Self Injury Fact Sheet
Most researchers agree that self injury (SI) is self-inflicted physical harm severe enough to cause tissue damage or marks that last for several hours, done without suicidal intent or intent to attain sexual pleasure. Body markings (piercing, tattooing, etc) that are done as part of a spiritual ritual or for ornamentation purposes generally aren’t considered SI. more >>
Self-mutilation is a behavior so shocking that it is almost never discussed. Yet estimates are that upwards of eight million Americans are chronic self-injurers. They are people who use knives, razor blades, or broken glass to cut themselves. Their numbers include the actor Johnny Depp, Girl Interrupted author Susanna Kaysen, and the late Princess Diana. Mistakenly viewed as suicide attempts or senseless masochism — yen by many health professionals -“cutting” is actually a complex means of coping with emotional pain. Marilee Strong explores this hidden epidemic through case studies, startling new research from psychologists, trauma experts, and neuroscientists, and the heartbreaking insights of cutters themselves — who range from troubled teenagers to middle-age professionals to grandparents. Strong explains what factors lead to self-mutilation, why cutting helps people manage overwhelming fear and anxiety, and how cutters can heal both their internal and external wounds and break the self-destructive cycle. A Bright Red Scream is a groundbreaking, essential resource for victims of self-mutilation, their families, teachers, doctors, and therapists.
Cutting: Understanding and Overcoming Self-Mutilation
Known as the illness of the 1990s, close to two million Americans and possibly more suffer from the psychological disorder of self-mutilation. The most prominent public admission was that of Princess Diana. Written for the self-mutilator, parents, friends, and therapists, Levenkron unravels step by step the mindset of the self-mutilator, explains why the disorder manifests in self-harming behaviors, and, most of all, describes how the self-mutilator can be helped. Through riveting case studies and conversations with his patients, the profile of the self-mutilator emerges: someone who is typically fearful of people and abandonment, whose attachments are hostile or tenuous at best, who lacks interpersonal trust, and who often can’t stay focused in a relationship of any depth. Cutting tells the reader where to turn for help and offers important skills the self-mutilator must learn – what Levenkron calls the “Attachment-Dependency Trust Axis” – in order to overcome the affliction.
The Scarred Soul: Understanding & Ending Self-Inflicted Violence
Self-inflicted violence. Written for the victims of this addiction–and for mental health professionals–“The Scarred Soul” explores the reasons behind this behavior and shows how to overcome the psychological traps that lead to self-destructive acts. Illustrations and charts.
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