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I dont know what i'm going to do this summer.

I started cutting in a different way this year - I got into razors instead of stanley blades, and I started cutting really deep. I used to cut thighs and just surface. Last winter was probably my worst cutting in the past, after a drug relapse I cut close to 150 cuts on my forearms, but they were basically scratches - it was january and by the summer it was totally healed. I cut in high school and it was the same deal, just little scratches and cuts and whatnot. This year its totally changed. I started cutting in november - deep cuts on my upper legs with stanley blades first, then long shallow cuts on my calves. Then slashes on my calves.

Then the day after boxing day I got really depressed after getting drunk at family xmas (i'm supposed to be sober by family decree) and having a fight with my aunt - and cut the SHIT out of my forearm in what I guess was a para-suicidal attempt. It was pretty serious at the time, I was legitimately trying to kill myself but it wasn't a very sharp knife and there was no way in hell I was going to be able to do it. I cut my forearm about 5 times, each cut being about 2" long going up my arm. I lost about a half litre of blood on the bed in my childhood room at my parents house and called an ambulance to their rural house. It was incredibly embarrasing and I got bitched out by the doctor, had to be picked up at the hospital by my dad and driven to the city I live in and checked into the psych ward. The cuts weren't that deep and healed up fairly well. The doctor told me not to do it again. My family was pretty pissed off. After that something got unglued in my head and I was back into pretty bad habits and now I had cuts in pretty obvious places.

I've got a compulsive issue with my forearms - I absolutely cannot STAND to have sleeves on my arms. Having anything on my arms drives me TOTALLY NUTS. Last winter when I crosshatched my arms with scratches it was a nightmare covering it with long sleeves.

So anyways, I got into a relationship with a girl I met in the psych ward - a party girl with strong histrionic tendencies who ended up being a REALLY bad mix with my borderline / narcisstic tendencies. I was cutting myself on my calves almost nightly by this point and systematically rubbing alcohol sideways into the cuts to get a massive rush again and again. I have blood stains all over my carpets in both of the rooms of my apartment that i'll likely never get out. I was getting paler and paler and ended up with pneumonia and strep throat. I was drinking all the time as well.

Things got really weird at one point with the girl, she knew I was a cutter and got really curious about it and one night we ended up drunk and high together and she wanted to cut. We ended up cutting a fresh razor blade in half and she let me cut her with a cross hatch pattern. It was probably the stupidest thing i've done with another person. I still can't believe I did it. She bled all over my carpet. It was the most incredibly intense night I can remember.

The relationship (or whatever it was, she claimed later to just be using me, except I remember it as me using her, or whatever. With uncontrolled personality disorders in relationships its just layers of use and abuse i think) was out of control, and when it really hit the skids I tried to kill myself again, except this time it was pretty nuts. I used a clipped razor and really dug into it. I dumped a box of sea salt into a bucket of water and had that on the floor and had my sliced up arm and leg and after I had really sawed into my arm and leg had it stuck in there so it would really bleed out. I finally hit an artery and got a wicked spray of blood and then the seriousness of it all occured to me. I was talking to someone online (absolutely everything was covered in blood) and the person I was talking to told me to smarten the hell up. I drank a bunch of booze, wrapped my arm up, called a cab and went to the hospital. I ended up having over 40 stitches and was in the psych ward for several days.

I got to the hospital and was totally giddy. I just didn't know how to cope ... the range of emotions I had gone through leading up to that had totally overwhelmed me. I still haven't gone back to normal since then, i'm still detached and flat. After several hours of bleeding and going in and out of a daze I finally got to the stitching point. I lied about how much blood I had lost and tried to act like I wasn't suicidal and it was all a big laugh. I had an intern (who was a pretty young girl) stitching me up. She was obviously really distressed and looked like she was going to throw up. She was pale and shaky and did a terrible job stiching me. The whole time I was laughing and joking around and telling stories because ... well ... I was drunk from the booze I drank before I went to the hospital ... and I had absolutely no idea how to cope with the whole situation. I'll never forget that intern's shaking hands. She was indian and the doctor overseeing her work was Sikh and when he came back into the room he was looking incredibly serious. I was totally delirious. I remember flipping out because of how bad a job she did stiching me up.

The brutal thing is that now i've got a forearm that is brutally scarred, you can't really tell from that picture ... but there are 9 slices each about 2-3 inches long over my entire left forearm. One is white and bumpy and the rest are dark reddish purple. Even with long sleeves on its hard to hide them. With a watch on its mostly hidden but especially the really deep one that hit an artery its obvious when I twist or bend my arm.

I'll be talking or gesturing and all of a sudden people will see it and totally change expression or gasp. I'm so acutely aware of it.

I've also got probably 100 slashes on my leg, which is going to be a major issue in summer. My entire calf is just covered in cuts now.

I can't believe that things have descended to this point.

I'm marked.

But I think about the girl from the winter too, and its going to be hard on her - she's got a calf full of scars now too - she won't be able to wear a skirt or shorts for a long time. I'm a total nut and alot of people already know i've got issues. But she's pretty new to the mental health scene and I don't think she's a lifer. She's going to really regret doing that.

I've been doing well since - I've cut once in over a month. This is a major improvement.

But i've got all these scars now, in such visible places - and they aren't fading despite vitamin E, UV light and loofah ...

I guess these are the scars I will bear for life.

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i have the flu (and shouldn't be sitting here) so excuse me if this response rambles.

the sleeve issue sucks. i've been there, been forced to wear long sleeves inpatient, and still have the scars. for a while they were really red, raised and rubbery. a dermo told me that my scars had kelated and rx'd cordran tape. it softened them, made them white and flat. they are still visible if you look for them, but i feel comfortable going wearing short sleeves when before i really did not.

there are also band-aid scar strips, i can't speak of their efficacy because i'm allergic to latex, but my dermo said they work. maybe try the OTC treatment and if it doesn't help ask your doctor for an rx for cordran? scars never really go away, but they will get flatter and white.

oh, and i've heard vitamin e doesn't work.

congratulations on only cutting once in a month. it's hard to stop, but you can. but don't punish yourself if you do. it's hard enough that we feel we need to cut. we deserve congratulations for not cutting, but i don't think we deserve to be punished for cutting. i do think that stopping should be a goal. i also believe that there are coping mechanisms out there that work, and that we all just have to find the right one. (i'm up for talking about coping mechanisms if you want, but i don't want to berate you.) i hope that you are proud of yourself for only cutting once in a month.

my best to you,

penny

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Good progress to make it a month and only cut once. Kudos.

Right now, I have made it almost a week without cutting. Its tough. I think I am addicted to it. I mainly cut on a small scale--the most damage I have ever done was 30 some stiches on my arm. Other than that I just put them together with butterfly bandages. Mainly I just cut enough to make myself bleed--I like to watch the blood. And then, I constantly pick at them as they heal.

You do seem to cut a lot. That is pretty amazing. Hang in there.

I hope the addition of lamictal will help me stop cutting.

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i'll try and be helpful but will for warn you my head is a mess now so i cant say for sure my reply will make much snese, or really focus on what is important.

i have BAD scars on my legs, and i live in a place in australia where it is ALWAYS hot , we never have a winter, and if you dont go to the beach or swim you are an outkast.

my doc has said the only option for me to get rid of my scares now is plastic surgery. appartently i can get some refferel and cheaper rates. but once again i am in oz and not sure what kind of scheme they have for plastic surgery in where u are. and i know my doc feels sorry for me which is why he is going to so much effort to help me get rid of the scars. i dont know why cause i keep making new scares every week but oh well......

dont worry about that chick, as harsh as it sounds, she made her bed now she got to deal with it. if you feel terrribly guilty about her, and you have a way to contact her maybe write her a letter to make peace. but at the moment in my opinion you need to really focus on getting yourself better. what happened in the past is been and done, u cant go back, just learn from it and realise that its hard enough for you to live with the scares you have so dont go helping others make there own. concentrate on you and what u got to do to stay on top of this.

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I'm pretty disappointed in myself right now for falling back on some of my other destructive, masochistic coping mechanisms when my world fell apart. I may not have cut this weekend but I did get into other stuff - substance use and spending ... its discouraging but i'm going to try and get back on my feet as fast as I can.

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I'm pretty disappointed in myself right now for falling back on some of my other destructive, masochistic coping mechanisms when my world fell apart. I may not have cut this weekend but I did get into other stuff - substance use and spending ... its discouraging but i'm going to try and get back on my feet as fast as I can.

I can understand how that would be discouraging, we all ideally want to turn to healthy coping mechanisms when things go to pot, and I'm not going to glorify what you did. But at least you're seeing the pattern for what it is. You're not ignoring it. You're not pretending it will get better on it's own. You're owning something that is very hard to own. And I think you deserve a lot of credit for that.

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I went out in a tshirt and shorts today.

It was pretty cold.

I think it was a pretty big move because everyone could see all my scars.

Is this owning my scars as part of my body? Or being really stupid?

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