Many people who have, or are, cutting may wonder why God has allowed them to go through that extremely hard trial in life. They may be thinking why He has allotted months of emptiness and apportioned nights of misery to them (Job 7:3).
It’s hard, but God works everything together for good to those who love Him (Romans 8:28). He does this to make us more like His Son (Romans 8:29; James 1:3-4). It may not be a satisfying reality, but it’s a glorious one. It’s glorious because the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us (Romans 8:18).
Before I was a Christian, I had a pornography addiction, suicidal thoughts, and feelings of depression. Around the time of my parent’s divorce when I was seven or eight years old, I began to be emotionally abused by my mom. This pattern continued for years.
It was in middle school that I started to struggle with pornography, suicidal thoughts and feelings of depression. Yet, I became addicted to pornography not just for the quick rush of pleasure and fulfillment, but because of a lack a of closeness with those whom I wanted to be close with. I just wanted an intimate relationship that wouldn’t give me any harm or hurt in return.
Because of the emotional abuse I endured under my mom, I became a very nasty person. I cursed people out and treated women terribly, threatening to even rape them. I was hurting, and the rejection I felt made me want to hurt others emotionally back. Eventually, no one wanted to be my friend anymore. Here, I started to feel absolutely alone.
I was suicidal because I was so unhappy with the way my life was going. Always feeling alone, deeply depressed, hating myself and hating others, I wanted to end it all. I still vividly remember the time when I tried to strangle myself to death. I hated everything and didn’t care about anything or anyone. Soon after, I began cutting myself.
I became so numb inside that I could literally feel no emotions whatsoever. At that point, I was willing to resort to anything to feel something.
I specifically cut all over my arms. And I would wear long, baggy clothes to hide the marks in whatever ways I could. I did this because misconceptions of our culture towards those who cut causes people to hide their physical afflictions in unnoticeable places. I didn’t want to be called a freak or to feel any more of an outcast than I already was.
The reason I cut myself – and I believe the reason why many others do too – was to escape the emotional pain through physical pain. For those who’ve gone through emotional pain, I’m sure you can agree that physical pain is much more tolerable than the emotional.
I believe that the world and the Church have misconceptions towards those who cut. I’ve heard people exclaim, “Oh, they just want attention!” and “Are you insane?” Some who cut may want attention (though I doubt it) or may be mentally unstable, but I believe that the majority are not either.
Emotional pain, for someone who has to resort to cutting him- or herself, is the worst pain imaginable. It’s like a deep void in your soul, where something is missing, or where there is unbearable emptiness. Sometimes it can be so unbearable that you’d much rather feel physical pain instead, hence leading someone to cut his or her own body. Someone like that is not crazy. They are just in desperate need for love.
I ask of you, could you show them the love of Christ and be accepting of them, regardless of whether they are Christian or not? There is healing from a life of cutting. Victory is possible. Not by their own power, because when they are in a position of feeling alone, they seek the ultimate retreat from life. And what is needed is for someone to show them that, no matter how much pain they are in, or how many times they mess up, they are not alone.