My ask box won’t let me publish my answer, so I’m posting it this way:
You definitely have the strength. Everyone does—you just have to learn how to channel it. Next time you want to, I have a couple of things to ask of you.
First things first: Wait.
Think about what’s going on. What’s making you want to self-harm? What was the trigger, or the event, or the bad feeling? Loneliness? Depression? A certain event that triggered it?
One way that really helps me when I’m struggling is writing about it. Whether it’s poetry, prose, or random scribblings in your journal, it feels good to get it out. It feels even better when you can get it out to an understanding person, whether that be a close friend, a family member, doctor, or therapist. Find someone to talk to, and if you don’t feel ready to talk to someone about it yet, then just write about it.
Try some of these tactics to help prevent self-harm as well:
- Writing letters
- Journaling (as I said)
- Turn on music that makes you dance, and dance!
If you’re trying to do those things but they don’t work or you’re still fixated on self-harm, try:
- Squeezing ice
- Snapping a rubber band
- Go for a run/walk (but don’t use exercise as punishment)
- Play with your pet
- Call a friend (even if you don’t tell them what’s going on, hearing their voice oftentimes helps)
- Take a bath (without razors nearby)
- Message me! I’ll try to respond as soon as I can, as long as I’m home.
- Read a chapter in a book.
- Take scissors and drag them across the cover of a composition notebook (cutting the book and not yourself relieves some of the physical frustration and gets the “action” out, leaving only the mental part to deal with)
- Cook or bake something
- Clean or organize something
- Make a bracelet, or do something else rhythmic (the repetitive motion soothes minds)
- Paint your nails
- Fill out a coloring book
Just breathe. Find something else to fixate your mind on. I know self-harm is an addiction, and I know how consuming it can feel. But if you take up an instrument or a hobby (scrapbooking, needlework, jogging, yoga, biking, journaling, making something, etc) or even do something as simple as figuring when you’re most triggered and scheduling to walk your dog during that time. There are so many simple things you can do that really go miles. Make a cup of tea, go sit with your family, watch a show that makes you cry with laughter, or even take a nap.
Lastly, and most importantly:
Find a favorite picture of yourself as a child.
Look at it, and think…
Would you starve her?
Would you make her puke?
Would you make her exercise until she faints?
Would you tell her she’s worthless?
Would you tell her she’s not good enough?
Would you make her cry when she looks in the mirror?
Would you tell her she’s going to grow up and hate herself?
Would you tell her she’s going to lie in bed praying for death?
Would you tell her she won’t have the energy to fake a smile anymore?
Would you abuse her?
Would you make her spend hours in the bathroom because of an overdose of laxatives?
Would you hit her?
Would you punish her?
Would you burn her, cut her, scratch her?
Would you make her bleed?
Would you make her WATCH herself bleed?
Would you rip her hair out?
Would you let her be scarred?
Would you make her plead for mercy?
Would you make her beg for release?
Would you make her drown her thoughts in alcohol and drugs?
Would you make her cry simply because she’s alive?
Would you kick her, push her down, abandon her, hate her, torment her?
Would you kill her?
Then treat yourself the same way, lovely.
(All of this goes for guys as well.)
If you’re still struggling, check out this page. It’s a link to a page on my old blog where I chronicled a ton of posts that helped me when I was going through a rough time.
Stay safe, my love.