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From Pain to Peace

Okay, so I've never written an account of my modifications or my past with cutting before, but I figured why not, it might help somebody out in the long-run, or even just give me a little more insight into myself.

For years, I was a cutter. I started when I was about 13 when I branded myself with a cigarette lighter. I was going through so many changes with school, my family, my friends, and everyday more and more stress seemed to be piling up on top of me. I was so calm after I had burned myself that all I could think about were the new marks on my body. It was such a rush... the endorphins, the pain, the relief. I was so elated with it that I didn't even think about hurting myself again for months.

Eventually though, I did. I didn't want to burn myself again because that took too much effort and energy. The thought of the preparation, the healing process, the after effects and the scars didn't really satisfy me as much as it did initially. I wanted something fast and I wanted results that I could control a lot easier. I found random razors around my house and garage and began cutting my upper arms and shoulders. This was the beginning of something that carried on for years.

When I woke up in the morning, I'd see myself in the mirror and look at the bright red lines I had made. I knew that I was changing myself instead of letting other situations change me. I'd go to school, and every time I put on my book bag I felt the pain from the open cuts and somehow it got me through the day. It made everything so much easier to deal with.

Some of my friends found out and didn't really know what to do with it. One of my friends couldn't deal with it at all and started to push me away. It never occurred to me that I was hurting the people I cared about more than I was hurting myself. I never thought that my actions would affect them in the way that it did. Eventually my parents found out too and my senior year of high school I was sent to therapy for about five months. The doctor was nice and understanding, but it just didn't do much to help me. By that time, I had already realized that I wanted something different besides the frustration and anger I was dealing with on a daily basis. I didn't want to rely on a razor blade to get me through every little problem, and I didn't want to risk alienating anymore of my friends or family.

My parents still think it was the doctor that got me to stop hurting myself. I was the one that forced myself to stop. It was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do, because once that part of my life was cut off, I had nothing to fall back on. I had no safety net. If something went wrong I didn't know what to do. I was completely lost. My friends kept telling me that I could always go to them, but no matter how good their intentions were, it just couldn't match the feeling that cutting gave me. By the time I graduated high school, I hadn't cut myself in two and a half months. Every day I would think about it, but forced it out of my mind.

It wasn't until halfway through my first semester of college that I had cut myself again. I was having a really hard time adjusting to the new surroundings of a college campus and finally, I broke and cut open my left palm. By that time, I had gotten into tattooing and found the life-changing qualities that body modification afforded me. After I had cut my hand, I was looking around online at some tattoo sites, and stumbled upon BME. I found not only tattoos, but implants, ink rubbing, suspensions, branding, scarification, and so many other types of body modification I had never seen before. Scarification opened my eyes to people that had once been cutters with an addiction to it, but had turned their pain into works of art. This completely opened my eyes and gave me something to put actual pride in. Since finding this community of people that I had never thought existed, my entire thought process had changed. I was a different person. I cut myself a few more times in the following weeks, but when I did, I looked at it with a sense of pride and accomplishment. I wasn't afraid of my scars or my body. I wasn't angry or frustrated anymore. I had found something that altered not only my brought me closer to inner peace, but brought me closer to being complete on the outside as well.

Since then, I've gotten a few more tattoos, and a few more scars have been added to my body, but all with love. Also, I haven't been afraid to talk about my past with cutting either. I used to hide my scars and hide the fact that I had cut myself from everyone I could, but now I'll tell anyone who asks. It's a freedom I've never felt before. A few close friends have even trusted me enough to let me perform some minor scarification work on them (I don't recommend this unless you have sterile instruments and are working in a sterile environment... actually, for safety's sake, you should probably just leave this to professionals).

Body art and modification has changed my life and has given me something to take pride in. I'm more at peace and can deal with problems and stress without resorting to mentally and physically harming myself (I don't see the pain scarification causes as harmful). Without it, I wouldn't be me. I wouldn't have the friends I do now, and I wouldn't be as close as I am to completing myself physically and spiritually. It's shown me a light I have never seen, and I can't wait for my next experience.

Note: I don't suggest anything I've done to anyone else. Nothing I did was really sterile or that safe, and should have been left to professionals who know what they're doing.

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submitted by: Anonymous
on: 22 April 2006
in Scarification

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