Ripped To Shreds
Age 19, Connecticut, USA
I wish I could tell you that everything will be alright, like you used to tell me when I was little. Like you used to do when I would run to you all bruised up because of my father.
I wish I could comfort you now like you used to comfort me whenever I was told I wasn’t good enough and I was pushed to my crying point. I never realized how much harder it must have been for you, being hurt by him and watching your daughters get hurt as well.
And I never made it easy for you.
I remember how you would do everything in your power to protect me from the abuse, and then later on my sisters. But it was never enough. He would always be there to hurt us. I remember when he pushed you down the stairs. You were pregnant with my middle sister. He never wanted her. Even to this day.
I remember having to leave during Christmas Eve multiple times. Always landing in the shelter for the night. But always ending up at that apartment with the person I know as my father.
I now know you were scared. After all, you and I were born in a different country. So you didn’t know the rules. He used that against you.
That is until you started to fight back. Then he backed off of you and came onto me.
I remember trying to tell others to get us help. But the fear of being sent back to our home country made you stop me from speaking up. If only we knew about the help we would have gotten. So instead I put on a brave face and protected my sisters.
But all of this was years ago. Now you just lost the youngest to him. I still don’t understand how the system can take a family and rip it to shreds. I don’t understand how the agency for children in abusive homes would classify you as the abuser and hand my sisters over to my father. Someone so much worse than anyone can imagine.
I wish I could stop your heartbreak as it happens right in front of me. I wish I could be strong enough to hold you up, like you did for me many years ago. I hope you forgive me for not trying harder to keep my sisters with us. And I promise you that I will do everything to have them close.
And as you leave for our birth country, I hope you forgive me for doing petty things. For disagreeing with you. For trying to impose myself. For being so stubborn.
Because it’s one thing to lose your siblings. It’s another to lose your mother.
What did you learn?
Fear is a disease. It corrupts the innocent and causes things to be left unheard for a long time. Sometimes the only thing you can do against it is put on a brave face and push forward.