“I feel that I am broken or damaged. That some part of me either never learned a particular skill set or was incapable of learning that skill set. I suspect it centers on my ability to deal with intense emotion. But I would say that is a vast oversimplification. Trust enters into it. Confidence plays a role. Self image. The fact that a large protion of Self-Iinjurers have been sexually abused, as I have, cannot be ignored.
I’ve been asked how often I think of Self-Injury (SI)? Everyday. I think of it everyday. Not that I have the urge to engage in SI. But SI is a boundary. A border into another country. Or perhaps another layer of life. One that most never visit. However, once you visit that place, you can never truly leave. You cannot uncross that boarder. Leave that layer of life behind. You may distance yourself from it. You may end the harmful practice. But you carry that piece of you, a passport stamp or an emotional scar, with you until the end of your days. Once you cross the boundary that is your own skin, there is no uncrossing it. Ever.”
Fragileboy, BUS (http://buslist.org/phpBB/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=193499) Thurs. Mar. 27, 2014, reprinted with permission.
I used to self-injure. I started when I was 10 and continued until I was 16 when I stopped. But I returned to self-injury in my early 30″s after some particularly difficult stuff came up in therapy. It took me 10 years to stop.
I’ve now been free from self-injury for over 3 years, but it’s still with me. I look at my arm and see the scars. They’re faint, so no one else would notice them, unless they were looking very closely at my arm, but to me they’re a daily reminder of that dark, lost, and lonely place in my head.
I still get urges to self-injure almost daily. And some days I really want to – I want the release that only a cut will bring. But I also know that I don’t want to go there again.
Self-injury is something most people don’t understand, as it goes against just about every instinct for self preservation, but those of us who have done it, know it works, and that’s sad.
I wish I didn’t have knowledge of that world but the above quote is right. Once you have self-injured, you can never totally leave it behind.