child abuse

‘If I drink beer, maybe they’ll like me.’ ‘Maybe if I smoke this.’ Their words cut deep. I was desperate for acceptance. When it wasn’t enough, I stopped going to class and flunked with all F’s.’

“I thought the bullying would stop when my mom died of cancer, but it returned full force. I remember being yanked off my feet by my ponytail, blood running down my leg. I still wasn’t good enough, so I dropped out. When I returned to school at 31, a mother of 3 kids, I thought the same failure awaited me again. I was absolutely terrified.”

‘I BEGGED my mom to get my stepfather out of my bed. He would just ‘fall asleep’ there. How convenient for him. I started thinking my mother knew, and just didn’t care.’

“In third grade, we moved. I thought it was so fancy! Surely nothing bad can happen in the suburbs. I slept over at my friend’s house one night, and was woken by something startling. I froze, I didn’t know what to do. I started to silently cry. ‘Why isn’t my friend waking up? If she wakes up he will stop.'”

‘When I was 15, I was sent to a private boarding facility in the backwoods. I snuck out was roaming during the night. I was suddenly taken into a building far in the woods, the doors locking behind me.’

“For the next 2 years, I was ‘locked up’ with wire fences, an open bay dorm of girls in dresses. I was to say yes ma’am and no sir. Everything was taken from me. Our letters were censored. Girls who would cry would be forced to sit in a baby stool with a pacifier.”

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