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Self Harm If you or someone you know is struggling with self harm and needs advice or alternatives, we're here to help.

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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
jamdoughnut Offline
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just holding on for tonight... - June 17th 2015, 07:31 AM

Oh my gosh finally!!
ive been trying to make an acount on this site for two years now! I had to go out of my way and make a new email just so that i could post a thread without my mom finding out....
but im trying to hold on and it seems like every night is a battle... if i cut tonight then all hope is lost for me and i let everyone down. If i dont then i would be clean for a week, but i would be in even more pain than befor and the urges would only get worse...
i feel so broken, like im wandering in the darkness.....
  (#2 (permalink)) Old
Sophrosyne Offline
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Re: just holding on for tonight... - June 17th 2015, 08:11 AM

Firstly, it is ok to relapse, no one would be let down they might just wonder why. But it is ok to give up sometimes as long as you pick yourself up again and try again.

Secondly, I know it may seem like the urges will get stronger the longer you don't do it but it actually doesn't. The urges sort of fade if you wait long enough and hold on for long enough. It's just that sometimes when you've waiting a while, the urges come back for a few minutes and you just have to ignore them and try and do something else to take your mind off it.

You seem like you are going through a lot to handle at the moment, and just remember that there are people here who will listen when you need someone to talk to so feel free to talk to any of us whenever you need it ok?

You can do this, just keep going.

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  (#3 (permalink)) Old
Chai. Offline
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Re: just holding on for tonight... - June 17th 2015, 11:29 AM

Hey there,

First off, I am going to say welcome to TH. I am glad you were able to join and I am really glad you made this post asking for help. I know how much courage it takes to open up to someone, even if it is on the internet and talk about something like self harm. And it's really commendable that you made this thread.

If you don't cut today, you are going to be free for a week. So congratulations for going clean for so long. I know it doesn't feel that long, but every day self harm free is an achievement and you should be proud of yourself. Like Hilary said, relapse is a part of recovery. It does not mean you are weak, or that all hope is lost for you. What matters is how you react after a relapse. You just need to stand up again and try again. I know it's not as easy as it sounds, but it is not impossible either.

During the initial days of recovery, I always compared the path of recovery to that of a baby walking for the first time. Have you ever seen a baby walk for the first time? After every few steps, the baby falls but it does not give up. It stands up and tries walking again knowing it is not going to be easy, knowing there is a chance that it might fall again, but after a few falls, the baby learns to walk. Similarly after a few relapses, recovery becomes a possibility. Never say there is no hope. Just stand up with a smile, be proud about how far you have come and just try again. Okay?

The first thing towards recovery is figuring out what is triggering you to self harm. You could make a journal about your feelings or write a blog about your triggers. writing and journaling help figure out your triggers and also serve as a distraction method. Once you have figured out what triggers you, you could work towards avoiding your triggers or fighting them, depending on what they are. You need to find things that will help you cope in a healthy way. Every time you feel the urge to self harm you could try taking a walk, writing something, painting, reading, shopping, etc. You need to do things that make you happy. Things that will distract your mind and help you forget your urges.

The alternatives to self harm thread is a compilation of distraction techniques that has been put together by the members of TH. I suggest you take a look at that and see which of those work for you. Sometimes it might happen, that you feel some techniques don't help you, in those cases don't give up. Just move on to other methods until you find something that helps. There is always something that helps with the urges and the first thing is figuring out what it is. You could make a list of coping techniques that have helped you in the past and try using them again.

Think about reasons not to self harm. Keep goals for being self harm free. My reasons for not self harming would be not wanting to scar badly, being able to say I am self harm free for a particular time, being proud of myself. Yes, every small reason works. Make a list of reasons why you shouldn't self harm and keep it somewhere you can see it everyday and remind yourself why you want to beat it. In the beginning keep small goals for being self harm free. You could start of with a week and at the end, you can reward yourself for reaching the goal. The rewards helps serve as a motivation sometimes and it is worth a try.

I know this is really hard and I know you feel lost. But I also know you have it in you to fight this. It's going to be a tough fight, but you have to believe in yourself, okay? You don't have to do this along. Talk to someone who can help you. You could talk to us, your family, friends, a teacher, a doctor, anyone who can help you. You don't have to do this alone. You deserve to get help and that is only possible if you open up to someone about this. Don't give up, you got this.

I am just a message away if you want someone to talk to. Stay strong.

"Being happy isn't about having everything in your life perfect. Maybe it is about stringing together all the little things."

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  (#4 (permalink)) Old
Palmolive Offline
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Re: just holding on for tonight... - June 17th 2015, 08:43 PM

Hi there,

I'm sorry you've been trying to create a thread for such a long time but am glad you finally now have been able too and that you have come to us for some help and support. Going through self harm is a hard thing to go through and it's better to have support when you are going through it.

I think that you can make it a week. I have no doubt in you at all. You've come really far already and done so well that you should be really proud of yourself. Six days is amazing and if you slip up tonight, then you slip up and then you work towards seven days again. Saying that I don't think you will. I think you're strong enough to get through these urges and I'm going to try and give you some help on how to get through them and I hope its helpful to you in some way.

You need to believe in yourself. There is something called cheer-leading statements which are statements you say to yourself too cheer yourself on. For example, you can say "I have done this before I can do it again" or "I am strong enough to do this" or "I can beat these urges" but you have to keep telling them to yourself. The more you tell them to yourself the more you will believe in it. So keep repeating it to yourself in your head.

Here is a list to self harm alternatives: http://www.teenhelp.org/forums/f12-self-harm/. Try and use these when you have the urges to self harm. Yes it's going to be hard and it might take time, but distractions do help. Not all of them will work for you so it's about trying new things and trial and error. But keep trying the same things and keep trying new things, okay? Because you will find things that work for you and you are what is important in this. As long as you are engaging is these distractions, then you aren't self harming and that's a good point to me because it means you are staying safe and thats important too.

Also, talk to people. Don't be alone in this. Teachers, friends, family, doctors, counselors, talk to them all. Let them in and let them help because they can only do so if they know what is going on for you. If you came on here and just said I don't feel right, then we wouldn't be able to help you very well. Do you know what I mean? Even write to someone to let them know or print this of instead if you find that easier. This is about what works best for you and I know talking can be hard so lets focus on what you want to do in this. Okay?

Maybe create a poster and put on it reasons not to self harm. There must be more reasons not to self harm than there is to self harm. Also maybe you could write reasons to fight this and to get better. Then when you are struggling to cope and want to hurt yourself or give in you can go and look at the poster and it can remind you of why you shouldn't self harm and why you want to recover.

Has anything happened to make you feel this way? If there is something and you want to talk to us about it then know that we're here for you. Teenhelp is a safe place for you to talk and get the help you need. We won't judge you or your situation but we will be there for you and help you as much as we can. If you don't want to talk to us about it thats okay too or if there isn't anything making you feel this way then that's okay too.

The thing is is that you do have to take baby steps and you have to keep choosing recovery again and again and again, every single time you want to hurt yourself in some way. You don't just choose recovery once, you know? Its repetitive. And it can get tiring but in the long run it's very worth it because your life can be anything you want it to be and by beating all of this you can have that life of anything and be anyone. You can beat this and get through to the other side, it's just going to take some hard work and time because times a healer. You can get through this so keep you chin up and fight it. We believe in you, you just need to believe in yourself, okay?

Take good care and stay safe. Come on here if you have urges and talk instead of harming yourself,

"Only in the dark, can you see the stars..."
Josie 12/3/2014, always in my heart. Sue 19/2/2016; Peter, Ellie, Hannah, Andy, Kirtsie RIP.

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Re: just holding on for tonight... - June 18th 2015, 12:18 AM

Hi, Jamari!

Welcome to TeenHelp! We're really happy to have you join us, and I'm sorry it took so long for you to be able to create a thread but I'm so glad you were able to make an account and reach out here. This place can be wonderful for support and finding others who understand.

You mentioned how you feel you would be letting others down if you were to relapse, but that's probably not true. Regardless of a relapse, your efforts to stay self-harm free, the urges you resisted and things you get through resorting to healthier coping mechanisms still matter after a slip-up. Relapse is a part of recovery, it doesn't mean all hope is lost and it's important to remind yourself of that. Carefree gave a great view of it, it is like baby steps and it's okay to relapse. Be sure to be proud of yourself for your accomplishments and progress, okay? As Hilary mentioned, eventually urges fade and become easier to deal with after you're self-harm free for awhile, and learning healthier coping techniques is important to help you deal with them.

Do those close to you in your life know of your struggles, such as your parents? Since you said you've been trying to create an account on here without your mom finding out, I assume your mom isn't aware of your self-harm issues? Or maybe you just want a safe place to talk about your feelings? Either way, I understand completely. But while seeking support online can be incredibly helpful, it still doesn't replace real life support given by those in your personal life. Having support from your parents or others could be really helpful to you as you have someone to talk to at home and when you have urges. Along with that, you deserve to have support and someone to talk to instead of facing this alone, Jamari, you know?

Having healthy outlets and ways to express your feelings is a good idea so that you don't keep your feelings bottled up. You can do so in so many ways too, such as art, or writing poetry, short stories and songs. Do you play a musical instrument? Learning to play could be a fun hobby along with being an emotional outlet. Do you have a journal? I recommend keeping a journal to write down your thoughts, feelings and events that happen throughout your days. Getting things off your chest can help a lot, and on that note, you could also start your own blog here on TeenHelp as a substitute for journaling! Identifying and writing down your triggers can be helpful too so that you're able to take the next step in figuring out ways to avoid them if possible or learn healthier ways to cope with them.

Exercise and sunlight release endorphins just as self-harm does, which could help with your self-harm urges. Distracting yourself with hobbies you enjoy and introducing new hobbies in your life might be beneficial so that you're able to fill your time with things that make you happy. On that note, remember to treat yourself kindly! When you feel like hurting yourself, distract yourself with small joys and things that make you happy. Such as a relaxing bath, a favorite hot beverage or snack, or even paint your nails! Do something for you.

As Jessie said, you have to keep choosing recovery. And she's so right, you can beat this and come out on the other side. Others have gotten far in self-harm recovery and so can you. I cannot stress that enough, you may not realize it, but you're so much stronger than you think. And eventually I hope you see the strength you have because it's enough to get through this. You don't have to go through it alone either as you now have a safe place to receive support and a place to share your feelings.

Has anything in particular happened to make you turn to self-harm? You're more than welcome to talk about anything bothering you and making you feel this way. Others have offered such great advice and I hope this has helped you. In the meantime, you're welcome to continue reaching out here and you can message me anytime if you need someone to talk to, I don't mind listening ever! Everyone needs to be able to vent and have someone listen, right? Take care and stay strong, Jamari, you can do this, believe in yourself.
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