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Friday, May 21st, 2010
11:38 pm
(Old Repost from Personal Journal) A Non-Cutting form of Self-Expression - "Painting"
Instead of cutting, I've started a non-invasive, non-painful, non-injurious way of helping myself get through the more craptastic times - I paint (nail polish), draw, write things on myself; things to clear out my psyche, things to empty out the reservoirs of pain and anger. Some of them are angry on their own, some are unusual in other ways, some are questions that I don't know the answers to, some are random bits from stimulus I take in through any and all methods of sensory perception.

So, let's see.... What's on me right now?

a) I <3 NNY (Short for "Johnny" - pronounced along the lines of "knee", only (of course) without the 'K')
b) "I wonder if there's really something wrong with me?" - Johnny The Homicidal Maniac, Jhonen Vasquez/Slave Labor Graphics
c) "I don't much like myself" - JTHM, Jhonen Vasquez/Slave Labor Graphics
e) "Ask a different question!" - *VERY* dark humorous quote from JTHM - I won't go into the reasons, but if you're curious, the "Director's Cut" (I.e., the graphic novelization of the comic is out and readily available) (more props to Jhonen and SLG)
f) "JTHM" - reference should be obvy by now - if not, reread the bibliographical information repeated endlessly above.
g) Jhonen
h) "Time for something different - Over the stars!" - JTHM
i) "EXIT" written directly over my heart
j) "Macbeth's bloody banquet" [Just finished watching Slings and Arrows - second season had the New Burbage Shakespeare festival doing "the Scottish tragedy" - funny/weird/random: ever since I read Macbeth and learned about the bloody banquet, I can't listen to the song "Banquet" (by Bloc Party) anymore without thinking of that scene, even though they have nothing to do with one another.]

And, finally, totally non-violent, non-angry 'paintings':

j) "Pain" - name of an Oingo Boingo song that was affecting me particularly at the moment..... (Go, Danny and the boys!)
k) David Tennant as Giacomo Casonova (just watched it, give me some leeway, will ya?)
l) David - "Beloved" (the translation of David in Hebrew - a little factoid I picked up from Michael. Stupid that I still miss him sometimes....)

EDIT:I started doing this after I 'lapsed' - one very shallow cut, really, only a scratch, that ENDED with one cut. I threw away my last knife afterwards. Painting helps me get rid of the feelings I have when I want to cut, but without actually hurting myself. My therapist is quite proud of me for coming up with it.
Wednesday, April 14th, 2010
10:35 am
Please Help Researchers Understand Self-harm


Hello from the Personality and Emotion Research Laboratory (PERL)!

We're entering our last couple weeks of recruitment for our current study on self-harm.  A big thank you to those of you who have already participated in this research, your input and willingness to share your experiences with us is incredibly valuable!  To those who still want to participate, just send us an email at chapman_lab@sfu.ca.  You can find a bit more information about the study below.

Thanks again, and best wishes!

The Personality and Emotion Research Lab



Would you like to help us understand how to help people who self-harm?


Self-injury (sometimes called “self-harm”) involves harming yourself on purpose. Some examples include cutting or burning yourself, taking an overdose of pills, or banging your head. Right now, very little is known about why people start or stop self-harming. The Personality and Emotion Research Lab (PERL), a research team from Simon Fraser University in Canada, is conducting a study to learn more about the experiences of people who self-harm, and we want your help!  We are interested in how emotions, life experiences, stress and coping styles affect self-harm. We hope that this research will help other people understand more about why people self-harm and what they can do to help. 


What you can do: If you want to participate in this study, you will fill out online questionnaires on self-harm, emotions, coping, symptoms, and life events. These questionnaires will take approximately 2 hours to complete.  


Who can participate: We are looking for people who currently self-harm (whether you are trying to stop or not) AND those who have self-harmed in the past and quit.


What’s in it for you: Participants who complete the questionnaires will be paid $5 CAD (money transfers via PayPal). You can also choose to participate in our long-term study, where you will fill out a shorter version of the questionnaires every three months for two years. You will be paid $5 CAD each time you complete a set of questionnaires (about 30 min each), and you will get a $15 CAD bonus once you have completed all 9 sets for a total of $60 CAD. Telling us about your experiences will give us important information on how self-harm changes over time, and could help develop and improve treatments for people who want to stop self-harming.


Please contact us at perl@sfu.ca if you are interested in participating or if you have any questions.


Thank you,


Personality and Emotion Research Laboratory (PERL)

Simon Fraser University

Department of Psychology
RCB5246, 8888 University Drive
Burnaby, BC, Canada V5A 1S6


Thursday, March 25th, 2010
4:17 pm
you gotta make yourself see what you wanna see
so. i havent posted here in quite some time which i suppose is a good thing. wooo. 

ive cut like three or four times in the past year. i dont think thats too bad at all. im at a bit of a writers block because theres so much turmoil in my head that im not sure what to include and what to omit. i guess ill just try to go without thinking much about it and going on tangents like this one.

im in need of expressing the respect i have for myself as well as gaining more solid self respect/esteem. (also i need to break down my inflated ego.) cutting is not a way to get that respect at all. would i amaze myself if i had the will and strength to cut deeper? yes. but thats not a healthy amazement. at least not for me. i think that individuals can have their own truths and whatnot but for me, personally, cutting is disrespectful. yes, the blood is great and it feels good but that apple and peanut butter i just ate felt good too. and to have self control and self efficacy in troubling times feels better. i may not entirely believe that but ill keep telling myself because it helps. 

so at the head doctor (counseling) the other day abbie asked me to tell her one simple thing i was going to do that would be respectful of myself during the next week. after a few minutes of thinking and struggling to find something simple and something i could honestly do i said that i wouldn't cut. and i dont feel like i want to. thats a good thing for sure. 

at one point in time i wouldnt have said that i wouldnt cut for a week because i didnt know if i could live up to that. now that i think about it, it feels pretty good that i told her that.

also my grandma died like a month ago. for the past 8 or so years she's been going downhill. she had severe dementia that was getting worse and worse until she finally let go. i miss her a bit. i dont know if i believe in god anymore but if g-dawg is in heaven i know that she is healed and dancing with her husband :) 

ive been constantly scared/worried that my brain will suffer the same fate. i thought of this because i drank a diet pepsi today and it has aspartame (which most likely messes up your brain). so another part of respecting myself would be to stop drinking alcohol/things with chemicals and the like. also to stop eating junk food. but maybe i should have a glass of wine a day because that's supposed to be good for you or something. i dont want to be drunk. i dont want to consume the calories either. in fact, the calorie thing is a little more motivation to not drink than the self respect is. 

i just want to have a nice life with the strength to fight my vices. i dont want to not have the vices because i know that ill probably always sometimes want to cut and thats ok. i just want to be able to not. not only to not cut but to do something productive with that energy and that emotion. 

i feel ass though im in a good place now, again. i felt this way long ago and i think its been hidden for a few years. but if anyone needs to talk, feel free to message me. phone, aim, here, whatever works. 

"life is waiting for you, it's all messed up but we're alive, oh life is waiting for you, it's all messed up but we'll survive"

Current Mood: hungry
Saturday, March 20th, 2010
9:37 am
Hi there
 I'm new to this community and wanted to introduce myself. My name is Sarah and I am grad student in Massachusetts. I am finishing up my degree in Counseling and Psychology and am doing my thesis on Self harm and adolescents and am looking for adults who self harm or used to self harm to take my ANONYMOUS survey for my research.

I just want to say that I that came into this field originally as a high school health teacher and was inspired by one of my former students who came to me in privacy because she was cutting herself. I am currently a Crisis Coordinator at University and am really trying to shine some light on this area, because as you all know, not a lot of people can understand why people self-harm.

If you are interested in taking my anonymous survey, the link is:


Thanks so much for your help...you dont have a to create a username after you take the survey, you can just close it out.
Saturday, January 16th, 2010
8:02 pm
I can't believe that I'm ONE FULL MONTH LATE, but....

As of December 14, 2009, I'm five years clean!!!! (Well, five years and one month (and two days), now, but.... details, details...)

And, given some of the things that have happened to me lately (I'll write more about that stuff in either my personal journal or in here, or both, as the need strikes), that's pretty impressive. So, go me!!! :)
Thursday, November 26th, 2009
6:23 am

Angela Hartlin's memoir, FOREVER MARKED: A Dermatillomania Diary has finally been released! Please join her Facebook Fan page to spread word about this skin picking disorder along with her experiences with it.

People with this disorder have traits of Body Dysmorphic Disorder and usually suffer from depression. It is an Impulse Control Disorder that is fueled by high levels of anxiety. The first few pages can be previewed at the Lulu.com site, which includes a better definition of Dermatillomania.

Even if you do not have Facebook, the prices are listed there for Canadian, American, and International buyers. If you do, please spread the word of the fan page to everyone on your friend's list, even if you have to tell them that you're spreading the word for a friend! We need to raise awareness about this silent disorder and help break the stigma on mental health in general. You never know who is suffering in isolation from having this condition.

Please e-mail forever.markedATyahoo.ca if you want to purchase from Angela directly; she offers a lower shipping price than Lulu.com does. Include the country that you live in and she can send you a quote. She ships the day she gets a payment (or the day after), then sends an e-mail to confirm that it was sent.

Thank you. <3

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009
3:50 pm
OK, ladies and gents, I need your attention, please. And I need some help, desperately.

Please, please, please, help me get through this oh-so-trying-time. Because I can't do it on my own.

Current Mood: craptastic!
Wednesday, October 7th, 2009
6:42 pm
survey results
Hi all!
Some of you took part in a survey I posted here sometime in July/September.
Well, the analysis is all done and as I promised some, I shall share with you my results and findings :)
PLEASE do note that my study is pretty amateur and should not take my findings as proof or concrete evidence in any argument.

read furtherCollapse )
Thursday, September 10th, 2009
1:31 am
Monday, June 22nd, 2009
4:05 pm
i have an amazing girlfriend. and this is why.

the other day was really rough for reasons that id rather not go into and i wanted to cut. angie was on the other side of the door i was sitting against not letting her in. she knew why i left the room being someone whos cut as well. (we met in this community actually.)  i let her in the room for whatever reason. just cuz. i guess i didnt really want to do it. if i did i wouldnt have let her in. so she sat with me, i had taken a shaving razor apart. ive never used one before but ive seen what they can do

so she sat with me and talked me down and let me cry on her without forcing the blade out of my hand. after very much back and forth and me somewhat threatening to cut her hand if she didnt quit asking for the blade i got real serious about it and then she really had to stop me. but i stopped yet again. i thought about one time when we had only been talking on AIM for a few months and she cut. first it was three, then seven, then twenty. being there when she was doing that and not being able to do a damn thing about it was a terrible feeling. i didnt want to make her feel like i had. i didnt want to hurt her more than i already had that day. so i dropped it before i had another chance to change my mind.

all the rest of the day i looked down at my thighs and they were lacking any new marks and it was a great feeling. im so glad she was there to help me and be calm when i wasnt.

even though i doubt you'll read this, thank you angie, youre quite wonderful and i feel just as blessed as ever to know you :)
Monday, June 15th, 2009
1:28 pm
Sunday, May 31st, 2009
6:40 pm
I. Have. Fucking. Had. It.

Here I sit, less than 24 hours away from my 37th birthday, and my mother has cut me off. Oh, I'm not homeless (yet), and I still have internet/phone/TV (thank gods, or I'd *really* lose it), but I've been eating ramen for a month and a half (once a day) and my mother thinks that the best use of the very little money I have left (call it $10) is to go down to San Jose (bus, train, light rail) so that I can miss my phone call with Patrick and spend the evening with my mother, grandmother, sister, brother-in-law, and their two children.

I am currently only able to take the barest minimum of medication for my psychological disorders (not to mention my chronic pain issues) because guess what? My mother now says (after promising to take care of me after she lost my second health insurance plan) that she cannot afford to help me out anymore, and so the county is going to have to take care of me.

If things don't work out in a big, big way within the next couple days, I am going to have to move to Canada. And I'm not joking.

Current Mood: panicked
Monday, February 23rd, 2009
11:00 pm
my wrists are screaming at me. i just want to give in. it wouldn't take long, it wouldn't be that bad. just give in. it won't hurt more than i hurt now. as corny as it sounds nothing could. it's too much. i can't take it. i'm sorry.
Saturday, February 21st, 2009
7:04 am
Major Relapse
Hi. I have been reading your entries and have posted once before. I was a cutter in high school, and then 15 years later, it reappeared in my life. It coincided with a very high pressure life situation involving getting my PhD. But I don't think it was just that. I think I had forgotten how much it helps. I used to drink or take drugs to try to dull the pain or get a release. Now I cut again. The problem is that I am bipolar and my doctors don't trust me to 'just cut'. They are afraid I am going to take it further. I stopped cutting recently for 3 weeks, and almost all my cuts healed. But then recent turmoil sent me into a tailspin and I find myself with cuts on my wrists, hands and legs. I am working with dbt therapy to try to stop, but sometimes, when things are this bad it feel impossible to not dissect myself. I am just writing this entry to say hello and to join up with others struggling with the same thing. It does make me feel better to think that some day I won't look at my scars and desire to reopen them. So many of you on this site have made it for months, or even years. Maybe some day I can too. But not now. Now I wonder where to cut next.

Thanks for listening.

Current Mood: depressed
Monday, January 12th, 2009
12:35 pm
Hi. I'm new.
I was good for almost a year.
I relapsed around Halloween, it's been a really hard few months
Sorta on and off since then. I've lost a few friends over all of this.
Sunday, December 21st, 2008
5:07 pm
Advice needed!
I need to figure out what to do regarding my stuff that was left up in Seattle and never returned to me.

BACK STORY: Last September, I moved up to Seattle for all of about a week before my then-sponsor/then-very-close-friend decided that she couldn't live with me and kicked me out with no warning. I am very lucky in that my best friend and her husband (and their son) had *just* moved up into that general vicinity, and were willing and able to help me keep body and soul together until I could get back home to the Bay Area, CA. The day before I was to hop on a train to bring me and my stuff (including several sweet dwarf hamsters that I smuggled on-board :)), I was supposed to pick up the remaining items (including a computer, a leather jacket, and a bunch of other stuff), but Fate intervened, and I ended up falling and getting a badly strained set of back muscles - I had to go to the hospital - which delayed my arrival at Pam's by about 45 minutes. She said that she couldn't wait that long, and left. I was able to retrieve the stuff that she'd left on the front porch for me, but the important (and expensive) stuff was still inside. I called the cops, who claimed that they couldn't do anything, that Pam had done nothing technically illegal - which doesn't make any sense to me. Refusing to return my stuff is tantamount to stealing it, is it not? Especially since I (well, OK, my mom) has offered to pay to ship the stuff.

Part of what makes this so frustrating is that Pam refuses to speak to me - she'll talk to my mom, but not to me, so I have to go by what my mother reports. And, given that my mother is pretty flaky... The last report I have received is that my mother called Pam to try to arrange a pick-up by UPS or some other we'll-pick-up-and-send-your-shit-for-you places, and Pam responded something to the effect of, "That's not one of my priorities right now, and Stef will have to wait for her stuff." I have no idea how long ago this was, but it's been OVER A YEAR since my stuff was left and not returned to me.

My part in all this: I know that I've made this sound as if this were all Pam's fault. And that's not entirely accurate. I have owned my portion of the blame. Part of the problem was that my doctor had recently changed the doses of some of my medications, which caused some difficulties for me, and I didn't change myself back to the original dose when I should have. Another part is that when Pam asked me to change one or two small things, I questioned why she wished them to be changed, rather than simply changing them. Additionally, I was feeling very abandoned (and I have abandonment issues, anyway), and Pam's attempts to get me to deal with these feelings made me feel as though she were rubbing my nose in the fact that (as I felt at the time) "nobody wanted me around". I certainly could have dealt with all of this better, and the gods know I wish I had. But, as I have come to learn more recently, I was very sick at that time, and clarity is not something I had a lot of at that time, which I suppose is what Pam meant by her claim that I was backsliding. It wasn't so much that I was backsliding in my program - my psychological problems were getting worse, and I didn't know how to fix that. Also, Pam relapsed (and took my medication), and I didn't know how to deal with that. At ALL.

Back to the present: The short of it is that she still has my stuff, and a friend of mine, Heinz, is going to be going up to Seattle this week to spend some time with his dad, who is dying. He is willing to meet up with Pam and pick up my stuff.

Here's my dilemma - do I:

a) Email Pam myself, telling her what's going on, etc.
b) Have my mother call (or email) Pam to tell her what's going on, etc.
c) Have Heinz call/email Pam (since he's the one who's going to be actually seeing her, maybe) and tell her what's going on, etc.

One of the things I'm concerned about is that she may have sold my stuff or thrown it out or something.

Current Mood: distressed
Wednesday, December 17th, 2008
7:45 pm
saw my ex out with someone else already.  they kept following me all around a faire on Sunday.
so tired of being reminded we aren't together any more.
i hate that feeling of butterflies or my heart racing that i get when i see the ex...
i ended it so why should i be feeling like this?

nevermind the fact that i already suspected the ex had already moved on and was being chickenshit and letting me end it

Current Mood: infuriated
Monday, December 15th, 2008
9:13 pm
Sara Creekmore's Sale
My favorite dichroic bead artist is not going to be making beads anymore. She's shutting that portion of the store on December 31. I'm very sad about this - those beads are *gorgeous* and a lot of fun to design with. One of the reasons I'm as upset as I am is that I was planning on using some of those beads for the 'chip' necklace/bracelets I want to make for you guys, so if you are interested, please get back to me soon!

If you're curious, and/or want to take advantage of the amazing sale that she's having right now, check out www.creekmore-glass.com, or go to the special sale page at:

Current Mood: disappointed
Sunday, December 14th, 2008
8:56 pm
Birthday Calendar
Hi, guys! I came up with an idea that I really like, and that I hope you'll really like, too. Please submit to me your (approximate will do) sobriety date, and I'll set up a recovery birthday calendar. Along with positive feedback, I'm hoping that some of you (if not all) will allow me to make something that would count as 'chips' - the symbols of sobriety that you earn when you reach certain time-markers - 24 hours, 1 week, 1 month, and so on.

What are your thoughts?

Current Mood: pleased
2:24 am
Today is my 4th birthday! In four minutes' time, it's been four years exactly since I last cut! *happy dances* I never thought that I would be able to stay clean for four weeks, much less four years. I'm so proud of me - something that is historically hard for me to even momentarily admit.

I'm proud not only because I'm clean, but because I started this support group, in order to help others who were suffering from the same disorder/addiction I have: I have come to care for all of you, and I sort of consider you all to be (at least in whatever small way we find that works for us) my unofficial sponsees. I hope you all know that you can come to me with whatever concerns happen to be bothering you - I like to think that I am trustworthy. In here, talking about these matters, you are completely safe. I promise.

I'd like to start a birthday program on here. What do you think about the idea of recognizing people's clean time? (it just occurred to me because it happens to be mine...) And, maybe, if you like that idea, we can start thinking about 'chips'.... My last 'chip' was actually the crystal flute Morgan bought me about three months before my third year... Anyway, it's something to think about.

Current Mood: proud
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