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The Boy

4 years old, the boy,

Likes dinosaurs and legos

coloring things on white paper

he likes to draw butterflies and flowers

Tall, strong trees full of leaves


8 years old, the boy,

likes riding bikes and drawing;

Etching things on lined paper

Later he’ll use those lines for a story about


Tall, strong words full of meaning


12 years old, the boy,

likes drawing sunsets and waterfalls

The things he designs are “for girls”

He has to use his fists to defend himself

when he would rather use them to cradle a paintbrush

Like how his mom held him close

as he came home from school and yelled

“Mom! Michael didn’t hit me today!”

The other boys call him things

things that make him cry when he gets home

Tall, strong words full of meaning


14 years old, the boy,

Doesn’t really like anything anymore

He stays inside most of the time

and washes his hands frequently

because whenever the bullies had him on the ground

he noticed his hands were dusty; so he doesn’t like dust

He tries to be himself but that’s too hard now

No more words, half dead

Didn’t take art like he wanted to

Void of meaning



16 years old, the boy,

like music and poetry

and the solace of words

tall, strong beautiful words

He wants to be a musician someday

The other boys don’t like him, but that’s okay

Those times they pushed him around

Those times they made him cry

Later he’ll use those lines in his book he’s writing


He says he’s been growing the book for 17 years

From a small acorn

each page covered in those butterflies and flowers

He likes writing and he doesn’t care what people think of him

The book stands: a beacon

Tall, strong, a heretic in plain sight

And casting light on the darkness he feels

The book may not mean much to others

Like how you pass a thousand trees on your way to the grocery store

To pick up your 1,000th jug of milk

But to him it is tall, strong

and full of healing

This poem is about how bullying messes up your mindset and stops you from doing things you want to do. Sometimes it seems like the only thing you are is a victim, and there is nothing you can do to make that stop. Bullying is massive.




That’s all I’m thinking. Shit. I’m pissed. 


… I don’t know why you don’t get it, are you stupid?  You pretending to be naive? No… maybe not?

You ask me to skype, see my family… I-don’t-want-to.

It’s been around 9 months since I stormed out of your house, remember that night? That you were towering over me… beating me up as my son cried in the other room. Don’t yet? I wish I didn’t have to. Because that’s all I think about when we e-mail or text.

You complain you haven’t seen my son… but do you hear me complaining about you being a shitty mom? A shitty support system? A shitty person to me? Do you hear me complaining right now about how much lack of care you STILL show over my emotions? How fucking selfish you still are?

And you wonder why I’m pissed at you…

I live a sea away, and I still sometimes feel your grip over me… Your constant pressure to have me answer your questions, constant pressure over your emotions threatening to drown me.

Drowning… Sometimes I feel like I’m trapped inside this little bottle. I can’t speak of whats wrong… You’re whats wrong. And I can’t even shoo you away.

Do you ever ask me how I’m doing? How I’m handling my new marriage? Have you ever had the courage to speak about the things you have done to me? The way you have hurt me?

No, all you are crazy about is seeing my son. And that’s why I deny it to you! I scheduled to skype tomorrow, and I am not going to! Because you’re a shitty person and I am PISSED off.

Because whenever I think of making you happy, I remember the times you put your foot down so I could be unhappy, so I could be drowned with more exhaustion, so I could be more lost.

Because you never made the effort to really help me!

You know what? I’m beginning to not care about you. Not care about what happened. I’m beginning to actually move on, but not forget! Don’t think yourself lucky this time, because to me, you’re growing to be a stranger… A  bad one at that.

In your eyes I am completely evil. But remember, this is what you showed me to be.

How Can You Turn Off Your Heart?

How does your heart turn off completely? My mind is mush, and everything else about me is confused.

We were set for a trip to his hometown. He changed his mind, because the kid he wanted to bring with us (me, our two kids, and him), couldn’t make it. He decided that we shouldn’t go, not me.

Well, the day of the event, he came to me while I was making dinner. He glared at me, and cornered me against the kitchen sink. He asked, “Why do you do this to me?” I was, of course, confused. I didn’t understand what he was talking about.

He said again, “Why do you do this to me? Are you afraid that I might be happy? You stopped us from going to my home. You stopped her from coming with us. You cancelled our trip without asking me first.”

I didn’t do any of this. He knew I didn’t do any of this, yet I was being blamed for what didn’t go his way.

Then he spit in my face. I was completely sickened by this. Spitting in someone’s face, is something I wouldn’t ever dream of doing to anyone, not even my own worst enemy. I was unaware that a broken heart can break further.

He is mean in his words and actions. He talks about World War III starting, so that he can torture and kill people that anger him. When he reads in the news about a wife being murdered, he will smile at me and say, “I wonder what she did to him to make him murder her.”

At times, I can feel my life hanging in the balance, but at other times, he is loving like he used to be. My poor tired mind and broken heart are so confused.  How can you turn off your heart so that you can make the choices that will be better for the whole family?

Pushing The One You Love Away

This is my first post for Band Back Together. It’s been really interesting reading all of your stories. I feel the sense of community in these posts.

I was separated from my mother at the very early age of around three or four.

Recently, I have noticed it is affecting my relationships with a lot of people in my life, including my fiance. I’ve noticed when I am away from her, I rage and become angry. I always seem to look for connections with other people, so I am not alone. I try to either keep myself busy, or I surround myself with other people so that I don’t have to be alone.

I am currently seeking therapy for my abandonment issues.

I would really appreciate some feedback from other people who deal with similar issues.

My Journey To and Through Infertility

When I was 15, I had terrible ovarian cysts so my doctor put me on birth control. Not that I needed it – I wasn’t sexually active. It was great. No cysts. When I was about 19, I decided to go off the pill. I was taking them but didn’t need them as I still wasn’t sexually active. I knew it couldn’t be great for me so I just stopped taking them.

And then, I never got another period.

After about a year, I went back to my gynecologist and asked about it, whether it was strange or not. He said it WAS very strange and that it did happen occasionally. I may never get another period and may, in fact, be infertile. He told me this very solemnly and with great empathy. He was a good man.

But me, well, uh, I was ECSTATIC! Infertile? Please. Thank you, god. I was never the kid who planned the wedding and the babies and the names. I had three younger siblings I didn’t really care anything about (now I do). I loved to party and this was before the HIV/AIDS epidemic. (YEAH..I know, I said it. This was mid to late 70′s. Figure out how old I am)

I was trying to be an actor and was living a very vagabondish life. I worked about 10 different jobs so I could live and enjoy my life and sexuality. And then one day I felt different. I went to the clinic and yes, I was pregnant. This was after not using birth control for 6 or 7 years. It was a very easy decision for me to make and I had an abortion. I have never regretted that decision.

I lived my life. I used birth control (not the pill, the sponge… remember the Seinfeld episode when Elaine hoards them?)

And then I met Tom. We were friends, fell in love and got married. I realized that, in fact, I did want to have a family with him and that it was going to be wonderful. My life and expectations were turned upside down by the love I felt for Tom and it was so exciting and fun. We were older and after a year of trying, we started dealing with infertility. I was fine. Tom’s motility was low. No boxers or hot tubs. My eggs were a little old. We did inseminations. (Did any of you ever ALMOST make love in the quiet room with your legs in stirrups? To make it more personal? I KNOW you did!)

About a year later, during an insemination break, I became pregnant. There were little lines on the test and it was so exciting! We told everyone. It was amazing. We went to check in and have an ultrasound and hear the heartbeat and well, you all know… there wasn’t one. It was ectopic. I sobbed as they took me in for my D&C because I wanted this baby that I never wanted. This was a little “me and Tom.” It was heartbreaking for both of us.

The next step was IVF. I became a science experiment. I’m not sure there are enough words to convey how much I hated the process. I was going crazy from the hormones, the daily shots of Lupron and the shots Tom gave me (though, I think he got a little pleasure from it). I had eggs harvested and there were a lot. Not many were viable though. There were enough for a transfer and enough to freeze for the next baby.

So we followed protocol and did everything right. There was no baby. It was heartbreaking. Because for the faintest minute, they thought there was a baby… but no, there wasn’t.

We did it once. That’s all we needed. I looked at Tom and said I didn’t want to be a science experiment anymore. I wanted to be a mom and I was already 38 years old. We moved on to adoption. We were together on this decision. He didn’t need a clone and neither did I.

I am so grateful I was with Tom because someone else may not have seen it that way. And that would have been OK but a problem for us. And with Tom it was not a problem. We moved together to the adoption process and that will be my next post.

Because that was a barrel of laughs, too!