It Ain't Paper Cut!
By: Khalid A.
He wears a long sleeved shirt on a hot day. She tells her mom a cat scratched her. He crawls into a dark corner in his room. She cries quietly in the bathroom. They mask their sadness with bleeding lines and they take their painful remnants to their futures.
It’s amazingly confusing what pain can do, how far it can go, and how crazy it can become! And they say love is the craziest! We’re talking about an addiction here and what could be the common meaning of an addiction isn’t more than an obsessive habit you run after such as drugs, fetishes, alcohol, pills, and the list goes on. However, ever thought self-injury is considered one? We’re talking about an agonizing inaudible growing issue that is happening among teens and young adults. Cutting to the chase, it all boils to that desperate feeling of helplessness a person goes through. Enduring the agonizing human condition and it’s wavering attempt isn't squared on inner conflict anymore, it has developed to a harmful phase. Yet it’s hard to understand why some people cut themselves on purpose. This atrocious habit is actually happening and under the hush-hush with a rising number. Statistics shows that 1 in 12 people are harming themselves on purpose. The definition of self-harm starts to form when the person bottles up unexpressed feelings that drives him or her to physically express it and let it out through cutting. The habit itself comes with many theories about the cause of the saga of self-hurting. One theory says that people who practice self harming behaviors are usually seeking attention. This is true when it comes to one side; punishing someone. Through self harming, a person can make another feel extreme guilt and responsibility. Another theory states that harboring feelings of dislocation, or numbness from mental pain push people to self harm in order to feel real. Additionally, some people self harm to fit into a community or because of social pressure. But theories are still theories and mental-pain is still a hurtful reality. As far as I know, in such a hazardous world and mid-night poisoning thoughts, this could be the most primitive and self-destructive behavior a person could resort to.
Cutting comes from a lingering place, where the person finds him/herself in a closed place, and cutting seems the way to be the only way to counteract or temporarily relieve the suffering that leads someone to engage in self harming behaviors. It is what some people go to in order to cope with and identify their pain. While the habit itself doesn’t show the tendency of a suicidal conviction, since its aim is to give a temporary relief to the person, and since the person is not aware of a better solution, or the hope of thinking that there is, tension builds up. Not expressing this tension in a healthy way leads to the cutting. This could become a compulsive behavior, and as eerily as it sounds the cutting might end up being an addiction! You may come to a clashing point where you wonder how the self-cutting could turn into an addiction. Well, when the brain starts to connect the false sense of relief from bad feelings to the act of cutting, it then craves this relief the next time tension builds. And that’s when resisting the urging feeling to cut might seem hard. For what it matters it isn't a countermeasure like most think, it’s more like the church of the poison mind!
I remember a friend of mine used to joke about it, a lot of boys in my class thought he cut himself to appear stronger, like a gang-fighter, but we knew better. He used to hide them under his long sleeved shirts in the middle of hot summer days, and used these cute little cartoon plasters; it’s like he likes what he does so much that he even decorates it with such colorful plaster tapes. Whenever I confronted him about it, and about how seriously infected he could get, he would answer me that he sterilized the razors before he used them, like he planned it. I mean seriously his arms were framed with cuts and lines, it’s like freaking Godzilla had an interact fight there!
Studies show that there are no gender differences in the motivation of self-harming when it comes to adolescence or early adulthood. But, on a high average, females are more likely, then males, to express that their reason for engaging in self cutting behavior is their will of punishing themselves. Studies also show that there is no certain age group for the motivation itself and only cases that are still uncorroborated show that the habit itself is more likely to be accompanied with unresolved depression which is the case of every self-cutter/harmer.
But does the issue come with tolerance and acceptance or does it aim for a new phase to help young people? Now that’ll start another subject worth hearing!