Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Wish My Parents Would Stop Fighting

Parent’s fighting keeps them from understanding how the divorce affects their children and knowing how to help their children. The fighting usually does not stop when the parents are divorced.

My parents separated/divorced 4 years ago when I was 13 years old but it feels like they have been separated forever. It’s hard for me to remember when they were still together.

Since I was young it has been a fear in the back of my mind that they would get divorced. I felt like that wouldn’t happen in my family though. I believed my parents really cared for each other. At first they would fight occasionally over stupid things like money or taxes. They would fight the most when there were big events like family vacations. Dad would make charts, tables and lists for what he wanted to do on vacation and when. My mom would flip out about that. For the last two years it seemed like they fought all the time. We had to sleep at a friend’s house some of the time. Things seemed to get better for a year but they still said they were going to get a divorce. They tried marriage counseling and it seemed like they had stopped fighting. We thought they were getting along better but now we think that they just weren’t talking to one another at all.

Since my parents divorced they don’t fight directly. They use lawyers, courts, legal documents and emails instead. They don’t scream at each other. This type of fighting doesn’t affect me or my siblings as much. I just accept they will fight with each other but it bothers my older brother the most. He is the angriest at mom and dad. He’s angry that the marriage didn’t work, and that mom left and got remarried. He had the closest relationship with mom and had the best relationship with our parents. As the years went on, mom was less able to tolerate anxiety and stress and for example, stopped reading with us.

After the divorce, dad felt guilty and took a lot of the parenting upon himself. Mom was very angry while dad was very guilty. They are both trying to save the family by fighting with each other. They blame each other for ruining the family in the past and present. If they win this battle of egos they will save the family by defeating the other one. The fighting that they are consumed with though, is what ruined the family in the first place.

After mom left I only saw her once a week so she wasn’t really there for us. Dad was depressed so he wasn’t really there for us either. They are trying to get it together by fighting. They realize that they didn’t pay a lot of attention to their children. If they really get it together and stop fighting they may be able to help us out.

Friday, July 28, 2017

I Hated when Daddy Move Out

A child’s relationship with his/her parents is very special. Sometimes a divorce interferes with this relationship.

Ever since mommy and daddy started to divorce it has been hard. I hated when daddy moved out because I love seeing him. I love spending time with daddy – spending time with him is very special to me. Daddy lets Sam and I fall asleep in his bed and then he moves us to our own bed. Mommy won’t do that. She isn’t as nice as daddy. I love spending time with my daddy and I miss him.

I wish I could tell him how upset I get when I can’t stay over night when I am supposed to. I can’t tell him because I don’t want to upset him or make him angry.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Divorce is Both Good and Bad

This child has a mature perspective on the things that happen when parents divorce and how it affects the children.

Divorce can be good or bad, it depends. Divorce is good for the children because they don’t hear as much fighting from the parents. It can also be good because their parents have a chance at being happier.

The parents could, though, mess this up and find someone else to fight with. That would be a shame. I sure hope that the next time they find someone they can get along with them.

Divorce is also good because you can see your parents individually and get to know them a whole lot better. You have a chance at having a good relationship with both of them. You also get to spend time with the other family members on each side. This can be hard, though, when your parents are still angry at each other. When that happens they don’t want you to like the other parent or they don’t want you to have a good relationship with them.

Divorce can be bad when you can’t spend time with both of your parents on holidays. They also talk badly about the other parent, and you don’t get to see one as much as the other. The parents fight over you – in doing this they put you in situations you don’t want to be in. Their anger spills over on to you.

Monday, May 22, 2017

When I First Learned About the Divorce

Children learn about divorce from different sources

I first learned about the divorce when mommy and daddy sat me down and said “we have something important to tell you.” They told us that they were not going to live with each other any more.

One day I told my best friend, Julia, all about the divorce. She didn’t know what divorce meant. I told her how parents break up sometimes. One lives in one house and the other one lives in a different house. Julia was very sad for me when she heard this.

Mommy and Daddy are divorcing but they still have plenty to fight about. Now they are fighting about a swing set. Can you imagine grown ups fighting about a swing set?

Friday, April 21, 2017

When I was a child I felt the breath of a monster.

When I was a child I felt the breath of a monster. It was a very clever monster. It knew your thoughts. It could feel your mind. It was best for you if you did not have one. A mind that is. Anyway, nothing has been the same since. I have been on lookout. Making sure it won’t sneak-attack. A clever monster it is. I have not seen it for years. But sometimes when the house is very still I hear it echo within the beat of my heart. I avoid mirrors like death.

I have spent much time considering the monster that was my father when he beat the rag doll that was my mother. I have spent little time considering that rag doll. The one with all the bruises, and burns, and tears that came to be our life.

It is a horrible thing to see someone you love being beaten . . . to see someone who chases away your nightmares crumpled on the ground. They are humiliation, they are shame, no person is left. Only a will-less thing tossed and pushed and taunted. That was my mother. That was me. I felt shame for her. I became her shame. I held it close to me because she would not.

That scene plays out in my life. Behind locked doors an unwilling participant with a gentle hand is cast into a role he does not know and cannot play. I am the only one with the script. As I withdraw from disgust and raise a numbing screen of protection he lays there bewildered and dumbfounded.

The sadness afterward, is the choice I cannot make. To become a woman in love with a kind and gentle man or to stay an orphan searching desperately for a father who does not exist?

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

We run, we hide

We run, we hide. Stashing pieces of our flesh behind the walls.

Pots of flesh.

Little pots of flesh.

Little pots of flesh burning everywhere. As we run. Run from the boot. The big black boot. It comes down upon us, down from the sky. Run from the wheel. The rolling wheel, the cart with bodies high. The air is black with our ashes. We breathe ourselves in.
into our lungs. Lungs choked with ashes and water and air. The dead are everywhere.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Victim

Young – child – old. Victims. Victim. We are an exclusive club. An elusive club. Prick us, we do not bleed. Kick us, we do not bruise. We give up the holy ghost and sanctify the trembling name of woman.

I am a victim. My life spins round and round out of control. It is not my life. It is not yours. It belongs to anyone who can grab it and pull it and squeeze it. Everyone is its master. I wait. I wait in silence. Are you kind, are you cruel? What will it be, a slap, or a pet? I never know until it is over.

I am a victim. I wait. I wait for things to happen. I wait for things to stop. What hand starts the motion, what hand stills it? I wait. I know gravity does not exist, Spring may not come and if we are not careful we will fall from the edge of the world.

I am a victim, a child. I live close to the floor. Scrambling. Trying to do the right thing. Trying to say the right word. Frantic. Looking for a magic incantation that will make me good enough for him to stop. For this spinning to stop. I watch carefully trying to guess what cannot be guessed. To see what cannot be seen. Close to the floor. There is no way out of this room. No doors, no windows, not a sliver of an opening to squeeze out a hand, a foot. I live close to the floor. Scrambling. And I hate myself for it.

I am a victim. I fight because he is wrong. I give up because he is right. I fight even when I have forgotten why. Even when I believe what he believes. Even when I have become what he says I am. I fight in small ways. In pathetic ways. It makes me sick. How weak I am. If others could see I would make them sick too. Try to drift far away.
Don’t let him make you cry. Don’t let him see you frightened. I can never keep it up. I always fall apart. I keep trying in small sorrowful ways.

He is my lifeline, he is my beast. He gives me love and he takes it away. He caresses my face while his boot is on my neck. I never know if I should hate him or be grateful.