Archive for the ‘To Write Love On Her Arms’ Category

I witnessed one of the most scary, yet intriguing trends being brought up in adolescent America while I was in high school. I wasn’t just a witness to it, I was also hugely involved in it. It had the ability to tear friendships apart, to break the hearts of parents and make them wonder if they weren’t good enough while raising they’re child, to manipulate the person involved into thinking that everyone around them was the enemy and all they wanted was to report them to the school psychologist. The trend, was cutting.

Freshman year is a confusing time for anyone no doubt. Friendships from middle school sometime come to an abrupt end, new friends come into your life and life itself takes on a whole new meaning within you. It’s the year  most of us spent trying to understand ourselves better. Freshman year was also the year I saw cutting play a bigger role in our society than I ever did before.

Cutting shouldn’t be a trend. I remember knowing people who cut themselves because they thought it was cool and they wanted to fit in. Others of us did it because it was a way of escape from the mess going on inside our heads. Either way, it was becoming something bigger than we thought it ever could be. As it was having its way in my life, I saw what it was doing to others as well.

Once people found out about it, you became part of the gossip train. Some people thrived on that attention. They didn’t want that specific kind of attention, but having people know who they were gave them some sort of thrill. Those who were cutting for deeper reasons, the attention was a nightmare. Their one thing they had that they could control was now exposed to the world. The one secret they wanted to keep was out.

Either way, I saw cutting growing and growing into our society. It was once a well kept secret that nobody wanted to talk about, and soon it was all some people could talk about.

Cutting isn’t cool. Cutting is a serious problem. Cutting shouldn’t be the thing to be doing. Cutting can be dangerous. Either way you look at it, no matter what the intentions of the cutter are for doing it, they need help. Yes even those who wanted the attention; there’s still something there that needs to be exposed.

Cutting shouldn’t be an epidemic.

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“If you struggle with self-injury, you are not “a cutter”. You are a person. You are not only your pain. You are not only wounds and scars. You are also better things. You are possibility and promise, hope and healing, daydreams, favorite books and favorite songs. You are the people that you love and the people who love you. You are hope and change and things worth fighting for. This is all your story and your story isn’t over.”– Jaime Tworkowski.

 

I found this quote not too long ago, and it has stuck with me. I love how Jaime puts those words together, to make something powerful; something so meaningful and important to someone who is suffering. We have a habit of sticking the label of “cutter” on someone whom we know is dealing with self injury, and it’s wrong. People make them out to be their flaw and their flaw becomes the only thing people see. They can’t get past the stigma, so whatever issue they are struggling with at that time is now made their identity.

Oh there’s “so and so” the cutter
Oh isn’t that______, the addict?
Oh I know them, they’re the suicidal one right?

I know it’s a name association process, or whatever the proper term is, but we shouldn’t be associating peoples personal struggles with who they are. Fact is, the persons struggle is never who they are. Truth? If you know someone, and have to place that “label” after their name, you don’t really care about them as deep as you might think, and chances are you don’t know them even half as well as you might think you do. I find it shallow actually. In the past I too have associated people with things I had heard about them, but now if I do hear something about them, before I even know them too, I make an effort to know them better. I don’t care who you are, you don’t deserve a label over you.

And if you are going through something that’s painful, Jaime T said it right. You are hope and change. Things don’t have to stay the way they are at this very moment. Believe in yourself, even when it’s most difficult to. If you can muster up even just a little faith in yourself that things will change, that the sun will once again shine even just a ray of light into your world; you will see that change, and that change is possible. I’m a psychology fan, and I remember learning, that smiling releases endorphins into your body, the chemicals that make you cheery; they’re also called the “feel good chemicals”. So when you’re down and out, just smile. I know that sounds lame, but it does work; if you want to be happy and have hope, you can.

this is all YOUR story, and your story ISN’T OVER