Self-Harm, Why and How to Stop

I’m trying to get a better understanding of why this happens.

I have been guilty of it before. I never used sharp things but I would claw at myself and hit myself. My reasons were largely due to

a) Anger. When I was furiously angry I needed some sort of release. I could never physically attack who or what I wanted to, so I would hurt myself as both a release for the rage and as a weird sort of punishment to whoever caused me to be that upset. (Usually my parents, especially my very temperamental dad) Of course it didn’t work that way, I always hid the scratches, it wasn’t like I held them in their faces, but it made me feel better about it I guess.

It was also due to b) My psychosis. When the demons wouldn’t shut up I would scratch, pound and shake my head violently to try to make it stop.

Generally my voices stop me before I actually hurt myself, but sometimes I ignore them and do it anyways. They tell me that if so many things are already hurting me, why would I want to hurt me too. They also told me that hurting what’s on the outside wouldn’t help fix what was hurting on the inside, even if it provided temporary relief.

Like I’ve mentioned before, my voices help me keep going.

I’m making the post because I recently saw a post on another website over someone struggling with depression and I never understood how you could hurt yourself out of sadness. Wouldn’t that just make you more sad? How does that make you feel better? I remember one of my friends who cut herself would always tell me I didn’t understand, but then she wouldn’t try to explain it to me so she didn’t allow me understand. It was very upsetting to have her push me away like that.

If you’ve hurt yourself before, why did you do it? Also, to make this a helpful thread, what keeps you from hurting yourself/stops you?

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I’ve never been one to tolerate physical pain and that is part of the reason I’ve never stooped to really hurting myself but the voices in my head have shown me images of cutting or doing self harm in various ways, with the end results in death but I am not ready to die. I may wish I were dead some days when the depression overtakes me, but days like today where I’m rational and non-moody I can admit I’m glad I’m still around. I think though I can partially understand the need in some peoples cases to self harm as a way of releasing all that negative emotions and memories. I’m not saying that it’s a good thing, but I’m not trying to put down those who result in self-harm because I can not judge other people like that.

With me the hardest thing is ignoring the voices and the images in my head that push me to do things like that. Normally I can ignore them because I don’t have the desire but when they push, and push and I start spiraling into depression release is the only thing I look for at that point. While self harm is technically a negative release technique it may be the only thing that comes to someone’s mind when they’re not rational. I tend to find prayer a strong release for negative feelings and when I get too bad, or too far down that dark hole I turn to prayer even if it means sitting and praying on my Rosary for an hour or so if it gets the negative feelings/voices/images out of my head without causing myself any more physical pain I will do it before I turn to pain.

See if the butterfly project helps also. A big internet movement so lots of support on the net for it. The main rules are…

  1. when you feel like you want to cut, take a marker or pen and draw a butterfly wherever the self-harm occurs.
  2. name the butterfly after a loved one, or someone that really wants you to get better.
  3. NO scrubbing the butterfly off.
  4. if you cut before the butterfly is gone, it dies. if you don’t cut, it lives.
  5. another person may draw them on you. these butterflies are extra special. take good care of them.
  6. even if you don’t cut, feel free to draw a butterfly anyways, to show your support.
    But can be easily transferred to just self-harm


i hurt myself because of self hatred…you hate what you look like, you hate everything about yourself…therefore it is logical in my mind and the mind of the sufferer to then inflict some sort of pain or suffering upon yourself…
i started at 9 or 10 clawing at my skin sometimes all over my body , somtimes just my arms and legs.
it escalated from there.
what keeps me from doing it, is i have too many scars to remind me ’ that it was not such a bright idea…or a good way to express my hurt.
take care

I remind myself by thinking that if I go psychotic again the next one could be suicide

Simple mistake and its all over


sing,dance,punch a wall anything just to get the anger out of you even whistling or shouting works for me


Some threads that may be of interest.