You don't have to want to kill yourself to cut yourself. In fact, "cutting behavior" tends to be not an attempt at suicide but a way to cope with emotional problems, says Harvard psychologist Dr. Sharon Chirban, an expert on cutting and other psychological disorders.
Cutting is most common in girls and young women, she says, but men are not immune. And neither are celebrities.
Quite a few A-listers have acknowledged cutting themselves. Keep reading to find out who...
Is Demi Lovato into self-injury? A couple of years ago, the 18-year-old actress said she wasn't, CBS News reported recently. But when she recently dropped out of a performing tour "to seek help with emotional and physical issues," a source close to the Lovato family said the 18-year-old actress and singer had "fought through eating disorders and has struggled with cutting," the magazine reported. Said the source, "Demi is taking control by getting help."
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Kids aren't the only thing Oscar-winning actor Angelina Jolie has adopted. She's also adopted an open-book policy on her personal life, admitting that she cutting during a rocky patch in her teens and early twenties. "It's that middle stage when you might not know what life means that is the dangerous time," she told USA Today. "But I don't have that anymore."
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Supersexy actress Megan Fox - who turned heads in "Transformers" - has acknowledged cutting herself, though she told People magazine, "I would never call myself a cutter. Girls go through different phases when they're growing up, when they're miserable and do different things, whether it's an eating disorder or they dabble in cutting."
Rocker and sometime actress Courtney Love has made outrageous behavior into a career. In 1995, she told Spin magazine that when she got really "blasto" on drugs, she would run around naked and cut her arms. "Crazy s***," she said.
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Straight-talking Christina Ricci, best known for her roles in "Sleepy Hollow" and "Monster," has spoken openly of her self-injuring behavior. When an interviewer for Spin magazine noticed red marks on her arm, she said she had put out cigarettes on her skin. It didn't hurt, she explained. "You get this adrenaline rush," she said. "You can actually faint from pain. It take a second, a little sting, and then it's like you don't feel anything. It's calming, actually."
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Few celebrities can match Amy Winehouse when it comes to self-destructive behavior. The troubled English rocker has acknowledged a drinking problem, and there have also been reports of cutting. She has "crisscross scars and scatches" up and down her left arm, People magazine reported. And a video showed Winehouse scratching her exposed midriff with a shard of broken mirror.
Being a royal is protection against the emotional difficulties that can lead to cutting. In a 1995 interview with the BBC, Princess Diana revealed that she cut her and legs, saying "you have so much pain inside yourself that you try and hurt yourself on the outside because you want help," the Toronto Sun reported.