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Can drinking be a form of self harm



Oct 3, 2017
I am diagnosed with depression, PTSD and borderline personality traits and I drink a lot. I drink to block flashbacks and well mental pain. But I also drink because I want to punish myself. I get a lot of satisfaction from knowing I am damaging my body.
I have had alcohol treatment in the past and it was of no help. I am not physically addicted, I don't physically crave alcohol. I just want it to damage me. Is this self harm? Professionals don't want to know when I tell them I do it because I want to destroy my liver.


Well I think you already answered your own question, alcohol is essentially a poison after all.

The canned answer here would be that you find a way to deal with your emotional and mental issues that would lead to you not wanting to damage yourself, but if it was that easy I imagine you would have done so already. Not that you shouldn't try anyway.

Still, perhaps there could be different ways for you to indulge in that self destructive desire that aren't so utterly and irreparably damaging? liver damage is often irreversible and will lead you to a very, very unpleasant death. That may not matter right now but I would bet it will on your deathbed...

I don't know, I don't think I should be suggesting to a stranger ways to damage themselves, but it would be incredibly tragic if in the future somehow you managed to bounce back from your mental issues but then the damage to your body was already irreversible and terminal, so maybe trying to find the lesser of evils could be a temporary measure at least.


Active member
May 21, 2017
I am sorry you are dealing with so much. It does sound like you have answered your own question about alcohol and self-harm.

There is hope. Doctors and counselors have helped me to see that and have given me some strategies to cope with life better. Have you considered seeing a counselor? Christian counseling has helped me tremendously. It has given me a safe place to vent, cry, get a relatively unbiased opinion and advise, and mostly, offer me hope that I can get better. Hang in there. There is hope!
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