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Sometimes I sit and wonder if it really was abuse. "Discipline", "Because I love you", "Because this wouldn't fly in the real world".... all excuses I'd hear. Was it the truth, though? The small mistakes I'd make... talking out of turn, dropping a glass, not wiping off the table properly.... all were deemed unacceptable in your eyes. Should they have been? The bruises sustained from hitting, the scar of my back from being shoved into a bookcase when I was only thirteen, the small mark on my cheek from being slapped... are those normal? My friends tell me it's not. But are they wrong? Maybe I was in the wrong. Maybe the dozens of slits that I forcefully made along my legs, arms, and hands were just stupidity. Maybe the pills and the rope around my neck that failed several times meant something. Was it abuse? In your eyes, I wasn't perfect. So I was awful. I deserved punishment. In my eyes, you were my role model. My everything. Have you betrayed that? I ask you again, was it abuse? Or did I make it all up? I can hear what you'd be saying right now. "DON'T YOU EVER SHUT UP?!" you'd scream. I did. I'm done shutting up. I ask you again, WAS IT ABUSE? I need closure. I need an answer. Is laying your hands on a child abuse or fair punishment? I remember being spanked as young as three or four. The first time I remember it, I came inside to use the bathroom in the summer. You spanked me, and then locked me outside for hours because you couldn't be bothered by my presence. Was it fair punishment to slap me for defending my brother when he asked if he could be a girl? Was it fair punishment when you made me do wall-sits and push-ups and such until I threw up, or, in one event, passed out? I ASK YOU AGAIN, WAS IT ABUSE?! ....was it abuse? .....or..... ....were you only protecting me....?


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