rachhh asked in HealthMental Health · 9 years ago

Can someone help explain self harming?

Last year a close friend told me that she was cutting herself and I did a lot of research about self harming and I really did try my best to help her. She never really explained her reasons for doing it only that she had low self esteem. I tried for ages to help her stop doing it then eventually I was so caught up in her constant depression I started to cut myself even though I hated it and what it did to my friend. I didn't do it loads but I still did it and still have scars. But when I did it I felt nothing really. I never fully understood what it does to people and why they do it. But after a while I worked lout that my friend was doing it for my attention which really upset me as she put me through hell all for my attention? We're not that close anymore and she still does it and it still upsets me but a lot of people I know do it and I think she's doing it cause they do. Why do people cut to fit it? What's cool about it? I am just very confused ablout the whole thing and itd be great if someone could help. Thanks so much! X

Update:

P.s I forgot to mention that I know a lot of you who answer my question will either be current self harmers or have cut in the past. I hope you can all get through it. Never ever feel like your worthless, you may feel like no cares about you; but someone does there's always someone. And even if you can't see it, god cares, he will always care. I find a huge comfort in god and I know a lot of people don't. But I believe he is there and he cares about everyone. He may not be with you in a physical presence but spiritually he's always there. And I wish I could help self harmers I wish I could make them better. My heart goes out to the people who suffer from depression etc. I watched a film called "to save a life' it changed my life. If you need comfort watch that film. Your beautiful and your loved by someone even when it feels like you aren't. God bless.

7 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    9 years ago
    Best answer

    There's a lot of good information about why most people do it at this site:

    http://www.palace.net/~llama/psych/injury.html

    Let's set it straight, though -- there are about one million self-harmers in the U.S. right now of all ages, genders, musical tastes, fashion styles, etc., and only a small percentage of them are the annoying young posers who do it to fit into some BS "emo" stereotype that means nothing. Please don't base your opinion of self-harm in general off your immature little friend(s). Not all self-harmers do it for attention. Most are actually quite ashamed of what they do and hide it.

    There are many reasons people self-harm, one of the most common being that it provides an immediate, intense distraction from emotional turmoil. It's essentially like trading in complex emotional pain for easier-to-manage physical pain instead. (I'd rather wash and bandage a cut than try and decode a mess of confusing feelings.) The need to self-harm becomes an urge that occurs when a person who suffers from a condition known as "overwhelming emotions" (look it up) experiences the culmination of their emotional pain. When a self-harmer's not in that overwhelmed state, pain hurts just like it would to any other person and we try to avoid it like they would as well. But once we get into that sudden rush of adrenaline and inundating inner pain, we need to ground ourselves with a distraction like that. Suddenly the pain is a welcomed distraction, one we'd gladly exchange all the other stuff for. It's like this beautiful stinging sensation that's saving me from whatever negative thoughts I previously couldn't get out of my head, even if it's only for a few minutes. Not to mention, eventually your body grows accustomed to the rush of endorphins released by your brain when pain is inflicted on the body, and it becomes a chemical addiction no different than a drug addiction.

    Source(s): I self-harm, but I am currently trying to quit.
  • 9 years ago

    Usually, if cutting is a real psychological problem then there will be other symptoms that follow along with it. If low self-esteem is the problem, for example, then eating disorders usually tag-along with cutting and self harming. People cut for different reasons. Cutting actually releases endorphins in the brain so that there's a sense of euphoria that follows after a cutting session. Serious cutting is a deep-rooted problem that takes a lot of therapy to stop.

    I knew a lot of people in school that cut themselves for attention. I don't know why they do it. It's not cool. I went through a rough patch about two years back where I was bulimic, anorexic and I had a severe cutting problem. I was almost hospitalized because of my cutting habits... it was scary. I never got why people WANTED to seem like they had problems, it's not cool.

    My friend found out about my cutting and then started in on it as well because she said she wanted to be just like me. I stopped but she continued. She finally ditched the cutting habit but moved on to cigarettes and alcohol. This all escalated to other drug abuse problems but that's because she got involved with that crowd. The influence that peers have over a person is incredible- it's frightening.

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    If anyone cuts to fit in, something is wrong with them. More so than anyone else who cuts. That is not a good reason at all if there is one. From what I know, people cut for a bigger reason than that. Possibly depression on an underlying pain. Coming from experience, I cut because I was sexualy abused this summer. Cutting is the only way I can feel something. It is the only way I can let my anger out. It also relaxes me. I'm messed up and I enjoy the pain. I find it addicting. I've lost a lot of friends because of it and I would never say that it is "cool" at all. But what do I know, I'm 17

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    Wow that's really messed up that your friend did all that for your attention, that kinda makes me upset thinking about it, I could never do that to my friend. Any ways to answer your questions I really don't see why somebody would do it for attention, obviously there is something wrong in their head if they are cutting themselves for attention. another reason might be physical, emotional or sexual abuse as a child. I did it because I thought if I was so bad that I had to be beat down on by my mother and father then obviously I was a bad kid and deserved to be beat and cut. then when the beating slowed down or when I got in arguments with my parents I would be locked in my room and think about horrible things and cutting myself was one of them. Once the idea was brought into my head and once I had done it for the first time it was hard to stop almost like an addiction. It is not a cool thing to do I am very ashamed that I felt I had to do that to myself now I am faced with a self esteem issue because of all the scars. I don't know why people think it is so great, I guess they look at it as freedom. It is just soooo stupid. Please don't do it anymore.. :'(

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  • I don't think it's 'cool'. I know at my school if someone finds out about someone cutting they start bitching about them and calling them an 'emo'.

    I myself have had a lot experience with this... I did it for many reasons. At first it was self hate, I wanted to destroy myself, I thought I deserved it... then I noticed it balanced out my pain. Like if I was feeling really sad or down inside, I would make myself be in more pain outside, it helped me deal, it made me feel a bit distracted from what i was emotionally feeling. Then in other situations I did it because I didn't know what else to do, I remember once a certain thing happened to me (not gonna put it online) but I didn't know how to deal with it, the only thing I knew what to do was to cut, and I went through a huge 'cutting frenzy' and cut my ankle over 50 times within minutes (purely because I didn't know what to do, and I was feeling stressed, sad and confused).

    I have friends that do it for attention. It does make me angry, they also pretend they have other mental illnesses that I have had and it angers me because they don't. But because hey don't know I have had these mental illnesses, I have to act like I truly believe they have it and I 'try' help them from something that's not even there.

    I'm very sorry for what you have been through, you didn't deserve it.

    I hope I helped.

  • Gloria
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    For the best answers, search on this site https://shorturl.im/axeSB

    Why Do People Self-Injure? The Purpose Self-Injury Serves The alteration or destruction of body tissue may be regarded on its surface (both literally and figuratively) as a morbid behavior on the one hand, and as a self-help behavior on the other (Favazza and Conterio 1988). We all have methods of coping with stress, whether it is emotional, physical or psychological. Coping is a behavior, which an individual utilizes to get through stressful, and difficult times as best they can. And sometimes the methods we use are extreme, perhaps excessive in comparison to the original stress. Self-injury is an example of an extreme method, but a method that, nonetheless, serves its purpose. Mentally ill self-injurers have an increased risk of suicide, although self-injury itself in not a failed attempt at suicide. It is frequently mistaken for a suicidal gesture, but there is a clear distinction between repetitive self- injury and suicide attempts. Self-injury is intended not to kill, but rather to relieve unbearable emotional pain and many survivors regard it, paradoxically, as a form of self-preservation (Herman 1992). The reasoning behind self-injury is diverse and by no means the same for all self- injurers. Self-injurers may give a single reason for their behavior, but, more commonly, their reasons are multiple and sometimes, on the surface, seemingly conflicting. 1. RELIEF FROM OVERWHELMING EMOTIONS 2. PHYSICAL EXPRESSION OF EMOTIONAL PAIN 3. UNREALITY, NUMBNESS, AND DISSOCIATION 4. SELF-PUNISHMENT AND SELF-HATE 5. SELF-NURTURING

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago
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