I have read and spoken with many over the years who have self harmed usually externally. Cutting or burning themselves is usually how it is done. For some it is binge drinking til they pass out. For others like me it is emotional eating and cutting my hair or pulling my hair out.
Late this afternoon, I was triggered. Tonight while in the bathroom I noticed through my poorly self cut hair that there were grey hairs. Well I took my tweezers and started pulling them one by one. If I missed, I pulled a clump of hair. I just realized this now, that this is my form of self harm. I do it, not only because I want to not admit I am aging, but because when I pull and the hair doesn’t come out, it burns my scalp. I feel the sting on my scalp.
I’ve noticed as I’ve become aware, that anytime I am stressed, triggered or miserable, I take a pair of scissors and start to cut my hair. I had always figured it was because I am broke. I’ve also felt embarrassed and ashamed that I don’t have money to get a simple hair cut.
So not only do I deal with my ED, I now realize I cut and pull my hair out when I can’t deal with the negative feelings on the inside. I sit here with a stinging scalp and ears that feel warm to the touch, I know they feel that way, because that is where the sensation radiated too.
Self harm doesn’t always have to be an external scar or scab.