Self-Injury Ed and Support

  • Ridiculosis

    Ridiculosis (150)

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    Do you do it? Do you think it's right or wrong? What have you heard about it?
    I'm a SI-er and I've always wanted support. So, this way, I and other SI-ers can learn about this trend or whatever you want to call it and get support from other mibba-ers.

    Self-Injury Facts

    S.A.F.E. Alternatives® 1985-2007
    (Self-Abuse Finally Ends)
    800-DONTCUT®
    www.selfinjury.com

    About Self-Injury:

    Definition:
    Self-injury is also termed self-mutilation, self-harm or self-abuse. The behavior is defined as the deliberate, repetitive, impulsive, non-lethal harming of one’s self. Self-injury includes but is not limited to: 1) cutting; 2) scratching; 3) picking scabs or interfering with wound healing; 4) burning; 5) punching self or objects; 6) infecting oneself; 7) inserting objects in skin; 8) bruising or breaking bones; and 9) some forms of hair-pulling. These behaviors, which pose serious risks, may be symptoms of a mental health problem that can be treated.

    Incidence & onset:
    Experts estimate the incidence of habitual self-injurers is nearly 4 % of the population, with an almost equal number of males and females, although more females present for treatment. Recent studies of high school and college students put the number at approximately one in five. The typical onset of self-harming acts is at puberty although it can be seen in young children as well as adults. The behaviors often last for 5-10 years but can persist much longer without appropriate treatment.

    Background of self-injurers:
    Self-injury is found in almost equal numbers in all ethnic groups. Nearly 50% report physical and/or sexual abuse during his or her childhood. Many report that they were discouraged from expressing emotions, particularly, anger, and sadness.

    Behavior patterns:
    Many who self-harm use multiple methods. Cutting arms or legs is the most common practice. Self-injurers may attempt to conceal the resultant scarring with clothing, and if discovered, often make excuses as to how an injury happened. A significant number are also struggling with eating disorders and alcohol or substance abuse problems. An estimated one-half to two-thirds of self-injurers have an eating disorder.

    Reasons for behaviors:
    Self-injurers commonly report they feel empty inside, over or under stimulated, unable to express their feelings, lonely, not understood by others, and fearful of intimate relationships and adult responsibilities. Self-injury is their way to cope with or relieve painful or hard-to-express feelings and is generally not a suicide attempt. However, relief is temporary, and a self-destructive cycle often develops without proper treatment.

    Dangers:
    Self-injurers often become desperate about their lack of self-control and the addictive-like nature of their acts, which may lead them to true suicide attempts. The self-injury behaviors may also cause more harm than intended, which could result in medical complications or death. Eating disorders and alcohol or substance abuse intensify the threats to the individual’s overall health and quality of life.

    Diagnoses:
    Only a licensed psychiatric professional can determine the diagnosis for someone who self-injures. Self-harm behavior can be a symptom of several psychiatric illnesses: Personality Disorders (esp. Borderline Personality Disorder); Bipolar Disorder (Manic-Depression); Major Depression; Anxiety Disorders (esp. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder); as well as psychoses such as Schizophrenia.

    Evaluation:
    If someone displays the signs and symptoms of self-injury, a mental health professional with self-injury expertise should be consulted. An evaluation or assessment is the first step, followed by a recommended course of treatment to prevent the self-destructive cycle from continuing.

    Treatment:
    Self-injury treatment options include outpatient therapy, partial, (6-12 hours a day) and inpatient hospitalization. When the behaviors interfere with daily living, such as employment and relationships, and are health or
    life threatening, a specialized self-injury hospital program with an experienced staff is recommended.

    The effective treatment of self-injury is most often a combination of medication, cognitive/behavioral therapy, and interpersonal therapy, supplemented by other treatment services as needed. Medication is often useful in the management of depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive behaviors, and the racing thoughts that may accompany self-injury. Cognitive-behavioral therapy helps individuals understand and manage their destructive thoughts and behaviors. Contracts, journals, and behavior logs are useful tools for regaining self-control. Interpersonal therapy assists individuals in gaining insight and skills for the development and maintenance of relationships. Services for eating disorders, alcohol/substance abuse, trauma abuse, and family therapy should be readily available and integrated into treatment, depending on individual needs.

    In addition to the above, successful courses of treatment are marked by 1) patients who are actively involved in and committed to their treatment, 2) aftercare plans with support for the patient’s new self-management skills and behaviors, and 3) collaboration with referring and other involved professionals.

    (from http://selfinjury.com/sifacts.htm)
    March 28th, 2007 at 02:44am
  • Lioness37

    Lioness37 (100)

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    I've done it before, but then I realized it didn;t help anything, it made things worse. So I stopped and now I try my best to help people who do self-harm.
    March 28th, 2007 at 03:50am
  • Jack's Cold Sweat

    Jack's Cold Sweat (100)

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    I used to.
    I don't advise anyone else to do it.

    I think people need to get it through their heads that not all people who self injure do it because they are "emo".
    It's a way of coping.
    I think it is sad that a lot of people do it.
    And what makes it worse is some people do it for trend.
    March 29th, 2007 at 03:44am
  • Ridiculosis

    Ridiculosis (150)

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    FailurePlayedInStero:
    I used to.
    I don't advise anyone else to do it.

    I think people need to get it through their heads that not all people who self injure do it because they are "emo".
    It's a way of coping.
    I think it is sad that a lot of people do it.
    And what makes it worse is some people do it for trend.
    Yeah. I know some people who cut and definatley would not fit under the "emo" label.
    March 29th, 2007 at 05:40pm
  • Arcane-Inamorata

    Arcane-Inamorata (100)

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    I started self-harming in grade six. I was bulemic, but that didn't last very long. I also would punch myself and dig my nails into my skin. Then as I got older I started using razorblades and I cut my wrists and ankles a lot. Then one day my friend decided to tell my parents (and I'm still mad about it) but I did decide to stop and I feel a lot better about myself now. I can't say I really regret doing it but if I found out that, for example, my brother or my cousins started SI, then I would be really sad and try to help them stop.
    April 4th, 2007 at 04:22am
  • fall-from-a-star

    fall-from-a-star (100)

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    i do.
    i'd use anything. kinife, razor, compass, glass, anything that was near... or i'd punch a wall unti i bleed. or scratch myself repeatedly. im trying to stop...but it helps, the pain feels less.
    i want to stop-but i dont.
    i need to hurt, i need to bleed, i need to punish myself.
    April 4th, 2007 at 08:27pm
  • Matt Smith

    Matt Smith (900)

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    I go through enough physical pain on a regular basis to not want to inflict some more on myself. Seriously, pain does nothing for me, I've had too much. o.o

    All I can say is that it isn't for me. It really isn't for me. But I can understand why people do it; just because my life is cool and I can live with myself doesn't mean other people don't wake up to torment and self-loathing.

    My friends say self harm is "stupid", and I certainly don't advocate it, but its a narrowminded view. Then again, I don't think I really have an open-minded friend. However, I really don't think self harming is a good thing at all. I'm sure people who do it don't think its a good thing.
    April 4th, 2007 at 10:41pm
  • Mr. Fahrenheit

    Mr. Fahrenheit (100)

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    SA is a really serious thing. I am still trying to stop after relapsing God knows how many times. I will always tell people to find other ways to solve their problems before it gets too serious, but I know some people won't listen.

    Also, I know that everyone always says that there is no person who does it completely for attention, but I know for a fact that there are people who want attention so badly that they will sink to SA. One of my friends went through that at one time. However, if someone wants attention that badly, something must be going on that isn't good. Either they are being ignored or even neglected by their parents, or something bad is going through their mind.

    So, if you have never SA-ed, don't start now. If you do SA, please, try to stop. It's terrible for you. I know how hard it is to stop, and don't get discouraged if you relapse. If you try hard enough, you won't need it.
    April 5th, 2007 at 09:37pm
  • Willow2293

    Willow2293 (100)

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    were-all-gunna-die:
    i do.
    i'd use anything. kinife, razor, compass, glass, anything that was near... or i'd punch a wall unti i bleed. or scratch myself repeatedly. im trying to stop...but it helps, the pain feels less.
    i want to stop-but i dont.
    i need to hurt, i need to bleed, i need to punish myself.
    i went through that too. for a long time. i'm still trying to quit.
    i know how you feel (i want to stop but i dont) it's like smoking. we know it's bad, but it's addicting.
    why do you want to punish yourself? i know the need to hurt and to bleed (i know that a little too well, actually) but what did you do so wrong that you need to be punished?
    April 5th, 2007 at 11:28pm
  • Ridiculosis

    Ridiculosis (150)

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    were-all-gunna-die:
    i do.
    i'd use anything. kinife, razor, compass, glass, anything that was near... or i'd punch a wall unti i bleed. or scratch myself repeatedly. im trying to stop...but it helps, the pain feels less.
    i want to stop-but i dont.
    i need to hurt, i need to bleed, i need to punish myself.
    Why not try talking to someone about it, writing it down, blast your music, play sports, go for a walk, clean...the list goes on. Or maybe you can pray about it. I don't mean to sound preachy but God has helped me so much through SI, and I even recently made a promise to Him and myself that SI is no longer for me. I pray that you may have the courage to do the same. I mean, what do you have to lose?
    April 7th, 2007 at 10:41pm
  • billie.

    billie. (100)

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    Enough people know what it is, enough people actually do it.
    What needs to happen is for us to brainstorm together some ways to get over the addiction.
    April 8th, 2007 at 04:30am
  • Sanity Is Illegal.

    Sanity Is Illegal. (100)

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    Firstly, if you want to help people who do self harm, you
    need to define the ones that actually need help &&
    the ones that are attention whores. That is a definite first
    step, otherwise, you don't know who you are helping, &&
    who you are not.

    Personally, I see talking as the first step. Whether the
    person who does it speaks up, or a friend or relative
    notices && voices their concern. Talking is one of the
    best strategic way of getting someone out of it, despite the
    fact it's the hardest step. However, if you don't take it,
    how the hell are you going to get anywhere ??

    While, or after the talking stage [[which can take months]], you
    really need to rid yourself of troubles. Walking,
    socializing, sport, friends, anything that you can
    take pleasure in is suitable [[apart from harming, that's
    beside the point]]. Time with other people is
    very effective, as you get used to it, you will understand
    your own situation && take a liking//comfort to
    it.

    && REMEMBER;; life isn't all that bad. In the end, things
    will work out, I promise. I did it, I'm still here aren't I ??
    April 8th, 2007 at 11:12pm
  • Ridiculosis

    Ridiculosis (150)

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    Knights Of Cydonia.:
    Firstly, if you want to help people who do self harm, you
    need to define the ones that actually need help &&
    the ones that are attention whores. That is a definite first
    step, otherwise, you don't know who you are helping, &&
    who you are not.

    Personally, I see talking as the first step. Whether the
    person who does it speaks up, or a friend or relative
    notices && voices their concern. Talking is one of the
    best strategic way of getting someone out of it, despite the
    fact it's the hardest step. However, if you don't take it,
    how the hell are you going to get anywhere ??

    While, or after the talking stage [[which can take months]], you
    really need to rid yourself of troubles. Walking,
    socializing, sport, friends, anything that you can
    take pleasure in is suitable [[apart from harming, that's
    beside the point]]. Time with other people is
    very effective, as you get used to it, you will understand
    your own situation && take a liking//comfort to
    it.

    && REMEMBER;; life isn't all that bad. In the end, things
    will work out, I promise. I did it, I'm still here aren't I ??
    I agree. Talking helps so much!
    April 9th, 2007 at 02:47am
  • neverland.

    neverland. (100)

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    I began to self harm when I was 12. It started off as depression, I was mucked up in the head. I had no friends, my parents and I didn't get on and I felt guilty for a lot of things I said and did to people. I felt lifted of my sorrows and guilt and pain as it bled out of me. It was like all these emotions were running though my blood and I could let the bleed out of me. I went to counselling for a while and I found talking helped however I still cut.

    It is like a relief, an easy exit. I know deep inside me it won't help but it stops the pain for a while. I can't stop, it is like a drug.
    April 9th, 2007 at 06:31pm
  • Tickle Me Sara

    Tickle Me Sara (100)

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    I used to self harm.
    One of my friends found out and then started doing it, and flaunted it.
    I felt so horrible for that, at the same time, I couldn't believe she'd do something like that.
    But I couldn't stop myself, I was purely addicted.
    I started talking to this girl Nina, and she made me relize it wasn't worth it.
    We helped each other quit. I'm still clean.
    But she was put into a psyco center for almost this whole school year.
    She won't tell anyone why, but I'm sure cutting/drugs was part of it.

    It's not the lastest trend to follow, it doesn't make you cool, or popular.
    It just makes you relize you have some form on mental problem, and that you're an idiot.
    I always get cold really easily becuase the circulation in my arms is poor due to the damage I caused to them. I get stomach pains from abusing advil, even thought I don't abuse it anymore, it has caused me to get these stomach pains.

    I regrat self-harming, and anytime I hear someone called "emo" for asumed self-harm I turn bitchy. Britany Spears could self harm, doesn't make her "emo".
    And when I see people doing it for the sake of "the trend", what ever sick trend that is, I flip.

    People use it for attention, and there's other people out there who can't get them self to stop because their life is such a shit whole, and their mind has becaome dependent on the release. People who want to stop, but can't. Then those idiots go around flaunting it like it's their newest and biggest car. ::Ranting: Cussing
    April 9th, 2007 at 08:52pm
  • the footloose doll.

    the footloose doll. (100)

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    yeah, I cut. Or used to.
    I've been pretty much clean for about 3 months.
    it hasnt been easy. it still isnt easy.
    but, in the end. you would have done an amazing feat and conquered it.

    I remember when I thought of quitting, I became terrified.
    There are other ways of dealing with what you're feeling.
    Talking, writing, drawing [anything creative], playing video games, even patting your pet.

    Sorry for the lengthy-ness, but here's a list of alternatives I find helpful:

    When you feel…

    Angry, frustrated, restless:
    Slash an empty plastic soda bottle or a piece of heavy cardboard or an old shirt or sock
    Make a soft cloth doll to represent the things you are angry at. Cut and tear it instead of yourself.
    Flatten aluminum cans for recycling, seeing how fast you can go.
    Hit a punching bag.
    Use a pillow to hit a wall, pillow-fight style.
    Rip up an old newspaper or phone book.
    On a sketch or photo of yourself, mark in red ink what you want to do. Cut and tear the picture.
    Make Play-Doh models and cut or smash them.
    Throw ice into the bathtub or against a brick wall hard enough to shatter it.
    Break sticks.
    Tear thick garbage bags with your hands.
    Crank up the music and dance.
    Clean your room (or the whole house).
    Go for a walk/jog/run/do some kickboxing.
    Go bowling – not only is it physical activity, it’s really loud too.
    Stomp around in heavy shoes.
    Play handball or tennis.
    Talk to someone.
    Scream into a pillow, to loud music, or in your car with the windows rolled up.
    These things tend to work better if you rant at the things you are cutting/tearing/hitting. Start out slowly, explaining why you are hurt and angry, but sometimes you may end up swearing and crying and yelling. That’s okay. It’s helpful to vent your emotions as long as you keep yourself and others safe.

    Sad, soft, melancholy, depressed, unhappy:
    Take a hot bath with bath oil or bubbles.
    Curl up under a comforter w/ hot cocoa and a good book.
    Baby yourself somehow – pull out your favorite blanket or a stuffed animal and rock in a rocking chair.
    Light some sweet smelling incense or candles.
    Listen to soothing music.
    Smooth nice body lotion into the parts of yourself you want to hurt.
    Call a friend and just talk about things that you like.
    Make a tray of special treats and tuck yourself into bed w/ it and watch TV or read.
    Visit a friend.
    Write a love letter to yourself listing all the qualities that you like.
    Stretch your muscles or do some yoga.
    Read children’s books.
    Watch your favorite movie.
    Trace your hand on a piece of paper then label each finger with one thing that feels special and safe for you and that corresponds to each of your five senses (e.g., taste: chai tea w/ honey; smell: vanilla candles).

    Craving sensation, feeling depersonalized, dissociating, feeling unreal:
    Squeeze ice hard. (Note: putting ice on a spot you want to burn gives you a strong painful sensation and leaves a red mark afterward, kind of like burning would but without the scars.)
    Put a finger into a frozen food (e.g., ice cream) for a minute.
    Bite into a hot pepper or chew a piece of ginger root.
    Rub liniment under your nose.
    Slap a tabletop hard.
    Snap your wrist with a rubber band.
    Take a cold bath.
    Suck on a strong mint or sour candy.
    Talk to someone.
    Stomp your feet on the ground.
    Focus on how it feels to breathe. Notice the way your chest and stomach move with each breath.
    Do some grounding exercises. Describe your surroundings in detail (e.g., “I’m sitting in a chair, I feel the softness of my skirt against my legs, I feel the slight chill of the air conditioner blowing on me”) or repeat phrases to yourself that tell you who and where you are (e.g., “My name is ____, I’m in my bedroom, I’m ___ years old). Place your hand in front of your face a focus on remembering each item you listed for each of you five senses that feels safe and secure.
    NOTE: Some people report that being online while dissociating increases their sense of unreality; be cautious about logging on in a dissociative state until you know how it affects you.

    Wanting focus:
    Do a task that is exacting and requires focus and concentration (e.g., play a computer game like Tetris or Minesweeper, writing a computer program, needlework, color in a coloring book).
    Eat a raisin mindfully. Pick it up, noticing how it feels in your hand. Look at it carefully; see the asymmetries and think about the changes the grape went through. Roll the raisin in your fingers and notice the texture; try to describe it. Bring the raisin up to your mouth, paying attention to how it feels to move your hand that way. Smell the raisin; what does it remind you of? How does a raisin smell? Notice that you’re beginning to salivate, and see how that feels. Open your mouth and put the raisin in, taking time to think about how the raisin feels to your tongue. Chew slowly, noticing how the texture and even the taste of the raising change as you chew it. Are there little seeds or stems? How is the inside different form the outside? Finally, swallow.
    Choose an object in the room. Examine it carefully and then write as detailed a description of it as you can. Include everything: size, weight, texture, shape, color, possible uses, feels, etc.
    Choose a random object, like a paper clip, and try to list 30 different uses for it.
    Pick a subject and research it on the web.

    Wanting to see blood:
    Draw on yourself w/ a red felt tip pen.
    Take a small bottle of liquid red food coloring and warm is slightly by dropping it into a cup of hot water for a few minutes. Uncap the bottle and press its tip against the place you want to cut. Draw the bottle in a cutting motion while squeezing it slightly to let the food color trickle out.
    Draw on the areas you want to cut using ice that you’ve made by dropping six or seven drops of red food color into each of the ice-cube tray wells.
    Paint yourself w/ red tempera paint.

    Wanting to see scars or pick scabs:
    Get a henna tattoo kit. You put the henna on as a paste and leave it overnight; the next day you can pick it off as you would a scab and it leaves an orange-red mark behind.
     Play the “fifteen minute game.” Distract yourself for 15 minutes without hurting yourself and tell yourself that if you still want to harm yourself in 15 minutes, you can. When the time is up , see if you can go another 15 minutes. Repeat as necessary.
    April 10th, 2007 at 01:02pm
  • billie.

    billie. (100)

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    damn, stringy, you're helpful ^-^
    April 10th, 2007 at 01:41pm
  • Potential Slayer

    Potential Slayer (100)

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    I detest when people automatically associate Self-Harm with Depression.

    Believe it or not, there are people who live in grand lives and are happy, yet just love the fact of cutting themselves for their own personal pleasure.

    I'm not condoning in the matter of cutting yourself, I just state what should also be observed.

    Self-Harm and Depression are two DIFFERENT matters. They may be linked, but not actual 'symptoms'.
    April 11th, 2007 at 01:52pm
  • billie.

    billie. (100)

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    I don't believe we're discussing masochism here.
    we're discussing teenagers who self harm because they feel like shit.
    April 11th, 2007 at 03:45pm
  • Potential Slayer

    Potential Slayer (100)

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    Magazine Sickness.:
    I don't believe we're discussing masochism here.
    we're discussing teenagers who self harm because they feel like shit.
    If you read the first post, I believe it discussed about Self-Injury. It is sill SELF-INJURY.;)

    Read the DSM and the fellow development of the new versions.

    Plus, labeling teenagers who do self harm because the feel horrid, is non-realistic in today's society. It use to be a case in that somewhat obscured form, but it's gone beyond.

    There's a difference.
    April 11th, 2007 at 10:36pm