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Self-injury: You are NOT the only one

By November 29, 2011 - 12:43pm

Self-injury: You are NOT the only one
Since you ask, most days I cannot remember.
I walk in my clothing, unmarked by that voyage.
Then the almost unnameable lust returns.
--Anne Sexton
Introduction Information Interactive
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Because I Hurt
A new book by Jan Sutton of SIARI and Deb Martinson, author of this site, coming in Autumn 2003. More here.

In spite of the title, there is no shame here. If you cause physical harm to your body in order to deal with overwhelming feelings, know that you have nothing to be ashamed of. It's likely that you're keeping yourself alive and maintaining psychological integrity with the only tool you have right now. It's a crude and ultimately self-destructive tool, but it works; you get relief from the overwhelming pain/fear/anxiety in your life. The prospect of giving it up may be unthinkable, which makes sense; you may not realize that self-harm isn't the only or even best coping method around.

For many people who self-injure, though, there comes a breakthrough moment when they realize that change is possible, that they can escape, that things can be different. They begin to believe that other tools do exist and begin figuring out which of these non-self-destructive ways of coping work for them. This site exists to help you come closer to that moment.

How do you know if you self-injure? It may seem an odd question to some, but a few people aren't sure if what they do is "really" self-injury. Answer these questions:

Do you deliberately cause physical harm to yourself to the extent of causing tissue damage (breaking the skin, bruising, leaving marks that last for more than an hour)?
Do you cause this harm to yourself as a way of dealing with unpleasant or overwhelming emotions, thoughts, or situations (including dissociation)?
If your self-harm is not compulsive, do you often think about SI even when you're relatively calm and not doing it at the moment?

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Related Topics


Cutting and Self-Harm Self-Injury Help, Support, and Treatment Share RSS Self-Injury: Types, Causes and Treatment Do you ever hurt yourself when you’re feeling overwhelmed? If so, you’re not alone. For many people, self-harm is a way of coping with problems. It may help you express feelings you can’t put into words, distract you from your life, or release emotional pain. Afterwards, you probably feel better—at least for a little while. But then the painful feelings return, and you feel the urge to get relief by hurting yourself again. Self-harm may feel like an addiction. You want to stop, but you don’t know how. Or you may feel like you can’t give it up because it’s the only thing keeping you from completely breaking down. If that’s how you feel, know this: you deserve to feel better, and you can get there without hurting yourself. There is help out there, if you want to stop. Whatever you’re facing in your life, you can learn how to not just cope with it, but overcome it. http://helpguide.org/mental/self_injury.htm This group is about helping those with self injurious behavior, creating awareness of this topic, discussing this issue, and overcoming this disorder. Here are some useful links on this topic: http://bpd.about.com/od/selfinjuriousbehavior/p/Self_harm.htm http://www.education.com/reference/article/Ref_Self_Injurious/ http://www.twloha.com/ http://self-injury.net/




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