childhood

‘If not your breasts, they’ll attempt to convince you your worth depends upon your thigh gap, complexion, weight.’ Mom shuts down 8-year-old daughter thinking her body is ‘flawed’

“My darling girl, there is something I must get off my chest before you grow into yours. As you get older, society, men, even some women, will try to convince you that your breasts — their size, shape, level of ‘perky’ — are what define you as a woman. Hear me clearly when I firmly inform you, they are wrong.”

‘Your brother is dead. Pick up the phone!’ That was the text my sister sent me. I was studying at the time, thinking I was too busy to chat.’ Brother loses twin to tragic heroin addiction

“During his funeral, one of our friends approached me. ‘Your brother really loved you, you know that?’ I said, ‘Yeah I know.’ He continued, ‘One time I told him I was gonna hang out with you. He got really angry. He told me I better watch my back, and that he’d kill me if I got you to start using, too.’ I almost cried right there.”

‘My dad was married and had an affair with my mom. I became the product of their affair. On the outside, we looked normal. But behind closed doors, dark secrets hid. My life quickly took a turn.’

“My younger sister woke up while it was happening. She said, ‘Daddy can you do that to me like you do to Shannon?’ He told her, ‘No it’s only for her.’ The hardest words to swallow came from my own mother. I was only in 4th grade and it tore me apart. I still hear and feel him breathing down my neck.”

‘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.'”

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