Jeremy thought cutting himself was gross, so he broke his nose.
Jeremy was a nice guy, really. He got okay grades and he worked hard. He was pretty quiet, but he had a few friends and this one girl in his Euro class who looked at him every once in a while. Jeremy was happy; that part is important. Jeremy was happy and remained happy for the duration of this entire little episode.
The problem with Jeremy was not that he got sad, but rather that he got frustrated. He said the wrong thing frequently and imagined that whoever he told it to was still thinking he's the stupidest person in the world. Jeremy also liked to think that the world was straight forward, even though he knew it wasn't. Jeremy pretended there was a very direct correlation between pain and gain, so that whenever he was hurting, something was getting better. Somehow the lack of blood distinguished between self-mutilation and whatever Jeremy was doing, so he never drew blood, but when things went wrong he punched himself in the head or bent his fingers backwards because he thought it might fix things.
Jeremy stumbled over his chair and words after Euro one day, in precisely that order. He was getting up and suddenly he was falling down, falling into the girl who smiled at him, knocking her down too, knocking the egg she had to carry around for AP Psychology down, breaking it from one bonus point to a mess that was all over her new dress.
"Oh, christ," Jeremy stuttered, "I'm so sorry. Oh god, I'm really sorry. I meant to do that. I meant- I didn't mean- I'm sorry, I meant I meant to do that. I didn't mean- I really like you I'm so sorry."
The girl was already running out of the room.
Four minutes later Jeremy wandered into the nurse's office, talking wildly to himself.
The secretary looked up at him. "Yes?" she asked.
"I think my nose is broken."
She looked at him carefully, noticing nothing wrong. "It's fine," she said.
Jeremy made a quick fist and hit himself in the nose. Something cracked.
"It's really not."