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Safety Pin: A Girl`s Best Friend

by Jenny 

Posted: 18 May 2003
Word Count: 1543
Summary: True Event that is going on right now. I never thought I would cut myself, always said I would never even think about it, wouldn't be able to stand the pain. Then Sunday night the emotional pain just got to be too much to bear.

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I couldn't believe what I did.
'Everybody knows' I thought. 'They can see right through me.'
My face a blank stare.
'Maybe not everyone knows, but my friends will for sure, what will I tell them?'
I sit on the bus next to Tim. Don't say a word. I hear his voice. "What's wrong?"
"I dunno..." I mumble. I see in my mind, my hand, bringing that safety pin down to my wrist, dragging it along in a line as straight as possible, tearing the skin it had crossed.
"Yes, you do, now tell me...you've been worrying me lately...please? You can tell me anything, you know that, right?
"Mm hmm...I dunno." I know he's worried, I want to tell him, but am scared of his reaction. Tim has been there before, well, almost.
"I hope you'll be ok, I hate to see you like this. You know how much I love you." I felt like I had betrayed him, I know he won't like what I tell if, that is IF I tell him.

The night before, I thought it would be a one time thing, a temporary relief of the pain I kept up inside, but it's all I could think about afterwards. I wanted the blood, I wanted to make sure I was alive. Reassurance that this life is real. Although I know it was wrong, I liked the dull throbbing pain it left in my arm. Problems that caused it in the first place have now died down, allowing the cut itself to become the major issue on my mind.
'I should tell somebody...I'm really scared. I hear about all these self-mutilation stories where they have cuts all over their bodies and try to give up life by slashing their wrist. I don't want to become like that, I truly don't.'
Sitting in 2nd period was hell, it's my free period of the day so I was alone, torturing myself with my two-sided thoughts.
It wasn't long before I broke down and told Courtney and Ashley. They have both been there, former cutters. All day long, I'm worried about, given looks of sympathy, I couldn't stand it.

Back on the bus. Destination: home. Once again sitting next to Tim. I wished to sit by myself, but I know he would freak out if I wasn't next to him.
Quieter than before, of course he still knew something was up.
"What is wrong? Why won't you tell me? Please??" He was beggin me to tell him, I reall didn't want to worry him, but I couldn't be myself around him unless i got it off my chest.
I suddenly burst out crying and show him the slit in my arm.
"Oh my god!!" *silence*
'Oh my god, I hope he's not angry. Please don't be mad, Tim, please say something. You've almost done it before, you know where I'm coming from. The only reason i did it was because you weren't there for me to talk to. I was having a crisis and you weren't there. You say you would always be there no matter what, but you hung up leaving only the dial tone to comfort me, didn't work too well. You said you would always be there for me...'
My thoughts racing around with things I wanted to say, but anything that was the truth I said would hurt Tim or make him mad, so I remained silent.
A couple more minutes went by when Tim spoke. "Why...why did you do that?" I lifted my head up from his shoulder, never ending river of tears running down my face.
"I don't know...I freaked out, I didn't know what to do, the safety pin was right there, and..."
"Don't ever do that again. You hear me? Promise me you'll never do it again."
"I dunno" I said it too quietly for him to understand me, I guess he thought I had agreed not too. I didn't know what to say or think. I remained silent the rest of the ride home.


My friends have given up the idea that I would hurt myself again, they pretty much left me alone about the topic. However, it continued to haunt me.
Tim's baby brother, Matthew is the cutest kid I've ever seen so I didn't mind that the only way I could go to his house was to help babysit. The kid actually helped keep my mind off things. It wasn't until we were alone together and not chasing a little baby around the house that my mind was again focused to it.
I tried my best to put on a smile, I tried so hard to be happy, but the attempts were weak and the truth had shown through. Of course Tim picks up on this quickly, he always knows when something is wrong, I guess that could be a good thing, but I didn't think so at the time.
"God...when will you stop being like this? I hate it. I want you to be happy."
I don't respond, all my mind is set on is what I saw earlier that day. My pale face in the mirror, my eyes fixated on the bathroom stall door behind me swinging shut. One of the many that shut up the secrecy. The only other place aside from my bedroom where I can hide the truth. They won't tell, won't tell the counselors that I have a problem. They won't send me to outside counseling where some strange person will be there specifically to analyze me and drug me up to regulate my moods.
"Please tell me." Tim has a way of getting things out of me, I wish he wouldn't do that. I ended up telling him again. I confessed to reopening that same cut just so I could feel the pain again, and how I'm scared to be alone. "Remember that teddy bear I got you for valentine's day?" he asked me.
"Uh huh"
"Well whenever you feel scared or alone, hug that bear, as tight as you want. I don't want you to be sad anymore."
I nod. "I can try that"
'Sure I can try that, it might work at home, but what about at school. It's not going to work for me.'
I forced a smile and gave him a kiss and hugged him. I didn't want to let go. I didn't want to go home. Home, back to all my troubles, reminders, knives, safety pin and thumb tacs. I didn't want to go home. The only thing I did when I got there was grab the teddy bear and go to sleep.
'I'm safe for tonight'


Much better mood I'm in since the night before. Tim's sugggestion really did help me. My day was almost normal for a while. Until the school counselor called me into her office. She knew what happened on Sunday night. She wanted me to talk about it. Courtney had told her, I should have known she would. I mean, why wouldn't she? I di the same thing for her, except she was in way more danger, she had attempted suicide.
"Now, you have a very good friend, you know that?" She started off. "She is very worried about you. Do you know why?" I nod my head yes. "Can you tell me why?"
"Because on Sunday I kinda freaked out and...and I cut my wrist" My voice was so quiet, I'm amazed that she could hear me. I showed her my arm.
"Well, do you want to talk about it?"
"Not really, I think I have it under control" I lied, not that big of a deal is it?
"Well, you did a very good thing, going to your friends like that. You know if it was a larger or deeper cut or there were several, you know I would have to call your mother, right? The fact that you have your friends' support proves to me that we don't need to take it that far right now. However...I will be calling you down atleast once a week from now until summer to check on you. I'm going to ask you to show me your arms and legs, maybe not legs yet, but if it gets to be that, I will."
'I can't believe it, this means I can't do it anymore. Maybe there's somewhere else I could, maybe I can try on my legs, she's not going to check there unless I have problems on my arms. I can't believe I'm thinking this, what am I doing? I'm not a cutter. I don't need to plot my next area to use as a victim.'
My brain was so scattered, but I managed a smile and a "yes ma'am, I'll try my best, I should be ok" as I left the room.
'God, now I've got the counselor's to worry about, not only Tim and Ashley and Courtney, but the counselors. They're the ones that can tell my mom, they're the ones who can get me into special outside help. They're the people who can send me to the hospital, the nutcase ward. I don't want any that!! How did this happen anyway? I wish I never opened my mouth!!'

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Comments by other Members

Hilary Custance at 09:58 on 20 May 2003  Report this post
Hi Jenny, this is a brave piece of writing. It is very clearly and graphically written. This suggests you have done other pieces of writing before and have skills well worth developing in this area. To write conversations, when you are writing about yourself is particularly difficult. Have you thought of writing a short play or film? This strikes me as half way there already. With the scenes on the bus and with the counsellor so strongly depicted. If you don't get many comments, it may simply be because it is so personal. It strikes me as good writing, so keep it up. Perhaps talk to one of your friends then write a piece about their feelings and view of the world. Just an idea. Cheers, Hilary

old friend at 15:26 on 09 September 2003  Report this post
Hello Jenny,

I was so interested in the piece you had written that I had to look up your 'details'. I cannot see how young you are but young you must be if, as you say, this is a true event.

Your writing has a great deal of potential for you can convey the emotions 'you' felt. Many so-called 'good writers' lack this quality. Read your piece again, then re-read it. you will see how the spelling and the punctuation may be improved.

Nevertheless you have tackled a difficult subject and express it in an original way. All strength to you pen!

old friend, Len

Nik Perring at 13:35 on 12 November 2004  Report this post
Hi Jenny. I agree with the others. You definitely have the tools here. Have you written much else? If you have you should put it up and let us have a read.
The quality of the narrative is very good. I'd agree with Len though; re-read it and just tighten up on those spelling and grammatical mistakes. Otherwise this is a very strong piece. Well done!

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