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I've been thinking about posting about this for a while, so i guess it's just time to bite the bullet and post. As some of you know, I suffer with self-harm. It started more than a year ago and has been happening on-and-off since then. The longest I managed to stop was about 4/5 months. I have seen 2 different psychologists in the past - for OCD/self-harm. I found though, (and this is purely my opinion, I know that therapy helps for a lot of people) that I didn't like therapy. I'm sure that lots of people don't like therapy but stick with it and find that it reallly helps them, but for one reason or another I discontinued the therapy both times. What's happened recently is that my school phoned my dad to tell them about the SH (self-harm) because they're worried about me. I understand why they did it, yet really didn't want them to. I felt a bit suicidal after she told me that she'd phoned, I think it was because I was worried what would happen when I went home. Thankfully that passed though. They've phoned them once before (last Sept) but my parents thought that it had stopped (in March my mum asked me if I still SH-ed and I said no, because it was true then but i've since started again). Sometimes I feel like I'd really like to stop - because it seems to me to be a v strange thing to do, leaves scars, leads to lying to parents, but sometimes I don't want to or don't feel able to. Part of me would really like to tell my parents about it, yet something stops me. Sometimes they'll ask something as simple as "how are you?" or "you're not happy, what's up?" and for some stupid reason I can't tell them. If they ask how i am i'll say "fine" and when my mum asked me yesterday "you're not happy, what's up?" i said it was just exams making me stressed etc. She asked me a few times yesterday if something was wrong and then when I said there wasn't she made me promise, which like a stupid, weak fool I did.

I feel so bad for writing all this, I don't know why I'm telling all this to you, I don't know why I SH, I don't know if I want to stop. It scares me sometimes that I can do this to myself, that I find that it helps. I also get scared when I feel so bad that I think that it would be better if I weren't here, thankfully that doesn't happen often and it passes.

I can't bring myself to get referred to a psychologist/psychiatrist, but have today bought a book about SH (called "A bright red scream"). I don't think it's a self-help book, more about learning about it and trying to understand. Would you believe that there wasn't a single self-help book for it in Waterstone's?!?

Any thoughts/advice/encouragement would be appreciated. I'm not sure what I'm looking for or trying to gain from writing this.

Please don't hate me for writing this

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Hi Star,

Please don't hate me for writing this

The last thing anyone is going to do is hate you - all we want is for you to feel better about yourself so that you don't have the need to self-harm.

I think I would find it hard to talk over these things with my parents - I certainly would have felt awkward about it while I still lived at home, but I do think it's important you speak to someone.

I was lucky in that the psychologist I found (or rather who found me weeping on the street :thumbup: ) is a really fantastic person. I have been able to discuss everything with her and feel safe doing so. It hasn't always been an easy relationship - we had a few weeks where things were a bit rocky and we seemed to be constantly seeing things from a different perspective - but have resolved that now. I only see her now every 6 weeks and I really miss her support and strength but I know I don't need that level of support any more.

Sometimes I feel like I'd really like to stop - because it seems to me to be a v strange thing to do, leaves scars, leads to lying to parents, but sometimes I don't want to or don't feel able to.

I wish I knew more about SH - I feel I'd be able to help more if I knew more about it - but you know we're always here to listen any time.

Do you think it would help if you did something else when you feel like SH ing - trouble is I don't know what would fill that gap, but there might be something you can distract yourself with.

today bought a book about SH (called "A bright red scream"). I don't think it's a self-help book, more about learning about it and trying to understand.

I hope the book helps - I'm sure, as with OCD understanding more about it does/will help.

Take care and don't give yourself a hard time.

whitebeam

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Heya Northern Star,

I haven't 'spoken' to you on the board yet, so hope you don't mind me replying?

i know that this is completely different to what you're going through, but i used to self harm (midly though), but despite the fact it was just 'mild' i felt i needed to do it, so i understand why you do it, as i'm sure do many others.

you mentioned that you're not sure if you can or want to give up...well, i know this is completely different, but i recently gave up smoking-the fact is, before i made the decision to give up, i didn't 'want to,'- because i liked/needed it-or at least i thought i did...-the factors that did make me give up was that i didn't want to become like the people in the anti-smoking ads, or an old women constantly holding with a fag-i was one of those people that kept saying "i'll give up when i'm older"-well i started smoking at 13, so at that age 18 was 'older' and when i got to 18, end of uni was 'older'...see the pattern here?! - i don't want to give bad advice, but i would say that whether or not you feel you want to give up, maybe make a list of why you do/should give up self harming- the 'not wanting to give up' feeling is natural when a person is addicted to something-the brain uses it to convince us to carry on, because self harm is comforting (in that short period)

i'm so sorry for rambling on, and that i probably said nothing useful in all that! but although i haven't been using this board long, it is clear that people on this board who do 'know you' better care about you a lot, so don't feel bad or regret posting that ok.

take care,

H xxxx :)

p.s i couldn't even find a book on ocd in waterstones (except one tiny book which looked rubbish) so no, i'm not suprised you couldn't find self help books on SH!! :wontlisten: - but then again, the charity gets money from buying them from amazon... :thumbup: )

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Thanks for your messages you 2. :)

whitebeam -

I wish I knew more about SH - I feel I'd be able to help more if I knew more about it - but you know we're always here to listen any time.

Thanks for that :)

Do you think it would help if you did something else when you feel like SH ing - trouble is I don't know what would fill that gap, but there might be something you can distract yourself with.

I have some very long lists of alternatives (which I've got off the internet) and they sound really good. Trouble is though, when I really feel like harming then that's the only thing i can (or maybe that should be "want to" - i don't know) think of really. However, when I decide that i can and want to give up then I'm sure they will come in very useful.

Han - making a list like that sounds like a really good idea - I'll try and give it a go - thanks! :) And well done for giving up smoking! Very proud of you!

p.s i couldn't even find a book on ocd in waterstones (except one tiny book which looked rubbish) so no, i'm not suprised you couldn't find self help books on SH!!
While I was there i looked for books on OCD (basically just to see if they had any) and nope, there were none of those either :wontlisten: Although I did find a book on OCD in the library. :thumbup:

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Hi Northern Star

I'm afraid I don't know much about Self Harm, except that I know that several board members have practiced it from time to time, or regularly, so you're far from alone with it here.

I get the impression that Self Harm may be carried out as a response to guilt - as a kind of 'punishment'; also that the pain of Self Harm may divert one's thoughts from the obsession or depression (perhaps referring to past or future fears) to the 'here and now' of active pain. Am I right?

I feel so bad for writing all this, ......Please don't hate me for writing this

Why? Why should we?

I don't know why I'm telling all this to you, I don't know why I SH, I don't know if I want to stop.

That's a very honest appraisal of the situation. The point is that, from an outside perspective, Self Harm is obviously destructive, and something that should be tackled urgently. I can also see that it might be addictive, in the same way that drug taking is also very harmful and yet very addictive (excuse the analogy). Like Han suggested, perhaps a similar approach to drug addiction can be followed for Self Harm? There are loads and loads of resources for drug addiction recovery I would guess, so maybe something in that field might help you? Just a thought. Please say if you find this approach hurtful or presumptuous.

It scares me sometimes that I can do this to myself, that I find that it helps. I also get scared when I feel so bad that I think that it would be better if I weren't here, thankfully that doesn't happen often and it passes.

Again, an honest appraisal - I'm glad the latter feeling doesn't happen often. I'm sure you don't need me to tell you that the world is better with you in it than not in it.

I can't bring myself to get referred to a psychologist/psychiatrist,

Why not?

Thanks for raising this difficult and emotive issue so openly. I'm sure it will help others on the board with the same issues.

Take very good care of yourself.

Stephen

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Guest Hypnosinc

Hi Star,

It's a pig, aint it? You don't want to do it, but you don't want not to do it. I think Han's analogy is good. I gave up smoking last week after most of my life on cigarettes. It isn't easy, because it was a learned habit, and I really have nothing to put in it's place. And that, I would guess, is where you're at. You would stop, if there was anything as effective at relieving whatever deep psychological problem causes you to SH in the first place.

That is where therapy comes in. But lets get this out of the way as soon as poss. Therapy is not a punishment. It is not case of "do it or die". It can make recovery a heck of a lot easier, but for some people the treatment seems more harsh than the sickness. If it is too much to cope with at the moment, don't go beating yourself up over not doing it. You will do it, when you are ready.

I get people coming to me who want hypnotherapy to stop smoking, and I tell them to come back when they have already been stopped for two weeks. My theory is that when they have stopped, they have already made the commitment to stop. That is when they will benefit far more from the therapy, to help combat the withdrawal symptoms. Now, the same could be said for you. You have to move away from the notion that you can't do it, or the price is too high, or whatever. It may be that getting a suitable book will help, I don't know. Not everyone gets on with self-help either. But you probably won't get on with therapy, till you have taken the very bold step of going for broke, and telling yourself that you have SH'd for the last time.

Anyone who wants to break any kind of habit, even the habit of giving into intrusive thoughts, has to reach that point first. To be able draw a line in the sand and say "This is where it stops." It is not easy. You can do it on your own, but a good therapist can help you do it more quickly, and more effectively.

A good place for you to start is by feeling comfortable with talking about it. SH is not a crime. It is nothing to be ashamed of. It's not anything to be proud of, admittedly, but it is certainly nothing to be ashamed of. You can talk about it here, which is good, because you're pretty anonymous. When you're comfortable talking about it here, you're ready for the next step, which is talking about it openly with those who do know you, ie your family.

At that stage, be blunt, don't hold back. You can say something like,

"This is what I do. I don't like doing it, I'm not even sure why I do it, but I am determined to stop doing it, eventually. Until then I need your support. I'd like your understanding too, but I know that not many people can understand. Even I don't understand why I do it. But this is not going to be a taboo subject from now on. You may have some ideas about how I should tackle this, but I'm going to do it my way, and I would like your support and encouragement for the difficult decisions I take."

People find it almost impossible to argue against such authoritative honesty.

Whatever you do, my dear, be determined, and you will win through.

God Bless.

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Hi Stephen,

thanks for your post :clap:

I first want to apologise for it being a while since you posted that I'm replying. I had 6 hours of exams today :whistling: and was revising until late last night :clapping: , but I do really appreciate both yours and Sinclair's posts.

I get the impression that Self Harm may be carried out as a response to guilt - as a kind of 'punishment'; also that the pain of Self Harm may divert one's thoughts from the obsession or depression (perhaps referring to past or future fears) to the 'here and now' of active pain. Am I right?

I use it as a punishment sometimes, generally just because I dislike myself and feel sometimes that I deserve it. If I have an argument with my dad then I'll sometimes use it because I feel bad about myself (I want to stress that my parents are not abusive or anything and that I know they love me - having an argument with them might trigger me but so do other things and I don't want anyone to think otherwise). Also, if I feel bad in general, e.g. after someone close to me died, then I'll use it - it helps, I don't know why, and I know that it only helps in the very short term, but it does usually help me (please no-one think that I'm saying it's good - it's really not and I would hate for anyone to go down the same road as me - it's a very slippery slope and v difficult to get off once it gets ingrained - the longer it goes on for the harder it is to stop (that's just my theory anyway).

I feel so bad for writing all this, ......Please don't hate me for writing this

Why? Why should we?

Because I don't like me and find it hard to understand that others could.

I can also see that it might be addictive, in the same way that drug taking is also very harmful and yet very addictive (excuse the analogy). Like Han suggested, perhaps a similar approach to drug addiction can be followed for Self Harm? There are loads and loads of resources for drug addiction recovery I would guess, so maybe something in that field might help you?

This keeps cropping up - it's the same analogy Han used and my school nurse used the analogy of it being like I'm a smoker, so it seems that there must be some truth in it! I agree, it isaddictive and that's why if I stop for a day or so then it gets easier to carry on not doing it (if that makes sense) but once I start again then sometimes it's harder to stop. I think that Han's suggestion is a v good one, although at the moment all the list would probably say would be:-

1) because i've let people down by SH-ing

2) because so many people are being so wonderful to me and doing everything they can to help

3) because they would like me to stop

I know this is difficult of me but I would like that to say:-

4) because all the time I want to stop and atm i don't think I can honestly say that.

Please say if you find this approach hurtful or presumptuous.

Not at all, all suggestions are welcome!

I can't bring myself to get referred to a psychologist/psychiatrist,

Why not?

Because i can't bring myself to go down that road again - i can't really explain why. I want to stress that I didn't have a bad experience of therapy or anything, it's just me. I know this isn't being v helpful. This reluctance feels really silly to me because I know that if I had a broken leg I'd go to a doctor and get it fixed, and yet for some reason I won't for this.

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I gave up smoking last week after most of my life on cigarettes.

Blimey - what is it around here with people giving up cigarettes at the moment? 1st Han, then you! I'm v impressed!

And that, I would guess, is where you're at.  You would stop, if there was anything as effective at relieving whatever deep psychological problem causes you to SH in the first place.

Yes, I think so. If there was something else I could do which achieved the same effect but it also has to be something i can do to hurt myself, which i feel is punishment for myself. I think this is one of the reasons I "can't" give it up. I also can't find any particular reason that makes me SH though.

Therapy is not a punishment. It is not case of "do it or die".  It can make recovery a heck of a lot easier, but for some people the treatment seems more harsh than the sickness.  If it is too much to cope with at the moment, don't go beating yourself up over not doing it. You will do it, when you are ready.

I am so glad you said that. But i hope no-one would think any less of me if i said that i don't think i'll ever be able to. I just can't see myself going into therapy again.

I get people coming to me who want hypnotherapy to stop smoking, and I tell them to come back when they have already been stopped for two weeks. My theory is that when they have stopped, they have already made the commitment to stop. That is when they will benefit far more from the therapy, to help combat the withdrawal symptoms.

Again, I think that's very true.

Now, the same could be said for you.  You have to move away from the notion that you can't do it, or the price is too high, or whatever. It may be that getting a suitable book will help, I don't know. Not everyone gets on with self-help either.  But you probably won't get on with therapy, till you have taken the very bold step of going for broke, and telling yourself that you have SH'd for the last time.

Again, you're right. I know that until I tell myself that I've SH-ed for the last time and made that positive step and got all the right plans in place then I won't be properly free of it. I did recently tell myself that i'd never do it again but...well, i did. :whistling:

When you're comfortable talking about it here, you're ready for the next step, which is talking about it openly with those who do know you, ie your family.   

At that stage, be blunt, don't hold back.  You can say something like,

"This is what I do. I don't like doing it, I'm not even sure why I do it, but I am determined to stop doing it, eventually. Until then I need your support. I'd like your understanding too, but I know that not many people can understand. Even I don't understand why I do it. But this is not going to be a taboo subject from now on.  You may have some ideas about how I should tackle this, but I'm going to do it my way, and I would like your support and encouragement for the difficult decisions I take."

I don't really see myself ever talking openly to them about it. Sometimes I'd love to and I feel bad for not feeling able to. If i could tell them properly about it then I'm sure that they would support me and everything. My dad knows and i think my mum might but I can't make myself talk to them about it and I'm so glad that they haven't brought it up (that's thanks to my school - the teacher who spoke to my dad told him that I didn't want a fuss and didn't want to talk about it). What you say, though, sounds like a good thing to say to them.

I want to finish these 2 very long posts by saying that I hope I haven't made anyone uncomfortable by talking about this, and that I do appreciate the help and advice you are offering. I promise I'm not trying to be difficult.

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Hi NS

Thanks for your comprehensive reply, and I hope it was helpful talking this through. I haven't got time for a long response now, but hopefully others will have some input. You do sound like you have low self-esteem. I know how this feels, too. Why don't you look back on some of your helpful posts to the board over the months - that should give you a confidence boost!

All the best, and take care

Stephen

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Oh Northern Star, things do seem rough for you.

You probably can't talk to your Mum and Dad because you simply can't think what the heck you would say. This isn't really suprising because how do you explain things like Self harm to someone else when you don't understand it yourself.

I have to stress that I have no knowledge or experience of SH so I can't offer much help.

The whole "list" scenario can be very eye opening, not necessarily just identifying the reasons you should stop but also the reasons why you don't want to stop at the moment.

What about I feel I should be punished because........

I want to harm myself because.........

It could help throw some light on why you feel so self-worthless.

I know very little about SH but it seems that it is something that people feel gives them control of at least one thing.......the momentary sense of release that follows seems very similar to the compulsion side of OCD

Lots of Luck

Caramoole

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Guest Person

This is just my opinion.

For me, SH provided a sense of 'high'.

It can quite easily be replicated by running, watching a scary movie etc.

The doctor suggested clutching ice as it is painful but relatively less harmful.

All the best to you.

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Guest Crispie

Hey Northern Star--

I have also been one to SH. And like Person, it DID give me a high, a release from whatever I was NOT able to talk about, or figure out, that was going on inside of my little brain.

I have been told I am a fairly intelligent person, but when it came to figuring out feelings and what was going on--NOPE---Couldn't do it. And all of a sudden it started coming out in all different ways. I bit my lips, chewed my fingers, and hurt myself in ANY way I could think of.

Now, I am 41, married, with children, and all of a sudden I am SH!!! I still didn't know what was going on. I needed to talk to a therapist. She has helped me so much to be able to dig the feelings out, and see what has been going on.

But until she started to teach me how to do that, the SH got worse. IT BECAME AN ADDICTION. Every time I did it it became more and more of a release. Like a release valve letting off all of the pressure of just being me, and not knowing how to deal with it. The thought of doing it was SO EXCITING to me! The sight of it was even more. Now, I see the scars, and think--WHY? I know why. It is a gentle, yet subtle, reminder to me to take time to KNOW myself. I need to listen to my thinking and feeling every waking moment of every day to understand what is going on in my head.

I was queen of denial, my feelings had been so stuffed for years!!!! They were pushed down, hidden away, not to be brought out in the open. So, it did take some struggle to be able to pull those out, deal with them, and let them go. But once I got the hang of it, I am able to call those feelings on the carpet daily. I see what they are up to. I see how they are affecting my choice of words that day, or if I am feeling something physically--like a headache--is it stuffed feelings??? Do I NEED to talk to someone about something that's bothering me?

But it boiled down to I didn't know myself and how I REALLY felt about things. I needed to do that before I could stop the SH. I have been SH free since February. And yes, once in awhile, like any other addiction, it will creep into my mind...wouldn't it feel good to SH??? And right there it is a HUGE WARNING SIGNAL to me---What is going on that I am NOT dealing with?? Once I figure that out, that crazy SH feeling goes away. But, it is like an addiction, the more you do it, the more you want to do it. And until you search your heart and know what it is that makes you NEED to do this, you probably will not stop. I needed to know how I felt about things, and feel free to tell people. I didn't think my opinion was valuable before. I know it is. And as long as I keep in touch with my feelings, I am ok. I don't NEED to SH.

You CAN overcome. But you have to WANT to. Meds help a little, but talking about things helps a lot!! You are young, take the time to get to know yourself, and LIKE yourself. The more you like YOU, the less you will want to hurt YOU.

BEST WISHES!!!!!!! Pm me if you need to talk. Huge Hugs--Crispie(Chris)

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Guest Person

I'm not too sure whether this is the right thing to say, but I will say it. If any experts here disagree, please say so.

I think it is important not to become addicted.

Even if it cannot be stopped right away, don't let it increase, eg. if it has been 10 times, either try to decrease or else leave it at 10.

DON'T increase to 20 even if 10 does not produce the euphoric 'release'.

Try to find other ways to compensate, so that eventually even '10' can be cut down.

I found that once the number of times increases, it does so at a frightening rate and scars start to carpet the entire area in question.

Hence, I think it is crucial that a serious addiction is not formed.

This is just my opinion.

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'Person' has a good strategy, try and decrease the amount of times a person self harms, flicks a switch, wash's hands etc.

This would be what I call self-help therapy practice. By actively trying to stop doing it X number of times you are practising the therapy for the big day comes when you face the OCD fear and say 'No more' and walk away without doing the actual particular compulsion.

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I gave up smoking last week after most of my life on cigarettes.

I am shocked... after the grief you gave me for eating lovely tasty Big Macs :thumbdown:

Still. congrats on quitting, takes will power and strength :thumbup:

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Hi Caramoole,

I've not said hi yet to you, so hi and welcome to our little community! :)

You probably can't talk to your Mum and Dad because you simply can't think what the heck you would say.  This isn't really suprising because how do you explain things like Self harm to someone else when you don't understand it yourself.

You've hit the nail right on the head here. I don't understand it myself.

The whole "list" scenario can be very eye opening, not necessarily just identifying the reasons you should stop but also the reasons why you don't want to stop at the moment.

What about I feel I should be punished because........

I want to harm myself because.........

It could help throw some light on why you feel so self-worthless.

That sounds like a very useful, albeit quite difficult, list to write. I think it would be worth it though. :thumbup:

I know very little about SH but it seems that it is something that people feel gives them control of at least one thing.......the momentary sense of release that follows seems very similar to the compulsion side of OCD

You're right again! It does give a momentary sense of release but, like OCD, it is only momentary.

Thank you for such a helpful post! You may have no experience of self-harm but your ability to say so clearly how sufferers feel is very wonderful. I always have such respect for people who can empathise (is that the word I mean? I gave up English last year!) with people who suffer from things which they themselves have not been through. I think it shows a great depth of understanding of people.

OK, I'm rambling now so I'll stop this post :thumbdown:

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Hi Crispie and Person,

Thanks for your replies - I didn't know there were going to be so many of us who have been/are going through this. And Person, not seen you round for a bit - nice to "see" you again.

I have also been one to SH.  And like Person, it DID give me a high, a release from whatever I was NOT able to talk about, or figure out, that was going on inside of my little brain.

It gives (dare I say "gave"? - don't know yet) me a bit of a high too - I think it's because the body releases endorphins (kinda like natural painkillers) in response to pain.

She has helped me so much to be able to dig the feelings out, and see what has been going on.

I am so glad for you that you've been able to work this out and kick the SH's butt, go girl!

  But until she started to teach me how to do that, the SH got worse.  IT BECAME AN ADDICTION.  Every time I did it it became more and more of a release.  Like a release valve letting off all of the pressure of just being me, and not knowing how to deal with it.  The thought of doing it was SO EXCITING to me!  The sight of it was even more.  Now, I see the scars, and think--WHY?  I know why.  It is a gentle, yet subtle, reminder to me to take time to KNOW myself.  I need to listen to my thinking and feeling every waking moment of every day to understand what is going on in my head.

Crispie - this could be me writing most of this. And I look at the scars too and think "why?". You've done such a good job in working it all out.

I have been SH free since February. 

Way to go! I'm so proud of you! :thumbdown:

And until you search your heart and know what it is that makes you NEED to do this, you probably will not stop.  I needed to know how I felt about things, and feel free to tell people.  I didn't think my opinion was valuable before. 

I totally agree, someone keeps saying to me that it's not the SH that's the problem (although that is obviously not good), i.e. it's a symptom, and it's what's causing it that I need to tackle.

You CAN overcome.  But you have to WANT to. 

I know, and as soon as I wholeheartedly want to stop i think I will.

Thanks everyone and hugs :thumbup:

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'Person' has a good strategy, try and decrease the amount of times a person self harms, flicks a switch, wash's hands etc.

This would be what I call self-help therapy practice. By actively trying to stop doing it X number of times you are practising the therapy for the big day comes when you face the OCD fear and say 'No more' and walk away without doing the actual particular compulsion.

Yes, I agree totally - even by decreasing something like SH or an OCD compulsion by just one time a day then eventually (or sooner!) there will be none.

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Hey Northern Star,

I tried writing a reply a few times earlier but got interupted...why do i always have to close the whole thing eh! Oh well 3rd time lucky....? :)

First thing:

I had 6 hours of exams today  and was revising until late last night

what a nightmare!well done for getting through it though! :thumbup: how many more to go? (hope they've been ok so far)

anyway...i was wondering if you've done much research into SH from the internet or anything? you said you bought a book but no doubt the internet has plenty of useful stuff as well. also, because you don't want to see a therapist, how about help lines/charities/organisations or anything specialising in SH (i guess the help line thing is only really if your reluctance to see a therapist is because of the face to face situation or something similar?) with the internet and help lines at least its in the comfort of your own home.

Also, i know you're reluctant to see a therapist, but if possible, maybe keep an open mind about it? its perfectly acceptable to not want to see a therapist, especially if it didn't work out before, but as with the idea of listing pro's and cons of SH, maybe do the same for all your other options like therapy/medication (which by the way is entirely your decision and i would like to remain entirely neutral on the medication issue), because at the end of day, just thinking about it is not like actually doing it (i wish i could say that to myself when i'm suffering the pure-o's... :thumbdown: ) so i'd say don't be worried about changing your mind and similarly don't worry about the reluctance to see a therapist-just see how it goes?

i hope at least some of what i said makes sense, remember its just my humble opinion so please ignore anything thats not useful!

all the best,

Han xx

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Hi Han,

I tried writing a reply a few times earlier but got interupted...why do i always have to close the whole thing eh! Oh well 3rd time lucky....? :D

I know what you mean! If anyone comes into the room when I'm writing a post at home then I always have to bring up another window on the screen quickly! :thumbdown:

First thing:

I had 6 hours of exams today  and was revising until late last night

what a nightmare!well done for getting through it though! :) how many more to go? (hope they've been ok so far)

3 more hours tomorrow and then another 6 the week after next and then that's it for this year! Hurray! Of course I don't really know anything for those exams yet but that's what next week's for, isn't it?!? They've not been too bad so far I don't think (touch wood and I might be taking what I've said back come results day!). To be honest, by the time I got part-way through the 3rd paper I was somewhat sick of the whole thing!

anyway...i was wondering if you've done much research into SH from the internet or anything? you said you bought a book but no doubt the internet has plenty of useful stuff as well. also, because you don't want to see a therapist, how about help lines/charities/organisations or anything specialising in SH (i guess the help line thing is only really if your reluctance to see a therapist is because of the face to face situation or something similar?) with the internet and help lines at least its in the comfort of your own home.

I have done lots of searches on the internet for SH, there is lots of useful info out there like you say. There are also some online support groups (like this one) which are specifically for SH but, while I think it would be good to "meet" other people who are like me, I worry that it might actually make me worse though because I would be spending time reading about it and discussing it more than now and I think that that might trigger me too much. Although I will keep it in mind but won't be joining yet.

Also, i know you're reluctant to see a therapist, but if possible, maybe keep an open mind about it? its perfectly acceptable to not want to see a therapist, especially if it didn't work out before, but as with the idea of listing pro's and cons of SH, maybe do the same for all your other options like therapy/medication (which by the way is entirely your decision and i would like to remain entirely neutral on the medication issue), because at the end of day, just thinking about it is not like actually doing it (i wish i could say that to myself when i'm suffering the pure-o's... :thumbup: ) so i'd say don't be worried about changing your mind and similarly don't worry about the reluctance to see a therapist-just see how it goes?

I will also keep in mind about seeing a therapist - someone said to me today, "you're gonna do this on your own aren't you?" and I said yes. Although I think it won't be entirely on myown I think that with support of lovely people (including you guys!) I can (eventually) beat this. I kinda thought yesterday that i'd SHed for the last time but unfortunately it wasn't to be. Although I have discovered one reason why I keep on SHing so at least that's a step in the right direction. :)

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Hmmm...having a bit of a **** evening. Thought I'd have a rant on here (sorry people :thumbup: ).

Earlier on I was feeling bit down, but was getting by reasonably OK. Then my sister phoned (whom I love to bits btw). Someone (i.e. most likely my mum) has told her about the cutting. Great. Am I not allowed to have anything private now? She gave me the whole guilt trip about how many people I'm worrying and about how I've hurt my mum because I'm not going down to see her next week (since last Sept my mum works and, therefore, lives in Dorset during the weeks and so comes home weekends so I normally see her then. I'm going to stay with her for a couple of days after my exams but she'd wanted me to go next week as well 'cos my dad's going away so it'd just be me at home, but I since made other plans for a mate to come and stay overnight which my dad seemed happy enough with since he's been worried recently since my school called him about the cutting. So my sis said my mum had been getting really excited about me staying and was getting the house ready etc even though nothing was in any way definite but she (sis) thought that my mum had said to go down next weekend, which would be fine so I called my mum and told her that but there'd been a mix-up but she said we'd discuss at the w/e maybe going down thurs-sat next week 'cos I have to be back here on the sunday. She said my mum feels guilty about not being here with me but I've always tried to be as supportive as poss. When she 1st said she was looking for a job down there I thought omg, i really don't want her to go, but I never told her that. i always said that whatever made her happy was perfectly fine with me [and i didn't say it in the negative tone that that sounds like when written on here] )

Anyway, back to the phonecall. She told me that i'm worrying lots of people and that cutting doesn't do me any good and that it doesn't do anyone else any good and that there's more important things in life than exams (which is not even what triggers it although it obviously doesn't help) and that she's seen people die (she's a med student) and that compared to that i've got it good (or something along those lines). She blatantly seemed to forget that over the last few months I've watched my grandmother battling cancer, seeming to maybe be on the mend, suffering setbacks, getting weaker and weaker and then eventually dying over Easter. Does she not think I feel bad about it? that I know obviously i'm v lucky i don't have a terminal illness? that i wish i could just be happy? that i know how many people are worried? that i feel like **** for hurting people? that one of the reasons I didn't tell any of my family was because I didn't want to hurt them, make them feel bad?

She told me she wants me to stop.

I know people do.

I don't want to hurt anyone.

But I don't know what to do.

:thumbdown:

P.S. sorry for depressingness of post :)

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Hi Northern Star,

I think I understand, it’s been so long since I was a teenager (i am now 30) with issues and problems (and that’s not being patronizing). Looking back in my life I can see so many more things that didn’t make sense so many feelings and thoughts that I didn’t understand and that I kept secret from everybody, even my family don‘t know to this day or at least I don‘t think they do. I use to wear long sleeves to hide the cuts on my arms, razor blades, pieces of glass, the release, the feeling, the knowledge of knowing I was only hurting myself and not others, even though I wanted to make the world feel and see what I felt without hurting them,I still hided it, confusion and pain but I could never put into words. I still feel guilty about the marks on my arm (left) which I know are there even if they are very faint.

Think about you and take care

Alan

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Hi Northern Star :grin:

You can't stop your mum and sis worrying about you or loving you.....just like you can't stop the SH at the moment.

I know that it puts heaps of pressure on you but you don't understand SH-ming yourself, so you can imagine how difficult it must be for someone who has even less knowledge on the subject :thumbup:

This probably doesn't help much at all :thumbdown: but they worry 'cos they care :)

Wishing you better days :D

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