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DOH Monday: Symbols

I recently heard about a sad story. (Don’t worry, it has a happy ending.) An artist at the tattoo shop I go to has a son who suffered brain trauma at birth, among other things. He is probably only a couple of years old. He can laugh and smile but that is about it. He can’t walk or talk, and he needs a feeding tube to eat. He is such a precious child though.

The tattoo shop decided to put on a fundraiser to help him get life-changing medical treatment. They had raffles and $50-100 tattoos of awareness ribbons. They called it Ribbons for Silas. I went and got a ribbon tattoo and a few raffle tickets to help as much as I could for this little boy. My tattoo is green and teal for Bipolar awareness and Sexual Abuse awareness, and it’s probably the most meaningful tattoo I have. It is beautiful. Here it is!


Now remember I said it had a happy ending? Well the tattoo shop was able to raise over $7,000 for Silas!  I am so happy I was able to a part of the success! Now Silas can get the medical help he so desperately needs and deserves!


I’ve been keeping this a secret for years. The only thing I know is how to keep it a secret. I was molested as a child by two people, different times and no one in my family knows. Not my mom. Not my dad. Not my brothers.

How do you open up about this to someone you love? How will they believe anything you say? How will they believe you after all the years that has passed? Why is it easier to let your best friends know, but not your family?

I don’t want to tell my family because who knows what will happen after. I’m scared. I’m scared they won’t believe me and call me a liar. I’m scared what they might do to them.

But I still want to tell them. I just don’t know how. If I tell them, it’ll set me free. A huge weight lifted from my shoulders. This is probably the one thing keeping me from moving on.

It hurts me to hurt my family, but it hurts me more to keep this from my family. I think about it too much when I shouldn’t, but I don’t know what to do. I’m clueless.


I was in the third grade when I was given my first labels.

“Whale.” “Fat.”

I hear it now, as I did six years ago.

Still I hear it ringing through my ears, wondering if it is the truth.

Years later I think to myself, do they know how hurtful those words are? Do they know I still think of it? Do they know that every time I look in the mirror, those names, those labels comes to mind, along with many others.

If they do, if they did, would they still have chosen to say that, or would they go back and erase it?

I wonder.

Fast forward three years.

Just starting middle school, a new school, a new beginning, a new life. Right?


With a new school, comes a new bully, new names.

“Bitch.” “Slut.” “Ugly.” “Poodle head.”

The names go on.

And the first time in my life, I feel helpless.

I feel trapped.

Because now, not only were they attacking verbally, but now they attacked through social media.

Helplessly, I admit defeat, and call for help.

Therapy for one year.

It helps.

I stop going.

No more bullies …for now.

One year later.

Half-way through the terrible mix.

Not an adult, but not a kid.

You’re changing in different ways.

Discovering new things about yourself.

Life is great …until they come again.

A new army of bullies ready to take down their first victim.

“Idiot.” “Fat.” “No good.” “Dirty whore.” “Lame.” “Loser.”

Those were the nice ones.

One more year…

Once again, a new year, a new bully

This time it’s worse.

“Thunder Thighs” is the only thing I was called.

One name, twice the pain.

I pull out my razor, to help relieve the mental tension.

Trying to replace mental pain with physical pain.

It works …for a little while.

One year later.

I am now clean.

Going through therapy.

Recently diagnosed with clinical depression and anxiety,

This puts a toll on my family.

I try and push through it, as I’ve done for years.

Apparently, I’m a great actress,

Fooling everyone around me that I am happy.

But now, I no longer have to pretend…

I am getting help.

Even though it hurts sometimes…

And those awful memories flood back.

I have self control…

I am seven months clean.

Still with urges, I manage to throw away my razor, and speak up.

With help from my family and friends, I am on the road to recovery.

Because after all, my disorder doesn’t define me.

Another Night With A Stranger

A man I met on the internet is planning his suicide. I’ve never met him in person. He bought a rope tonight. He seems like a nice guy, has a dog and a job. He set the date to end his life. I don’t know what his hair smells like or which cigarettes he smokes. He told us he is taking some time beforehand to say his goodbyes. Tonight has been spinning.

There is nothing quite like the plight of another to bring you out of your own mental suffering. My anxiety, my depression, my broken relationships, all of it can wait. This stranger needs me. I think he went to sleep. I wanted to talk to him, but he wasn’t there. I messaged him for an hour- just ramblings. Thoughts on the topic including my own attempt. I told him about the drugs I am on, the exercises my counselor has recommended. I told him about the song I use to get through the winter, and the blue light device my husband bought me to help. I don’t want to leave him alone- even if he hates me for it- because alone is the worst way to feel.

I don’t know this stranger friend. Yet I want to save his life. I want to hear his heartbeat more than ever now. I want to feel how he feels in a hug. He is kind. He’s funny and witty; he knows things that he teaches us. But he is broken. He is broken in a way we can all relate to. I don’t know any underlying cause for his depression. He doesn’t need one. He doesn’t need to explain himself to anyone. Everyone should try to help him. No one deserves to feel so low that their only escape is permanence.

I would like to meet my stranger friend one day. I just didn’t expect it to be so painful.


I feel like I’ve lost enough recently. In the last year I lost my best friend (she won’t speak to me) and several close friends to different situations. None of them are dead, but sometimes things can’t be put back together.

I lost what I thought was my future. A career that I was brilliant at, had me trembling and crying behind closed doors from anxiety and bipolar disorder. I quit in August.

I lost the rest of my sense of peace and independence shortly thereafter and spent some time including my birthday in a psychiatric hospital.

I live with my parents now, and I’m trying desperately to get back on my feet, but my brain is fighting with me every step of the fucking way. I’m battling suicidal thoughts, panic attacks, and anger I never knew I had in me.

But plot twist. My parents are moving cross country and it’s no longer my choice. I’m going with them. I’m leaving my friends, my mentor, my therapist, my home.

I’m left grasping at straws.

I’m afraid of how much more I can lose because I’m losing the fight. Even when I try with everything that God gave me, it just doesn’t seem to be enough.

I miss my best friend. I miss my independence. I miss the me who could glow and love and feel joy. I never thought mental illness could cost this much.