Why Do People Self-Injure?
After my last post where I jokingly showed myself slitting my wrist (when I got bitten by a dog near my wrist), today it made me ponder WHY people ever self-injure. After all, it would see almost silly that anyone would want to hurt themselves… I mean, other than those who are really into the whole BDSM thing, I can’t imagine that getting injured is something that people would desire, suffice to say, it is one of those life paradoxes.
I had a very short-lived date with bebe today… after waiting for a whole week and being excited to see her, it ended after a short 3 hours. It was fantastic, I could finally let her see my house (because I always wanted to, not because she asked) and she could just feel something a bit more special, knowing where I lived and what it looked like inside. I would certainly want her to feel comfortable in my house, who knows, maybe we’ll be sharing some nights here in the future! Furthermore, I got an opportunity to take her to my miniature shooting-range, that way she can shoot for the very first time. We played a bit of Nintendo Wii and then decided that was enough of being indoors, after all, it was such a nice day outside today! However, just before she left, she got a call from her brother. She didn’t tell me what the call was about right away, but I could tell it wasn’t anything good (or well, good for me at least), because she has that look in her face and also she becomes very mild, timid and soft-spoken.
Soon after, she told me that her brother called because they were inviting her to go to dinner with a friend of theirs (and the sister, who happened to be bebe’s friend). There were obviously two instinctual decisions that came to mind, 1) be the more understanding person and let her spend time with her brother/friend, or 2) be greedy and make her stick to her plans of being with me for today. Of course today is special in the sense that it is Easter Sunday – and most people on Easter Sunday, whether religious or not, spend it with “special people” – whether it be family, a significant other, parents or whatever. I am not debating the fact whether her brothers are considered “special people” because it’s without a doubt they are, but likewise, I also gave up a day with my mom to be with bebe – and that’s the position she holds in my heart.
I opted for #1 because it seemed like the right thing to do. From this, I would hope that she is happy and also heartfelt (感謝) with my decision. While I do not “celebrate” Easter like religious individuals, today was a very special day for bebe and I to spend together and to be have to give her up to others hurt and disappoint me, yet, I have committed myself to wanting bebe to see the “nice” and “selfless” side of me. Did I do the right thing? I could tell she wanted to go, despite her “asking” me (as if not letting her would have done anything… she’d just be angry the whole night and not enjoy it either way with me) if it was “ok” to join them instead. It was a battle I would not win… if I kept her for the night, she’d probably “judge” me and call me greedy, want to rush home or would be upset for the entire night anyways. If I let her go, I betray myself and feelings because I’ve been WAITING SO LONG to see her.
Sometimes I ask myself, can she not see how I feel? – or does she choose to ignore the fact that I consider her to be a very important part of my life? Am I squandered simply because “I like her more than she likes me?” I know I’m the one who wants to continue trying at this relationship, so I should not be complaining to her about how she treats me, but I also wonder whether she’d treat a friend like this – not even considering that I have any extra privileges as her (potential) boyfriend. If she was out with friend A and her brother/friend B invited her to dinner, would she skip out on friend A or is it only because it is ME who is in this position? I do acknowledge that perhaps like Poh Ching says, I should unconditionally love bebe and yes, I most definitely should.. .and perhaps it is because bebe KNOWS I unconditionally love her and that she can “get away with it” that she does it… because she knows no matter what she does, I’ll still stand by her and have no qualms about it. She gave me that “I really want to go” look – so being the soft guy I am, I decided to give up my own needs and tell her I’d drive her home to be with her brother/friend tonight. I had gotten to see her for a total of 3 hours, in which I spent 60 minutes of driving time to accomplish that (20 mins each way times 4 directions). She’s still local now, so I can bite my tongue on it, but if this were to happen when she’s moved out much farther, I’d really then consider my option of keeping her for the night much more carefully. I’m not trying to lock every moment of her life with me, but I’m also asking for a reasonable treatment. With her decision to move away without thinking about my feelings of having to go farther to see her, I’ll also be more expecting of the time I spend with her given my travel time is more than twice as much and also much more tiring. If only she could “live inside my shoes” for the day and perhaps then she’d realize what it’s like to be me and to love her so much I’m willing to turn my life upside down for her and also perhaps see in my own eyes and feel through my heart how she treats me.
With that said, I knew because she mentioned that it was not a friend she had an opportunity to see often, I could totally understand her wanting to see her. I’m not ignorant of friendships and the power of them and if I had a friend who I didn’t see often, I’d give up an opportunity with someone I could see often as well – however, it was the matter of which it was done which sucked. She did ask and that was very thoughtful of her and that’s the reason why I responded so easily when she asked me if “it was ok”… because I understood. Because we had a bit of time left, she did allow me to have a walk in the park with her. Unfortunately, she did not take any initiative to hold me or anything and she kept on keeping distance when I walked closer. I had hoped given that I had been generous (大方) with my decision, she might feel “closer” to me and “reward” me with perhaps a more closer-feeling – I did not expect her to deviate from what she’s ready for, I did not expect her to hold my hands or do anything we “haven’t done” but certainly putting her arms around mine and leaning into me would’ve been nice. True, people who are generous “give with expecting” and do not expect “rewards” for everything, but I would say that given I opened my heart to be so understanding to her needs/wants, that she be understanding and give me that sense of “me doing the right thing.”
On the drive home, I was waiting, waiting and MORE waiting for her to at least show the decision I made – she was appreciative of. I hardly expected something like, “oh you’re the most wonderful boyfriend in the world!!” or anything of the likes, but taking the time to acknowledge or even say something like, “I’m sorry this happened”, “I’ll make it up to you” or “I really appreciate what you’re doing” or just SOME kind of sympathy or appreciation would’ve been all I wanted. Instead I ended up to be the one apologizing as if I was the one wrong (which I was when I “reasked” her a question, but I had been waiting the entire drive just to see if she’d acknowledge the fact I’m being thoughtful of her). Don’t even put us into the role of boyfriend and girlfriend yet, just think of us as friends and let’s just say if you were with a friend and suddenly had to duck out, you’d still say something like, “Hey, sorry I had to go” or “Hey, we’ll make sure we catch up next time”… something to show that you appreciate the person’s time and will make amends soon. Bebe literally told me off by saying she can “see me another time”… that was worse than her NOT acknowledging/apologizing the entire ride home…. because to me, that’s like saying to an interviewer, “oh, you can just interview me another time” when the interviewee decides to leave mid-way through. I’m not expecting her to cry on my shoulders and sniffle about how sorry she is to leave me, but if you don’t do something like this to a friend, you definitely don’t do it to someone who REALLY REALLY cares about you. You can’t even apply that, “but I don’t feel like I can sacrifice for you yet…” excuse on this, it is not a sacrifice, it is about morality (道德).
I saw something my friend posted the other day about how “girls don’t like nice guys” and I spent hours persuading him that girls really DO like nice guys. Bebe is trying hard to care for me and be comfortable with me because I’m nice and that because she feels I do deserve her. Likewise, through my own experience, I was reassuring him that good women, like good guys, because I see how bebe tries so hard for me because I’ve proven myself as an admirable man who can treat her right and is kind to her and those around her. I suddenly realized today is it because I’m too nice to bebe that’s the problem? Would I encounter the same problem if I didn’t start off being so nice and soft with her? If I was more of an asshole or hard-footed to begin with, would I be so easily conned into her needs all the time rather than thinking about my own? I try to do things which I think is in her best interest and happiness – likewise, I figured that giving her an opportunity to spend time with her brother and friend on a rare occasion would accomplish that. I asked her in the car whether she “felt” anything that I only got to see her 3 hours today and she without hesitation, told me that she could’ve just “taken the bus” – is it just me, or is there something wrong with that response? All of a sudden I’ve gone from “doing the right thing” to as if I am wrong for even asking curiously if that invokes any feelings of ’embarrassment’ (not the true word I wanted to use, but there’s not a good English expression of 不好意思) in her. I was just looking for her to say, “I’m sorry for not being able to spend a special day with you”… was that simple and then I would’ve felt as if my decision was a proper one to make, knowing she felt that appreciation. Do girls really like the bad boys better? Seems like women like to fall for the assholes and macho-men or the ones who don’t give-a-shit, rather than the ones who DO give a shit. All I have to say is I really really wanted bebe to be happy with being able to spend a GREAT night with her brother and friends, but I also don’t want to feel like as if I’m of not value. I’m a a friggin human being with feelings. I DO THINGS happily for her, she should at least know that!
Because I had planned for a day out, I did not have any dinner preparations. On my way home driving, I had to roll all the windows down and have cold-air on full blast, otherwise I might’ve exploded and killed people on the way home. I drove up to the mountains (because our city has very nice mountains and very well-known for them), went out to the overlook and just screamed out my frustration and anger. More interference from her friends… seems like there’s a common-theme here, always her friends taking her away from me. I ended up kicking over a mailbox, but feeling bad about it, I ended up picking it back up. Good thing no one was around since it’s probably illegal to damage government property. I guess I still have some good moral-fiber left in my body…
On the way back home, I stopped by to pick up some fast food… probably one of the worse fast food places in all of the city. The food is jammed full of fat, empty calories and grease beyond what anyone can even imagine. This is when it occurred to me, why am I hurting myself when it is bebe who is hurting me? Shouldn’t I be angry at HER and take it out on HER? How illogical is it to damage my own body even though I am not angry at MYSELF? Why would I torment myself by eating this shit to make myself “feel better”? It is such a weird thing… and that is also why I decided to research on why people hurt themselves. For ages, I’ve always thought it was ridiculous anyone would want to cause themselves pain – it confuses me. I can totally understanding wanting to cause someone else pain as revenge or something, but to hurt yourself? RUBBISH! However, I proved (along with many others) that when people cannot find ways to express anguish, you do it on yourself (i.e me consuming shitty-ass foods and smash my foot into a metal bin).
Here’s an interesting quote:
This may be the aspect of self-harm that is most puzzling to those who do not do it. Why would anyone choose to inflict physical damage on him or herself? Because they cannot imagine themselves doing such a thing under any circumstances, many people dismiss self-injury as “senseless” or “irrational” behavior. And certainly it does seem that way at first glance. But people generally do things for reasons that make sense to them. The reasons may not be apparent or may not fit into our frame of reference, but they exist and recognizing their existence is crucial to understanding self-harm.
and also found in a psychological literature, Solomon and Farrand (1996) states:
The assumption is that the alternative to self-injury is “acting normally,” but on the contrary . . . the alternative to self-injury is total loss of control and possibly suicide. It becomes a forced choice from among limited options.
Because I had only known one friend who ever “hurt themselves” to “get rid of the pain” I could never fully relate to it – I could only imagine how crazy of a girl she was to want to hurt herself as an output for her emotional pain. It is not the first nor the last that bebe’s actions/words have affected me so much that I would feel the need to hurt myself our at least consider the plausibility of it. Today, I realized a bit of it how hurting oneself is a valid output (nevertheless a poor one) of pain. Spending an hour hitting a punching bag have resulted in very painful knuckles and scraped skin, but at the very least, it clears one’s mind and gives you an opportunity to inflict that damage to a non-living thing – at the very least, I’m not hurting a living-being physically as an output.
I suppose for the most part, I have my emotions and output intact. While I do experience anger, hatred and vengeance like any other human being, I keep them under-control or at least within safe confines. I would not necessarily consider myself suicidal, I’ve certainly thought about it the first time I lost bebe – that’s how important she is in my life. It seems irrational, but when you’re overwhelmed with emotions, then you start to begin irrationally. There’s been times I thought about how jealous bebe makes me feel when she holds her friends in greater regards than me, I’ve thought “not so nice things to do” about them… along with any guy friends she claims that she is “more comfortable with than me” – but those are all just in-the-moment thoughts and seriously, I hope she never tips me over the edge to ever act on them. I hope in the future, I’m included into bebe’s life with her friends where I don’t need to feel jealous over them and where bebe can begin to reasonably provide me with the same time she spends with her friends, with me… that way, at least I don’t feel as if they’re constantly “stealing” her time away from me and although it is bebe’s decision to spend so much time with them, it is also them who entice her to spend more time with them.
I think about when L and I broke up. We had been together for many years, but yet, not once had I considered about hurting myself. I had only hated her boyfriend enough that I wanted to watch him wither in pain and remind him and her what they did to me. Despite how I felt, L actually didn’t ‘leave me for another guy’ – in fact, we broke up well before she even moved and met the new guy. It was however, the deep hatred I had for her boyfriend that I would want to inflict much pain on and have her know how she changed my life forever by hurting me in such a way. Nevertheless, if you noticed, I had mentioned things all about damaging another person and NOT myself. On the contrary when it comes to bebe, I’d much rather hurt myself than hurt her because that’s EXACTLY how much I love her, I care about her so much I could not even think about hurting her, but rather, take it out on myself. I cannot imagine my life without bebe and I’m not sure how I’d take it if anything ever happened… I really don’t want to think about it, simply because we are meant to be together and shouldn’t squander the opportunity. Likewise, it’s not a good idea for bebe OR I to “test each others limits” because I know we both have “explosive” personalities (which I saw part of hers today).
On another completely happy and worrisome note… having taken bebe shooting today, she has some remarkable accuracy for a girl who has “never shot before.” With a 8-round clip, she hit 7 targets at 15-feet distance. Shit, I don’t even think I hit that many targets the first time I shot 😆 I gotta say, bebe was DAMN SEXY (even though she always is, harhar), I love watching her aim/shoot because I want to die in happiness from seeing how cute she looks when she’s concentrated, lol! I know she doesn’t share the same gun enthusiasm as I do… she likes playing around with them and modeling in them, but she’s not big on shooting like I am. I’m glad she still joined me to shoot today though, despite her having said she’s “afraid” to shoot before. If she actually spent more time shooting, I’m sure she’d be an adept shooter – minus her using rifles because that did not seem to be her forté due to the weight of my sniper rifle and trying to acquire the target on the other side of the scope. I really enjoyed watching bebe learn and just seeing her posing with guns was pretty hot, haha. I tried not to get an erection over it and I didn’t 😛 I was a good boy! LOL. I do notice she seems to wear the same rotation of clothing every time I see her on a date though, not sure why 😀 Does she have other overly-sexy clothes she doesn’t want me to see her in? HAHAHA.
I’m just going to blame my bad-luck today in what happened and (trying to think of an excuse for her attitude) that maybe she doesn’t value Easter Sunday as much as I do when it comes to sharing it with her. Maybe it’s just I’m too “easy to access” or accessible to her that my time isn’t as valuable. If I was harder to get a hold of like her friends and she wanted to be with me more, every moment would seem more valuable. Alas, I’m still trying to work my way to importance with her friends. Hopefully she has a great night tonight and that it reminds her that I’m willing to give up such an important date for her and that she sees me 苦心 for her. I want her to be happy but also remember I’m trying to be selfless for her. I’m holding out for tomorrow and hoping that she’ll make tomorrow extra special for me and that at least I know my sacrifice wasn’t just for nothing! 😀
Think positive and I pray that one day soon, she’ll find that special spot in her heart for me! I love her oh-so-much and would do almost anything in the world to win her over… I just hope I can accomplish it in the proper way than just having to get rid of all her friends so she can concentrate on me, lol. I rather like her friends (and most are quite cute… although I still got my eyes on Bebe, muhahah), I wouldn’t want to be mean unless I was forced to 😆
Posted on April 24, 2011, in Personal and tagged Blog, Date, Depressed, Depression, Emo, Emotions, Friendship, Girlfriend, Girls, Guns, Interests, Love, Movie, Musings, My Life, People, Personal, Relationship, Self-Injury, Self-Worth, Thoughts, Women. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.