Thursday, 12 May 2016

Self Harm

Self harm always has been and probably always will be, one of those taboo subjects that everyone hates to talk about. It's always brushed off as nothing, until it escalates to the point where you're ending up in A&E. This is exactly what happened to me, when I first started doing it, everyone put it down as "typical teenage antics", and that it would go away soon. So I started believing it, I started to believe that it was nothing, and it was just a phase I was going through. But it wasn't a phase, self harm is never just a phase. If help isn't sought soon, it can escalate quickly.

This is the last time.
Everytime I would self harm, I'd tell myself this. But I knew I was lying, to myself and everyone around me. Excuses were becoming harder to come up with when people were asking how the cuts had happened. In the end, I just gave up. Self harm is extremely addictive, however some narrow minded people claim that it's done for attention. Not one bit. Most people that self harm try their best to hide it, and unless you're going around showing everyone, then it isn't done for attention. People use self harm for various reasons, but for me, the reasons are listed below:
A release; I needed to do something to cope with the emotional pain inside my head, because it was becoming extremely painful. Self harm became my coping mechanism, something I turned to when my head became too overwhelming.
I deserved it; I felt as though I deserved the pain because I was a bad person. I also felt like everything I came into contact with fell apart, so I felt as though I deserved to punish myself.
I needed to feel something; Sometimes I felt so numb and empty that I didn't feel anything, and it scared me. Self harming meant that I was feeling something, normally to remind me that I'm still alive.

I hate self harm with a burning passion, and I hate that I've let it get this far. If I could go back in time and stop my 13 year old self from doing it, then I really really would. But unfortunately, that's impossible. Every time I do it, I hate it so much. And I tell myself that next time, I'll try harder to fight the urge. It's true, I do try harder. Yet I still end up doing it, and it's now gotten to the point where I've been to A&E that many times to get my arms steri-stripped and bandaged that the psychiatric liaison team know who I am. My arms and legs went from having white scars, only a few of which were visible, to being covered in lumpy and pink scars. Yes, I know they'll fade, but they're always going to be visible. They're now constant reminders of how much I hated myself. Even in the future when I'm better, they're still going to be reminders of my past, and that's something I don't think I'll ever forgive myself for.

My battle with self harm has been long and hard. Sometimes I don't even try to fight the urge, because I don't feel strong enough. But other times, I physically sit on my hands until the urge subsides so I can't do anything. It's a daily struggle. If I go into a shop and buy a pencil sharpener, or razors, the first thing I think of is self harm. Whenever I see someone that has a scar or cut on their arm that's not from self harm, I automatically panic and think that they've self harmed. I can't go to certain places around my area without being reminded of the time I went there and self harmed. Everyday consists of triggers and urges, and I have to fight with myself day in, day out.

If I could give one piece of advice to anyone who self  harms, or who's  thinking about it, it would be this; get help as soon as possible.
Go to your GP, speak to your parents, speak to a teacher, speak to your school counsellor. If I had sought help earlier, then maybe it wouldn't have escalated to the point I'm at now. But the sooner you get help, the more likely you are to recover.

Self harm ruins so many lives, don't let it ruin yours.

I will win. Not immediately, but definitely.

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