Explaining Self Harm Essay

2334 words - 9 pages

Self-mutilation is the deliberate, direct destruction or alteration of one’s body without suicidal intent. It is meant to be a way of coping with one’s emotions and to calm the hatred and rage within oneself. Before recent studies, it was thought to be a crazy, masochist act and although self-mutilators tend to have some psychological disorders they are no longer considered crazy. Due to these recent studies, there are also many ways to help stop and overcome self-mutilation.
The average self-mutilator has two goals. One being that their acts of self-harm are kept a secret because they feel no one would understand and people would just label them as crazy. The second goal is to have control of themselves. “It’s a way to have control over my body because I can’t control anything else in my life” (Smith 2). They normally feel that they cannot control any aspect of their lives, but they can control what they do with their bodies.
Self-mutilators also tend to have similar traits. The average self-mutilators aim to be perfect to feel accepted, but when they fail to live up to expectations they turn to self-harm. They have negative thoughts about who they are and how they look. They have a hard time expressing and coping with their emotions which consecutively leads to frequent mood swings. Everything just seems mixed up in their heads and they do not know how to fix it. Self-harm is their way of coping and their escape.
Two categories have been made for the types of self-harm; they are either mild or extreme. The most common way of mild self-harm is cutting. “Cutters” use any sharp objects such as blades, knives, glass, etc. to fulfill their needs. Seeing the blood flow out is like seeing all the stress, anger, and sadness leave their bodies. They tend to cut areas of their bodies that can easily be covered which usually consists of their arms, legs, and chests. It relieves and relaxes them.
Another form of mild self-harm is burning. The use of lighters, matches, cigarettes, hair- dryers, or just any types of hot objects are involved. The burns turn into blisters and self- mutilators tend to pop the blisters to interfere with the healing process. Scratching is also considered a type of self-harm. Self-harmers do not scratch at their skin as other people do when they have an itch. They scratch severely to break their skin and possibly bleed. They also scratch at scabs to intervene in the healing process. Head-banging has also become a common way to self-harm. It is self-explanatory what this type of self-harm is. Basically, they bang their heads against walls and any other hard objects found to stop or “kill” their thoughts and to relieve stress.They also bruise themselves, either by running into objects, hitting themselves, or any other thing they can to mark their bodies. Hurting themselves seems like the right thing to do because they feel they deserve the pain. After a while though, what use to cause them pain no longer is enough and that is...

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