The foundation causes of self-destructive habits can differ from individual to individual, in keeping with licensed drug and alcohol counselor Candace Kotkin-De Carvalho LSW, LCADC, CCS, CCTP. A few of the most typical causes embrace a scarcity of optimistic coping expertise, unresolved points from childhood or adolescence, and poor psychological well being.
Lorz describes self-destructive behaviors as being the product of both misguided makes an attempt at self-protection or moments of dissociation. They’re typically formed by beliefs you might have about your self, what you deserve, and the way you might have taken within the messages of the world and people round you, she says, making them basically a response to private circumstances which have had a traumatic impression on you. They could have even labored (otherwise you believed that they’ve labored) up to now to guard you from feeling harassed, overwhelmed, harm, exhausted, scared, or in peril, she provides, however finally these coping mechanisms at the moment are inflicting extra hurt than safety.
Osibodu-Onyali provides that when individuals have skilled a number of detrimental occasions and even traumas, it adjustments the way in which they view themselves, others, and the world. “They start to anticipate dangerous issues to occur, and when good issues come their method, they introduce self-destructive behaviors in order that issues return to the detrimental sample they’re used to. It is not that they get pleasure from negativity; it is simply that it is acquainted,” she says.
Moreover, self-destructive behaviors may be signs of many psychological well being points, in keeping with Manly. For instance, an individual who’s affected by despair could have interaction in self-protective behaviors, like not going to work resulting from a scarcity of power or to keep away from stress, which are finally self-destructive. Those that undergo from substance use problems could resort to self-destructive behaviors, together with stealing to keep up the habit or driving whereas below the affect, with little or no means to genuinely recognize the long-term impression; the cumulative results of those behaviors are sometimes tragic.
“Quite a lot of psychological well being problems akin to BPD typically depart the sufferer caught in a cycle of self-destructive behaviors that depart the person feeling indignant, remoted, and misunderstood,” she provides.