Cutting Warning Label

This article has helped me in times of need. The author is unknown but I hope by sharing it at least someone can be helped.


….before you make that first cut remember. You will enjoy this. You will find the blood and pain release addictive. Even though you think you can make a few tiny cuts that aren’t deep and will heal easily …they will get deeper. They will scar. They will take sometimes months to heal, and years for the scars to fade!
IF you think you can limit the cutting to one area of your body think again…it will spread when you run out of skin.
Be prepared to withdraw from others and live in a constant state of shame. Even if you are the most honest person ever to live …. you will find yourself lying to the people you love.  You will jerk back from your friends when they touch you as if their hands were dipped in poison. You will be terrified that they will feel something under the cloth of your shirt or because it just plain hurts so much to be touched.
Be prepared to get so out of control you fear your next cut because you don’t know how bad it will be. Just wait for 10 cuts to turn into 100…. Be prepared for your entire life to revolve around thinking about cutting… cutting and covering up cutting, and just wait till that first time you cut “too deep.” And you freak out because the blood won’t stop… and you are gaping… .and you feel yourself shaking all over. You are having a panic attack and you are terrified but you can’t tell anyone. So you sit there alone… praying it will be okay and swearing you’ll never let it go this far again… But you will and further.
Don’t worry, you will learn how to take care of your cuts so that you can go deeper and deeper and avoid the ER. And the better you get at treating your cuts the deeper they get.
You will lie to yourself and justify it when you find yourself spending 20 , 30 or 50 pounds every time you go the pharmacy. You will feel the flutter of your heartbeat every time you go to the counter to ring up your order. Steri strips… 3 or four different kinds of  dressings, iodine,  antibiotic cream, medical tape, scar reducers….. You will tap your foot impatiently hoping the line will just move and no one will stare at you or wonder why you need all these things. And at the same time secretly hope someone will notice… someone who is standing in line with an armful of the same supplies… someone who understands; but of course that never happens.
Medical supplies won’t be the only thing you spend all your money on. Be prepared to buy a new wardrobe… long sleeved shirts in summer colors, bracelets, wristbands , boots… gloves.. the list goes on and on.
You will start looking at everyone in a different way… Scanning their bodies for any signs of self harm… just hoping that you might meet someone like you so you don’t feel so terribly alone. You wont even think about it … as your eyes scan their wrists and arms… hoping just hoping they will be like you…. But they are not.
You will see their clean arms and feel terribly ashamed and alone.
You will start doing a lot of things alone. You will always have to wash your laundry in private so know one sees the blood stains on your clothes and towels. You will always be cleaning up the blood.. Scrubbing your bathroom floor… wiping the blood of your keyboard….
You won’t be able to make it through a day without cutting…. Next thing you know you are in a public bathroom somewhere breaking open a scab with a sewing needle that you keep in your wallet for emergencies. When you get really desperate anything will be a cutting tool … scissors… a car key… a needle … a paperclip.. even a pen. Doesn’t matter what it is if you need to cut bad enough you will find something.
Say goodbye to things you took for granted. Like wearing shorts or sandals… pedicures… sleeveless tops. A normal summer day at the beach or in a swimming pool will become a far off memory for you.
Get ready to itch. Because you will itch and itch …”so much you will look like you have fleas or a skin disease.”
You will become an expert on your body as you destroy it carefully… You will dream about cutting… you will dream about being exposed.  It will haunt you day and night and take over your life. You will wish you never made that first cut because while you absolutely HATE cutting… at the same time you love it and can not live with out of it.
You have been warned…..


  1. This is so…heartbreaking.
    The shame, the fear of being touched by other people, the fear to go too deep…the day you finally get that “too deep”, and shake in terror and pray for the blood to stop running away out of you. And then self-medication, the paradoxical feelings at the pharmacist’s, being constantly alone, chocking in long sleeves in the summer, the pen stuck in the flesh while shivering in a disgusting public toilet.
    It is all incredibly TRUE and I can’t really help myself but crying.

  2. I so hope someone reads these words and stops to think before they act. Self-harming is addictive. I too thought I was in control; I thought I could limit my cutting to a small area of skin that could be easily hidden. I was so wrong. I now have scars from wrist to armpit on both sides of my arms. I’ve had to go into A&E for stitches twice and steri-strips many more times.

    Like you, I’m both ashamed of my scars but also want people to see them and see what I’m dealing with on a daily basis. I go swimming and look at other people’s arms to see if the statistics about how many people cut are true. If I see someone with scars – and it’s usually a teenage girl, not a 30-something mother – we lock eyes and share a moment of understanding.

    I’ve lapsed tonight after several ‘clean’ months. It feels awful but also cleansing in some way.

    1. I’m sorry that you felt you needed to cut. I sometimes have those moments too, but having my daughter changed my mindset on things so much. Things aren’t about me any more, they are about her. And one of the most useful things anyone ever said to me was this: all feelings pass, if you give them time. Now I tend to try to sleep it off if I get urges. I will soon be a 30-something mother and sadly I have scars that are still very obvious, and they are keloid so I always will. Please try to get some help to stop the cycle. You can do it. xx

  3. […] read this excellent blog post and can relate to a lot of it that I thought I would share. Life after Borderline Personality Disorder; making a life worth living through love, laughter, […]

  4. this is so beautiful. i should say sad, but as i am now realizing i am more than halfway to never coming back from this nightmare, so many switches went off in my head. Your writting is beautiful making the piece of sadness equally great

  5. This inspired me so much and put my unexplained feelings into words. I can connect to this writing on a deep level I can very much appreciate. Thank you.

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