not sure my post is coherent. I really need to stop posting after I take my nightime pills.

Edited by dedoubt

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i have done this, i just thought i was crazy, or not what anyone else did, or if it had a name or something. i hate doing this, i agree when you say it's a self punishment thing

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I have a different viewpoint on this.

I'm *very* self-critical. I'm also critical of other people, but they get slack because I don't expect them to be perfect. Myself, I should be. This mainly comes from the notion that I should always be right and in control of myself. I berate myself for any perceived slip because I fear that others will judge me for it and deem me worthless and incorrect. I feel like I have to prepare for any attack at my thoughts and actions and have all my bases covered to avoid situations where I'm wrong, and therefore worthless and have my thoughts/opinions be brushed aside and no longer matter. This is due to a fear of not living up to expectations and the backlash that always came from me being at all imperfect when growing up.

But, that's completely fear based and I definitely don't derive any pleasure from it. It's a constant that is there whether I'm feeling happy or sad. And it's only brought out in situations where I feel somehow threatened/inadequate intellectually or emotionally. I mainly do it to avoid making mistakes - mulling over all the wrongs in an attempt to not repeat them.

Where I do make myself feel bad on purpose is, well.. more of a wallowing/defeated thing. Not so much that I keep myself down when I am, so much as feeling like happiness is a barrier between feeling ok and blocking out the negative that is constantly present. A barrier that must fall, needs to fall, here and there. I've found that allowing and even pushing the negative feelings to the surface serves to attend to them in a way that's easier for me to handle. Kind of like how sometimes you just need to cry to feel better. I can force them down by feeling/faking happy and/or becoming numb to my feelings. But the longer I push them away, the worse they feel when they inevitably push through. It's like taking a breather in a fight. In this way, feeling bad makes me feel good. And I like that feeling. You could say that I'm somewhat addicted to it. In the end, I'm glad and like the process in a way. Perhaps moreso than I should. But I think, ultimately, I like the result of relief that comes after. I don't know if that's more or less healthy, but it's what I do.

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I'm glad this thread was revived, because I was thinking about posting this very same topic a few weeks ago. I've always known it isn't healthy to have my mind in a constant negative loop, but I hadn't put it together that it is SI that actually causes me so much more pain and lasting injury than the physical SI. I spend most of my time hating myself for pretty much everything I do, hating my physical body, hating the world around me, thinking of how fucked up everything is. It's all encompassing, swamps me, and doesn't let me come up for air often enough to take a look around and see what bullshit all of those thoughts are. Which makes them almost impossible to conquer, because they MAKE SENSE. Yes, if I weren't mentally ill, my life would probably be easier. Yes, if I spent more time planning, I could make better meals (w/work, four kids, being actively sick with MI). Yes, if I just took a long walk every day, I would lose weight. Oh, this all makes so much sense, can't argue. How about-- if I hadn't screamed so often at my children years ago, they would be happier now. It doesn't matter that I don't have a time machine to go change that, it's ALL MY FAULT. EVERYTHING is. And the thoughts never stop, I even dream about how horrible everything is. ETA: I should add that this looping negativity often leads to the physical SI-- sometimes to hurt myself more, sometimes for the relief-- and it usually gives me a brief respite from the thoughts-- I don't give myself grief for the physical SI, oddly.

Which is making me grateful that lithium seems to be helping this time around (plus all of the other pills). My brain is quieter, I can sit still and not *think* so much, I can just be. Of course, it comes at the expense of feeling like a zombie (for me), but I prefer a zombie state to how my brain usually is.

Speaking of which, I'm not sure my post is coherent. I really need to stop posting after I take my nightime pills.

I really relate to this. I beat myself up for not finishing school earlier, for feeling like a let down to my parents, for not fulfilling the measure of my potential, for not recording my album, for being bipolar because after all my parents' son should not have any sort of problem, deficiency, failure etc.

During my last "episode" I spent about 8 hours writing some crazed manifesto where I confessed to every fault and sin I could think of...I felt so awful...like such a total failure. When the sun came up I called my parents in a crashed state and they came running and I just apologized over and over and over again for being such a fuck up and despite their attempts to assure me that they were in fact proud of everything I've done and accomplished, I couldn't accept it.

While I have a history of actual physical self abuse using several different methods, I think the most harmful has certainly been the emotional cutting I do to my heart and soul. I don't let myself off the hook for anything. I don't know how. I don't give myself any room and live in a constant state of regret, desire to change the past and heartache. I obsess over my first true love not loving me as much as I loved her. It's awful and I strive each day to think about my present...the future will come...but if I can just live in the present instead of my past and not place so much judegment on myself, maybe I can break this awful cycle.

I don't know though...it's so hard.

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I have a different viewpoint on this.

I'm *very* self-critical. I'm also critical of other people, but they get slack because I don't expect them to be perfect. Myself, I should be. This mainly comes from the notion that I should always be right and in control of myself. I berate myself for any perceived slip because I fear that others will judge me for it and deem me worthless and incorrect. I feel like I have to prepare for any attack at my thoughts and actions and have all my bases covered to avoid situations where I'm wrong, and therefore worthless and have my thoughts/opinions be brushed aside and no longer matter. This is due to a fear of not living up to expectations and the backlash that always came from me being at all imperfect when growing up.

But, that's completely fear based and I definitely don't derive any pleasure from it. It's a constant that is there whether I'm feeling happy or sad. And it's only brought out in situations where I feel somehow threatened/inadequate intellectually or emotionally. I mainly do it to avoid making mistakes - mulling over all the wrongs in an attempt to not repeat them.

I do this too. I can completely relate to these two paragraphs.

Worst thing is, I've only just realised I do it.

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I've caught myself bombarding me with material, media, thoughts and memories that just make me feel worse and worse. Things that depress, freak me out or hurt me. This goes back far longer than my physical SI, actually.

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