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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Abuse & Assault » Rape (Page 3)

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Author Topic: Rape
Cjmammy
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I think it would help if I knew what some1 has gone through but I don't want any1 to get upset by reliving what they went through and getting upset.

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Cj

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Heather
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You know, I've talked so much about so much of what I went through at this point that I can manage my feelings very well, so trust I'd never put an offer out there like that if I didn't feel okay about it. [Smile]

I'm also at the point in my healing where it's okay even if I do get upset. Took a long time, but I got there, and you'll be there someday, too, even if that feels very far away right now.

So, give me a little bit to collect my thoughts and I'll start writing about some places I think we might intersect that might help shortly.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Heather
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To get you filled in: my two primary sexual assaults in my life happened when I was very young (11 and 12) and in the early 80's, when rape was just-so-BARELY starting to really come into the cultural conversation in the world. At that time, we didn't have all of the information we do now on things like rape trauma, for instance. We certainly didn't have the kind of support services available now.

The second assault was a violent gang assault and I tried to tel and report and it went incredibly badly. With that one and the first one, I was in a household at the time where if I had disclosed or fully disclosed, it would have made me much more vulnerable to someone emotionally abusing me, so because of that and because of how trying to disclose went, I just clammed up, full-stop for several years. I kept having the feelings I had around my rape, and had some intellectual memories of the assaults, but my more tangible, visceral memories just were not something I had access to (which I think you understand).

Years later, I was getting counseling around something else, and some of it got brought up. I had a wonderful counselor who was incredibly compassionate, but again, we still didn't have a lot of info to work with and we also had a much ore pressing situation in my life that needed to come first. While we talked about my assaults some, I wasn't told -- likely because she didn't know -- that because I didn't tangibly recall the assaults then did not mean I wouldn't later.

Fast forward about another five or six years. I was with a partner who was really wonderful and wonderful to me (and who I'm with now again, oddly enough, and is still awesome), and in the middle of sex one time it just all came flying back. I started screaming, I got really disoriented, I did not know what the heck was going on, couldn't immediately identify what those memories were. He suggested I get some help, which I knew was probably best, but I SO BADLY did not want to deal with this at all, having felt I had put it all behind me and wanted it there -- and again, I know you can relate -- that I ignored that advice. You are being much smarter right now then I was then: good call, you. [Smile]

So, I basically trashed my relationship, I ran out on this person, I dissociated for a couple weeks I still don't remember to this day, and when I got myself back together, I was okay, but the fact of the matter was that for a few years there, while I was functional in most areas of my life, I made some pretty bad interpersonal choices and part of me was just not fully present. later on down the road, I finally started talking to some other survivors, talking about it more and more gradually over time -- many years of time -- and it gradually got easier. I also made some amends I needed to: that helped a lot. I got better at taking care of myself and forgiving myself. I got better at being angry at the right people, instead of directing it inward or bottling it up.

I won't be dishonest: it was a very slow process that at the time felt like it took forever, even though now, in hindsight, it can look and feel like it happened a lot faster. But I completely understand how awful and hard and scary and unwanted it can feel in the moment, and how very unjust. That's a biggie I remember feeling: this injustice that *I* had to be the one to deal with the continued pain and mess, that *I* had to be the one to do the hard work when someone else was the one who made the choice to assault and abuse me. For me, just getting through that anger alone -- and getting TO that anger -- took a while and was a real challenge.

I also remember feeling very much attached to keeping a stiff upper lip, feeling very resentful of feelings that I thought were really inconvenient and had the capacity to derail my life, a life I'd worked -- as I suspect you have, perhaps even more so -- to build. I remember feeling very weak, which bothered me a lot, particularly since it made me feel so vulnerable, something that can so easily trigger feelings around the assault all by themselves.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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I understand everything you said at present I feel as if a day a hurdle since I opend up about what happend and everyday it seems to get harder to deal with I keep looking at ppl in the street and thinking did they hear my crys for help did they turn a blind eye or can they see skin deep what iv been through and is still goin everyday because HE don't this to me and he is living his life to the full.

I'm left to pick up the pieces in life which I have tried to do for the last 5 years and and bring a stunning little boy up and struggle each day knowing that his dad well can't call him that the creep that abused me and raped me is out there possibly playing happy families gets away with it.

My trigger is when I'm in work ( I run my own catering company) is that every strange man that walks untovthr building is he the 1 that dine it to me and made me feel like this. If he had hit me about kicked me or slapped me around a room I would have been used to that treatment but what or who gave him the right to rape me I done nothing wrong in this [Frown] [Frown] omg I can't stop the tears coming [Frown]

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Cj

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Heather
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It's okay you don't have to. There's no reason you can't cry and let these tears out.

You have been carrying a LOT mostly or totally by yourself, Cjmammy. The fact that you have done this well and gotten this far doing that is AMAZING. I know it's so hard right now, but I hope you can know somewhere, deep in your guts, that if you could do that well without help, once you start getting some help and doing some real healing, it seems very likely you are going to seriously rock your life.

Can I ask what you do to take care of yourself when you're feeling like this? What do you do to provide yourself comfort?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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In the beginning I used to comfort eat but for the last couple of years I have been goin to the gym and doin sessions there to realise my anger.

Iv also thrown myself into caring for my son who is my whole life. ( sorry for the late reply I had fallen asleep crying)

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Cj

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Heather
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It's okay. Hope you're feeling a little better today.

What I was asking about though, is really how you take care of YOU, not your son or anyone else, and how you find comfort, not just a way to let your anger out. Going to the gym can certainly be a means of self-comfort, too, but it sounds like you're not really using it that way.

So, what about things like taking a long bath or a long walk you enjoy, doing some kind of creative project, hanging out with friends, meditating, reading books you like...?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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I don't really do anything iv concentrated on the baby so much that i have forgotten about myself. I think I need to sit down and really think about how I'm goin to start looking after myself.

To b honest if I look in the mirror I font recognise the woman in it I was never like this I have left myself go do badly [Frown]

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Cj

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Heather
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For both your own sake and the sake of your kid, if you don't have ways of taking care of yourself, you want to start coming up with some. It's clear that it's often easier for you to think of him than of yourself, so it might be good motivation for you to do that if you remember that when you take care of yourself, your model for him so that he can learn to take good care of himself.

Have you yet heard from the crisis center again after they didn't call back?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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No still haven't heard off them I'm slowly starting to give up on them callin back. I know they said they will send me a letter with my appointment time and details on in the post I'm hopin that arrived today (I'm in work).

I can feel myself closing back up and goin back to the person I was last week b4 I said what happened to me I don't want that I want to move forward in life

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Cj

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Heather
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Kind of staying wide open for days or weeks on end isn't something anyone can likely sustain, or that's all that healthy. You don't have to stay as wide open as you've felt to make more progress healing. It's okay to reign those feelings in some during your daily life and not to be constantly processing them.

Why don't you go ahead and call THEM back, okay?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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I'll try and give them a ring in the morning when I'm alone in the house. Orient get the letter I was expecting either.

I really want to stop thinking about the negative things that happend to me and start thinkingbof the posative so I hope that the councillor can help me that way to.

If the man hat hit me about I would have expected that, but when he raped me that was a whole new pain.
I am slowly realising that it wasn't my fault

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Cj

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Cjmammy
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I just give up in so sorry I ever said I should have just kept quiet and tried to Carry on for asking as I could.

Thankyou for your support and help .

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Cj

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Heather
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Well, I don't think you should have done anything different than what you did, but it's also okay if you're feeling strained. It can be really hard once we kind of open this box.

You're absolutely welcome. Please just ask if there's more we can do for you right now.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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I had my phone contact today it was amazing I felt so calm when I cane off the phone I had a panic attack half way through and they managed to calm me to.

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Cj

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Heather
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That's great!

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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Hi just to say everything is goin good iv started to put a little of my past behind me and is starting to moveforwars with things. I can't thankyou enough for the support and advice u have given me it been amazing ty [Smile] [Smile]

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Cj

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Heather
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Well, I'm more than happy to have given you what helps and support I could!

I'm glad you seem to have had a few days now where you're feeling better. That's really great news. [Smile]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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Everything was goin fine until today I feel so low as if I can't carry on cause I got no energy to do anything. I don't know if this is part of the process if it is I hope it passes soon

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Cj

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Heather
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These feelings will tend to come and go, changing often, alas.

What did you want to do for yourself today?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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I wanted to go for a long walk to try and sort things out in my own head but as I opened the door I had a panic attack and thought I couldn't do it. It real scared me so iv stated in all day with the baby and just watched alot of tv

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Cj

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Heather
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Okay.

Maybe you two could at least go sit out on the stoop or something as some middle ground?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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I wish I could but when I get these panic attacks I feel I have to lock myself away to make sure I'm safe so that no1 can hurt me again.

I feel so frustrated with myself for not being able to do everything I want and that he has the control over me

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Cj

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Heather
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It's okay. You know, on a personal note, one of my parents has profound PTSD and has the same thing happen. He also tends to beat himself up about it, but my feeling is that we do what we're capable of and feel capable of, that's all we can do, and if you feel less scared staying inside, then that's you taking care of yourself.

I think it might help to change your script a bit here around control and who has it. I'd not say your rapist has any control over you right now. Rather, I'd say that what he did manifested in a handful of symptoms, things that went unmanaged because you didn't know how to manage them or feel able to ask for help -- which is very common -- and it's those symptoms which simply have gotten the better of you right now, a lot like sometimes symptoms of a flu get the better of us when we're sick.

But, with help and some more work healing, those symptoms WILL subside and you will feel more in control of THEM and of yourself. In other words, I think this is less about someone else having the control right now than it's about you not having it because you're in process. Do you know what I mean, and can you see the difference?

Also? I'd not see your healing as a fight between you and your rapist, especially since if there was a fight between the two of you you already won. You survived, you have your own power, you were not someone this person took the power from in any way but in those moments. You've still got it and he still doesn't. You already won that battle.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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I understand where u are comin from and thankyou

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Cj

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Cjmammy
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Had a good session today with the councillor she made me realise that I'm so concerned in supporting and trying to protect every1 else around me but there is no imedate support and help around me and that I really really need to start taking time out for myself

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Cj

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Heather
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I'm so glad you had a good session!

I have to say, working with people internationally, I am so often so impressed with the rape crisis/support services in the UK. It just seems like so many people get served so well, which is just fantastic.

I agree with your counselor, wholeheartedly!

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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She not my proper councillor she is the support worker and she is so amazing she knows how to get me to talk about things that I didn't think I could about.

We agreed today that I'm goin to be transferd to a proper councillor so until then the support worker is goin to give me all the support and help that I need to get me back on track as she said I have so much I need to get out in the open and because the list is nearly a year long she will be with me al the way until the time comes for me to transfer over x

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Cj

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Cjmammy
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Just to say hi everything is goin good apart from my feelin nervus about meeting the new health visitors on Wednesday. My old health visitor tol me she had to tell them about what is goin on so that she was aware if what is happening and y I'm under the councillors.

I wasn't happy about her tellin them but she said they needed to know. I'm finding it hard to deal with that this total stranger knows what has happend and iv not got a say in what she knows

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Cj

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Cjmammy
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not doin to good today. things are real starting to get on top of me iv even broke out in a rash all over my hands, i tried to speak to my councillor today but i couldnt get words out that i wanted to say to her, so we nearly sat there for half an hour with me not being able to say a thing (typical normally u cant stop me from talking ).

i mainly spoke about my son and my family no knowing what had gone and she told me again that i relly need to take time out because for the last 5 yrs iv done nothing but put my family and every1 else b4 and that im goin to find it real hard to start gettin my emotions in order so that i can slowly start movin on forward in my life

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Cj

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Cjmammy
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Why do I bother existing everyday I don't inowany more ?? ????

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Cj

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Heather
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I'm so sorry to have missed some of your responses, Cj!

It sounds like you're in a rough spot with this right now, and you're obviously asking a pretty huge question I'm not sure any of us can answer, even for ourselves, much of the time.

It's pretty uncommon to start with a counselor and have the floodgates open up right from the start. More typically, like any relationship, it takes time to build gradually. I know that's frustrating, especially when it feels like there's so much to get out, that you need to get out, but it won't come out. I also know that it gets old fast to hear that all of this takes patience, even though it does.

Want to fill me in on how you're feeling now, and how you think we can help you out?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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I just don't know how I'm supposed to be feelin or where my head is at the moment. I feel so lost I'm constantly feelin as if ppl are looking me as if they are trying to worn me out . I font know what any1 can do to help me to b honest

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Cj

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Heather
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There's not really any "supposed to," here: we just feel how we feel at any given time, and how we feel can be in a pretty huge range, from person to person, but also for any one of us from day to day.

I doubt people are trying to wear you out. I'm not sure what that means, but for anyone not let into your history, you can be very sure they don't know what it is or what you're going through right now. However, you're likely feeling so raw that it can feel like you're transparent to others, even though you're probably not.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cjmammy
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I just really hate feelin like this and iv even started shouting at my lil 1 which hurts me more [Frown] I just want to curl up in a ball and sleep until it's all over but I know it's not goin to happen and that I need to deal with this head on

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Cj

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