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Any older adult cutters out there?


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I cut once a day a teenager and started again 2 weeks ago, cut nearly every day, it is like everything finally came to a head as it usually does this time of year, I battled anxiety and depression as long as I remember,I'm at my wits end. I'm afraid my husband is going to find out he thinks a friend's cat got me. I think about cutting constantly (almost can't wait for my husband to go back out of town to work so I can do it again)

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I'm sorry to hear you're struggling right now.

 

Holidays seem to have that effect on a lot of us.

 

I was having a lot of self harm thoughts as recently as a week ago. Fortunately I was able to not act on them, as it's been more than 5 years since my last intentional self harm and 5 years plus about 7 months since my last skin-breaking self harm.

 

I have to say that the idea of husband encountering new self harm scars is a definite deterrent for me.

 

I hope you can find things that work for you.

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I agree with Wooster that this time of the year is triggering for a lot of us, and I'm very sorry to hear you're battling with this right now. I self harmed well into my thirties, so understand where you're coming from.

 

We have a few pinned threads at the top of the SI forum that you might find helpful, but apart from that, are you seeing a therapist who might help you deal with these urges?

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I know that it feels really isolating to be an older person and still self harming. There are a couple of others who have posted here.

 

I just turned 40 this year and also work in a "helping profession" which makes me think I need to get my shit together so I can actually be helping people instead of ruminating on self harm.

 

It sucks sometimes.

 

I really struggle with having a "professional identity" at the same time as being someone who needs support. I have a not-so-useful thought that "I should have it together" or "I should be better at this" or "I shouldn't be having these thoughts now that I'm older" etc."

 

Being able to catch myself and systematically working on eliminating "should" from my self talk has been immensely helpful. Most of the time now I can get pretty easily to a place of "Oh. There's that thought again. It's just like any other thought. I don't have to invest in it." It's taken a lot of practice, though.

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i'm 32  and I've been self harming off and on since like 15

 

 

I broke a streak of not harming for nearly a year recently

 

I felt it was my only option outside of suicide so I do not feel guilty

 

 

but then I feel guilty for not feeling guilty about it  - which leads to more cutting

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I'm 29, so I'm a bit younger than you, but I qualify as an adult at least. It is pretty hard to find other adults to talk to about self harm, or maybe I'm hanging out in the wrong circles, but thank you for starting this discussion. I feel a lot of shame in regards to my cutting, because there's a sense of it being something you 'get over' and there's a lot to be said for finding other people who share this experience. You're not alone, and I'm sorry things are hard for you right now.
One thing I'm trying is to minimise my use of the word 'should'. Wooster mentioned this, and honestly, it's fantastic advice. Give yourself a break, you've got a lot to deal with. You're doing well because you're still here and you're talking about it. I hope things get better for you.

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I cut pretty frequently as a teenager and when I was caught, immediately stopped. Unfortunately my Tdoc at the time was useless and I only stopped because I was taught to be horribly ashamed of it. I'm 32 now and just started again 3 or 4 months ago. Sadly as a single adult it's much easier to not get caught now. I thought that I had held out for 16 years without SH but in looking back now and reading other people's posts, I just found plenty of other ways to SH without a blade. SH is on my mind constantly now and though I had an apt with my Pdoc on Tuesday, I didn't bring it up so clearly that shame is still very much intact. :(

I too like Wooster's advice about "should" and will try to implement that idea.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I feel odd as I didn't even start to self harm until I was an adult. I only started in full about 5 years ago. I was depressed as a teen but I didn't start to have all-consuming depression and anxiety until I was in college and then even worse afterwards.

 

I've brought it up with pdoc and the tdocs I've had, none of them seem to really care so long as I am not about to kill myself.

 

I'm sorry you are suffering so bad with this, I hope you can find the help you need.

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While my husband is very understanding (as much as a person really can be) I do my best to keep relapses from him. I don't like to involve anyone else in my pain, it's a lot to handle. I would definitely talk to your husband about it. If it's something difficult you are going through, that's one thing he's here for is support and love. If I'm having a bad night I'll mention it and then we'll do something together until my urges pass. It helps having him around because I won't do anything then, and also cuddles. If I do mess up I might mention it days later and we figure out how we might prevent that series of events should they happen again. 

 

I understand the shame and not wanting to be found out, but it's better to talk about it then have him find out and be afraid. People tend to assume SH is a suicide attempt and that is scary for them. *hugs* Once you explain things you might be surprised how supportive he is of your recovery rather than upset over the past <3

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19 and yep still doing it....

 

I do it though for a different reason though....let's say pleasure...that sounds more appropriate  ^_^

 

I wish I could stop though :( It's very hard

 

I don't really feel guilty about it, just disappointed, it doesn't fit with my personality...there is always a conflict between the urge and the real me.

Edited by StJimmy9151
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I'm 27, and I sometimes do cut. It does not happen very often unless I'm in a really bad spot. For example, I spent last week-end feeling out of it and stayed in my room, on my bed and doing nothing, just trying to let it all go by without cutting. However, I did at some point. Right now, I'm trying to find a job, and you can imagine how problematic that is when you got marks on your arms.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi Lith,

 

Welcome to Crazy Boards! We have members from lots of different situations here. We know that cutting is not a teen thing but a more widespread occurrence. I'm an adult struggling with self harm myself.

 

You've definitely come to the right place if you're looking for a place where you can express yourself without being judged or stigmatized. As a mod will probably tell you : this is a pro-recovery website, make sure to take a look at the guidelines.

 

Hope you enjoy the boards!

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Hi everyone. I'm knew to the board and it is almost like a weight was lifted off of my shoulders today to finally find a place like this. I just turned 31 this month and I've dealt with self harm since I was about 15. I went over a year without cutting but within the last week I've relapsed. I felt so horrible knowing I'm in my 30s and still fighting this monster and I've needed desperately to know I wasn't alone. So, to all those who created and maintain this place for everyone like me, thank you!

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  • 1 month later...

I'm SO glad I saw this board... I'm almost into my 4th decade, and in the last 4 yrs relapsed after 20+ years. I mistakenly thought I'd "cured" myself. What a joke... The sense of shame being an older adult and still doing this has been a great weight. And like others, I'm in a healthcare field, so I totally "should know better." I'm not a cutter, but I do self harm. I try to use all the tricks I know, all the cognitive behavior therapy things I've learned, to try to avoid it... I've done it twice this month- so far. I hope to hang on tighter and keep it that way. I've come to realize there is no age limit on this, just as there isn't one on any other MI or addiction. 

 

Anyway, I'm very grateful to have a place like this where I can share my thoughts, my successes and my failures... 

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