A lonely long road but it's all possible
Let me start by telling you a little bit about myself, I'm a 16 year old female who has battled self-harm and abuse as well as school phobia for a few years. Self-harm since I was 8 along with the abuse and School Phobia since I was 12/13. I look like your average teenager on the outside and I tend not to share myself with other people unless I know they'll benefit from it.
I can remember very clearly the first time I cut. A male in my life had hit me across the face and shouted at me, I was 8 years old scared and alone. I hid in my room for hours crying but it didn't make me feel better, there was a safety pin on my window ledge I picked it up, at first it was nothing breaking solely the first layer of skin but then I got braver and pushed harder slowly the blood came out, only a spot but at 8 years old it was enough to escape.
As well as the things going on with a man in my life I was bullied, not just the average "ginger" remarks either, I was physically assaulted on many occasions by the time I was 10 and in year 6 at primary school I was cutting weekly with glass and standard kitchen knifes (the sort you eat with not Stanley type knives). At night I'd sit and cry for hours wondering why the people at school and the man had picked me, was I an awful person? By this time I'd got better at making myself bleed and also at hiding it from teachers, parents and the like. I loved the rush, the blood, and the pain and also I loved having a wound to look after.
When I was 11 years old I was forced into secondary education and I hated it, this in turn caused the self-harm to get worse. It was at this point I discovered razor blades and proper knives; I'd come home from school and sit on my bed forcing myself to bleed to feel alive. I can remember one night I came in and sliced, I felt every millimetre of that blade, every slice and cut it made I can remember smiling at it and the giggling, I felt ok, I felt real again.
At age 13 I'd walked out of school and into the world of home education which for me wasn't all I thought it was I saw him more and more, I felt weak and useless. My legs were scarred from 5 years of self-harm and I couldn't cope. I couldn't concentrate, my skin was constantly itching to bleed and I needed to feel. I felt useless and being at home with only 3 friends didn't help, I felt well and truly isolated. At this point I was cutting deeper in order to feel the pain and to bleed more and more, I was cutting 2 or 3 times a day but never in viewable places. I was petrified of seeing him and every time I cut I felt the disgust leave my body.
I was forced back into school in some parts this was better and others it was worse. It gave me something to focus on for a few hours rather than the need to bleed but also filled me with fear at the prospect of mixing with people who didn't understand and didn't care. I went back to cutting once a day this was a step in the right direction. I hated it. In February 2004 it was only weeks away from my 14th and I was still at school desperate to escape, I came home one night after being assaulted at school I was cold again no longer did I care I didn't even feel one of the punches nor the slaps the only thing I knew how to do was reach for the blade, this time was different I did it on the side of my thigh and I pushed hard until I was bleeding rapidly I knew this was dangerous but at the time I didn't care. Half an hour later and the blood wouldn't stop I knew I needed stitches and reached for the phone.
My road to my first recovery.
I was taken into hospital on the night without either of my parents knowing, they stitched me up and I was on my way or so I thought. They contacted me a few days later insisting I went to a counsellor, I went on the morning of the 16th I sat there in silence not knowing what to say until she asked me why I cut, I told her about the things at school but not about the man, that was my first mistake.
In May I had the strength I needed to walk out of school and re-enter the world of home-education. For the first few weeks I'd got down to cutting once every 3 weeks which was a great improvement and I started to live life again, until that was he came back into my life for the worse.
After 4 weeks of not cutting I cut, I felt great at the time but the comedown of it was horrific. I got the sweats and shakes of a drug addict.
I battled for another 6 weeks before relapsing and at that point I stopped kidding myself I was on the road to recovery.
Back into the abuse and also to school, the self-harm takes hold.
11 months later, I was back into school by my own admission this time, I wanted to see if I could go cold turkey from self-harm but I couldn't. This school was ok though I met a truly inspirational teacher who helped me achieve some great GCSE grades and shaped me. Still I was alone in a world of the abuse though and I still used cutting as a way out. It was at this point I found piercing, the cutting actually slowed as I started to accept what the bullies had said wasn't true, I started to feel happier but I couldn't escape him. It was weeks before my GCSE exams were due to take place and I carved a D into my genitals, which is still faintly there today, it was to say that he owned me, I was his personal possession.
The pressure from exams was intense but again it gave me a focus, I came home, studied, got shouted at and slapped around sometimes more but I knew I could cope, I always had cutting, and the blade was my best friend.
I left school and I lost focus again. The abuse from him got a million times worse, he'd done sexual stuff before but this time he took it way to far, he put me in a totally fragile position, he constantly scared me and hit me.
In September 2006 I started college and I met a person who made me see that I had to make it stop, the abuse, the self-harm and the self-hatred.
I know that self harm will be with me forever but as long as I know it's there I can fight it and I can survive. I can handle a relapse because I know he won't be able to hurt me and I've overcome my phobia of school environments. The flashbacks are starting and so are the panic attacks from withdrawl and from what he did but I can fight.
I hope this proves that you can over come self-harm
submitted by: MillieB
on: 30 Sept. 2006