The Story of a Girl

There once was a little girl, the youngest of four daughters. By the time this little girl was four, her mom had been married three times, and the entire family was irrevocably screwed up. At four years old, this little girl and her older sister (six) were both already so tired of being made to feel expendable and also so tired of being the punching bag for StepFather #4 that they decided one night to run away. They packed a few things and were just getting ready to make their escape when the Mom and the Stepdad came home. It was not a pretty homecoming; Little Girl and Sister were given the option to either go (and Mom was considerate enough to pack a couple of bologna sandwiches to get these little girls through the next couple of meals, thoughtful and loving Mom that she was) or come back inside and get a spanking. At this house, a spanking usually meant a belt on a bare butt until there were bruises. Now, both sisters still thought running away was the better option, so they very bravely bundled up their few things and headed out the door. They lived on the second floor in an apartment complex, and right outside the back door was a very long flight of stairs with a door that locked at the bottom. The two sisters got all the way to the bottom of the stairs and could not get the door unlocked no matter how hard they tried. They pushed and pulled and cried to no avail, until finally, tired and cold, they decided to go back upstairs. At the door, though, after Sister went inside, Little Girl stood at the door and could not make herself go in. She tried really hard to step over the doorjamb into the light, but just.couldn’t.do.it. Even when Mom and Stepdad acted all happy and made hot chocolate for Sister, Little Girl could not do it. She stood there, uncertain and afraid, until finally, Mom just came and shut the door without saying a word. Little Girl went back downstairs and couldn’t, again, get the bottom door unlocked, so finally she decided that maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to go back inside. When she got to the top, though, Mom had locked the door. And no matter how hard Little Girl kicked and screamed and cried, nobody came to answer it. Finally, exhausted, she laid down in front of the door and fell asleep, curled up in a little ball. In the morning, Mom opened the door and Little Girl had wet her pants and was cold and shivering, and Mom got the belt out and gave Little Girl a few more bruises. That was the last time either of them thought about running away.

And now, 32 years later, this Little Girl is all grown up and angry. She is angry because she has worked so hard to not turn into her mom, she has worked so hard to love and cherish and value her children above all else, and still gets completely lambasted at every turn for not doing it right. She has left a man who was rapidly turning into Stepfather #4 (minus his tendency to want to put his hands down Little Girl’s pants every time had could get her alone), and left him with nothing but three children and a car that ran about 1/4 of the time, but has not been given accolades for that; after all, Marriage is Sacred and should be upheld no.matter.what. She is angry because now she has moved into a new home and has paid all of her bills on time (even when it meant eating Ramen Noodles for weeks on end. Little Girl does not give.a.shit. if she ever sees a Ramen Noodle again) and has worked her way up from taking a job at a temp service and making minimum wage to having a good job in a secure industry, yet still raises her four kids on less than $1000 a month, and can’t get ahead. Little Girl is angry because this supposedly could have been prevented had she just been more loving, kind, patient, forgiving when her husband was out fucking other people and stealing money from the household to buy drugs and being gone for days and days at a time. Little Girl is angry because no matter which direction she turns, this world turns a blind eye on the fact that perhaps she would not be poor and struggling if it, as a nation, held all men accountable.

This Little Girl? She has been accountable for every decision she has made for the last 32 years, ans she is tired. She is tired of being told she should not feel a certain way-angry, happy, frustrated, bitter, joyful. She is tired of trying to explain herself to people in the hopes that just one-ONE-of them will get it, and maybe stop and think before casting stones at ALL single moms. This Little Girl is tired of a justice system that does not protect the true victims but instead protects the criminal, and this Little Girl is tired of being told she should not be angry-furious, TOXICALLY, uncontrollably angry-at the man who violated her daughter, or for the lack of support she has gotten from people who are her friends. She is tired, tired, tired of being told that she should be neither lonely nor sad, when there is much to be sad about and many ways in which to feel lonely. Maybe more than anything, she is tired of standing up and continuing to fight for understanding when there is none. She is tired of being a voice for single moms when nobody is listening, tired of being an advocate for not just HER children but other ones who are being abused and yet being called a bitch, one who should just let things go. Tired of listening to the accusations of bitterness and hatred, without once being given the opportunity to explain why there are sometimes legitimate reasons for it.

Just-tired. That’s all.


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17 thoughts on “The Story of a Girl

  1. If I could hug you right now for real, I would. You know I’m always here. No. matter. what. I think you deserve any and every happiness you find, and I will cheer you on and I will cry with you no matter what. And I love you. No matter what.

  2. You are an inspiration to me every day. You have worked so hard, and done things that I never would have found the inner strength for. Anyone who tells you that you shouldn’t be proud of what you have accomplished, anyone who tells you that it was bad to have left your husband deserves a kick to the head. Don’t let anyone beat you down. You are an amazing, smart, caring wonderful woman.

  3. I understand tired…it’s ok to be tired. You’re doing what’s right and even though some days it seems like its all worthless and no one is listening, you are making a difference…one small piece at a time.You’re not alone, thanks for being YOU!!*hugs*~K

  4. Oh Kori, my heart broke for the little girl you. And I am angry that you went through that and angry that anyone would question that you are a good mom doing a great job raising your kids. And you know what? You don’t have to explain anything to anyone. Anyone who knows you knows what an inspirational, kind, generous, hard-working, loving mom, friend, and woman you are. Those who don’t know that can just kiss your ass. I know it’s easy for me to say this when people you think should be supporting you are not and you feel attacked. But really, they can all kiss your ass.

  5. Wow, Kori. I wish I could do something to make you feel better… and that sounds so trite, but it’s true. I wish I could share with you some of the stability I have and want to be able to make you hurt less. You are the epitome of the single mother rising up, against all odds, and overcoming. It probably doesn’t mean much, I mean why should it? But, I am SO proud of you.

  6. Oh Honey, my heart breaks for the Little Girl…I wish I had the appropriate words to make you feel better but there are none. So instead I will offer my love, friendship, respect & support.You do an amazing job raising your children, despite such huge odds stacked against you (and all single mothers)…you hardly had a positive parenting role model after all. No wonder you are so tired. Take care Honey…

  7. You are not a rock, sweetie. Years from now, when your kids are grown, they’ll marvel at your strength in the face of adversity. And at how very much you love them. Even when you were so tired.

  8. You know, no matter how hard you try to make people understand, some of them will just never get it. Ever. They are too afraid of admitting they could be wrong.I’m sorry that people suck.

  9. I think when you’re fired up is when you have your best writing. I’m sorry that you’ve had to go through what you did and I hope to have strength like you through this hard time.

  10. Believe that your kids, the people whose opinion really matter, do know all that you are doing for them. To hell with the haters.

  11. I second Freedom First… I am so sorry people suck! I am so sorry you have experienced what you have gone through. The way your mom and step-dad treated you is despicable. Makes me sick that anyone would have to endure that.And oooh, whoever told you that you shouldn’t feel toxic anger toward CF is just plain stupid. God created anger, and I’m pretty sure He’d want you to be angry. Those people who are judging you will be judged in their own time. We are here and we are listening, Kori. Love you!!

  12. I am so tired of the whole judging thing. It really does nothing to help anything at all and makes those doing the judging look like out of touch assholes.And the whole accountability thing- I hate double standards.

  13. I am in tears. I just cannot even fathom treating a child this way. It is indescribably amazing to me that people who go through what you went through can grow up to be so amazing. I’ve heard some similar stories from my Mother, but more mental than physical, and I cannot imagine how she became the woman she is today. I feel so blessed to have been able to have such amazing parents, but to be able to meet people like you who have broken the cycle and are making a positive impact on the world. Seriously, I love you. (Hugs)

  14. Just came back to say, I sure love the courage the The Little Girl has… The Little Girl took a tangled up bunch of laces, and has woven them into her very own web. A web that is dewey, and bouncy, and soft, and warm. I’m proud of that Little Girl.

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