This is one thing I have never understood...Self abuse. I have wanted to hurt others at times, but never myself. I have met "cutters", and often wondered if it was a bit of a Munchausen’s/attention thing...as opposed to the "relief" they claim it is.
"Nearly 1 in 5 students at two elite U.S. universities say they have purposely injured themselves by cutting, burning or other methods, a disturbing phenomenon that psychologists say they are hearing about more often.
For some young people, self-abuse is an extreme coping mechanism that seems to help relieve stress; for others it is a way to make deep emotional wounds more visible.
...Separate research found more than 400 Web sites devoted to the subject, including many that glorify self-injury. Some worry that many sites serve as an online subculture that fuels the behavior - although whether there has been an increase in the practice or just more awareness is unclear." (source)
I think we (as a society) need to take a long hard look at why all these pathologies are growing instead of waning. Eating disorders, drug abuse, suicide, self mutilation all seem to elucidate a disintegration of the younger generations. Why?