Marks on my skin, Anonymous (16)

I cut myself for the first time in November, 2018. I remember feeling completely overwhelmed with homework, problems at school, tension with my family, and friend problems. I was in the midst of a panic attack and I couldn’t keep hitting myself, it wasn’t doing enough. I ran to my bathroom and cut my knee. I knew it was wrong and I knew once I start I wouldn’t be able to stop but I did it anyway. The next week my problems were even worse and again I cut my knee. This went on for another year and I had developed 16 permanent scars all lined up next to each other. Whenever I’d ask someone for help, they’d say I was doing it for attention and that I didn’t have any serious issues. My parents weren’t divorced, I hadn’t been sexually assaulted, I wasn’t being bullied, I didn’t have a diagnosed mental disorder, etc. They were right, but somehow everything I was going through still seemed like the most horrible things in the world. I stopped asking for help because I knew no one would believe that I needed it and I wouldn’t tell my parents because they would think the same. Pretty soon I ran out of space on my knee and moved up to my arm. People started noticing. I started calling them “cat scratches” and I tried to hide them as best as I could and I would refuse to wear short sleeves even in the heat. A couple months later, my parents noticed. It was the worst feeling ever to be scolded by your parents for doing something so stupid when you know you can’t stop yourself. They wouldn’t get me a therapist and they told me I was doing it because of peer pressure. They took away my phone so I couldn’t contact my friends and that was all. When I got my phone back I was still really stressed from that whole situation. It’s been about a month since then and I refuse to show my arms to anyone. I continue to self harm but in the places that I know no one will see them. I hope I can get help because I know I need it and I can’t help myself. That’s my self harm story.

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