Look at the name of the picture; “Self Harm Alternatives”. Until this year, I didn’t think of what I was doing as self harm. I knew it was a coping mechanism, but I wasn’t cutting, or leaving scars, so I didn’t think it was self harming.
My depressed and anxious feelings lead me to pluck body hair. I crave the two day old bruise feeling. When the bruise starts to turn purple and you always sort of have it in the back of your mind, but sometimes you forget if it hurts or not and have to poke it to check that it still hurts, do you know that sensation? That’s what I look for. I want to be able to poke it whenever I want sensation, but to be able to forget it when I don’t need it. Plucking body hair gave me the sharp pain that I needed to offset the numbness.
Another tool I routinely use is hot/cold therapy. Squeezing something frozen until your hand hurts right before it goes numb, or sitting in a hot or cold bath while holding onto something the opposite temperature.
If I catch it early enough, I can chill out with my weighted blanket, or having my service dog do DPT and distract me from picking at my cuticles (He repeatedly nudges his nose under my hand, interrupting my motions).
What really helped was a pebble in my shoe, so I could roll it out of the way when I didn’t want it, and easily put it back. This method was also the most discreet while I was at work.