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why can't I just walk away from sef-harming when I know it's bad for me?

18 Answers
Last Updated: 11/03/2020 at 2:06pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
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Stacey Kiger, LPC

Licensed Professional Counselor

My belief is that therapy is not about giving advice, but joining you on your journey

Top Rated Answers
November 3rd, 2020 2:06pm
self harm is considered an addiction, many people who start self harming claim they arent able to stop, it gives them feelings of relief, every time they feel overwhelmed, they think about self harming, because they feel good after harming themselves, but its a temporary relief. there are ways to stop such as reaching out for help, finding things you like so you can distract yourself, let your feelings out in a healthier way (journaling, painting or even screaming into your pillow when you feel stressed, sad, angry...)
April 27th, 2015 7:40am
because its an addiction, you need to replace the addiction with something else. there are many alternatives online, just need to find one that works for you
April 29th, 2015 8:56pm
Self harm is an addiction and quitting it is just as difficult--and just as much of an accomplishment--as quitting an addiction to cigarettes would be. It's okay if you can't quit all at once. Sometimes baby steps is the best way to get someplace.
May 7th, 2015 6:23pm
Self harm is really difficult to recover from. It can take months or even years to stop getting the urges. I've been there. I know you can do it though. The thing that makes it hard is the release it gives us. We can actually give it up until we find another outlet ( a healthy coping skill). You can go online and search for "healthy coping skills". Try some out and see what works for you. Hope this helps! :)
June 17th, 2015 6:40pm
I think that, after a while, it really does become both a physical and mental necessity. We know it's bad and we know that it isn't going to help much in the long run, but we enjoy the buzz and it makes us feel alive, which is why most people do it in the first place. But after a while, the sensation can fade, and then we are stuck with this mutilating addiction that is hard to get away from. i think it's because we convince ourselves that we need it, even if deep down we know we don't.
June 17th, 2015 6:59pm
In my opinion, self-harm can be an addiction. No matter what kind of self-harm it is. It's something you can relapse on and it's something that hurts you. It may because it's what you associate with what will help you take your pain away.
June 23rd, 2015 8:46am
People very often resort to self harm as a way to remove any emotional stress or pain into physical. Some feel that by doing that, the emotional pain effectively leaves the body when physical pain is released and stops. So there will be times when you feel that self harm is the only way. But the good thing is, that you know it is bad for you, and that would be the point to which you can find other coping mechanisms. For example, try to punch something soft instead, use a pen to symbolically mark where you would normally inflict pain. Write down your feelings. Take a look at the self help guide at the top of the webpage on 'Self Harm' - the guide will help you to understand more about self harm and find a variety of other coping mechanisms which you can try. All the best, StarryRiver83.
July 6th, 2015 8:53am
Because it works. In most cases, even after knowing that it is bad, people find it difficult to stop as it provides some amount of temporary relief and its hard to pull away from that. The temptations remain and overcoming them is a huge, difficult task which takes time.
October 27th, 2015 5:00am
You should realise the long term damage it can cause, and try to understand that self-harming will not do you any good. Try to find an alternative relief. For example, when I'm stressed, or having negative thoughts, I listen to music. Music can be very beneficial, just try to find something you like. Other alternatives include: Going outside for a walk, exercising, Writing (poems for example), drawing and much more.
December 1st, 2015 12:54am
Because it's an addiction and it's why it's so difficult for you. But you can do it, i believe in you.
December 14th, 2015 5:07pm
because youre either addicted or you do it to feel something - you could also have a subconscious connection and bond with the actual action itself and not the pain. you need to figure out what is causing you to self harm, and then try to figure out better ways to deal with what us going on. if you cant, there are plenty of lovely listeners on here, ready to help you.
February 22nd, 2016 11:07am
Because it's addictive. When we bleed, our bodies produce endorphins and adrenaline, which make us feel good. So cutting actually feels good, possibly the good feelings are stronger than the twinge of pain that comes from the cut. For the same reason it's hard to quit smoking, it's hard to stop SH. But it is possible, especially with professional help. Check out the 7 cups guide:
April 5th, 2016 1:41am
because its an addiction, it is like it becomes a part of you.. and without it you may feel lost but your not i promise you.. its just your body remembering the feeling and when you usually would do it your going to crave it but just remember your better than that
August 8th, 2016 9:29pm
You can't just walk away from self-harming when you know it is bad for yourself because you are addicted and used to self-harming. It is kind of like quitting smoking. You are so used to smoking that it seems like it is impossible to stop. You always have the urge to smoke. In this case, you always have that urge to cut because you have done it so much, and maybe it gave you pleasure, maybe it got your mind off of things. Even if you know it is bad for you, you are still having the urge to do it.
April 18th, 2017 2:57pm
Walking away from anything that is addictive is much harder than it sounds - it can take time to work through something as intricate as self-harming, especially when you still get a craving while knowing it's bad for you
August 7th, 2017 3:20pm
Most people who self harm are aware it's bad for them, but it's an addiction therefore it is hard to "just walk away" from it. Think of it this way, smokers know the dangers of smoking but can't stop, it's the same for self harmers. Something that can help with self harm is having a hobby that can distract you when you feel the need to harm yourself. Some people listen to music, read, go for a walk, etc. Finding something you enjoy can help take your mind off of things.
November 28th, 2017 10:41pm
Sometimes we can get addicted to hurting ourselves. We see self-harm as an escape from emotional pain, and it can make us feel better. We can be aware that it is bad for us, but continue it anyway. To stop self-harm, replace it with something else, so instead, when you go to hurt yourself, write down how you feel instead, or draw something.
December 12th, 2017 5:25pm
Self harming can be extremely addictive for some people as it is their way of coping. So giving it up is much harder than it sounds