I’ve got a confession to make. I self-harmed last night. I cut myself. Not just a little bit, I cut myself fifteen times. I had a phone conversation with my mum and that brought on the compulsion.
It wasn’t a horrible call. We talked about everyday stuff and laughed together. It was easy and it felt good. It felt like the old days. I didn’t want to hang up and neither did she, so we talked for ninety minutes.
Once I’d finished our phone call though, my mood dropped dramatically. I tried to distract myself by painting. I enjoyed getting my hands dirty, I painted with my fingers for the first time since I was tiny. I used loads of bright colours and created something beautiful.
Painting didn’t help though. There was no relief. I still held the urge, that dark voice telling me I had to do something. So I plotted. I contemplated suicide. I worked out how I would do it. Then I decided that wasn’t a good idea.
So I thought I would run instead. Just disappear from the house and go and obliterate myself with alcohol. I liked the idea of getting hammered and landing myself in some trouble. But again I reined myself in. I remembered how distressing it was for my wife last time I went AWOL and I didn’t want the police out looking for me. I knew if they caught up with me I would be looking at a Section and I’m not keen on the prospect of being incarcerated.
That’s how I ended up cutting myself. I really tried not to. I sat with the blade in my hand, feeling its edge and thinking about what to do with it. I sat like that for about an hour. And then I started. It wasn’t dissociative, I wasn’t out of control. But I enjoyed it. I know I shouldn’t admit that, but I did enjoy it. It was exciting. It was a release. It felt right. I felt like I should be hurting, I should be suffering. In a really sick way, it made sense.