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Self Harming for the First Time

Discussion in 'General Support and Advice' started by CactiCat, Jan 30, 2019.

  1. CactiCat

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    So I self harmed today. I didn’t cut, but I did the same motion but with a comb. It’s still swollen puffy and painful, which I’m actually fine with. The thing was that I was upset over what should be nothing. I forgot to do my chores before my mom got home, so now I get my phone taken away. Stupid, right? I’ve been pushing away the urge for a while now but today I just snapped and did it. Now I’m really scared that I’ll do I it again because it really calmed me down and returned me to my everlasting state of emotionlessness. My mental state has just been spiraling down recently and I don’t know how to stop it. I haven’t felt true emotion in at least a year and a half, and now I’m starting to get sad a little bit. It’s getting worse and worse faster and faster and I just don’t know what to do anymore. At least I’m not suicidal. Ive seen others go through depression and it seems so scary. I want to talk to my friends about it but I feel like they wouldn’t care and wouldn’t take me seriously. I just really need some advice.
     
  2. Chip

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    It's really good that you're talking about it, and even better that you used a comb rather than something worse.

    That said... you're absolutely correct; the problem with self-harm is that it is highly addictive, and (as you realize) doesn't actually solve the problem. So you need some help.

    Have you talked to your parents about this? If you can't talk to them, is there a trusted guidance counselor or social worker or psychologist at your school that you could speak with? That's your best bet next to talking to your parents.

    And in the meantime, one of the things you can use if you get the urge to cut is a rubber band around your wrist, or a piece of ice. Both of those can take the urge away and are often effective. Additionally, when you feel the urge, you can stop for a moment, take three or four deep, long breaths, and remind yourself that you deserve better than to harm yourself.

    The feelings you're having can happen for a variety of reasons, but the situation can be addressed if you get the right people involved to help. And for now, use EC to talk about what's going on for you that's contributing to the depression and other feelings. That will help a lot.
     
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  3. CactiCat

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    I definitely cannot talk to my parents, but I do see a therapist. I still feel like it would be insanely hard to talk to her about it. I feel like one reason it’s gotten so bad in the last month is because I had the only thing I really enjoy, martial arts, taken away abruptly. Martial arts was my way of coping with stress and now I don’t really have anything. I do think I’ll try the rubber band, but I’m afraid my mom will know what it’s for because she was severely depressed from 12-19.
     
  4. Chip

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    I would encourage you to open up to your therapist. Make sure first that she can keep the confidence and not share with your parents; it's a bit of a gray area, but most therapists will err on the side of the client in a circumstance like this.

    Therapy only works if you are honest with the therapist. If you hold things back, s/he can't effectively help you because s/he won't know the full picture. Therapists don't judge clients, so you don't need to worry about that. I'd just broach the subject and take it from there.

    As far as your mom... even if she figures it out, that's an opening to discuss it with her, so I don't see a downside, unless there's something with your relationship with her that doesn't work.

    Keep talking about the issues here. That's a good way to at least be getting some support.
     
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  5. jacobsweat

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    i faced that recently, just a downward spiral, but one way i helped myself to deal, was to listen to a guy named nf, he does some pretty good rap, that is pretty easy to vibe to
     
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  6. CactiCat

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    How can I hide it? Makeup doesn’t seem to be doing anything.
     
  7. ZUmiWyverx

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    I've been in a very similar predicament before, I'm so sorry this is happening to you but know it's not your fault for feeling this way, and we all do what we feel we need to in the moment and sometimes we make quick calls out desperation that don't have the perfect outcome, life's complicated but you're going to be okay. I hope things improve for you, i know they can. And don't be scared, it'll heal very quickly by the sounds of it, nothing to worry about.
    Where is the wound? You can wear long sleeves or socks if it's on your arms or ankles. Or trousers if it's on your legs. A simple plaster may even blend it in with your skin, if it's seen you could tell them it was merely an accident. Please take care, and be kind to yourself, you're deserving of compassion in your hard times too.
     
    #7 ZUmiWyverx, Jan 31, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2019
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  8. LaneyM

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    @CactiCat, how are you doing? I can relate what you are going through as I have battled self-harm, I understand the reasoning and the urges. If you can talk to your therapist, I'm sure they would be understanding and want to help (it's what they're there for). Also, there's an app called Calm Harm that's free and I've found it to be very helpful. It provides distractions and helps you track your mood so you can see patterns of when the urges are the worst. Other things you can do are listen to music, find a physical outlet (I agree martial arts was a good one. Perhaps you have other options available to you, even just running?), message a friend, make another post on here. Stay strong ok? We care about you.
     
  9. Mark543

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    It was two years ago since I put my nails to my skin I was in the shower stressing over an exam I had the morning after I just scratched and scratched until my my looked like a vulture dug it claws all the down... I'm sorry you have to go through this hell I still do it sometimes it really is the stupidest things that can set you off... if you want to talk about anything hmu :slight_smile:
     
  10. Mikey D

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    There have been times in which I got really angry with myself, or life in general. I took out my frustrations by punching inner thigh near my knee repeatedly. I knew that by doing that, it would cause that area to bruise, but would not cause any serious harm.
     
    #10 Mikey D, Feb 18, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2019
  11. beenthrdonetht

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    I'm serious here, but might acupuncture have similar effects, but probably safer? It could be that acupuncture works through a similar mechanism to cutting. (Seeing as the reason acupuncture "works" -- people feel better -- is not well understood.)
     
  12. LaneyM

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    @beenthrdonetht that was such an interesting thought I had to look it up. I don't know if I'm allowed to post outside links but apparently there was a pilot study done in 2011 that did show a decrease in self-harm behaviors using acupuncture. Holistic medicine can be very helpful. I know my mood improves, even a tiny bit, if I do little things like use essential oils or incense, meditate or have a cup of herbal tea. It's definitely not a cure but it makes my environment a little friendlier so it's harder to act on things.
     
  13. beenthrdonetht

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    Hi @LaneyM, thanks for the additional info. @CactiCat I hope you are doing OK, and can find a replacement for martial arts, which seems like a very good idea. If you can stand the monotony (listen to an audiobook or something...) any of those elliptical/bike/treadmill machines can get one into that steady rhythmic motion that always seems soothing. I'm so sorry you are in such a situation where it seems you can't go forward, back, sideways, or any way at all. And no phone! :frowning2: I think @Chip's suggestions are good about the ice and rubber bands. And I totally agree you were smart to just use a comb. It's weird how that works, but I can confirm (i wish I coudn't) that it does.

    Please let us know how you are doing, even if it is just to vent about how nothing changes. (But really it always does.)
     
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  14. CactiCat

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    Interesting. I might try it. I recently started medicine for ADHD and it made me happy for the first time in a long time. Sadly, I am developing a tolerance and am becoming more of how I used to be. Better, but getting worse again. At least this medicine has given me new hope if nothing else. Thanks to everyone who responded. I’ll post updates occasionally.
     
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  15. LaneyM

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    It may be a matter of finding the right dosage or medication type. It's not a fun process finding the right medication, but be patient with the process. I'm glad there was some change and improvement at least initially though! Take care.
     
  16. Kevin k

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    The first time I did self harm was with a cigarette butt. I felt I was punishing myself for not being able to stand up to a bully. I thought if I hurt myself worse, his words won't hurt as bad. I still occasionally burn myself if I'm feeling really depressed for whatever reason, but I think it's alot healthier to talk about it with others who care, rather than cause harm to yourself. It really doesn't help anything.
     
  17. CactiCat

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    Update: I’ve started track and things are better. Just doing something and exercising has made me feel a lot better.
     
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  18. CactiCat

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    Update: so I did it again. I used my pinky nail, which I had made into a small dagger and was very sharp, to cut my ankle. I didn’t think it worked but here I am, the next day, with cuts on my ankle. I don’t understand why I did it. I wasn’t upset. Nothing was wrong. I just sorta got the urge to and I gave in. It didn’t even do anything except make my ankle hurt. I have noticed myself slipping back into my old mindset as my body becomes tolerant to my ADHD medication. And I stopped track so I have nothing to do. It just sucks.