I find that I have always grown up hating my body.
This was true for me especially after being sexually abused. I remember feeling dirty and just hating myself beyond comprehendabe words. That I wanted, more than anything, to get rid of that feeling of dirt that layed grinning, firmly attached to my skin.
So I found a way.
Something that I used to do from a very young age was scrub away at my body with a sponge.The sponge being a notted lace of mesh-like material, which was – and still is – a very popular method of cleaning the body in Africa, Ghana. This increased with a furious vengence during and after the sexual abuse. I would scrub and scrub and scrub, until the first layer of skin came off and then the second layer.
Essentially, without knowing it, I was engaging in self-harm behaviours.
It was something I did in private and my mum didn’t really know about it until I started getting acne at the age of 10. Which I was so embarassed by, so, what did I do? I scrubbed it away.
And my mum was furious.
She kept asking me why would I do that to myself, that people were going to see that ugly mark on my forehead and people were going to hate me.
But I didn’t really care. People already hated me, I didn’t have any friends and scubbing away my problems in the past made me feel satisfied, so why should I care? But my mum went on and on, shouting at me until I felt utterly ashamed of what I had done and felt very much that I shouldn’t have done it for everyone to see. That now that people could see it, they would definitely not be my friend.
So, I went into school the next day, with a collection of small plasters on my forehead and because they were too small, I had to place some of the sticky parts onto the open wound. I remember it hurting so much but being proud of myself because I had successfully hidden it.
A lot of people came p to me and asked me about it and I laughed it of, saying that I had skid my head on the pavement while playing outside but at least I was one step closer to being the next Harry Potter. Most people bought that and a lot more people found me interesting.
The long story short? I made friends, my self-esteem grew and without knowing it, I surrounded myself with people who somewhat cared about me.
Nakedstreetkid out x