Sunday, September 11, 2011

YOU AREN'T DIFFERENT, by Shannon Radford

They tell you that you're different. Unloved. You're too fat, too
foreign, too weak. You talk different. You dress different. You like
things they scoff at, but what makes it so much worse is they know.
They know how to make you feel like you're about to cry, and they know
the exact moment to call you a name in order to force the stinging
tears out of your tired eyes. You want those eyes to show them no
fear, you want those eyes to burn into their souls and force them into
hell. They call you obscene, spiteful, and degrading names that you
know are true. I want to tell you that they aren't true. You are a
person. Whether or not you're still alive after what they've done, I
don't know. You aren't a stereotype, you aren't defined as a person
based on your weight, your height, your accent, your choice of
friends, or of lovers, and you are NOT unloved. They are the ones who
need to change. They gorge themselves on others pain, they play cruel
jokes, and they push themselves up using the shoulders of the abused
as leverage. But they're not jokes. They're knives being plunged into
your heart and mind. You are understandable, you are not to blame.
They just refuse to see. They hate you. But why should they? You
didn't do anything wrong. You hate yourself because of them, you are
useless because of them, you want to kill yourself because of them.
That's what I hate. I won't tell you it's wrong, I won't try talk you
out of it if you don't want me to, but I just don't like it. No one
should have the power they have over you. No one should be able to
take away your life like that… given you still have one. Don't tell me
the truth; it will only anger me more. They laugh; even when you're
alone I know you can still hear them. They kick and punch and the
bruises never go away. Never. I'm sorry. I can't stop them. I can't
shield you from this. I want to, I do, but they've already gotten you
haven't they? So I'm sorry. What about you should they find fault
with? You are perfect. I love your voice, your hair, your smile, your
food, your books, your principles, your thoughts, and your
personality. The you that they don't see is beautiful, and they don't
have the right to destroy that perfection. They don't know you, your
dreams, your nightmares… They don't know your future, only you do.

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