|   Log In

Inspiration

Self-Harm: A Guest Post by My Broken Palace

Hey PI Girls, we’ve been getting a lot of requests from you all to discuss and open up conversation to more serious topics on our site. We have partnered with My Broken Palace, a nonprofit organization that helps people in their time of brokenness. They (and we at PI) believe that no one should ever have to deal with loneliness, depression, anxiety, stress, abuse, addiction or thoughts of suicide alone. For their first post, they will be covering cutting, a topic really relevant to today’s young women.

 

Written by Jes Balascio of My Broken Palace

Perhaps you or a friend is struggling with self-harm or cutting. We understand how hard it can be to confront a problem like this. It’s like hiding a monster in your closet where you’re afraid to let it out, but in a weird way, you like having him there.

 

Kimberly Navarro, licensed therapist (LMFT), provides these insights about cutting:

“It can feel good to have a release from all you’re holding in. Cutting can create a space for you to free the pain, frustration and fears without anyone knowing what is going on inside. Self-harm can momentarily quiet the really deep pain, too. Cutting can be a way to deal with whatever life throws at you. The thing is, there are some good and some harmful ways to deal, and cutting is a harmful one: It is destructive to your body, leads to shame and can even become an addiction. There are chemicals that get released when our bodies get hurt, and they have a calming effect. This can create a ‘high’ when cutting, and so the chase begins: pursuing that feeling even though it never is quite as good as the first experience. There are times when you won’t have the words for your feelings/pain, but cutting is never the answer. You must find other ways that are not destructive.”

 

Here are a few signs you might notice that one of your friends or family members is struggling with self-harm:

  • One of the most obvious signs is wearing a hoodie or long-sleeve shirt all the time, even when it’s scorching hot outside.
  • Another sign can be wearing lots of wristbands.
  • Cutting also goes hand in hand with emotional problems in general. So just notice their obvious mood changes, ask how they are doing and have real discussions—don’t just keep it shallow.

 

It’s important to know:

  • Deep inside, many self-harmers want to be discovered. They often cut in obvious places hoping to get noticed. But they are torn because they are afraid of being shamed or potentially getting sent to a psych ward.
  • Most have friends who know but are sworn to secrecy, or have friends who struggle, too. The people who self-harm in complete secrecy and who cut in hidden places that would never have a chance for discovery typically are in more serious emotional distress.
  • As a friend, it’s important to follow your gut. If you think someone is in trouble, and they won’t talk to you about it, then they probably are; if they’re not ‘being themselves,’ then they may need help.

 

We strongly believe that one cannot be free of the harmful effects of society without accountability and a strong reliance on God. You or your friend won’t be cured of cutting until you address what’s hurting inside, and that will likely require the help of a professional who has a relationship with Jesus Christ and experience with people in similar situations to yours. You or your friend will need interventions before you’re free of this demon, be that from MyBrokenPalace.com, a local crisis center, a trusted therapist or a counselor. Whatever your choice, please do something now!

Never forget: We are here for you. You are not alone in this. If you’re seriously considering hurting yourself right now, then please call or message us; we have caring people ready to talk to you 24 hours a day. Go to MyBrokenPalace.com and get connected with our anonymous, nonjudgmental social network made up of people who’ve gone through, or are going through, the same stuff that you are. You can also sign up for our daily text of spiritual encouragement; text “join hope” to 40650, and then reply “yes” to opt in. *Standard text rates may apply.

Image: Lightstock | Prixel Creative

POST A COMMENT

You must be logged in to post a comment.

15 Comments

  1. savedbygrace16

    Posted by savedbygrace16 on August 30, 2014 at 23:16

    It was hard to hear that people who cut in places that are more noticeable are yes, torn, but not as torn as those who cut in places more hidden? I’m someone who struggles with self harm. My cuts are on my arm. But my intentions are never to be noticed. The pain is so real on both sides. I do like the article, it’s just hard

  2. BBK0224

    Posted by BBK0224 on August 30, 2014 at 17:42

    This was just an incredible post to read! I have struggled with self harm. It became addicting and it made me feel so good when I did it. It took me a while to realize I had a problem and when I did, I told my best friend who was really there for me and never left my side. Even though I told her, I couldn’t stop cutting. I didn’t had God in my corner and never prayed to him about my cutting. My best friend found out I didn’t stop cutting and suggested I tell my youth pastor. When I told him, we probably chatted about me cutting for half an hour. He wanted to know why I was cutting. He was really there for me and after our chat, he prayed for me and that was the first time I had prayed to God about my cutting. After a few days, I stopped cutting and I haven’t cut for 6 months. I’m still struggling though, I’m afraid I might go back and do it again and there are some days when I do want to cut. I went on a mission trip this past summer and I told my youth group my testimony and they were there for me. I found out that other people had cutting problems and they knew what I had gone through and that if I needed to, I could message them or text them about my cutting. It really makes a difference when you tell people. I also now pray to God if I’m ever thinking about cutting again.

  3. Limitless

    Posted by Limitless on August 20, 2014 at 00:21

    This is an amazing post. As someone who has been there, done that I appreciate any attempts (actually this was much better than an attempt!) to talk about this issue and bring it to light.

    I’ve actually recently been doing a lot of research about this issue, and because I know exactly what it is like I can relate to people in this situation – and unfortunately I know quite a few 🙁 But God has called me to do something about it and that I shall! The problem is we need to show people that they’re worth more than that, and that there is a better way to go about dealing with things than hurting your body (of course, Jesus is the answer, but when you’re stuck deep in the middle of that, usually that’s the last thing you want to hear!), but we need to do it in a non-preachy way, and in a way that shows understanding. Cuz people ain’t gonna change if they don’t want to . . . only when God showed me that He wanted me to, and that I wanted to was I able to break free from that horrible cage.

    P.s. – All you peeps who are struggling with this or know someone struggling with this, please don’t give up. I know what it’s like and one of the best things you can do is have a massive rant at God instead of venting on your body. Scream, cry, jump. But please, God is upset when he sees any of his daughters hurting themselves, and you should too.

    P.p.s- I’ve been SH free for nearly 11 months now! God is so amazingly good!

    • JayElleBee

      Posted by JayElleBee on August 22, 2014 at 19:50

      Limitless! Great job on breaking the cycle! What are your plans moving forward to help others? Have you contacted My Broken Palace about ways you can get involved?

  4. Skittle1524

    Posted by Skittle1524 on August 17, 2014 at 15:27

    I love how we are actually talking about this now. I struggled with self harm too and I’ll be 100 days clean the 20th!! My turning point was at church camp (magical stuff happens there) and I only went through one really bad withdrawal (I stretched my knee and no I have a scar from it) I haven’t wanted to cut since then but now I struggle with an eating disorder. Looking forward to an article about that.

    • Mandi Pi

      Posted by Mandi Pi on August 18, 2014 at 17:45

      Hey Skittle! Just wanted to tell you, you’re beautiful. 🙂 I know it can be hard to shove away society, but what they are pushing you to be is something unrealistic, impossible, and quite frankly, stupid. It doesn’t matter how “skinny” or “fat” people might consider you, the fact is that we all have different body types, and yours is beautiful exactly the way God intended it to be. 🙂 Listen to or at least read the lyrics of the song Mirror by BarlowGirl! They are perfect, and I love them. ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aYd8bVIgZo8 or http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/barlowgirl/mirror.html ) You ARE who you are in Christ–someone lovely and special who is being used by God. Don’t let a number (your weight) define you. No matter what anyone, or everyone, says, you are beautifully amazing how you are.

      If you ever need to talk, be held accountable, or be encouraged, you can either talk to me on here or email me at Amfin@earthlink.net (I check my email all the time). 🙂 Love you. <3

      ~Luke 12:6-7~
      "Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows."

      ~Psalm 139:14-16~
      "I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them."

  5. Project Inspired

    Posted by Surrealist on August 16, 2014 at 23:58

    I’m glad that this site has taken the initiative to step up and talk about the hard things. It’s such an pressing and relevant part of our society that it’s nice to know that not everyone has the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy when it comes to cutting and depression.
    What’s very relieving is that a Christian organization is talking about this because I’ve noticed that many places like this try to stay on the happy cutesy side of things and that’s why some people label us as people who think they have it all and have perfect lives even though many of us have real problems such as this.
    PI, I applaud you.
    Well done.

  6. DawnMarie1993

    Posted by DawnMarie1993 on August 16, 2014 at 02:18

    i’ve been down the road of self harm and its not a good place to be, i haven’t self harmed in 11 days now. God has really been helping me

    • tanatiger12

      Posted by tanatiger12 on August 17, 2014 at 09:29

      Wow Dawn that’s awesome it can be hard trust me but God has it we all have things in our lifes that is hard but everything that we go through is what makes us who we are if you didn’t go through this it wouldn’t make you who you are. God will use are pain for good his good in the Bible it says that everything works for those who love the Lord.

  7. angelagrhodes

    Posted by angelagrhodes on August 15, 2014 at 10:24

    Love this!

  8. Lovely Mistakes

    Posted by Lovely Mistakes on August 14, 2014 at 13:42

    I love this post. I also love the website that the people came from. I get their encouraging texts everyday:) They are truly helpful

  9. tanatiger12

    Posted by tanatiger12 on August 14, 2014 at 13:31

    Wow that’s really good. But it would be awesome if there was more talk about like how long or how much people do it and the fact that its just not found in girls its also found in guys.

  10. Leah518

    Posted by Leah518 on August 14, 2014 at 13:23

    Thank you for posting!!! It came yet again at the right time in my life. I am not the one who self harms, but I have a very good friend that does. I try to tell her to stop and that she needs professional help, but she kinda likes to argue with me a little and tell me she doesn’t. This really encouraged me to help her even more.
    Thank you!! 🙂

    • JayElleBee

      Posted by JayElleBee on August 22, 2014 at 20:03

      Leah, I am praying for your friend. And, I’m praying for you b/c it must be awful watching someone you love do that to herself. :*(
      Is there anything we can do to help you?
      Take care <3

    • goatwrangler

      Posted by goatwrangler on August 16, 2014 at 12:59

      Try to be understanding. I’m not the the exact same boat, but be understanding. She might not want to admit that she needs help. (It’s not a pride thing. It’s fear. Completely and totally fear. (At least for me.) If I’m falling apart with life as it is, I’ll completely break if my secret gets out and everyone knows that I have to see a shrink because I’m such a mess. If everyone I know finds out … My brain amplifies what would happen to the point where it would be unbearable.) Try to be understanding, ‘kay? 🙂