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Self Injury Awareness Day by Soda-Dreamer
Stamp: Self-Injury Awareness by FantasyStockAvatars

 

Today marks an awareness day over a subject that can mean many things to many people. Self Harm (or Self Injury) is the act of physical damage to oneself, usually as a coping strategy for expressing deep distress or coping in difficult situations. Self harm commonly is associated with cutting, but can also  refer to any physical damage to the self including burning, hitting, taking overdoses, swallowing chemicals, bleaching, hair pulling ( trichotilliomania), scratching and so forth.

You may know what it is, but it is often the reasons why that people are not familiar with. There is still this belief and stereotype surrounding the type of person likely to harming them-self, but the truth is, it could be anyone no matter what gender, culture or age. The reasons behind self harm can be such a huge variety- different people cope in different ways with different distresses.  Such issues that may trigger self harm might be bullying, trauma, abuse, school, work pressures, bereavement, difficult relationships, and so many more. There doesn’t always need to be a triggering event in someones life that makes them turn to self harm, sometimes individuals just experience a period of low self-esteem or distress that leads them to harm themselves. 

Today, we encourage you to look at ways you can support self harm awareness. You may be struggling with your own issues looking to seek help and sanctuary. You may be a friend or family member who knows someone who is struggling. Even if you are not aware of anyone in your personal life struggling with difficult situations, you have an opportunity to learn and share what you learn with your peers.

Remembering that deviantART is an Art website- art is a great personal therapy for many people, and not just a professional too. The self-expression art can provide is a great way to channel how you are feeling inside, usually a place that inspires people creatively. We encourage you all to use art when you are feeling down and need to express those thoughts, even if it is only for your eyes. You can use it to create images or writings of hope, of survival, to share stories and share that those who are suffering are not alone. 

Comfort Me by chrzaszczwtrzcinieComfort by anxx

 

Personal experiences 

One of the encouragements of self harm awareness is to share experiences, to show others they are not alone and that others do care. We encourage you to share your experiences, whether you write them in the comments of this article or as a journal or deviation.It may not be about you, friends and family can be affected too. Below, two experiences are shared to get the ball rolling.


"I was severely bullied from an early age and used self harm as a way to cope with this. Although it seemed to stop for a while, by the time I hit university and with no parents to watch me, it escalated to the point of stitches and getting in difficult situations with those who didn't want to know. Without the support of a loving boyfriend, good honest friends (who accepted me for who I was) and the encouragement to see a (very hairy legged hippy) counsellor, I managed to face those old feelings of bullying and learned to move on from them. I am 7 years self harm free. The scars are still there and very prominent, but I dealt with those issues inside and feel I have moved on and am happy." (BeccaJS)

"I think everyone has their dark days and is exposed to feelings of self-destruction, if not from themselves but from people around them. I never cut but I struggled with an eating disorder in my early teens. The desire for control was something I feared, but needed, and in some ways was proud of. I saw similar behaviour in some of my closest friends- one who cut the top of her arms so deep she needed stitches and another who once broke 3 fingers punching her fist into a wall. 
Between the three of us I think we dragged each other deeper, wanted to have the ‘worst’ vice. The most shocking fall. 
We all separated and went to University and I have no doubt in my mind that the brake saved us and we dealt with our demons. 
“What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” - a seemingly trite phrase but one that I feel sums us up in the best way." ( DistortedSmile )



Self Harm Facts

:bulletorange: A person who self harms is not defined as a “self harmer”. Many charities and organisations involved with self harm steer away from this term because it does not define the person and encourages a label.

:bulletorange: Self harm is not “attention seeking” or a tool to manipulate people. Even at times when you may feel that is what people are doing, there could be more underlying issues you are not aware of. Try to stay open minded.

:bulletorange: Self harm is a coping strategy, it is NOT a suicide attempt. 

:bulletorange: Self harm doesn’t necessarily mean the person has a mental illness. It can be a symptom of stress and low self esteem. Although sometimes a symptom of other mental illnesses, it is not considered its own.

:bulletorange: The severity of a person’s wounds has very little to do with how much he or she may be suffering. Don’t assume that because the wounds or injuries are minor, there’s nothing to worry about.

:bulletorange: Self harm affects a larger percentage of people than perhaps known- and it's not just the person who may be hurting themselves, but it affects family, friends, teachers, even professionals. The figures are always likely to be greater than any statistic can give you, because of how many who quietly suffer. 

i'll be there by MalvaAlcea 



 Self Harm resources


:bulletgreen: Self Harm UK  www.selfharm.co.uk/home  

:bulletgreen: Harmless UK  harmless.org.uk/viewpage.php?p…

:bulletgreen: Helpguide.org helpguide.org/mental/self_inju…

:bulletgreen: To Write Love on Her Arms www.twloha.com 

:bulletgreen: Recover Your Life www.recoveryourlife.com 


:iconitdoesnothaveme: :iconself-injuryclub:

:heart: Spread the word of understanding and reduce ignorance about self harm. Favourite this article, spread the word and be open minded :heart:

 Beside You by adrienne-paynter 

Add a Comment:
 
:iconpaintedbluerose:
paintedbluerose Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Student Writer
It's a beautiful article. :heart: Lovely job on it.

And I can relate to it as well. I don't think I would have commented as much, but I did notice a few comments saying how self harm is attention seeking or saying this is weakness or illness and it's your fault for doing it or whatever and that is a bit bothersome to me. When someone self harms, they don't think themselves as "sick" and needing help. And they don't do it for attention. Yes, there are some out there who cut themselves and show it off, stating if you do this or that to me, I'll cut more! But they have something else wrong with them. Most self harmers are ashamed and do whatever they can to conceal anything, such as cuts they've done. They're not going to be blasting on the news like that.

Self harming is more than that. It's deeper than that. Sometimes you're so ashamed, you don't want to talk to anyone about it. You think something is wrong with you and the world will look at you strange if you mention you cut yourself. Or worse, that you enjoy cutting yourself. You're afraid they'll lock you up, and who wants that?

I was about twelve years old when I started. I overdosed on pills, I cut myself, and I even was aneroxia/bulimic for a while. I did this for years until I just randomly stopped. I didn't think of sucide at the time. It was just a way for the pain to escape. I haven't cut myself in years, though I've been thinking about it lately. It wasn't until the past year that I actually talked to my parents and told them I used to cut myself. I'm almost twenty-six years old.

I don't think admitting what I did fourteen years ago counts as "attention seeking". I mean, if I didn't tell anyone until now, how is that seeking attention?

Yes, I probably should have gotten help, but I was scared and afraid. I didn't want to tell my parents that I was cutting myself. I was afraid they would be disappointed in me or think I was a freak or crazy. I couldn't take that. I think that also made me cut myself more when I thought about it. (The stress of it all.)

But it is NOT weak to say you have a problem and you need help. It is NOT weak to have a mental illness that affects you. It is NOT weak to say you have depression and you cut yourself because you're depressed. It is NOT weak to have a problem like this that you can't help.

The common causes of self-harm are mental illness, psycological factors, genetics, and substance abuse. I don't think having a mental illness is cause for saying the person is weak and that self harm is weak on their part. As my doctor says, self harm is the physical release for the pain you feel mentally.

Those who say self harm is weak don't know what it's like and will never know what it's like to feel that way. To feel that you have to cut to feel better. In a way, that's a good thing. But it can also be a bad thing because they think anyone who feels insecure or depressed and lets their depression out in a way they can handle it, is weak. It's not weak to have depression or to say you have a problem. It's weak when you can't understand.
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
This. And the worst thing is that getting help isn't always possible. The depression and the self harm aren't the problem, they are just symptoms. The underlying problem sometimes isn't anything that can be changed. How do you help someone who is simply different and has depressions because they simply don't fit into society? Aspergers, people with above average IQ, those who are hypersensitive? Just a few examples - all of those are perfectly healthy. Changing society itself is the only thing that would really help. And I don't see that happening any time soon.
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:iconpaintedbluerose:
paintedbluerose Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2012  Student Writer
First step in overcoming anything is admitting you have a problem. It's also the hardest. I mean, how many people are going to admit they self harm themselves? I mean, at this moment. Not in the past. Not too many are. Once they do that, it's one step closer to getting better. It's just hard to take that first step. :(
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:iconsavagebinn:
savagebinn Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012   General Artist
Good article. :heart:

When I came online I was surprised how many other people with Trich there were. I'd heard about cutting which I thankfully haven't gone through (have many friends who have, unfortunately) but I really felt alone. I think it's great to spread awareness of these issues because there are a lot of misconceptions surrounding them. It just isn't talked about much and it needs to be.
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:iconcecamire:
CecaMire Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
People please to be realising that self-harm is not an illness in itself

It is a symptom

You cannot point to a self-harmer and lecture them on how stabbing themselves with a pen is unhealthy because hey
maybe

maybe

they already know that

Instead enquire into and try to fix the problem that they are using this Coping Strategy against and look! it is gone

what a miracle
Reply
:iconpurplealienflower:
PurpleAlienFlower Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
QUOTE "Self harm is not “attention seeking” or a tool to manipulate people. Even at times when you may feel that is what people are doing, there could be more underlying issues you are not aware of. Try to stay open minded." /QUOTE


No. No, it is so often attentionwhoring. I've seen this so many times on girls just to get attention from their boyfriends or parents, FORCING them to stay with them- they're threating each and everyone to "stay with them for eternityyyyy" or otherwise they would harm themselves.
My actual BF had such a girl friend once, she tried to threat him to stay with her "together for eternity", sending pictures of her freshly harmed arms and legs on his cell phone, "just as a short reminder to NOT forget to call her this evening".
I call BS.
Don't say NOBODY would ever to this kind of stuff for attentionwhoring.


beside this, why you put a picture of two pple sitting on a RAIL ROAD there? Irony much?
Discussing self harm here and put a picture of pple sitting on a rail road here (we all know just too many pple kill themselves that way!) is pretty inappropriate I think __
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:iconcecamire:
CecaMire Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
I think your boyfriend's ex-girlfriend needs to see a therapist if she's so desperate for attention that she'll carve up her own body.

I never noticed the irony on the picture though lol
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:iconhelenarothstock:
HelenaRothStock Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Professional Photographer
In my experience on both sides, what most people need is someone to talk to without being judged...just to accept what they have to say, it's a first step that anyone can give. You don't need to know what to say. Keeping it to yourself doesn't solve it and people brushing it off as attention seeking is naive and more than a little cynical.

I read someones response that it's just teens. That is very wrong, any person of any age can have trouble coping.

Well written article :)
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:iconmusicalenvy:
MusicalEnvy Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Student General Artist
I made orange awareness ribbons and handed them out in school on this day, and it really did help a lot. Not many people knew about Self-Harm Awareness Day, and I was able to explain it to a lot of people. The next day I noticed a few more people wearing orange shirts. :)
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:iconcecamire:
CecaMire Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
That's wonderful! Sounds like you really made a difference :D
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:iconmusicalenvy:
MusicalEnvy Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Student General Artist
Yeah, I'm really happy it turned out so well. C: My one teacher had said that some other teachers were asking him where he got his ribbon, so I'm going to be making more tomorrow.
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:iconlucy-merriman:
Lucy-Merriman Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Student General Artist
"Self harm doesn’t necessarily mean the person has a mental illness."

True. However, I just want to put this out there, that if you have a mental illness, there's no shame in that. If a person has a physical illness, they don't go, "Oh, I'm such a bad person for being sick!" and hide in a corner. They go to a doctor, and get well again.

Mental illness is the exact same thing. I know a person with OCD who self-harmed, and they were ashamed because of all the stereotypes surrounding self-harm. They also thought they could get over it on their own, and were frustrated and even more ashamed when they couldn't. The fact is, once they accepted psychological and medical help, things got so much better.

So good for the people who can get over it on their own. But there's nothing wrong with needing professional help; that's what professionals are there for.
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:iconmangamaniacnatneko:
MangaManiacNatNeko Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
Very glad to hear there is an awareness day for this, just wish it was a larger spread awareness. You are so right about it being a coping mechanism rather than attetion seeking.
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:iconshirokuro-chan:
shirokuro-chan Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
I was fairly obese as a child and was bullied relentlessly all through grade school. When I finally got to high school, the teasing (for being fat, at least) stopped but my self-worth never fully recovered. During my senior year, I was hating myself so much that a couple times I took a pair of nail scissors and dug cuts into my left thigh, just enough to bleed and hurt. I purposely chose a place that no one would likely see, because I wasn't doing it for attention or for anybody else. I was doing it for myself, and I figured if I could feel the physical pain throughout the day, it would remind me not to eat and then maybe I wouldn't be so fat and worthless anymore. It wasn't the best or most effective idea, but I was desperate.

I've since gotten better and am pretty comfortable with my body now, but that was the lowest point I think I've ever had in my life. But I guess the good thing about lowest points is that they mean there's nowhere for you to go but up from then on (to steal some ideology from Bridesmaids :XD:)
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:iconphotographybycooper:
PhotographybyCooper Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Professional Photographer
I have had a history of instability for quite some time; since I was a little girl. My coping mechanisms were never very healthy, and were constantly switching. From anti-depressants to a break from reality, to self-injury. I had begun digging my nails into my scalp and biting my hand to relieve stress.

I switched to cutting, to burning, and back to hitting and biting. I struggle with my weight, and have had incidents of Bullemic behavior, and Anorexic thoughts.

A couple years ago, I had explored Buddhism as a potential religion. I began taking it seriously this year, and worked upon becoming a pacifist, and being less angry with those around me. It helped quite a lot, and even stopped an attack of SI--by meditating instead of letting the destructive instincts take over--but the behaviors just, once again, switched. I pick at pimples until they scab, then rip the scabs off and go at them again.

Recovering from Self-Injury is a battle for me, because self-injury for me is a symptom of a larger problem, even if I don't know yet what this problem is.
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
But you are trying to do something, you are not giving up, and you try to be stronger than your pain. That is, in my opinion, pretty admirable.

Buddhism is an interesting solution - I went down that road myself for a while. Then I discovered Taoism, a philosophy that has the ideal of the "uncarved block" - a person who can care about others, but who doesn't define their self-worth by the opinions of others, who doesn't let others influence them, who comes to their own conclusions about themselves and the world around them. Everyone is just fine the way they are. As soon as that was through my thick skull, as soon as I basically stopped caring about what other people think about me, I felt a lot better about myself. I was free, I was no longer afraid to express my emotions. So I squee in public, or I bawl my eyes out. It happens. I don't care if people think I'm weird. I'm fine just the way I am - and so are you. :hug:
Reply
:iconphotographybycooper:
PhotographybyCooper Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Professional Photographer
It has been an interesting solution. I switched religions as often as I switched coping mechanisms, and I hadn't viewed religion as that important. But I sat down, read the Dhammapada, and did more research into Buddhism. I went through a two year period of considering it before I actually declared it as my religion.

I'm glad a change in beliefs helped you too. ^^
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Buddhism isn't a religion. It's a way of life, a philosophy. Because other than most religions, Buddhism (and Taoism) let you make up your own mind, instead of trying to get you to adhere to dogmas. That's why they work. They don't force you to become someone else or deny parts of yourself. Organized religions do exactly that.
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:iconside-real:
Side-Real Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Professional Photographer
I'm very sorry I missed this..I've been using knives for roughly a year now, and it's certainly taken a toll on my physical well-being..I've run into many people who don't understand, are ignorant and begin to spout stereotypes at me, or just don't know what to do. I think this article was well written, and many more people should be exposed to this.
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:icondistortedsmile:
DistortedSmile Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Looking good Becs :D
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:iconkatantoon:
Katantoon Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I have been suffering from Trich ever since. It's a disorder where a person unconsciously pull their hair. A lot of times due to stress and pressure. Sometimes, the sad thing was your immediate family discriminate or ridicule you. I've experienced this before, my mom use to tell me I have a very weak resolve in life and it only cost me to pull my hair more due to stress. People will immediately label you as weird or crazy because they cannot grasp the depth of the problem.

Ive only discovered hair pulling as a disorder months ago and knowing that I am not the only one suffering from it helps me a lot. I've read Trich success story and I learn that this disorder can be overcome. It's a pain to cover bald spot, not to mention how stressful it is to cope with peer pressure. Im slowly recovering from it and I figured out that the best medicine is my self will and my feelings to not cower up when people ask me about this disorder. Also, getting your family aware of it is very helpful or if you are a parent and your child is suffering from it, NEVER ever tell them they are weak, you'll only leave lasting scars. Im slowly recovering ,sometimes I slip up but Im finally at the point where I have hope.

This is a very nice journal.
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:iconsatsumo:
Satsumo Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Self harm is not “attention seeking”.

Yes, it is. Self harm is almost entirely young people, who are surrounded by others, people who might care. I'm a older and I've lived through some bad things, terrible choices and responsibilities, things the I will take to the grave. I've been tempted to self destruct in various ways but don't because nobody is supposed to help me if I do. It would only make things harder for me.

Don't get me wrong, I have sympathy that people have problems. It's good that there is help for people and that they have groups and talk through their problems. It's a good thing, a healthy thing to ask for help if somebody wants that support. I don't think what I do is a good way to deal with problems. But this is about attention, if you ever get to be truly alone and responsible for yourself, you will be able to see that.

Look at the pictures, people hugging or looking sulky. Expressions are for other people to see. It seems pretty obvious to me.
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:iconwakagi-chan:
Wakagi-chan Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Student Writer
I think that you are confusing self-harmers with people like emo's. Self-harming is a disorder. Half of it is down unconsciously. People don't bite off their skin to gain attention, neither do they pull their hair for attention, nor do they scratch their wrists until they bleed for attention. A person who wants attention whines- self-harming happens because of suppression... It really is hard to explain it to someone who never experienced it. The part of the article that says "self-harming is not suicide" would be the most helpful in this case. Half of the people who commit suicide so not plan to die: they want to change, they want more attention and love. But self-harming is by no means want of attention.
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:iconphotographybycooper:
PhotographybyCooper Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Professional Photographer
No, it isn't. When I wanted help, I went straight to the people responsible for me-my parents, and asked for help. I didn't get it. I got a lecture.

Self-injury, for me, has been a result of my trying my best to keep anyone from knowing the issues I was facing, the breaks from reality, the suicidal impulses, and my growing anger at everything and everybody. All this anger would eventually culminate in an attack, which, with no-one or nothing to take it out on, would then be taken out on myself.

Very few people know about my self-injury, and my self-injury method was chosen deliberately for the best way to hide it, because it isn't their business. I speak about it now because I am almost through this period of self-injury, which I am proud to say I got through on my own. Nobody helped me; nobody held my hand, because nobody saw. I am here to help others get through, because it took me a decade to get through this on my own. Nobody deserves to suffer for a decade.
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:iconcecamire:
CecaMire Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
Do you mean to say that you never frown or cry by yourself? Expressions aren't always "for other people to see"; if you feel sad, chances are that you will look sad, *especially* if you're by yourself and you don't have to pretend for other people.

Also, self harm often occurs because the pain *helps* the person clear away/ignore the negative emotions. It could be, at the time, the best option for *not* self-destructing; the person may be turning to self-harm as a temporary measure until they can regain their balance.
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:iconslowlyfallingawake:
SlowlyFallingAwake Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Not necessarily. I get your point though - a lot of young people do it just to feel like they belong somewhere, some even brag about it (ludicrous). But everyone's intentions are different, it's illogical to put everyone in the same category. Imagine overtraining just to feel the pain of straining your body and to feel numb, which can also be seen as a form of self-harm. One does not have to have the intention nor the will to impress anyone, I think it can just as well be aimed at feeling some kind of purpose, feeling like you're doing at least something you can feel, something that matters.
I, be no means, advocate any form of self-harm by saying this.
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:iconjathara:
Jathara Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I used to self-harm. It wasn't even about the pain for me. When I'm nervous, I feel the need to bite things and chew things and did my very best to tear them apart, and after I destroyed all my toys I started going after my arm. It didn't scar like cutting, and if it didn't break skin marks went away really fast...when it did break skin, well, I'm accident-prone. Band-aids, because "oh I cut myself when I tripped!" I've gotten better since then. I've also found more other things to chew on but I don't feel that need at all any more.

I know people who still do self harm, though, and it TERRIFIES me.
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I used to. I cut myself in one situation (an emotionally traumatic one), and I scratched my arm bloody in another. Usually I didn't go to such lengths, however, and limited myself to doing the dishes in too hot water and things like that. I didn't want attention, I just needed the physical pain to be able to bear the emotional one.

The evening I had scratched my arm bloody a friend saw what I had done and shook his head.
"Why did you do this? By harming yourself you are just admitting a weakness you don't have," he said.

I realized that he was right, and I never did anything to harm myself again.

Nowadays I channel my pain into poems and art. Not stuff I let others see, it's just bits and pieces that help me vent.
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:iconravers-disease:
Ravers-Disease Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012   General Artist
I gave myself prison tattoos a year ago from misery and experimentation. I liked it, but in a sick way. I just loved seeing my blood mixed with black ink. I have three about four inches in diameter each. I guess it was self harm, because some ppl say it's a form of cutting. But hey, I tried it once then couldn't stop because it was addicting in a sick way which is why I have three instead of one. Yea it was dumb, not saying it's something to be proud of but the more we share our experiences and have an "awareness day" for it the more people might get ideas to start doing it themselves. Especially teens. If fucking your dog was popular and cool I bet you fifty bucks every kid would be doing it too...
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
With all due respect, that's silly. By the same logic one might say don't do awareness things for stuff like spousal abuse or rape, because it might give people ideas.

Sure, there are certain cults around self harm - but that isn't because self harm is cool. It's about offering a coping mechanism for emotional pain. If you cut yourself, you don't go and beat other people up, if you cut yourself you turn your pain and aggression inwards. A coping mechanism that doesn't harm others, doesn't involve committing crimes, and doesn't do lasting harm to yourself (in most cases anyway). It's very seductive.

But the coping mechanism isn't the problem. The emotional pain is. People who harm themselves are suffering - all of them, and each of them in their own, individual way. The only way to help those people is by showing them other coping mechanisms (art and music come to mind), and/or help them with their emotional trauma. Just telling them to stop hurting themselves is like taking the pain medication away from an injured person.
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:iconravers-disease:
Ravers-Disease Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012   General Artist
That isn't completely true because I have known idiots in high school who cut because it's a fad. Not everyone cuts or self harms because they ate suffering. I said that out of experience from knowing "emo" and "scene" kids in school who would show off thier scars in class and say "but don't tell anyone because it's a secret" when they know people will tell. Once some girl in our working group started cutting herself with scissors right in front of us and said it felt good. That is why I said what I said....not because I'm being an ignorant ass with my opinion.
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
How well did you know these "idiots"? I met a sixteen year old girl once in my favourite bar who seemed to be the stereotypical emo (the clothes, the hair, the scars on her forearms) - and when I asked her why she did that to herself, she shrugged and answered "It's cool. All my friends do it." I shook my head and thought, what a silly bint.

I got to know her better over the years, and she eventually told me that she had been sexually abused by her father her entire childhood, but that she was safe now because he's in jail.

What I'm trying to say is - you never know. Besides, if they weren't suffering in some way (even if it's "just" teenage angst), they wouldn't be drawn to subcultures like Emo or Goth, subcultures that tell you that it's okay to express pain, that it's okay to show others that you are hurting. The culture we live in (this being Western culture) is very unforgiving when it comes to showing "negative" emotions in public. The happy facade is prized above all else.

Normal people are suffering and hurt themselves, emo and Goth people are suffering and hurt themselves (not all or even most of them, mind you) - the difference is that emo and Goth people don't keep it secret. They don't cut themselves for attention - but showing off their scars is usually a cry for help. Which should be taken seriously.
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:iconravers-disease:
Ravers-Disease Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012   General Artist
Well to be honest...I am a person who seriously don't give a shit. If people are suffering...so what, everyone suffers. I have quite a bit of sob stories in my life to tell, but am I gunna cut myself and make myself look like a whiney angster. No...because I don't want other people feeling "sorry" for me and and extra stress on people who care. So no point in arguing...since I have been bitched out and trolled several times on dA because I have no compassion for humans. Oh man lime you should have seen the trolling and bitching I received for saying I hate prostitutes. Geez...
By the way how did this argument get started? I don't even remember reading or commenting on this thing....huh. Weird
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Well, good thing that dA keeps everything then... go to the journal, browse through the comments, and you'll find that I replied to a comment from you.

As for you not caring about others - well, I find it strange that even though you claim not to care about other people, you apparently still feel the need to judge them. Like prostitutes (since you brought them up) why hate them? What's it to you how people earn their money? Why do you care? And you are aware, I suppose, that there would be no such thing as a prostitute, if there weren't people who want that kind of service. Demand and supply...
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:iconravers-disease:
Ravers-Disease Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012   General Artist
Oh i see. I do that...comment on things and forget about it.
And I don't actually call it judging...there's is a difference between thinking the world and the people in it are just lame and shitty and actually judging them. I just think people focus too much on the negative, even if they are "suffering". Who gives a shit of you were molested as a child. Get over it and move on with life instead of whining like a little girl. My mom was beaten and molested terribly as a kid plus in a horrible abusive marriage for 7 yrs with my dad, is she some emo who cuts herself? No she's a funny person and great personality. I respect people like her and myself. Not people who go mental just because they suffered. That's my veiw on it. I like to say it how Madea would say it (if you've seen those movies there hillarious) "suck it up and shut the hell up" And I have my opinion on prostitutes but I'm seriously not gunna share it with you. It's a whole nother subject for me.
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
That's... cold.

I mean, good for you and your mom that she is such an amazingly strong person - but not being strong like her doesn't make other people less worthy. And yes, thinking that other people are lame and weak *is* judging. You have your ideal what a person should be like, compare them to this ideal, find them lacking, and consequentially disregard them as "emo losers". I repeat: That is judging.

And everyone deals with their emotional pain in different ways. Some turn it inward, some are aggressive towards others, and some turn into cynics who despise anything that isn't to their exacting standards. Yes, that's just another coping mechanism (I should know, been there) and cutting (Regency jargon here) others isn't in any way better than cutting yourself. Seriously, do you even realize how hurtful the things you say are?

Oh, and by the way - staying in an abusive relationship for years - I'd call that self-harm. Perfect example, actually.
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(1 Reply)
:iconphysco-matter:
Physco-Matter Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Now I don't feel alone anymore. :heart:
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:iconjenndragon:
Jenndragon Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
This is a fantastic article <3

I've only ever had two issues with self harm...the longest of which when I was in a severe depression. I'd rake over my chest with my nails until I bled. It distracted from the pain, even if only for a short while. I managed to stop that several years ago, as things looked up, but the scars still show on occasion.

This one was only once, and of a more humorous ending. I'd gotten so miserable with a situation, I bit down harshly on my arm. Oddly, when it healed, it took on the image of a smiley face. I find it funny to look at nowadays, like it's telling me to stop dwelling on the sad, and just smile on.
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:iconemerald-depths:
Emerald-Depths Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is a beautifully written article. I know a few people who have harmed themselves in the past. It was so hard knowing they were going through enough to drive them to cope in that way. I did what I could to help, and it seems to have been enough. I used to think of doing it to myself several years ago while I was going through a very dark point in my life. But I avoided it and made it through.

Thank you for sharing this. :) I hope people can take it to heart and do what they can to help others who are struggling.
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:iconclefairykid:
ClefairyKid Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012
:heart:
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:iconepiclonnesity:
Epiclonnesity Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
I was going to make a joke but I realized this probably isn't an appropriate time.
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:iconbeccajs:
BeccaJS Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012   Writer
As long as its not poor taste a joke is fine :)
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:iconepiclonnesity:
Epiclonnesity Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
It was in poor taste. I was going to say "Time to go cut myself!" before I realized how rude and out of line I would be.
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:iconstained-with-rainbow:
Stained-With-Rainbow Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I used to cut my thighs. Nobody saw my scars. I thought it was an appropriate metaphor like the scars across my heart. But then I met someone, who helped me realize I'm special, unique, amazing. I love her like a sister and she means the entire world to me. I love you, Sarah B. <3 One-year self-harm free. Thank you. :heart:
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Good for you! Go on, be strong! :boogie:
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:iconstained-with-rainbow:
Stained-With-Rainbow Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you! :heart:
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:iconsleepyowlet:
sleepyowlet Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
:)
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:icongillianivy:
GillianIvy Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
:heart:
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:iconvexnir:
vexnir Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
This is a very good article, thank you for spreading awareness about this. People often don't see the problem, for example, they just call the person an "emo" and bully them even more, which often leads to worse things. I know people who had or have the self hurting problem, and those people are usually afraid to ask for help and just suffer quietly. If it comes to my experience, I've had many troublesome thoughs about self harm and suicide, but I've almost got rid of them. You are perfectly right, art is a way of therapy - being able to express your feelings through art really helps - at least me.
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:icondawnsentinel:
DawnSentinel Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012
I've felt like self-harming but I'm too scared to cut myself or anything :P
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