The question "why?" is probably the question that self-injurers hear most often, and it's one of the hardest for some people to answer- myself included. (And definately the most annoying.)

For each self-injurer, it's a little different. Here are some:

-to prove to ourselves that we are still in control. (Although, in reality, the cutting controls us.)
-punishing ourselves for something done wrong, or for just the way we look
-adreniline rush
-attention- I hate to put this one on here, because very, very few people do SI for attention, but it is a reason.
-dealing with pain
-because of a mental illness such as depression, obessive compulsive disorder, post dramatic stress disorder, or simply stress
-to feel pain- sometimes, people are so far down into depression or something else, they don't feel alive, and SI may be a way to feel alive again.
-for relief from that feeling like you're going to explode
-from not being able to be happy, or not being cope with life. 
-sometimes, to some people, it seems as if it's the only hope to feel better.
-to punish others for hurting us- sorta like punishing yourself, but it's because your mad at them and want to hurt them, especially if they know you cut & you'll wind up telling them that you cut and why.
-habit (yes, sometimes it does turn to this: "Oh no, I'm upset, I want to cut... wait, I stopped cutting, why do i want to cut now?" -I've gone through that).

But, self-injury is almost never a failed suicide attempt- at first, for some people it may be, but repetitive SI isn't.
Why Do People Self-Injure?
These three were suggested by an anonymous visitor.
Updated 6-23-03
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