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Distractions/replacement for s/i


Nicolec
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Hi Nicole,

Well not sure if I can be of much help, Im only on day 14 of no s/i. Still have the urges and the thoughts. But thankfully so far Ive been able to not act on them.

Trying to keep your mind and hands occupied, thats the only thing that helps me. I use artwork, painting mostly. It gets kinda addictive to me, I loose myself in the paintings. When the urges come really strong, sometimes excercise helps. Dont know if your into music at all, sometimes playing music helps keeps me distracted. Hmmm, Ive also started this really annoying habit of finger tapping, dont ask me why, probably not very productive, but for some reason, it distracts me. ~ go figure.

You could try phoning someone when the urges become unbearable, not necessarily to say whats wrong but just for a general natter, the conversation might keep you distracted long enough for the urges to subside a little.

Hope this helps some,

take care

sue

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Hey Nicole :(

Its great that you write your own songs and music, have you ever thought about getting a cd made and trying to get signed to a label ?

You know song writing is very therapeautic, and some of the best songs ever written, come from the intense feelings of sadness, I hope one day though that happiness can be your inspiration :)

Im glad your feeling a little better than you was, but remember you dont have to cope on your own, were here and will alwayss offer a friendly shoulder to lean on :)

take care

Jj

ps, Oh and by the way.............. Thankyou, soon I hope Im counting the weeks and not the days, but I think Im getting there ~ yay :)

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Hey Nicole,

Hope that things are getting a little easier :)

Maybe one day you wont feel as shy, oh hey are you in a band ?, coz if not that might be an a idea. might even distract you a little more.

Have you ever thought about yoga, ?

It kinda helps me to concentrate on movemernt rather than things that are going on inside or around me., it could help a little. :)

anyway,

take care hun

sue

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Good morning Nicolec,

S/I reminds of a body betrayed-- a sort of auto-immune disorder like Lupus, Graves Disease and Goodpasture's syndrome-- only S/I occurs in the mind and then the body. There is something deep within, beyond the endorphin rush and feelings of relief following an SI, that is somehow met. I used to (when I was a teenager nearly 1/2 century ago) self abuse thru punching myself in the head or knocking myself out by ramming my head against a door frame or wall. At times I would end up unconscious... but the interesting part was that I felt instant relief (then the headaches followed). I was in deep pain as a child from my severe trauma (PTSD), and the "monkey chatter" or sounds in my head (not voices) would leave once I did this. I struggled with PTSD and anxiety, anger, deep sadness for the loss of my childhood, and the self harm was a way for me to dissociate from the immediate tension and overwhelming sense of not being able to feel real at times.

Nicolec, I rarely recommend therapy-- I think we are an over-therapized nation and severely under self reliant. I also believe that too many of us lead terrible lives of hardship, adversity and misfortune, very little of it which ever really happened (OK, off my soapbox). But, when talking with someone who S/I's, it's the first place I go-- are you or have you been in therapy for this? If so, would you see it as successful and effective? If it was effective, what skills did you learn to address the feelings of self harm?

With respect to your question: "So just wondering, has anyone got any suggestions for ways to distract myself/replace s/i with something else? I've tried holding ice and flicking a rubberband, but it doesn't seem to work," there are many things you can do still, such as taking a very cold shower, chew something with a very strong taste (like a Jalapeño pepper or 1/2 teaspoon of Cayenne powder, raw ginger root, or a grapefruit peel) or even drawing a deep red line in the area you would self cut.

Nicolec, my concern, as Jetliner (obviously a Trekkie like me) and you have been discussing, is that this doesn't even qualify for a band-aid. It possibly could reduce the "addictive" power of S/I, but the thoughts and feelings will remain, as you and others well know. S/I is a conditioned behavior designed to reduce tension and self soothe--- as such, my thinking is to ask you about trigger events or thoughts and to begin looking here, which I'm sure you've done. Do you feel comfortable discussing this with us?

I hope this helps,

David

Edited by David O
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Hi Nicole,

Hope your ok, hun you have NOTHING to be ashamed of, the shame should be placed firmly where it belongs, on the brother that abused you. Easier said than done I know. In a way im still blaming myself for things that happened to myself, like years ago, and its a difficult learning process, to finally be able to accept that I wasnt at fault in someway, and that there is no need to feel ashamed. But with therapy and suppoort im kinda getting there, (where ever there is :))

I think it is well cool that you are in a band :), have you ever win any of the competitions that you and your friends have entered ?

I hope that you do manage to take up yoga, its really relaxing, and helps me loads. It took me a while to really get into it ~ its not as easy as it looks or sounds. But then I have trouble concentrating (old age :)). You know the fact your only 16, dosnt mean that you cant work your way through this, maybe you could speak to your school counceller, for some advice, or even a teacher that you get on well with.

Keeping fighting the feelings of s/i hun, your doing really well, distraction not always the solution, but it gives you time till you can find the right answers, so that you can move forward.

hope that you are feeling a little better and less anxious, were here for you Nicole.

Take care

Jj

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Hi Nicole,

Maybe you could look into joining a local group, some sport centres or community centres run yoga classes, just a thought.

Talking to your counceller is going to feel a little wierd to start with, but once you can build up a little trust and respect it will become easier.

Hope your headache eases soon, and that you are feeling a little better :)

take care

sue

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Good morning Nicolec,

I'm sorry I didn't follow up quickly to your response. I did have one thought regarding seeing the counselor-- if you're struggling with expressing yourself, print this thread out and have him/her read it carefully. The thread shows your openness and honesty, the sincerity of your search and how you're struggling with this.

Be very patient and work slowly through this. Most school counslors are very familiar with things that affect teens-- S/I, eating disorders, depression, anxiety and other emotional issues. If they can't help, they can connect you to someone who can and still preserve your privacy.

Nicolec, I'm very hesitant to provide suggestions on the forum, my concern is that by doing so, you might replace the need to see someone with having conversation and some of your needs met here. I want us to be a part of your struggle and to be supportive and encouraging, but my thinking is that we should only be a supplement to real therapy in an office.

Once you begin seeing someone, we can assist you in developing a TEA form for looking at triggers to S/I and give you strategies for working past them in a healthy manner.

Are you open to taking this to a counselor?

David

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Good morning Nicolec,

To paraphrase Jetliner's phrase from another thread--there is no physical barrier restraining you. I understand and feel for you. I know this is nearly an impossible thing to do and that even posting here was difficult. While my heart goes out to you (you're the same age as my daughter), I will encourage... no... insist, that you muscle through this. Walk in, sit down and begin crying or staring into space or do anything that gets you in the door. The counselor will take from there.

I sometimes have people just come in and sit. I see their pain and agony and it shakes them to their very roots, but if I know them and know they're struggling, I gently sit with them and in the most compassionate, sensitive warm and caring manner, coax them to talk. And I sit quietly for long periods sometimes, but I wait patiently.

Nicolec, take the first step and walk in. Go to school today, even if you're late. Or go in tomorrow and make our appointment the minute you get into the building.

Good luck dear,

David

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