Life without Anorexia

My motto is
'Dont let the sadness of your past & the fear of your future ruin the happiness of your present'

My life at the moment is completely different to how it once was. I spent 5 years sick with anorexia nervosia and depression as well as struggling with self harm and overexercising. I spent 2 years in different treatment centres.
And since 2012 i have been declared healthy from my eating disorder.

I have been blogging for 7 years, and my whole journey is written in my posts. I now represent healthy and happiness. I want to show anyone struggling that it is possible to recover, no matter how hard it may seem.

I now blog about recovery, my life, veganism and positivity!

If you have any questions leave them in the comment section as i am much quicker at answering there, otherwise you can always send an email: lifewithoutanorexia@hotmail.com

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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

My self harming

Something which i thought i would write about is my self harm, as its something which ive been thinking about alot recently, and ive also been asked about it recently.


So, my self harm started when i was 13 years old. I remember the first time i self harmed very clearly, i had just gone to see a sort of psychotherapist, or not sure what to call the person. This was before i was diagnosed with anorexia, but i had been having food problems for about a year, i was purging, restricting and over exercising. Basically i was going to get some herbal medicines for my CF, and then i had to talk to the person who was going to put together the herbal drink (haha, this doesnt sound good ;)), and she asked loads of different questions and i just sat silent, i didnt know how to answer. I couldnt open up. Ive always had a problem talking to people, telling people what is going on, how im feeling etc
    That day i had barely eaten anything and on the way home my mum stopped in the shop and bought loads of different snacks - crisps, chocolate, yoghurt covered nuts. And as i knew i hadnt eaten anything all day, i thought i would eat some crisps and yoghurt covered nuts, but once i took a little all i wanted was more and ended up eating quite alot. And i got so much anxiety, i was almost shaking from the anxiety - my mum just thought i was tired and that it was from the whole 'experience' of meeting the herbal doctor.
  
However, the moment we got home i ran to my room, got into bed and lay there in the dark, hoping the anxiety would fade, but it didnt. And that was when i saw my compas lying on my desk, and i just grabbed it and began harming myself. And it helped. Instead of dealing with the anxiety and the mental pain, i would feel the physical pain.... however, soon i just got used to the pain and i just felt numb.
   Over the next while self harm became an addiction, it was my way of coping with my anxiety.

While i was in hospital all sharp things were taken away from me, but i still managed to sneak some sort of sharp object in.

When my mum first found out about my self harm i blamed it on the dog, though that was a very obvious lie, as my scars were newly made, long and deep. She tried talking to me about it, but i didnt say anything. I didnt have an explanation... all i knew was that self harm helped.
   When she told my dad, he became furious.... he couldnt understand. He was worried about me, wanted to help me, but all i did was push him away. I turned my back on my dad, i didnt want him to see me this way.

I self harmed for 3 years, and ive done a number of different forms of self harm - cutting (with loads of different objects), burning (this is something which i still cant believe i did - i poured boiling hot water on myself (my arms and my legs), just the thought of actually doing this to myself now is terrifying, and at the time i was so numb to everything that i dont think i felt so much pain... it was almost like i was trying tofeel something at that point.), i also used my hair straightner at times to burn myself, head banging (sounds strange, but yes it is a form of self harming).

  
All these different methods in a way to dampen my anxiety. To try to take the mental pain away, to feel physical pain... but it also became an addiction. I didnt like when my scars faded, i had to make new ones. I didnt show my scars, i tried to hide them at all costs, but at the same time i felt a little proud.... it was like my outside was showing my inside...  I was so scarred and broken on the inside, and i wanted people to know... i wanted people to just look at my outside and see how broken i was.
    Its like now i like looking strong, because it shows how strong i am on the inside.



In all honesty, i cant even remember how i stopped self harming. It was more that i was so focused on recovery. I was focused on stopping all my bad behaviour - not purging, not over exercising, eating food without cheating, trying fear foods... i was focused on my goal.
  But also, i was at Mando and on extra supervision... though it happend at times that i still self harmed. When you are recovering and doing things which are extra hard, it does mean extra anxiety. But i tried to find other ways to cope, and writing was one of them.
    I dont think i made the conscious decision to stop, it was just that i wasnt realy able to self harm as i had so much supervision, and then it stopped being one of my thoughts... it wasnt the first thing i thought about when i had anxiety, instead i had other ways of coping. And thats important in recovery, to find healthier options of dealing with your emotions and stress - because that is what it is about. Self harm is a way of coping.

It took a long time for my scars to fade, but they did eventually. I do still have pale white scars on my arms, stomach and legs (on my legs there are still pink/red lines and criss crosses).

There have been times in my half recovery, and when i have felt very depressed that i have returned to self harm - when i have had WAY TOO MUCH  anxiety, and just havent known what to do with myself, but it never lasted more than a day or two. This however is not somthing which i have written about on my blog, and it has been more than a year now anyway.

Dont ever start with self harm, you think you'll only do it once, but it is addictive and there can be serious consequences to self harm.
  And if you are self harming, please find a different way to cope, because you can recover from  self harm as well. I promise, its possible.

** At first i had planned to post pictures with this post, but then i realised that i really dont need to. That is not what my blog is about. My blog is pro recovery, and i think posting triggering pictures of my self harm would just have the opposite affect.

4 comments:

  1. Every time I read about your past it just makes my heart break, but at the same time it is a great motivation for me - if you could recover from being so sick, I believe everyone could do the same.
    J

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    Replies
    1. Thank you!! :) Of course everyone can recover, its hard to believe. But recovery IS possible, as long as you fight for it!

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  2. Way to go Izzy. You are an amazing person.!!

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