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Question
Posted by: joe | 2004/10/14

self mutilation

i find myself suffering from depression and low self esteem.i have never thought much of myself and have mutiliated myself since the age of about eleven.i proboblay have over a hundred scars on my body randing from small scratches to deep gashes caused by carving and butcher knives.i have a loving wife and two wonderfull children and from the information have gleaned from a therapist their could be childhood trauma involved.i do hav large memory gaps of my childhood and was and am still a battling drug user.do you have any info as to what type of trauma might have happened to me and what course i can follow to try and solve this problem as the mutiliation is getting worse and i am starting to feel suicidal.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Dear Joe, do check out the archive of this forum, as we've discussed self-mutilation rather remarkably often, and you will probably find many of the postings interesting and useful. It is somewhat less common in men, but not unusual. Every normal person has "large memory gaps in childhood", whether or not they experienced childhood abuse or trauma. All the reports that this or that symptom "indicate" that one was abused or traumatized as a child are dangerously false. People who WERE abused or traumatized may recover without problems, or they may inded have a rather higher incidence of a wide range of symptoms and problems, none of which are unique to that situation, so no symptoms suggests childhood trauma more than any other cause.
And quack therapists, who are often keen to prey on people who might ( and might not ) have been traumatized as kids, generally use bad techniques which almost guarantee that you wll develop "memories" of abuse, whether or not it actually ever occurred. The huge majority of people who were abused or otherwise traumatized as children remember it very well, in fact uncomfortably well.
What is needed here is for you to see a good general psychiatrist or psychologist for a proper and full assessment, than advice and discussion on possible modes of treatment. Beware of therapists who beat a big bass drum and expect to find just one cause for everything ; and those who have only one bundle of tricks to treat everything with. One Size Fits All treatments are inevitably a bad idea.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: joe | 2004/10/15

Dear Doc

Since this is the first time i am using this website pls advise how to access achive material relating to self mutliation so i can read up more on it.Thank you also very much for your prompt reply.How can you tell a `quack` from a person who has real motivation in helping you so one does not waste time and money and in turn end up creating a problem as you said that may not exist at all.Do you have a list of reputable therapists in the East rand area you could recommend?

Reply to joe
Posted by: Samantha | 2004/10/14

Dear Joe
I am not in a situation whereby I can give you info or advise but I can however share my life story with you.
Where you are injuring yourself, I find pleasure in hurting other people. Drowning, stabbing etc. I never cut myself but I took a overdose of tablets on several occasions. By God's grace I made it every time. I am now attending Inner Healing theraphy classes.
I would advise that you see a shrink asap. I will keep you in my thoughts

Reply to Samantha

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