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This will be a very mixed up tale about SH and coping. With a dash of irony thrown in for good measure. My self harming started when I was a small child, (im not going to go into details here) but I will add I am 31.
After being sexually assualted in PE (the school did nothing) and being told 'it was my fault' and 'you should be so lucky' the self abuse (self harm) became more and more, my 'crutch' to cope with the feelings I had. My so called 'family' thought it was me attention seeking? NO.
I started on antidepressants aged 16, and I am still on them now (first diagnosed anxitety and depression, now its 'GAD' general anxiety disorder) It continued until nearly 2 years ago when after intensive therapy I learned how NOT to do it. (my ex therapist is in my head so if the thought pops in my head he asks WHY, making me question why i feel i need to do it in the first place) I'm sure we all know the 'coping' stratergies, I was told about the elastic band around the wrist, red felt tip pens, ice cubes with red food dye in etc etc, unfortunately they didn't help me but it has helped others.
And, the ironic part of my story, after HATING my body, (self harming) for all this time, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis aged 25. Now my body hates ME!! Gave me a reason even more so to stop the SH'ing. (Yes I know, sounds daft, but, I should have been waiting for it ( the MS diagnosis). Someone in my family has it too).
(I would add I bought a book off amazon, 'women who harm/hurt themselves' by DUSTY MILLER It helped me a lot as I went through it with my therapist. It brought up bad memories, things I didnt realise that happened in my early life before SH, the relationships or lack of them, and the realisation that I AM NOT A BAD PERSON. To give myself a bit of slack, to look from the outside in as if watching through a window. I hated to see the way this young woman was abusing herself, causing pain to herself whilst 'thinking' she was making herself better. It was shocking for to me to see it.)
I hope that these words of mine can help, but the SH addiction is just that, an addiction. I will not say I have beaten it, the thought is there sometimes but its just a thought now.
Please dont suffer in silence, tell someone who you know will be understanding of your situation. (I know some doctors can be very blase about it like the GP who told me the dragging leg, bad coordination, bad eye pain etc was all in my head. Luckily the GP I had a 2nd opinion from got me straight to the hospital for an MRI scan proving I had MS)
Please people, be kind to yourself. (I used to blame myself for everything that happened that was 'bad')
YOU ARE WORTHY OF THIS LIFE, try and keep positive (placing post-its around your house(room) for you to tell yourself 'you're special' 'you are worth so much more than you think' 'I am strong'
Take care, and dont forget 'try to look after yourself better'