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goldskittle

Any other adult cutters out there?

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Firebird,

I can hear your sadness and loss but I would like to say that I see tremendous worth in you as well as seeing how much sorrow you feel.

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Firebird, I am so sorry that you are in such a situation. 

 

But, like Titania said, I see worth in you. I can appreciate how difficult it would be to feel self-worth in your situation though. 

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I am 19 nearly 20 and only started last year at 18 (which is considered an adult where I live). When I was in high school I think my brain was protecting itself from all the bullying by focusing on school work and nothing else. It was only when I moved to uni and away from home as well as the bullying that my emotional immaturity (I also have Aspergers) and trauma emerged leaving me unable to cope. This resulted in Depression and social anxiety which I tried to cope with by alcohol and self harm. I've recently relapsed again with my self harm after nearly 6 months clean and am currently trying to stop again.

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Girl, you can do it. Are you seeing a therapist or counselor? I was self-harm free for 14 months and had a relapse during a bad episode back in the summer, but now I'm back up to 3 months clean. After the relapse, I didn't think I could ever stop again. But I did. I got a lot of support here on CB and my therapist was great during that time period. What I'm trying to say is, it's hard to go it alone. I hope you have a professional you can talk it all out with.

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I'm really glad to hear you are doing well, hagar!

 

Props to you!

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I too struggle with SI and cutting. Haven't been doing so well at not SI-ing lately.

 

I didn't start it till I was an adult either. I am frustrated that I don't have better coping mechanisms.

 

I have also toyed with the idea of smoking cigarettes as a "substitute" for cutting.

 

Hopefully things will get better for all of us and we'll all find the help and support we need and deserve.

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I started when I was around 8.  I'm 39 now.  Grew up in a very bad neighborhood and my family was involved with, what can best be described as, a fundamentalist cult.  I beat myself because I was a "sinner".  Bad stuff happened in my neighborhood and people were raped/murdered and I blamed myself for not praying hard enough or "converting" enough people.  So my SI got worse.  My father was verbally and physically abusive.  My mother and sister were verbally abusive too...  Pretty sure I did some brain damage because I would beat myself with boards until I felt sick.  Suffered over a half-dozen concussions, all self-inflicted.

 

I felt worthless.  I was tortured at school.  Brutal, physical abuses that happened daily.  I hid the bruises.  I started drinking at around 17.  Just stopped 2 years ago.  

 

I have broken my fingers too.  Got to the point where I would fell so bad that pain was my only way of numbing it.  Just snapped them.  Never sought out treatment either.  Too embarrassed.  Just tape and popsicle sticks.  

 

Something happened when I was in my late 20s that broke me.  I started burning/branding myself.  I liked that the burns didn't heal quickly.  I waited way too long to get help.  I've been unable to change my circumstances, so my triggers are still there.  I try, but fail sometimes, to stop the SI.  

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I started cutting when I was 15 years old. My father has a drinking problem, and he would become very violent towards my little brother and I when intoxicated. I would cut by digging safety pins or thumbtacks into the skin on my inner wrists or under my arms by my bra. The cutting would temporarily silence the negative thoughts and emotions brought up by my father's verbal and physical abuse.

 

When I was 17, I told my mother and showed her my arms because I needed help and wanted to stop. My father found out and he reacted by screaming in my face: "You want me to send you to the loony-bin? Because people who do what you're doing end up there!" I was given no help of any kind, and stopped cutting only by snapping a rubber-band against my wrist whenever I felt the urge to hurt myself. 

 

I'm 23 now, and I have only had one relapse since I was 17. Until yesterday. My husband and I went to lunch, and he got pretty drunk. He's been really stressed at work, which led him to behave more aggressively than he ever has sober or drunk. He grabbed my arm while we were having an argument and leaned into me in an aggressive way. I can only say that the incident led me straight back to my childhood, to my father doing the same and worse to me. The whole drive home, I sank deeper into my memories, and practically ran into my office to cut my wrist. 

 

I know it's wrong, but it felt so peaceful. The world shrank to a tiny pinhole no wider than the point end of a safety pin. Everything was quiet. My stomach un-clenched and my tears stopped flowing. And then, just as quickly as the world faded away, it came back into focus with vicious clarity. I realized what I had done. I put on a sweater to hide my arm and, in the same moment, my husband opened the front door. After about an hour we had resolved our earlier disagreement and he apologized for his inappropriate behavior. I wasn't even going to tell him what I did, because I don't want to appear melodramatic, but as we sat on the couch eating dinner, I couldn't hold it in.

 

"I did something bad."

 

I did my best to convey that the afternoon was only a trigger, and that I am quite satisfied with our marriage and my life at present. I'm doing really well otherwise: stability on my medication, a weekly fitness routine, a nearly-completed degree in child development and education, and an affectionate new puppy recently housebroken. Things are going really well. Despite his guilt over his role in the afternoon's events, he accepted my reassurances and we moved on to happier topics.

 

However, I can't put it out of my mind. One little cut on my arm (already healing over), and suddenly I can feel the urge to SI return. All day, I have felt knots in my stomach like I'm holding in a scream. I'm going over and over the act of cutting in my head, and it's taking all of my resolve not to give in and cut again. I've opened the floodgates and now I'm content to drown.  

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This is a cool topic. I haven't seen this mentioned on other forums, so it's good to see it brought up...

 

I'm 29, and I cut, bite, and burn. I do it when I get angry, or when I'm overwhelmed with self-hatred.

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I have been hurting myself for as long as i remember. And I'm 23 now. And my son was taken from me and my husband is divorcing me because of it.

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I will be turning twenty-three soon, but for the last month and a half i have been feeling things i thought i left in middle school. I used to SI (Self-injure) in middle school. I didn't think my Anxiety was tied to my depression from when i was younger, but now i feel it creeping into every area of my life. 

 

Today i missed work, I've been getting sick every two weeks, so my absents wont raise any suspicion, but i don't know how long i can keep fighting off these urges. I feel like i don't deserve... a lot of things. Getting out of bed is harder than it has been in a decade. I would never commit suicide, that would be too selfish, but i want the pain to go away, even if just for a moment. 

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I will be turning twenty-three soon, but for the last month and a half i have been feeling things i thought i left in middle school. I used to SI (Self-injure) in middle school. I didn't think my Anxiety was tied to my depression from when i was younger, but now i feel it creeping into every area of my life. 

 

Today i missed work, I've been getting sick every two weeks, so my absents wont raise any suspicion, but i don't know how long i can keep fighting off these urges. I feel like i don't deserve... a lot of things. Getting out of bed is harder than it has been in a decade. I would never commit suicide, that would be too selfish, but i want the pain to go away, even if just for a moment. 

 

Welcome to CB, Annamarie. :) I'm glad you found us. 

 

Do you have a psychiatrist or therapist that can help you with these issues of depression, anxiety and self-harm urges? 

 

As well, we have a really great pinned topic at the top of the board called "Today I wanted to self harm, instead I..." and it's really inspirational and full of good ideas for alternatives to self-harm. 

 

You deserve kindness, love and respect. And, I understand how hard getting out of bed can be. It can be really freaking tough. But you're doing your best by going to work, that's a big deal! 

 

Anyway, I hope you keep posting and stick around!

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I'm a 54 y.o. guy.  I used to cut myself when I was a teenager but I haven't done it since I was 17.  I've been thinking about cutting myself in the last couple of days.

 

Advantages of cutting:  It will probably feel good for a moment.

 

Disadvantages of cutting:  My partner will probably catch me but more importantly in the longer run it doesn't solve any problems, just adds to the burden.

 

Once I told him I used to cut when I was a teenager and he completely freaked out.  Fortunately he was drunk at the time and I'm pretty certain he doesn't remember what I said.  Obviously he isn't going to be a source of support.

 

I'm going through a difficult time right now but I've been through plenty of difficult times as an adult and it never occurred to me to cut before now.  I have a guess as to why it's happening this time but I'm not certain.

 

Please don't tell me not to cut.  I'm either going to do it or I'm not even though I know no good will come of it.  I don't even know why I'm posting this.  Maybe just to be heard?

T. L.

 

Edited by T. L. Horse

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Hi TL.

 

Welcome. I hope you find some support here that's helpful.

 

I'm sorry that hurting yourself seems like the most effective way to manage things right now. That's a hard place to be, especially if your partner isn't in a place that they are able to be supportive.

 

Where else can you get support if your partner isn't available?

 

While people here won't tell you not to cut (we know... we've been there... it's annoying...), we are a pro-recovery site, so we will encourage you to find alternatives to distract or regulate yourself without resorting to self harm. But we also know that people self harm because, at least for a while, it is the most effective coping method they know.

 

It doesn't make sense to tell you "dont' cut" unless you have other skills you can put in place. Otherwise it's like telling an addict "just don't use" or someone with depression to "just get up and be happy."

 

There are lots of reasons that you got to the place that self harm is effective.

 

And I hope you continue to seek other ways to manage your distress without self harm.

 

You deserve to be treated with kindness and respect instead of pain.

 

PS-If you haven't already, please take a look at the forum guidelines specific to the self harm forum. We discourage posting about specific methods or tools of self harm because, as previously mentioned, we are pro-recovery focused. Please edit your post to remove the specific tool. Thanks.

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I'm sorry that hurting yourself seems like the most effective way to manage things right now.

I appreciate that.  It's a strange and terrible urge, isn't it? I managed to get through last night without doing anything and the urge is pretty mild today so it won't be a problem tonight.  I have this fantasy that this is a one time event but realistically I feel like I need to be vigilant for the foreseeable future.

 

I'm going to throw out the thing I use to cut because I'm pretty certain it's the only thing I'll use.  I notice that I said "going to" not "have".  I'm not certain why I haven't gotten rid of it already but I have this feeling that I want to keep my options open.

 

Where else can you get support if your partner isn't available?

 

That's a good question.  One of the things that kept me from doing anything last night was the knowledge that there was no place on my body that I could cut where he wouldn't see it.  That's not a very good reason.

 

It would have been so much better to say "I want (a better word is probably 'need') to hurt myself" to him but there is so much shame and disgust around self harm that so many of us can't talk, hear or even think about it.

 

Why the shame and disgust surrounding self harm?  Do people think we want to do this?  People do things for a reason.  The reason all of us do this is because of pain, pain that pushes us toward a place we have been before and desperately don't want to return to.  The consolation we can take from self harm is that we are not alone, there are people who understand and support us, and there are much more terrible things we could do to ourselves.

 

T. L.

Edited by T. L. Horse

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WayPoint -- I am so sorry that you experienced those statements.  I say this from the heart since my own parents said the exact same things to me when I was growing up.  They were not drunks; nor did they engage in any negative behavior du jour, but uh, they were jerks.  Not very sympathetic towards my emotions and ready to call me out as anti-social and yell at me for their convenience and to make themselves look good.  Which is just like being drunk, except drunk on one's ego.  They were the ones who partially sent me cutting for a few years in my early 20s (the other aggravating circumstance was a job from which I was emotionally abused at and subsequently acrimoniously fired from). 

 

I am so happy your husband actually saw the light and was willing to support you.  I wish I could find a girl who would do the same -- who could tell me that my parents were idiots and love me for the peaceful guy that I am.  Most girls turn their face at me when they find out I at one point had a bad relationship with my parents.  Potential spouses/mates don't want bad in-laws, I guess.  Perhaps I myself am in need of a girl who was herself abused, so that we can have something in common, and that we will have a flowery future despite the fact our parents seem to not give a damn.

 

I can see why your husband would react negatively towards your cutting; it is a natural human response.  However, be aware that he is more concerned for you than he is spiteful.  MUCH more concerned, in fact.  Assure him that his continued love is crucial to this not happening any more. From the man's side, I will tell you that if you assured him that he is a major reason for which you live, he will be much less freaked out about this.  It is content to drown, as it is for me, but do not give in to that temptation, as you still have your husband.  If he remains by your side, he is Your Go-To Person and deserves the title.  Your parents are not worthy in the rational sense... of course you should respect them emotionally for it is the best they knew... but do not respect the opinions that they spewed at you in such a brute manner.

 

Okay, enough with the platitudes.  But ignore the bad since it was illogical, I beg you personally...

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It's nice to hear I'm not the only one. I've had a lot of trouble seeking help because I'm embarrassed to be 30 years old and still dealing with this problem that started in my teens. I've gone long periods of time with no trouble, but it's my go-to coping mechanism for when things get really intense.

 

It's really not a call for attention, I only cut in locations on my body where no one will see and I've never told anyone except for my husband (who is not particularly supportive, unfortunately. He usually laughs at me and says I'm acting like a melodramatic teenager). Sometimes I have luck drawing on my skin with ink instead, but sometimes I still relapse. I just had a bad fight with my husband and am fighting the urge like crazy right now. 

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Snk, I'm sorry your husband is not supportive. 

 

Have you taken a look at the pinned topics at the top of the board? They are full of great suggestions to avoid self harming. 

 

I hope you can get through this urge without self harming. However, if you don't, I hope you remember that it's not a reflection on your strength of will or who you are as a person. It's sometimes the only coping mechanism we have. 

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