This entry does discuss self-harm.
There is a photo in which minimal scarring (no wound) is visible.
If this is triggering for you please do not read or read with caution.
Self-harm has been an on-going issue for me. I first cut when I was sixteen, still in high school, still living at home, very much in the midst of an eating disorder. Nine years later and I’m still self-harming. I’m much more in control of it than I’ve ever been, but I still do it.
Recently my behaviour was impulsive. I am disappointed in myself for that because I know I can do better. I know I can put off self-harm for days or weeks until the urge subsides. Often the immediate urge will subside within hours, but it does tend to return in the following days. Usually I’m sensible enough to keep preferred “tools” out of the house. I know having them around carries risk.
I’d gone several months, possibly six months or more, without self-harming. I don’t think it’s the longest I’ve gone, but it’s certainly close. I am proud for how long I went without self-harming, but with that does come disappointment for doing it.
So today was a rather blah day but I did drag myself out of the house and go to the respite group I’m involved in. By the time I got there, there was less than an hour left, but I’d left the house. I was teary, exhausted, tired and confused. Not the most brilliant space be in, especially when I seem to be known there for being happy, cheerful and chatty. I think I told one worker that I was okay, and the other that things were crap. I took the offer of a chat and spent most of my time there outside talking.
The worker I was talking to (our favourite, and she knows it) at one point said something along the lines of writing her phone number where I self-harm so that I’d remember to call her instead of self-harming. I laughed it off, but tonight I got creative. I got a permanent marker and wrote all over my thighs. Positive things, distractions, people to call, a reminder to take medication.
I know it will slow down the process of self-harming, if I actually get to that point again. The positivity will be right in front of me, and even if I don’t believe it, it will be there. I’ll leave you with a heavily censored photo of my “art work” and a big thank you to B for the idea!