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How It Feels

It feels like there’s an open wound on my chest.

Like someone has torn through my ribs and into my heart, splitting me open.

And the pain has subsided so I just sort of ache, and I’m covered in crusted blood, reminding me of the attack I have suffered.

And I can feel that my chest is ripped wide open and my heart is exposed and the cold air keeps blowing on my raw flesh.

I don’t know how to heal it.

The Things I Learned From Men

When I was too small to be understood when I spoke, my father taught me to scream. He was a sadist, and from him I learned to fear.

When I was in junior high, I met a policeman at my school. He was just there visiting someone. I told him that my life at 11 years old was a nightmare. I told him I was being molested by my step father. I asked for help. He said he was out of his jurisdiction. His girlfriend, my teacher, told him that as far as she knew I had a good home life. She knew that because she saw me for less than an hour a day for one semester in gym class. This was a class where I never participated, or dressed for gym because I didn’t want to have to take my clothes off in front of people to shower. From the policeman I learned that no one would really believe me or help me.

From my stepfather I learned to hate my body for the sickness it inspired.

From the cops who arrested me at age 15, I learned to devalue myself and make excuses for people who treated me badly.

From my husband, I learned to hate alcoholism, addiction, and excuses. From ridicule, to assault, to spousal rape, he taught me to despise him.

There was another lesson I learned from my Grandfather. It was his story. From the Jewish boy who grew up in Budapest Hungary, who saved up money he earned as a bell hop to come to America, I learned to leave . From his story, I learned to never give up, and when all else failed, to take those I loved and go.

I know looking back he was not a great man, not even really a good or kind man. Still, he taught me what I needed most. Thank you, Grandpa, for your story.

How Karma Got The Best Of The Person Who Molested Me

Fourteen years ago I was repeatedly molested by an older man. I was 14, he was 24.

My best friend encouraged me to keep “going out” with this guy. As she saw it, we were “boyfriend and girlfriend.” He really was a creepy low life, but peer pressure is a bitch. She dropped out of High School and came to pick me up after school with her boyfriend and this guy a few times a week.

It lasted about a year. During that time, I did poorly in life and school. I carried a lot of hate for my family. I built a wall of psychological harm around myself that I still carry with me today.  Life would be normal if this shit never happened, but it did.

Karma got them: He froze to death in an alley while drunk and passed out. My “friend” never earned her High School Degree, got pregnant, and is raising her child in her parents’ basement. I don’t know what happened to her boyfriend, but hopefully he got his karma as well.

Thank you for reading.  Hopefully putting this story into words will help me release the anger I carry with me from enduring this experience.

I have never received any support or advice about this. If you would like to share, I would really appreciate it!


“If you scream or fight I will kill you.”

“If you tell anyone what happened, I will know, and I will come find you and kill you. I will kill your whole family. And I will make sure you suffer. Don’t you dare tell anyone.”

Those words have haunted me for a little over 5 years now. Over and over in my head those words have played like a broken record. Don’t scream, don’t fight, don’t tell anyone. Or I will kill you.

And that is all I can get myself to write down. That is as far as it will go.

I am still silent after all of these years. Some of my really close friends and my mother knows what happened but I can’t break the silence of details. I can’t tell anyone what really happened that night. Even after all these years.

I am in another state. Far far away where he can’t ever find me. But he still has control over me. He still knows that those few words can do all of this to me.

And I am still silent.

Letter I Can’t Send: Dear Bryan

We all have letters we’d like to send, but know that we can’t. A letter to someone we no longer have a relationship with, a letter to a family member or friend who has died, a letter to reclaim our power or our voice from an abuser.

Letters where actual contact is just not possible.

Do you have a letter you can’t send?

Why not send it to The Band?


Dear Bryan,

I know that our relationship is long over. I have moved on and so have you.

I’m confused though.

The way you spoke to me those last few days, made me think that you wouldn’t find someone else. You told me that I didn’t meet your religious standards, but how does she? I would have converted for you. Hell, I would have done anything for you.

You let me go and said I wasn’t good enough, so how is she? Do I not deserve answers? I want to forget the pain that I went through for you, but your words repeat in my head on the nights that he works late. He knows some of what I went through for you, but never the words you said.

Why was I not good enough? Why was your only explanation “I didn’t plan on dating her?” Just why?