It has taken me a long time to access the burns community as I am so ashamed of the way my burns came about. I was a patient in a psychiatric unit and I had had all my sharp items taken away from me to stop me from self harming. Left alone without support or my usual coping mechanism my compulsive mind began to develop a plan of setting myself on fire.
It was an image in my head and the compulsion to carry it out was very strong. Despite reaching out to staff for help I was told “We have real sick people to look after”. After several days fighting the urge I eventually set fire to my clothing in an enclosed room where I knew the fire would catch quickly. Unfortunately my knowledge of fire was my downfall and I suffered 20% third degree burns on my torso.
I have had a hard time coming to terms with the fact that it is ok to get support because I have a complex that because I caused something to myself that other people had no choice over happening to them, I shouldn’t Ask for help. But I have been overwhelmed by the acceptance of the burns community when I have finally accessed support now over a year since the event. I suffer from severe flashbacks of the fire but I am working through them and I hope one day to be able to take up my hobbies of Girl Scout campfires and fire hooping!