The Effects Of Abuse On My Life

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I wish I could say that the abuse in my life began that fateful summer of my junior year in high school, which was not the case. I could not give you a definitive date on when the abuse began because it was a common occurrence in my life. The onslaught of verbal, emotional, and physical abuse came and went in cycles. None of my friends had any ideas about it, not really. They knew that I feared my Step Dad; they knew that I would never do anything to incur his wrath. It as often a pity joke amongst my peers that should I ever rebel it would be in the most fantastical way ever. It never happened. The abuse continued and I lived in fear. The most traumatic period of abuse happened after she died … the first time. The summer of 2000, it started out as a great summer. I was in a great place in my teenage life. I had friends. I had band and the excitement that in one year I would be in Washington, D.C. with all my band mates marching in the 4th of July parade. It may not seem that exciting to some, but to me, it was something I had been dreaming of from the moment I played my first note on my French Horn in 1996. I had a plan and goals. I would graduate high school, move to New York City and attend NYU. For me, my art and band had been my sure fire ticket to scholarships. My grades weren’t great; I had lost focus for a while because of being unable to finish homework due to home life. It wasn’t an excuse that I would allow to hinder me on my path to pursuing my dreams. I knew, even then, that New York was an expensive aspiration. I’ve always been a levelheaded kind of person. Research is important and I was doing mine. My best friend was even on board with going with me to offset costs. Everything changed that summer. I was away at s... ... middle of paper ... ...explained that because I was doing so much with my school and extracurricular activities that she was upset because she was never able to do those things when she was my age. In the end, she blamed me. We do not have a relationship. She pretends it never happened. She pretends all of the incidents that have occurred since have never happened. In my life now, I speak out about abuse. I speak out about the reality of mental illness. I support friends who face mental illness and even abuse. I participate in fundraisers, educational programs, and even more recent will be participating in an art show raising awareness about the real horror of mental illness. I rarely share my story. I rarely reveal the horrors of that year. When I do, it’s because I want others to know they are not alone. I want to whisper into the ear of every victim and survivor, you are not to blame.

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