When I first started this post I was going to write a long detailed post about self-mutilation, and I still can if you are interested, but I decided basically to get to the point of what’s on my mind.

The other day I saw a young beautiful, 18 year old college student who came into the hospital with approximately 50 razor blade cuts to each leg and the words “I am alive” carved into her left hand. This young woman is what we call a “cutter”, she cuts to soothe her emotional pain and to feel alive as the words etched into her blooded palm stated.

There was very little I could do for this young woman in the short amount of time I had with her for numerous reasons, but most importantly because she was in denial of her issues and I probably has borderline personality disorder (a lot of cutters have this disorder). I did try to offer her something, and the reason i am writing this post is because i want to offer it to all cutters as a way of at least initially soothing the hurt.

The next time you feel like seeing blood or hurting yourself, don’t pick up a razor, instead, pick up a red marker or red finger nail polish and mark on yourself the same way you would with the razor. The red will help give the allusion of blood without actually having to cut yourself. Even better, pick up a ice cube and hold it tightly in your hand. Let that pain serve as the pain of the sting from the razor. I propose this as just temporary fixes for the immediate and sometimes impulsive need to caught, but seeking therapy is most likely the only way to truly alleviate the pain behind the cutting. And if you really want help I can put you in touch with the right people or in the least, recommend a number of self-help books that can help you stop hurting.