Inside the Mind of a Cutter

“What happened to your wrist?” Krystal asked Melody. Melody had a bandage on her wrist.

            “Oh, I cut,” Melody responded.

            I thought Melody was joking but it turned out she was being serious. She had cut herself on purpose with a plastic knife. I couldn’t understand why she did it. I mean, why would someone purposely hurt themselves? What was enjoyable about pain?

            I looked down at Melody after that. My opinion of her changed and I no longer wanted anything to do with her. I didn’t realize that I would become her in a couple years.

            I suffer from depression off and on. It has been going on for years. At one point, it had gotten particularly bad. Life was very stressful at the moment. My college classes were difficult and required a lot of work. At the same time, I was having problems with my friends.

            One day, I was sitting in class when the impulse to cut crossed my mind. I was shocked that I would have such a thought. I looked down at cutting. It was wrong to cut. Where would a thought like that even come from?

            I managed to not give in but the desire to cut crossed my mind several more times. I really wanted to take a butter knife to my wrist. I knew I would feel better. I knew it was wrong though.

            Several months later, I went home for the summer. I still wanted to cut and eventually, I gave in. It was like staring at a piece of chocolate cake and telling yourself that you aren’t going to eat it because it is not good for you. The thought of the cake just won’t go away though and you eventually give in and eat a slice because you know you won’t feel better until you eat it.

            The first time I cut I used a pen cap. I didn’t want to draw attention to myself so I waited until night and scratched my wrist with the pen cap. It left long red raised marks on my wrist that hurt but were gone by morning.

            I ended up cutting several more times with the pen cap. Each night it was because it had been a bad day. Cutting helped me feel better. The pain would shoot up my arm, allowing me to put powerful feelings into something I could understand. I felt like I was doing something about my problems.

            Shortly after that, I quit using the pen cap and switched to a letter opener. It had a dull blade but made better marks than the pen cap. It didn’t break my skin but I still had to be careful because sometimes I would wake up with faint red marks on my wrist. If anyone asked though, I was going to pass them off as cat scratches.

            A part of me knew that cutting was wrong. I shouldn’t be taking my problems out on my wrists. I shouldn’t let people get to me either. But I didn’t want to acknowledge the sin I was committing though. For me, cutting was necessary.

            About a year after the first impulse to cut occurred, I realized that what I was doing was sinful. Not only that, it was addictive. I was cutting often. Sometimes, it was only for little incidents that happened during the day.

            It wasn’t easy giving up cutting. I have given into the desire occasionally, even though by then I knew what I was doing was wrong. It has been hard to break the habit. Even though I haven’t cut for almost five months, there are still days when I really want to. The desire will probably never go away entirely. There are days when life is tough and my fingers start itching for something sharp. It takes a lot of willpower not to cut. I am a past cutter though, and will probably always have the desire.

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