Why do people cut themselves?

There is so much confusion around the horrific addiction of cutting. It’s hard for some people to understand why you, or someone you know, would repeatedly cut on purpose. I’ve heard a lot of people say, “Why would anyone do such a thing as purposely cause pain to their bodies?” So let’s begin to uncover the reasons why so many people cut themselves. Most people cut themselves to try to cope with an even deeper emotional pain. If you or anybody you know is cutting, please understand cutting is just a cruel symptom of something much deeper and painful going on inside. Most cutters' ability to cope with life is overwhelmed by powerful emotions or extreme pressure that seem too intense to bear. When these emotions aren’t dealt with, tension builds up. Cutting can feel like a release of this tension.
         Most cutters have never had any healthy emotional relationships, which leaves people without the ability to be able to express their pain to others. Without the words or outlet to express their emotional pain, people give into a short cut—a destructive physical expression toward themselves. The physical pain has a calming effect on people more agonizing emotional pain. Cutting is the treating of one pain with another. A cutter’s life is one of choices between one kind of pain or a much greater one.
         The problem with cutting, as with any addiction, is that by harming yourself you never really are able to confront your deepest feelings. Perhaps that is you. You are using cutting to try to cope with an even deeper emotional pain. It is hard to say no to something that feels so good. But in the end, cutting will fail you every time. All cutters believe the physical pain they inflict upon themselves gives a temporary sense of relief from the intense emotional pain they are feeling. In this blog, I want to uncover a few more reasons why people cut. But keep in mind, you or someone you know, always cuts for some kind of relief.
        People cut to release anger, without hurting anyone else.   Cutting can be a substitute for anger toward someone else (usually an authority figure). Many cutters admit to being in painful or abusive relationships. Most people in abusive relationships feel stuck, or imprisoned, in that relationship. They feel powerless, even though their rage and fear scream out to be released. Cutting gives them that sense of release.
       People cut to deal with abandonment and loneliness.    Many people cut because they feel so isolated, abandoned, and alone. If you are a cutter, there’s a good chance you are also a loner, and what you do is often in secret. You don’t feel like you fit in anywhere, and so you fit in to your own little world. Cutting brings some pleasure into that little world, giving a sense of purpose and something to do to feel better about your isolation or being rejected.
       People who cut may have had a traumatic experience    — such as living through abuse, violence, or a disaster. Often, when someone has been through a disaster, they become emotionally numb, or shut their emotions down in order to avoid reliving the pain, over and over again. While that seems like a good idea, it is a huge mistake. We are not designed to be emotional zombies, or to be dead inside. In the end, the cutter desperately wants something to help them feel alive. Sadly, cutting may feel like a way of "waking up" from this sense of numbness and emotional death they have put upon themselves. That is why it is so hard for many cutters to turn away from cutting. When they self-mutilate, it’s the only time they really feel alive.