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A Masochist's Tale - Self-Mutilation/Body Modification

Warning: There are other outlets for the pain,frustration,anger,hopelessness you feel inside. BME is proof of that. Explore those options before following in these foot steps.

I figured I'd take the time to reveal a bit of myself to this community. Reveal what body modification means to me. And share my self-mutilation story.

I started self-mutilation when I was 12 years old. It started with cutting and progressed to burning later in life. The first time I did it it was either with scissors or an exacto knife. But I was trying to carve an upside down cross into my upper arm. For some reason, it's been so long I can't remember, I got upset,angry and cut really hard. But what I felt wasn't a bad feeling. I liked it. It made me feel better and snapped me out of that anger I felt. From then on until I was 21 or 22 I'd use that as a tool. I'd use cutting as a way to feel better. To snap me out of what I was feeling. To focus on the now and not what was haunting my mind.

Both my mother and father found out about my cutting. My father said "This cutting business has to stop." My mother threatened to have me put away in some Asylum type place. Did that stop me. No. I just got better at hiding it. So I kept my cuttings on my chest, stomach and legs. And through out my life until I was 21 or 22 I would continue to use those areas. With the exception of one incident when I was about 20.

Whenever I was deeply stressed, or depressed or having flashbacks to sexual abuse I would cut. The pain, the bleeding would snap me back into the here and now. It would stop me from thinking about the past. Or help me focus if there was a problem I had to deal with. Be it school, parents,relationships.

I didn't start burning myself until I was about 19. The first time I used a lighter. I flicked it. Then tilted it so the flame was touching the metal part on the lighter. I'd wait a few moments until it was nice and hot and then pressed it on my arm until it wasn't hot anymore. Then I'd repeat the process a few more times in a different area on the same arm. Then I'd move on to my other arm.

I'd still cut as well. I'd use anything sharp. Glass,scissors,broken CD cases. Anything. It was a tool to me. The pain. It made me feel better. Helped me focus. Snapped me out of whatever I was feeling that was bad. I'd feel such intense confusion. I'd be pulled in so many directions emotionally. And this helped that feeling stop. I felt less lost. Less confused. Less hurt inside.

When I was 20 or 21 I burned my legs, gain with a lighter. And I've used scissors plenty on them. I even took a Venus Lady Shaver thing broke it so I could slip the blade out and used that to cut myself. That time frightened me. I bled so much. It was scary. I was worried I'd have to go to the hospital and explain what happened. Luckily it wasn't as bad as I thought. So I didn't go to the hospital and eventually it stopped bleeding so much.

When I was about 22 or 23. I was in a relationship. With someone I loved more than anything in this world. He was just like me. And he didn't try and change me like my past lovers. He accepted me for who I was. And I was so heavy in love with him. But one thing we didn't have in common was the fact that he was a pathological liar. You see he was married. When I got that call from his wife telling me this, my world died. I couldn't speak. I could only cry. My world was spinning around me. And all I could hear was the sound of my dreams and happiness dying. That is the day I lost faith in love.

I was so upset over this. I grabbed a few incense sticks at least twenty and burned his inicial into my stomach. I used them all. I used them until the incense stick had burned down to the stick. I just kept going over it and over it. Again and again.

I do regret the things I have done to myself. I see the scars everyday. They remind me so much of how angry I was at myself. How much I hated myself. It makes me feel awful to think of the state I was in. And how it drove me to hurt myself in such an angry and chaotic way.

Today things are slightly different. I don't hate myself as much. I haven't self-mutilated in about a year. I still have some intense urges to do so.

This is where body modification comes in.

You see, I do like pain. If it's really intense, I'll cry. But I still enjoy it. It still works for me. It's still a tool. But whenever I have those moments where they drive me to want to self harm. I end up thinking of a tattoo or piercing I want instead. Or any other type of mod.

You see, I get the pain I desire to feel. But the end result is a lot more satisfying and I do not regret it like I would if I had cut or burned myself. What is left behind from modification is beautiful work. Not some angry scars reminding me of how much I hated myself. With each modification I love myself more. I don't see that monster I thought I was anymore when I look in the mirror. I see a canvas now. A canvas that desires to be filled/covered with mods. Each one revealing a new layer of who I really am. Each one brings me closer to loving myself.

Pain, for me, is a gift. Self confessed pain junkie. That's who I am. I'm not ashamed of that. I regret the angry slashes. My rage induced scars. But that is all. everything else is too much a part of me to change. Which is why modification means so much to me. I hold it close to my heart. I can experience what I desire and not have regrets about it later. Considering the fact that I can't change this part of myself is the reason why I am always searching for healthier outlets that give me the same effect as self-mutilation, but without all the guilt and regret. And the ugly self inflicted scars.

Most of my scars are now covered with tattoos. The ones on my thighs need to get covered next. When I get that done it will be life changing. I'll no longer see what I regret. I won't be reminded of my self hate as much.

I began to relise this a little less than a year ago. How much body modification has helped me be a better person to myself. It's a beautiful thing. I may not do everything that is out there in the body modification world. But that doesn't make it any less beautiful to me in my eyes.

I am greatful to anyone who has ever done work on me. It changed my life for the better. Nothing has come close to doing that like body modification. So to anyone out there who has worked on me. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 26 March 2008
in Culture

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Artist: Self+done
Studio: my+home
Location: Various+places+in+Connecticut

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