Autobiography of a Cutter
The Birth of a Cutter:
I'm sure many, upon hearing the word 'self-injury', would simply frown in disgust. After all, it's considered to pretty much be a 'dirty little secret' done by angst-filled teenagers and mental ward patients. I use to be one of those people who wouldn't dare think of picking up a razor, knife, or glass with the intent of self-harm. In fact, I use to be one of those people who considered it mostly a way of attracting attention or just plain stupidity. Looking back on those years, I can only laugh at how much I've changed.
I can't exactly remember in detail the exact time I starting using self-mutilation as a regular form of release; All I know is that self-injury has been a staple of my life for, at least, the past two years. I remember some of my earliest attempts: bruising myself on the arm, scratching my skin with a coat hanger until I bled, and biting myself hard enough to leave some nasty bruises. It started out being only once in a blue moon that I'd resort to hurting myself, but slowly throughout the years I started self-injuring more often and more severely.
For the longest time, I used a simple kitchen knife for cutting. I kept it well-hidden. There really was no fear of being found out since no one except me ever went in my bedroom, but I do believe paranoia comes with cutting. As for hiding the cuts them self, I only cut on my upper thighs, an area easily hidden from the prying views of others. Using a knife was not the best tool in the world, I found that it was to troublesome to keep clean, sharp, and sterile. Only a year or more later would I discover another device.
After many unsuccessful experiments with broken glass, metal, and possibly nails and staples, I finally discovered a way to discreetly obtain an actual razor through reading various sites. I had no idea why the thought never occurred to me before, use the blades out of those cheap, disposable 12-to-a-pack razors. I was, needless-to-say, ecstatic. The blades were much easier to hide, clean, and I could always bring one with me for cutting on the go. By this time, I was cutting several times a week, and my area for cutting has extended to include my chest and stomach.
It is now the present day, I've start self-mutilating worse then I ever have before. The cuts are deeper, cover a wider area, and have begun to include personally significant words and pictures carved into the skin: the last detail, however, possibly stemmed from my growing interest in scarification. Seeing how important cutting is in my life, I've gathered items specifically for self-injury: A beautiful porcelain jar to keep my razors in, antiseptic, a variety of bandages, and, of course, plenty of toilet paper/paper towels which proves to be perfect for cleaning up the blood left in the aftermath.
On a Personal Level:
There were many reasons I started cutting, and the are many to answer why two years later even after the run-in with therapy and hospitalization, I continue to cut. There are both scars on my body that I regret and scars that I could not bear to part with. I don't cut for attention; There meaning to every self-inflicted scar on my body. They stand to ground me to reality, a release from pain and loneliness, a way to vent anger, and a way to feel anything at all. I do have moments in which I'm afraid to touch the blade, the razor serves not only as my savior, but also a tormentor. In the end, however, the urge to cut always prevail.
There is one person who continues to try and stop my self-destruction. As much as I care about that one person, as much as they want me to stop, and as much as it hurts me to lie when they ask, I still will continue to self-injure.
A few questions remain: Would I stop a friend if they were cutting? Do I think self-injury is healthy? Would I recommend it to someone else?
If I friend wanted to stop I would try my best to support them, but I wouldn't be able to bring myself to tell someone else to stop cutting. I understand that cutting provides such relief, and, seeing that I do it myself, I believe it'd be hypocritical of me to tell someone else to stop.
As for the issue of how healthy it is, I believe that cutting is as safe as someone makes it. There will always be risks with self-injury. There's always the chance of infection, one can accidentally cut far to deeply, people may find out about one's cutting and be less-then-accepting, and many more reasons it could be considered unhealthy. I do believe cutting is comparable to drinking. It may prove helpful for the individual, but if it's 'healthy' is left to one's personal opinion.
For the third question the answer is simple, I'd neither suggest for it nor argue against it.
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 25 July 2007