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Self-Harm Disclosure

Weddings can be stressful under the best of circumstances. How do you cope when you don't know what to do about self-harm scars on your wedding day?
Self-injury can be a difficult topic to discuss, whether you're sharing your own experiences or trying to offer support to someone else. Careful consideration of the self-harm language you use can help you have more meaningful (and helpful) conversations.
A strong support network can play a vital role in self-harm healing and recovery. Someone like a self-harm sponsor, for example, can provide invaluable insight and encouragement throughout your journey—but what exactly is a self-harm sponsor, and who should you ask to be yours?
Paradoxically, writing about self-harm for HealthyPlace has been one of the hardest things I've done in my life—and one of the easiest. It's certainly not for everyone, but in my case, publicly writing on self-injury has been an incredible opportunity to both heal and be healed in return.
Recovery is never as easy as simply saying, "do not hurt yourself." But if I could send a letter into the past, this is what I would write to myself. And who knows, you or someone you know who self-harms or is thinking about it may need to hear these words, too.
Is there an easy way to say goodbye? There isn't if you've really enjoyed your journey thus far. However, sometimes we reach a crossroads where changes are necessary to carry on, and I've realized I've just reached mine. This is my last post for "Speaking Out About Self-Injury," though it certainly won't be the last time I talk about self-harm.
This post is not necessarily about wrist scars, as self-harm can come in many forms. This is just a reflection on my personal experiences with self-injury in the wrist and forearm area, as that's where I used to hurt myself. I feel most people react to scars similarly, especially if their reaction comes from ignorance or fear rather than love. Therefore, this post might be helpful if you know someone who self-harms and you wonder how to behave around them.
Self-injury often travels with certain psychiatric conditions. One such example is bipolar self-harm. This is not necessarily a symptom of bipolar disorder, but I think many bipolar patients ended up hurting themselves at some point in their lives. Why do we do it? As always, self-harm is a complex phenomenon, so I may not have all the answers, but I can share my own experience in this post.
When you experience a panic attack, the physical sensations are so intense they often cloud your judgment. For example, you may hyperventilate while the room seems to spin and your heart is about to race out of your chest. Some people may also feel like they're cornered in a flight-or-fight situation and may even self-harm during a panic attack. Why does that happen? I'm not sure I have the answers, but I can offer my personal insight.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and we've almost reached the end of it. Each year, I see more and more people opening up about their struggles, encouraged by themed conversations on social media and beyond. However, I feel self-injury is particularly difficult to talk about publicly, so self-harm stigma is still going strong. Why are people so afraid of self-harm?