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Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones, but Words Made Me Shred My Skin

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A blade was my best friend. I was the kind of girl that people looked right through. I felt invisible, transparent. I was a ghost and anyone could walk right through me. Even if I reached out, no one would reach back. Eventually I learned this and stopped trying.

I started cutting before people started picking on me as a reaction to my lifelong depression and struggles with PTSD; I didn’t know the names of my struggles, I knew only that I hurt and the only thing that made me feel better was the bite of the blade and the rush of blood.

People didn’t really want to be my friend. I became “emo” to everyone; I wore black, colored my nails with black Sharpies during class, and wrote poetry about death. It was a kind of quiet cry for help. Less of a cry, more like a silent prayer.

I was all alone without a friend, without anyone to look after or care for me. I’d sit out on the roof late at night when everyone else was asleep, looking at the stars, the moon. The moon was bright and big, and it made me feel so small. Small, like my problems couldn’t hurt me. Not if there was such a huge galaxy out there, promising a future and a world of beauty. I liked to imagine being there, surrounded by silence and simplicity, far away from the world of cruelty in which I lived.

I wanted someone to love me. I was desperate, begging for love that no one ever gave me. I became obsessed with the idea, told myself that I deserved it. I deserved friends who would look after me and laugh with me. I deserved a boyfriend who would kiss me and make me feel pretty.

No one loved me.

“Jesus Christ. Why don’t you cut a little deeper and do us all a favor?” one of them said.

“No one loves you. No one wants you here. What are you still doing here?”

“Cut deeper! Your whole arm might just come off, that’d be hilarious!”

“You’re such an emo freak. I bet you go home and cut yourself, don’t you?”

“You’re so disgustingly skinny. Are you anorexic?”

“Your cuts are a joke. Go deeper, let’s see something real to laugh at.”

Their words haunted me. When I cut, I felt their words leaving my body with the blood, as easily and as simply. The screaming inside my head was drowned out by a simple flick of my wrist over the delicate, easily broken skin of my wrist, the skin of my thighs that gave me a strange sense of healing. It was as if by cutting in the very places those hands had violated me, I could cut away the part of me that had been soiled there. I could cut away the sin and cut away the abuse.

I needed more and more to feel the same. I went deeper, did it more often. It became not only a daily thing, but more than that. Every hour, or even more often, I’d duck into the bathroom and cut. At school, at home, wherever I was. I needed it to not just cope with the day, but to survive it. I didn’t have anything else.

No one even saw. I was silent as I wiped away the blood, even smiled because even if people asked, they didn’t care. My entire world was crumbling around me, and all they could do was stand there and stare.

I got increasingly more delicate. Touch me, and I’d shatter into a million pieces, each throwing prisms of light on the floor, but broken. So broken. I didn’t want to live.

“I think that anyone who’s cutting themselves or whatever should just kill themselves and get it over with so that they stop hurting everyone around them,” said a girl, off-handedly, in my gym class to her friend. She didn’t say it in a cruel, obviously-meant-for-me way. All the same, I heard it, and I believed it.

Several hours later, I fell to the floor of my closet, my lover’s hands shaking me in fear, searching for a pulse. His hands were so clumsy and frightened that they couldn’t find it. His panicked, frightened voice cut through my swirling mind. I wanted to call out to him, to tell him not to worry, everything was going to be fine now, but I couldn’t speak. I heard the sound of sirens, a sound all-too familiar from a friend’s suicide when I was just a child, and I didn’t remember anything more.

Telling someone to kill themselves, even if you don’t mean it, might as well be an “okay” for them to pull the trigger.



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skilletrocks said...
today at 6:42 pm:
i suffer from deppresion everyday people always say those kind of things but somehow i make it thrugh another day but like article or poem said doing it at school too so i really liked this it was really good 
 
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