Original ArticlesThe Physical Results of Nonsuicidal Self-Injury The Meaning Behind the ScarsBachtelle, Stephanie E. MS; Pepper, Carolyn M. PhDAuthor Information Department of Psychology, University of Wyoming, Laramie. Send reprint requests to Carolyn M. Pepper, PhD, Department of Psychology, University of Wyoming, Dept. 3415, 1000 E University Ave, Laramie, WY 82071. E-mail: [email protected]. The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease: December 2015 - Volume 203 - Issue 12 - p 927-933 doi: 10.1097/NMD.0000000000000398 Buy Metrics Abstract The psychological meaning of scars from nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI) has been examined in case studies, but descriptive studies are needed to better understand the meaning of NSSI scars. College students with NSSI scars (n = 49) completed questionnaires concerning the interpretive meaning of their scars, emotions associated with their scars, and clinical symptoms. Levels of scar-related growth were positively correlated with interpersonal functions of NSSI (e.g., autonomy, self-care) and negatively correlated with likelihood of future self-injury, self-disgust, self-injury regret, and self-injury scar regret. Conversely, higher levels of scar-related shame were associated with higher likelihood of future self-injury, depressive and borderline personality disorder symptoms, self-disgust, NSSI scar-related regret, and intrapersonal functions of NSSI (e.g., marking distress, self-punishment). Individuals finding shame or guilt may be a more clinically severe group than those finding growth from their scars. Copyright © 2015 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.