Demi Lovato Leaves Disney Due to Bulimia, Cutting: Why People Cut

Demi Lovato left “Sonny With a Chance,” her popular Disney sitcom because she wanted to get healthy. The star had a stint in rehab to address her bulimia and cutting.  The star supposedly started cutting at the age of 11, and reportedly once said she cut as “a way of expressing my own shame of myself, on my own body.”

The teen star entered treatment for physical and emotional issues last October and since her in-patient treatment ended in January her main focus is staying healthy.  She will now be focusing on her music and self-improvement.

Why People Cut

Cutting and other forms of self-mutilation may be hard for many people to understand. According to research, people who self-harm are more likely to have underlying emotional problems, such as Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). According to a study by German researchers, people with BPD may engage in self-injury because they get a sense of emotional relief from physical pain.

People with mental illness may use the pain and stimulation associated with self-injury as a method of distracting and relieving themselves from emotional suffering.  It looks as if self-injury serves as a coping mechanism for the intense emotional turmoil that individuals suffering from mental illness tend to experience.

Self-injurious behavior does not mean the sufferer is suicidal, but it does mean the person needs emotional help. Hurting oneself is not a healthy coping mechanism, and self-mutilators are encouraged to seek support and find more productive forms of BPD treatment. A star like Lovato opening up about such issues will hopefully help many young people seek treatment.

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