Paja posted this awhile ago. I emailed it to my boyfriend. I don't know if it will be of any help to anyone else, but here it is:
SIV: Self inflicted violence (cutting)
The basic of self inflicted violence is this...Intense emotional pain is hard to deal with. You can't see it, you can't put a bandage on it, you can't fully explain it to anyone else. The pain is personal and well, excruciating. Some people have learned not to show pain, or lack the ability to effectively communicate pain. When the tension builds internally to a point that feels like..."I'm going to explode, I am going to go insane" people who self injure...injure themselves. This act does many things...says many things....
1. It transfers the pain to the surface, where you CAN see it, you CAN heal it. You can't bandage the soul, but you can bandage your arm.
2. The blood speaks volumes as to the internal pain. Think of the cut as a red mouth screaming the pain. This maybe the only way a person can express the discomfort they are in.
3. The act itself will literally cut the tension one is feeling. You are left with a calmness, a dissociating "high", you feel back in control now that the energy is released. This fact makes SIV a very addicting act. You are positively reinforced each time you injure.
SIV is very alarming/disturbing to people who don't do it. What you need to know about us is this. We are not trying to kill ourselves with the injuring...think of it more as self medicating. SIV does not = suicide attempt. Suicide is an another catagory all by its self. Suicide = taking action to ends ones life, while SIV = taking action to ease internal pressure, so one can keep on functioning. It is, in fact, often used to stop one from reaching that point of seeking fatal means to cope. The number one most common denominator to SIV is a history of sexual abuse...we are talking about deep deep issues that need a professional touch here, the healing journey is a hard one. Deep issues must be faced, a commitment to healing and working towards learning and using healthy coping skills must be there. One doesnt have to have any abuse in there background to learn SIV as coping skill., it works just as well no matter the reason behind it. SIV is about control too...controlling ones emotions and feelings and destiny. Cutting can give a sense of control. I CONTROL WHEN AND WHERE I FEEL THE PAIN. We are NOT crazy for injuring ourselves. We are just in pain, and have lost the ability to comunicate anyother way. Think of it this way...the SIV is a fever. Its a symptom of a deeper infection that needs to cleared up before the fever goes away. You would never tell a sick person...just stop having a fever. We do medicate the fever away, but does that cure the infection? Nope. There is deeper work we need to do. Things that are not helpful...
1. Giving ultimatums. "You may not cut." "I won't be your friend if you injure yourself."
2. "Stop it for me." "promise me you won't cut for me" - We need to stop for ourselves.
3. "Just don't cut" - if it were that simple don't you think we would do it?
4. Non injuring contracts. SIV is a coping mechanisim. It may very well be the ONLY coping skill. Until there is a new skill learned-practiced-implemented, the SIV will continue. (We don't ask babies to be born and get up and walk the same day. They learn to use their muscles first, roll over, crawl, stand, then walk. It is a slow gradual process.) Re-learning/learning healthy coping skills is hard work.View Thread
Sorry to borrow your idea Fran, but I know that have had a rough week & would really to come up with some positives in my life right now.
I'm grateful that my little boy's 3 day bout with the stomach flu is over & he gets to spend some quality time with his stepdad (which he was so looking forward to).
I'm grateful that I just got a 2hr uninterrupted nap.
I'm grateful to the mother bird who put her nest in the roof of my balcony. I can sit outside on a beautiful day and hear their little peeps (as well as watch her take care of them). She spends all day just finding food for them while they poke their little heads out & wait. It reminds me that motherhood is supposed to be a lot of work.
I'm grateful that it is such a beautiful day I am allowed to sit out with my iced mocha & watch it happen.
I'm grateful for my iced mocha.
I'm grateful for all of your kind words & understanding that are giving me the strength to finally find a T.
I'm grateful to anyone who will accept this from me... (((hug)))
I don't have a T yet. I haven't felt ready for that step, but I'm starting to think that I need to. I need to just blurt out my entire story and see if someone can help me untangle the mess that has been my life. I can get either the actually therapy or a referral through my employee assistance program, and I think I am going to. I don't know why...but I'm scared.
I went to my pdoc today. She had been my Mother's pdoc & after my mother passed away...she encouraged me to get grief counseling through the assistance program. I never did...but that's where the idea stems from.
And speaking of my pdoc visit today...she looked at my arm and said "those aren't all dog scratches...but you can tell me what they are when or if you need to". I guess she has me figured out. I'm almost glad she called me out. She didn't give me a strange look or have an odd reaction. She said it...and carried on. The down side of my appt is that I have severe left sciatica & a trigger knot below my right shoulder blade. She put me on steroids. Steroids tend to make you gain weight. I have body dysmorphic and an ED and so I am terrified to start the meds. I'm sick just thinking about it (I guess this part belongs on the ED board). I just know that if I gain weight...I'll SH. A lot. I'm fighting it right now. Ugh. I feel stupid & mad at myself. I just want to cut & cry!!!
You all are right. I need to find a T. I need to make that phone call on Monday and at least try. I can't have my PTSD which drives my ED affect my health and I certainly can't let it push me to SH.
B's nonsensical ramblings. I'm just so confused & lost tonight...View Thread
Welcome to the site SoCal. And please...respond to anything at anytime. We have a fantastic group here. I've only been around for a month or so and they have already given me enough support and love to help me start working on controlling my self destructive behaviors. This is the closest I've ever come to therapy...and it's been one of the smartest things I've done.
I told my boyfriend about the cutting in the hopes that it would take away some of the pressure and energy. I thought that if someone knew...it would be easier to stop because I wouldn't want to have to face him seeing the scars and cuts. It didn't work out that way. We don't talk about it (other than when I emailed him the SIV description that Paja posted...thanks Paja...he hasn't said anything but I know it helped him to understand a little). I've changed where and how I SH so it isn't so obvious. I guess I should contact employee assistance and find a therapist. It probably sounds silly...but I don't know that I'm ready to stop. It's like when I got clean. I couldn't stop using the drugs until I knew I was ready. I didn't do that until it almost killed me (more than once). But, you are all right. It's the lying that bothers me...and in order to deal with the lying I need to out myself when it comes to the SH. I'm not going to talk to my doc tomorrow...I'm going to call employee assistance and set something up there. If it doesn't work...I can walk away and I won't be out anything. I have nothing to lose...right?
You know what's funny is that the only 'constructive' way I have of coping is to clean. Especially the dishes. By hand (even though I have a dishwasher). People who really know me know that if my house is spotless (I'm a single mom with 2 boys and a dog...clean doesn't happen very often) that all hell has broken loose and to watch out. View Thread
I've been thinking about therapy lately. Okay...backstory...my primary care doc was also my mom's doc and after my mom died she encouraged me to contact my employers employee assistance program for grief counseling. I have a hard time with counseling...so I never did it. Well...I've been thinking about therapy lately and I even went so far as to check out the employee assistance program on our website at work today. So...I've been thinking all day and I've figured out that I am bothered more by the lying than I am about the SH or my ED. I lie about cuts and scars. I lie about what I eat. I spend so much time lying. I don't want to advertise that I cut or that I have an eating disorder...but the lying gets exhausting. I told my boyfriend about the cutting...and I actually regret having done so. I told him...but I don't want to talk to him about it. I have a regular check up with my doc on Friday (she doesn't know about the SH or ED either). I was just in their office a couple of weeks ago so that her PA could remove the 8 stitches from my arm (which I had lied about). I know she's going to ask me how everything is...and I'm going to lie. Ugh. Why can't I just tell the truth?
ROUS'S? I'm LOVING that!! The Princess Bride is my favorite movie. The absolute BEST of all time. But now I can't look at the ROUS'S in the Fire Swamp as the bad guys...they're sooooo cute in those pics...View Thread