Posted by: jedwardswright | October 7, 2010

Open Letter to a Self-Abuser

Dear Friend,

Please read what I am writing to you very carefully. I want you to understand what it is exactly that I am saying and consider thoughtfully what you should do at this moment.
You are not a terrible person, but you are paying a terrible price for the pain that you are trying to cut and burn away. There is a little child within you that is screaming to be loved and cared for, that never got what she needed from others, and it is her that you need to listen to right now.
She is desperately crying, “Help me!” I can hear her voice.
Don’t try to punish her or ignore her or drown her out, and listen to her for a moment. She is not bad, but grown-ups told her she was; she is not a bother, but adults made her feel as if she was; and she is not insignificant, although she was often ignored by those who were supposed to care for her.
She is just a little girl who needed to be picked up and cuddled, and instead was yelled at and beat up and neglected.
You have believed those adult voices, and you have taken on their role in your own life – but they were wrong!
You became so used to hearing hurtful things that you play them over and over in your head now. You got so used to being tortured, emotionally and perhaps physically, that it seems normal to you.
You need to find a better way, and if you look inside and see that unhappy little girl crying her heart out, instead of only seeing the lies and insults and punishment — look at her — you will realize that she is not the monster that she has been made out to be — not at all.
Instead she is frightened and cold and hungry, but no one can help her if you don’t let them. You are afraid that the ones who can help you heal will be like all those others in authority, all those other grown-ups, and they will look inside, see awfulness and reject your inner child.
That is not going to happen. If you allow yourself to reach out and get help for that child inside, she will finally get some band-aids and warm milk and comforting hugs that she has needed for so long.
It is up to you.
You can continue to cut and burn and scream obscenities at her, but how well is that working? Her voice still cries, doesn’t it? You have tried to shut her up, but she can’t help it.
Instead, you can bundle her up, call 911, and rescue her from that freezing cold place. If she gets taken care of, she will stop crying in your ears all the time.
You are not evil, because she is not evil, and she is you.
When you get to the ER, be brave and show them your stomach and arms and anywhere else that you have hurt yourself. Tell them that you want to stop but you can’t and you are afraid of what you might do next.
You don’t have to do all the saving yourself. You just need to ask for help, on behalf of that child, and not walk by and put your fingers in your ears anymore.
Just call, call 911, if not for you, then for her. She is begging you to get help and stop the pain. Please. Right now.

(Not all self-abusers are suicidal — in fact, most probably aren’t. However, if you are self-abusing without suicidal thoughts, this letter is for you too! Please, please call for help from your doctor or psychiatrist or therapist! If you do not have a psychiatrist or therapist, ask your doctor for suggestions or referrals. Be honest, no matter how scary it is. You can only get the help that you really need when the professionals know the whole story! I am pulling for you!)

With love and hope,



  1. Hi fine points.. now why did not i think of them? Off subject to some extent, is this page pattern really from a standard installment or do you use a custom template. I use a weblog i am aiming to make better and so the visuals is without doubt one of the primary things to accomplish on my list.

  2. Thanks, Carolina!
    The “theme” for the page is “Ocean Mist.”
    I use Microsft Office Clipart quite a bit, but sometimes I alter the images on my computer’s paint program. Otherwise I use my own photos or make my own pictures on the paint program.
    Does that tell you what you wanted to know?

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