My mom was 14 when she had my sister. Together, they struggled through life and became best friends. When my mother was 23, she met my father, 22 years her senior. After a whirlwind courtship, they married and divorced six months later when he announced that he was going back to his first wife.
A few weeks later she found out she was pregnant with me. She told no one that she was pregnant. She starved herself so that she didn’t gain weight. I was born full-term weighing a whopping 4 lbs 12 oz.
I don’t have many memories from childhood, except for being by myself. Starting in kindergarten, I walked home alone, where I stayed, alone, until my mom came home around 7 pm. What I do remember is being sad, lonely, and ANGRY. I had no idea who my father was, my mother was never around, and my sister resented me for being born and taking away her best friend.
The first time I tried to kill myself, I was only eight years old. I wrapped a phone cord around my neck until I passed out. My mom found me when it was time for dinner, but she never said anything. A teacher told a school counselor about the bruising on my neck and I was called into the office. I laid it all out. I told her about how sad I was because no one wanted me and I knew it would be better for everyone if I just wasn’t around.
That’s when I started therapy.
After a couple of months in therapy, my mom stopped taking me as the appointments greatly interfered with her work schedule. I got sad again. I learned that pricking myself with needles felt really really good! I would carry safety pins and sewing needles with me at all times. I got into sports, made a few friends and got to spend more and more time away from my house. I managed my depression, by myself, and kept my “pricking” private.
But just as things were turning around for me, my mom decided to move to Pennsylvania to be with some guy I’d never met before.
I was 11 and she moved me across the country to an alien nation. I was more alone than ever. Stranger in a strange land. People made fun of me for my “Texan accent.” I listened to classic rock and everyone there listened to Hip-hop. It was so hard.
I finally managed to make a couple of new friends but the depression grew worse. My safety pins no longer did the trick. I needed something else. I discovered cutting. It felt even better than pricking, and the euphoria lasted far longer. Unfortunately, it was harder to hide. The school nurse saw my cuts and called my mom who then had me committed to a psych ward.
I was 12.
After my release things got even worse. My mom’s new boyfriend was drinking more than ever and he started getting physical with me. In a 6 month period, he broke four of my bones, and fractured two ribs. The school nurse called the authorities. After an “investigation” it was dropped, because I was a “clumsy” child and hurt myself. I started cutting again, this time on my legs, because it was harder to see that way.
From 1998-2000, I tried four more times to kill myself. Finally one of my friends’ mothers (after seeing bruises from my mom’s boyfriend) marched into my house and packed me a bag. She told my mom that until she was ready to be a real mom, I’d be staying with them.
I lived with them for three months. During that time, they paid for my therapy and my medications. She took me shopping and we had girl time. I wasn’t so alone anymore! Then they moved… Her husband’s company was relocated to Florida, and of course I couldn’t go.
My mom finally got her shit together and we moved into a small cottage. She still worked all the time, and I was alone. I did drugs, primarily heroin. I became angry and defiant. I was expelled from three different schools. My cutting got worse.
I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder.
I met my first husband when I was fifteen and a few months before my seventeenth birthday I found out I was pregnant. By that time I was on a LOT of heavy duty meds. I was drugged constantly, either by pills prescribed to me, or the drugs that I chose to take. I quit everything, cold turkey. No more anti-psychotics, antidepressants, pot, heroin, cocaine, not even a cigarette.
My daughter gave me a reason to live. She saved me.
It’s hard for me now (nine years later) to wear shorts or short sleeved shirts, because my scars are still very visible. My kids haven’t really asked me about them yet, but I’m preparing for the day. I don’t know how to tell them about what I went through. I do know that I can tell them that they have saved me, in so many ways.
I can’t say that I haven’t been through some rough patches. And honestly cutting and suicide still weigh on my mind, but I fight the good battle every day and I will continue to do so. Borderline Personality Disorder doesn’t just go away, so the only thing I can do is work on myself every day. But coming here, and seeing what EVERY ONE OF US goes through, gives me hope.
Every amazing person that posts on this site is my hero, THANK YOU.
Thank you for giving the misfits a place to lay our weary heads.