“There are blood stains everywhere on your sheets. It looks like you’ve killed someone.”
I can still hear these words, told by my mother earlier today as she was doing the laundry. She does not know I self-harm, she still thinks it’s the “acceptable” monthly blood. And yet she can feel something is not right, there is too much blood, but she does not get what exactly is wrong. She will never get it because I will not let her know why there is too much blood. I will not let anybody know about the delicate self-torture that takes place in my room three times a week. I cut and I burn so that the sad bored version of myself let the happier and calmer me take the rains, so that I am in peace. And this, no one will ever know, this is why I am unblameable, unjudgeable and above all unstoppable.
I don’t even want to stop anymore, I’ve stopped trying to quit when I realized it hurt me more than self-harm itself and self-harm became so normal to me now. I keep telling myself it’s not that bad. After all, it helps, or at least I feel it helps. Some people drink to feel good, others eat, others smoke, I self-harm and the immediate consequences are positive. I even try to convince myself it is self-care. It is my trick to make myself happy, it is a moment I spend caring only about myself, it is only me and my body, only me and my feelings. And yet I know it’s all but a lie to myself, self-harm should not be considered normal, self-harm is unhealthy. I find this tragically fascinating, how you can get used to things that would shock so many people. I still remember the time when I was shocked as well, when it was still something not okay to do. When I started self-harming I did not know what self-harm was. I freaked out each time I hurt myself. I would cut then look at myself in the mirror and see what I had done. I saw a mad woman. Why would anyone hurt themselves on purpose?
But repeated self-harm often leads to tolerance and habituation, and now I have to cut deeper, more often and burn as well to get the same feeling of relief. How did I let this happen? How could I get used to it? I still do not understand and I blame myself for this. I do not understand why I kept doing it when I could still stop. And yet I can still stop. People often think it is an addiction, it may be to some but not to me. I am not addicted, I could stop if I wanted, but I don’t want to because I am dependent, I rely on it. I can stop for weeks and I have already done so, but what is the point if these weeks become unbearable? Now that I’ve been self-harming for two years, it is part of my life, it is part of who I am and I have forgotten how it is not to self-harm. This is why this remark made by my mom, it looks like a murder, made me feel so uncomfortable: it was a reminder of how violent self-harm is.