I’d like to save you but I’m washing my hair

School teachers are usually ranked highly in those most trusted professions. Two years ago I would’ve spoken highly of my high school English teacher but as I read her plead for forgiveness everything I thought about her turned to black.

I read her message and felt nauseous. In this letter she told me that she was so very sorry. She told me that she knew things were really bad for me but decided not to do anything because it would complicate her life.

Imagine that. Washing clothes and doing the tax rated more highly than my safety, dignity, and self-worth.

For people who have never experienced the hell I grew up in, they can’t understand why you wouldn’t say something. They want to know why you didn’t scream and demand to be heard.

Here is the answer, are you ready for it?

People like me are told everyday that they are worthless, pathetic, a waste of space, always in the way and then weaved into all these messages are the people won’t believe you and they will know what a truly horrible and bad person you are. How do we ask to be saved when we feel this way?

The other component of it is fear. As scared as you are, speaking up is even more terrifying. You know that at some point that you will be back in the hell and that the people you spoke out about will be keen to punish you for dragging their names through the mud.

I thought of running away a few times but where would I go? Every person I thought of escaping to would at some point betray me and back I’d go to the hell.

Setting off into the distance wasn’t an option either. In a small country town there are spies everywhere. A girl walking across a paddock that she shouldn’t be sticks out. Beady eyes would glare into the face trying to study it. Within minutes the owner of the property and people of the town would know of the daring escape. No time in the day was ever safe from those prying eyes. Those same glaring stares that would turn away from anything even remotely a little ugly.

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