It hurts, knowing that your parents don't love you the way you see everyone else's parents do. It hurts, knowing that you're the punching bag, you're the hated one. Nothing hurts more though, than the love you'll never get from them, and the respect from them. You'll never get them, no matter how hard you try.
I always used to believe that families were loving, parents always looked after and cared for their children, and older siblings were always there to help you in times of need, when parents couldn't. I was taught to think like that.
When I was 4 years old, the abuse started. At such a young and tender age, what could you do? You were seen as innocent, harmless and powerless. The parents always had the upper-hand, even more so when you're just a 4 year old child who couldn't yourself.
My parents started smacking me when I was 4, for reasons beyond me. I remember thinking, "Mummy, Daddy! What did I do wrong?" but I never got the reason. It started as harmless smacks, it stung, yes, and I did cry, but it only happened approximately one smack a month. I grew to become afraid of them, never knowing when they would hit me.
Every day in the house, I tried SO hard to be the perfect child to them, helping around when I could. I thought that it would stop the smacks from coming, but that was never the case. My parents accepted the help, but the hits never stopped.
One day when I was walking around, my mum looked at me and told me to "Work!" I didn't know the word, so I looked back at her. She stared at me hard, and yelled the word "Work!"again, but this time, with much more force. She was angry at me, I knew that, so I started crying out of sheer desperation. I didn't know what she wanted me to do, but I knew that I would have to do something to calm her down.
I cried and cried, until she came up to me and smacked me hard on the head. The force from the blow, added with the unexpected hit, made me hit my head on the floor (I was a short child!) and I cried even harder. I heard her walk away, and when I knew she was gone, I looked up and saw blood. My head was bleeding.
I'm lucky there was no permanent internal damage, but I did have to get stitches. My dad soon came in and saw my bleeding head and me crying in pain, and he drove me straight to the nearest hospital. The nurses questioned my dad, who told the honest truth. "I don't know what happened, she wouldn't talk to me. She was crying too hard." The nurses then tried to ask me what happened, but being 4, I cried even more. Even during the pain from my head, I was expecting a smack from the nurse, knowing that was what my mum would do. I thought that everyone was the same.
I got back home in the late afternoon, and my dad was told to feed me liquid medicine and make sure I get a lot of undisturbed sleep to heal my head as fast as possible. I slept for the rest of the day without having dinner.
However, when I was fully healed a few days later, as said to us by our local GP, the abuse was more. I was hit everywhere except for my head, and I was constantly burned everywhere, mainly on my stomach and thighs.
When I was 5, I started Kindergarten, and I was immediately seen as the outcast, "scary monster" by the students because of all the bruises and burns visible on my skin. I was taught by my parents to lie about them, saying that I was learning to cook, and being as clumsy as I am, I got burnt on the stove. As for the bruises, they were self-explanatory. I fell down the stairs. Typical lies to cover up the abuse, but back then, abuse wasn't seen as a common, need-to-be-addressed issue.
When I was in Year 1, everyday was a day I wanted to escape forever. My childhood dreams had all vanished, leaving me to be seen as a soulless person. I told all of my friends at the time that there weren't such things as a "happily ever after" ending, there was no Santa Clause, Easter Bunny, nothing. I was reality-grounded due to the lack of love from my parents outside of school.
Year 4, I did everything around the house. I cooked and cleaned, I fed my parents and myself, I was the cook and cleaner of the house. My parents just lounged around getting fatter and fatter as the days went past them. However, if I did one thing they didn't like, I was punished. The severity, depending on their mood. Sometimes, I'd be burnt 3 times around my body, sometimes, I was thrown against the wall or pushed harshly down the stairs. Other times, I got no food the next day at all.
I started becoming skinnier and skinnier because I was training myself not to eat, in case I got fed no food. My stomach wouldn't grumble and annoy my parents even more when I could train myself not to eat. I'll talk about this in a later blog as well.
As I grew older, I was hit more often. Every second I was near them, my mum or dad, and sometimes even both, would hit me, punch me and use me as a punching bag. For what reason, none at all. I was just there, so I was the one they picked as a punching bag. My sister was the perfect child, but even she did nothing to help me.
I couldn't get comfort from her, because I was scared of what would happen. So every night when everyone was asleep, I'd cry myself to sleep. Which constantly resulted in me catching the flu, of course. And then the abuse kicks in again, blaming me for wasting their money to get more medicine for me. Eventually, they stopped buying medicine, and if they did, it was locked in a cupboard, only for my parents and my sister's use.
That was another way of punishing me, I suppose. It was only until I was in Year 8 that a teacher noticed me. He saw that I was constantly bullied, and he took me to the side. I was in his class, so I knew who he was. He asked me what were the burns and scars on my arms.
I tried lying to him, saying that I was clumsy and burnt myself. As for the scars, I said that I had a cat, and I broke many mirrors, as I was clumsy at home. All that time, I never looked up to talk to him face to face. I was too scared.
He didn't buy the lies at all, and took me into his staff-room. All the teachers that belonged in the staff room were there, and the noticed me, but all went back to their conversations. I was brought to sit at his desk, and he cleaned the burns as best he could. The recent ones from the night before hurt a lot when he cleaned them, but he didn't bandage them. I think he knew what happened, even without me telling him. Well, he knew enough not to bandage the cuts and burns.
I'm lucky I was in that school, I don't know what would've happened if I wasn't. I would still probably be in my parents house still, never being allowed to leave, and my job being to look after the house and the tenants (them).
My parents have life sentence in jail, and my sister is serving her worth of community service and counselling. She was forced to go counselling by the judge of the Family Law Court, the reasoning was that she may have suffered emotionally as well.
At the time, I didn't believe that she suffered emotionally from seeing me hurt, but now, maybe she has. Although she didn't help me, maybe she was too scared to, too scared to speak up in case she became a victim as well. I'll never know. My sister can't contact me under any circumstances, so I'll never be allowed to speak to her again. I guess it's for security reasons? She was a bystander, after all, but she made no harm on me... I miss her, wherever she is now.
I've moved in permanently with my foster dad, yes, my teacher adopted me. Unusual, but I don't mind. He's not abusive in any way, and although I haven't opened up to him completely about my past, I hopw he reads these blogs. This is my way of communicating with him. I'm too scared to speak about my past, but writing it down, this helps a little.
There's still so much for him to learn about my past... self-harm as an example.