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This I Believe - Coming Clean

Writing this essay was one of the most difficult things I’ve ever had to do. It’s not hard because I’m a bad writer, or I struggle with English class, or I don’t have a topic to write about. This is hard because I’m not sure how to open up to people about one of the most personal aspects of my life. Rather than dancing around the topic, I’ll come right out and say it. I self-harm myself.
It’s hard to describe to someone who’s never cut before exactly what makes me do it or why it makes me feel better. I can tell you that after I cut, it’s like a weight has been lifted off of my shoulders. When I started cutting, it was just a few small marks, barely breaking the skin, but throughout high school it got worse. I was dealing with problems kids my age shouldn’t have to go through: an abusive boyfriend, lack of close friends or family members, a few close friends joining the military, a boyfriend joining the army without telling me first, emotional and verbal abuse at home, and gossip and rumors spread around my school about me. With my eyes down, and long sleeves covering my wrists, I hid from everyone. Solitude became safer than interacting with the world. I was holding my own personal masquerade ball where I clung to my mask as if my life depended on it.
Eventually, cutting wasn’t enough. I was burning myself and not eating or sleeping. At first, I hid the marks and scars. It was my dirty little secret. I would go through an endless cycle of making promises to myself that I would stop this time, just to end up breaking them a few days later. I felt like a disappointment, a failure. Honestly, sometimes I still do.
Although today I don’t cut nearly as much as I used to, I still have rough days where I’ll slip. I have days where I’m so happy I can’t imagine ever cutting again and days where I can hardly drag myself out of bed in the morning. I live my life moment by moment most days.
Many people have looked at me and judged me. I suppose I’ve brought that on myself. But this is what I believe: I shouldn’t have to hide anymore. Coming to Northern Michigan University is going to be my fresh start. I will hide no longer. I will be ashamed no longer. Everyone is fighting their own battle, just because my battle happens to be with self-harm and abuse doesn’t mean I should have to be embarrassed by my scars. I believe that I can overcome my challenges and come out on the other side stronger than I started. And so, this is me. This is who I am, with my scars and my tears, with no more secrets, and with an open heart, looking for new friends, a fresh start, and a better tomorrow.



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Haily_HoranThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Mar. 12, 2013 at 3:05 pm:
Stay Strong Beautiful.
 
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