My Experiences With Self-Harm & Depression - National Self-Harm Awareness Day, 1st March 2012.
Good afternoon everyone, I’m going to be writing a very personal post for a change. I’ve been thinking about addressing the topic of self-harm for a while now, as it’s something I’ve experienced; and what better day than today?
(I originally posted this on my Tumblr, as I was anxious as to how people would respond to it. People have sent me such kind messages of support though, since I wrote it. Seeing that it's helped people already, just makes me so happy. I hope it gets as good a reaction on here, as it did there. I haven't blogged in days, due to Blogger's photo uploader not working - I keep attempting to upload all of my London photos, but it just won't upload past 5/6 of them. Hopefully it'll be fixed soon.)
Most of you know, I’ve been bullied practically my whole life. Through primary school, secondary school, outside of school and online. Due to the bullying, I developed depression and a huge case of self-loathing over the years. I started self-harming as such, when I was around 13-14. It was a very, very dark place in my life.
I’m not going to go into the details of where I cut, how I cut and all that; it doesn’t matter. I cut because I wanted to hurt myself, I hated myself and my life so much that I felt pain was a sort of punishment for me. I did it for a few months, not daily but regularly.
I finally stopped when a “cutting session” became very OTT, the one cutting session that left every single one of the scars you can see in the photo above. I won’t go into details, but it was like a scene from a gory horror movie.. you get the picture! It was gross, I was terrified but it was a major wake up call for me to be quite honest. I told nobody, not one person until I eventually told a mate in school a few days later.
My Mum saw my cuts a few weeks after the above happened, she saw them by mistake. She of course rang my Dad straight away, who told my Nana. I remember the stress of hiding the cuts in school, in Home Ec my teacher would constantly give out to for not rolling up that one sleeve, but I still refused to roll it up. Same with P.E class, I had to wear the lamest looking armband to cover them, it was terrible. I know people who’ve cut before also, but didn’t do it on their wrists like me. They cut everywhere from their thighs, to their stomach.
A year later, I started binge drinking every weekend. The bullying continued, my self-loathing developed into Body Dysmorphia; I was an absolute wreck! I was still depressed more than ever, and I tried to overdose twice in one year. I know some of you may not know that, but yep.. I was only 15. Again, no help was looked for, for me. Looking back I think, why the hell didn’t I look for help myself? But I was only 15, the idea of a therapist scared me.
Over the years, I’ve built up a really, really thick skin. I’m a complete Marmite person; you either love me or hate me! I’m cool with that too, most of the time. People judge me wayyy too harshly over the net and irritates me. Any subscriber, or follower I’ve ever met in person has told me how nice and friendly I was to them. There’s nothing more amazing than meeting someone, who likes what you do.. it’s the best feeling in the world! I’m a very strong-minded person I realise that, as most of you know. If I believe in something, I’ll say it. I’m the first person to stick up for myself, and others for that matter. I receive abuse daily, mostly regarding my underbite disfigurement, which doesn’t hurt me at all nowadays to be honest. I think if you hear something enough, you become numb to it’s harshness..
I’m starting to ramble, so I’ll just get to the point, it sounds so bloody cliché but things do get better! Even if you’re still dealing with unnecessary shit off people constantly, YOU can change YOU. Almost like training yourself to not be bothered by people’s slags and trying to make the best out of you. If you self-harm, or are suffering from depression, the best thing you can do is talk to someone. Tell a friend, a best friend or maybe an older sibling. I find parents to be a bit judgemental when it comes to things like this, they immediately assume you’re doing it because of the music you listen to/people you hang out with bla bla bla. Just TELL SOMEONE! Take it from someone who bottled all of these feelings up for years, you end up exploding with anger. It doesn’t help anybody.
If you cut, those scars will be there forever. I had a few of mine tattooed over, as you can see in the photo and I’m getting another tattoo to cover the rest in a few weeks. I got a generic ‘Fighter’ script, because the song Fighterby Christina Aguilera (yep, I know..) used to give me courage and strength when I was being picked on in primary school. I remember listening to that song constantly, and adoring the lyrics and feeling like I could be who I wanted to be, and forget about the rest of arseholes bringing me down. To this day, the song still gives me the strength. It means a lot to me, every time I look down at my scars, I see ‘Fighter’ now.. I feel instantly strong and encouraged to be a happy person.
If you know a friend cuts, or are suspicious of one, talk to them and be out-straight about it. Don’t go accusing every person you see wearing 40 bracelets now, of being a cutter but sure.. it’s better to be safe, than sorry? If it wasn’t for me opening up to my friends about my problems, I probably wouldn’t be writing this right now.
If you’ve managed to read this whole post, well done haha! I just thought I’d share my experience and advice with you guys, as after I recorded my tattoo video and briefly talked about my past, some of you mailed me saying it helped to hear how someone else got through that dark period in their life. Trust me, it gets better.. it really does. Physically hurting yourself is not worth it, every time you feel the need to cut, distract yourself with doing something else with your hands - sounds weird, but it works. Whether it be cooking, reading, typing.. whatever.
I hope this has helped some of you, or maybe just helped you all get to know me better. I always find it helps reading someone else’s experience anyway. :)