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Himitsu Offline
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Question Opinion: Why is SH considered bad? - April 13th 2014, 02:58 AM

This thread has been labeled as triggering by the original poster or by a Moderator. Please take this into consideration before continuing to read.

Maybe this is horrible for me to ask, but why is SH bad?
For me, at least, the only part of SH I regret is getting caught and disappointing my parents so much. But, maybe, if society didn't have such a stigma about SH, if it were acceptable (within reason) would it really be that bad?

Say you do it carefully right, disinfect, not too deep, you'll have scars, but that's not too different from tattoos. And if you don't have to always hide it, it's safer because you don't have to be embarassed asking the doctor for a blood test to check if you're ok or getting antibiotics or getting help if you go too far. If people understood, then you don't have the guilt afterwards, so it makes it at least a semi-effective coping mechanism, right? If it hurts no one else?

Maybe I'm looking at this from the wrong angle, but I have trouble seeing what's so wrong about SH if you're careful... Where are people coming from with this?

I'd love to hear your opinions. Sorry.

Last edited by LlamaLlamaDuck; April 16th 2014 at 10:18 AM. Reason: Adding triggering prefix.
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Re: Opinion: Why is SH considered bad? - April 13th 2014, 11:40 AM

In my opinion, I think it's bad that someone hurts themselves because most of these people don't know what they're doing. For example, someone who cuts may be completely oblivious to the anatomy of the arms or legs, and might hit a nerve, tendon, or artery. It does not take much depth at all to hit something. Another example, someone who pulls hair too often can give themselves baldness. Stuff like that. And then there's people who do it for attention, people who do it because they become addicted, or people who do it because they're frustrated with their emotions. There are a lot of reasons why it's not a good thing. However, I'm not entirely against the idea for someone who is knowledgeable about anatomy and who is doing it for appropriate reasons.

As embarrassed as you may be, it's really not anything new for medical professionals. They deal with so many strange and far more embarrassing things on a daily basis than SH scars. It's mostly just friends and family you need to worry about. Somewhere along the line, things just got stigmatized, and once that happens, it's difficult to change opinions as illogical something may be.
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Re: Opinion: Why is SH considered bad? - April 13th 2014, 11:43 AM

Hey there,

No need to apologise - the best way to understand is to ask.

I have to disagree with you, though. I think there is no way that SH is a good thing. A lot of people start off just as you said; they do it carefully with clean instruments and they don't go too deep, or they hurt themselves in ways that wont leave too much of a mark, but often that's just a starting point. SH is an addiction. You start off small, but soon that's not enough, and the urges continue after hurting yourself, and you feel like you need something more, and gradually she harming gets worse. Some people promise themselves it wont get that bad, but before they know it, it has.

Also, SH is always hurting someone. First of all, it;s hurting the SHer. It's leaving a perhaps permanent mark on them which didn't have to be there if they could have found alternate coping mechanisms. It's endangering their life in some cases, despite it not being intentional a lot of the time, because accidentally going too deep or getting an infection is dangerous. Aside from that, it's hurting those around you. Sure, if it was less taboo, PERHAPS it wouldn't hurt people so much, but chances are it still would. Pain can be second hand, and even if it's not physical, emotional pain can be pretty painful too. I know that when I found out people I care about had hurt themselves, it really shook me up, and they were on my mind for a lot of the time until I knew they were safe. It is a distressing thing to go through yourself or to see someone else go through, so I think SH will always manage to hurt someone.

I think there are so many better ways to deal with things than SH out there. Justifying it doesn't make it healthy or safe when you could be writing about your emotions, or drawing to take your mind off of it. If you have a look here, you can find a lot of other ways to deal with anything that might cause urges. There is always another way, and so my opinion is that SH is bad.

I hope this helped! Feel free to ask anything else if you still want to understand things. Like I say, everyone is entitled to an opinion, but I think nobody should ever have to resort to hurting themselves to deal with something.

Take care.

❤ Nana ❤

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is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being.
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Re: Opinion: Why is SH considered bad? - April 13th 2014, 03:07 PM

I get what your point is there, but I think the above poster is right that even though you may not go too deep right away, sometimes when the addiction takes hold you will get to a point where you crave more and more of it, and then you may want to go deeper to get the same affect that you did before. Sometimes I compare self harm to substances, where you need more and more to get the same affect you did when you first started.

The other thing with self harm is that sure it's a coping mechanism, but for some it's their ONLY coping mechanism and they don't ever get support for the things that are going on. That means the problems they are facing that cause them to self harm in the first place will only continue to come back and it will turn into this endless cycle, ending with things continuing to pile up for them.

I WILL give you that if there wasn't as much stigma anymore people would be more likely to seek help for it and let others in, but then there is also the point Hollie made of it still probably being at least a bit distressing, even if someone knows at least a bit about what self harm is about.

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Re: Opinion: Why is SH considered bad? - April 13th 2014, 03:15 PM


I will be the first to admit that I have also questioned whether or not self-harm is a bad thing. My view on it was perhaps skewed by my view of myself, which is distinctively negative. Thus, I would be unlikely to look at SH from another angle, especially when I never felt like it hurt anyone else.

Like you, all I regretted was my parents finding out. I feel like what you do not know cannot hurt you. Stigma is rife, and the fact that SH'ers have been organised into groups of "attention-seekers", "people who don't know what they're doing", "people who are frustrated" and "genuine SH'ers" on this thread goes to show that the stigma does not just come from outside, but a no true Scotsman-esque fallacy within the group of people who self-harm.

That being said, I have to agree with all of what Hollie has said. Even if it may seem different to one who struggles with SH, it is never a good thing. I am not stigmatising, but merely stating my subjective view.

Take care.
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Re: Opinion: Why is SH considered bad? - April 13th 2014, 10:29 PM


I will say right now that I feel very strongly that self harm is bad, but I will also say that I have asked myself this exact question many times before. After thinking over it though, I always arrive at the same answers.
I agree that if the stigma was reduced it would make the guilt slightly easier to deal with, but are you honestly saying that you would be able to walk around proudly with SH scars and not feel the slightest bit of guilt when your friends/colleagues/family/partners see them? I also have some other problems with this idea, and I want to make it clear I'm not trying to bash anyone here, I'm just giving my opinions

1) Stigma being reduced would increase the possibility of more people turning to self harm

2) Like in previous posts-self harm always has and always will hurt several people, whether it was more acceptable or not. Knowing that your friend is feeling so bad that they need to hurt themselves to deal with it is very painful

3)Again like previous posts- Even if you are the most careful self harmer in the world, accidents happen, and it becomes an addiction very easily. Never in a million years did I think I would ever end up getting to the point where I was self harming every day and ending up in minor injuries over it, but it happens way too easily

4) Self harming is not an adequate coping mechanism because it doesn't actually solve anything. Along with the fact that it is very unhealthy and there are many other ways to deal with things. Even if self harm was a social norm and totally accepted, it would still be a problem because it doesn't solve a single problem, it just creates more. It helps to deal with the pain..but it doesn't help anything that is causing the pain in the first place, so it will just never stop unless you deal with the root of the problem.

Originally Posted by Himitsu View Post
If people understood, then you don't have the guilt afterwards, so it makes it at least a semi-effective coping mechanism, right?
People can be told about self harm in a million different ways, but they will NEVER be able to truly understand it unless they have been there themselves. They can empathise and offer support, but to be able to understand it properly they have to have been so desperate and in so much pain that they wanted to physically hurt themselves. That isn't something you can really explain..

Hope I didn't come across as too harsh or anything, just wanted to make my point

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