Trigger warnings: child abuse, self-harm
Hey, girl, open the walls, play with your dolls, well be the perfect family. -Melanie Martinez
~eight years ago~
Mom, dad, Ive been hurting myself since I was four. Ive kept it a secret for ten years, and I dont think anybody else in the world does it. I want to tell you because were going to film for TV, and I might lose control in front of the cameras. I dont want to make our family look bad.
Are you still doing it?
No. I quit a few years ago.
Then your sin is forgiven. Well go ahead with the filming. Just dont tell anyone.
Picture! Picture! Smile for the picture! Pose with your brother, wont you be a good sister?
~seven years ago~
Mommy, stop hitting him! Hes only eleven!
Do something, Cynthia! Im scared…shes not stopping!
~a few days later~
What happened to him? Did he get in a fight with his brother?
No. Mom got mad and slapped him. She wouldnt stop, so I pulled her off of him. Hes wearing makeup so you cant see the whole bruise and where he was bleeding.
Everybody thinks that were perfect; please dont let them look through the curtains.
~six years ago~
Im going to sit here while the producer interviews you. Im here to help you remember to say whats true.
Okay, daddy. I trust you.
Dont let them see what goes down in the kitchen.
~five years ago~
Mom, look! I watched ten kids and cooked food and cleaned the house while you were gone!
You didnt do the dishes?! You dont appreciate that I was gone shopping all day. I do so much work around here, and I cant be gone for a few hours without coming home to a mess! I need to work in a clean kitchen, and its your fault I cant! I dont ask for much!
Places, places, get in your places
~three years ago~
Is it that cutting thing again? I thought you were over that.
Im scared because I want to kill myself, daddy.
Are you sure youre not just trying to fit in with your college friends, pretending to have problems like theirs?
No one ever listens, this wallpaper glistens
~two years ago~
Youre not telling your therapist that youre having problems with self-harm and depression, are you?
No, mom. Im there because Im angry with my two older sisters for turning their backs on God and being rebellious, and hurting my parents.
Good. I dont think thats really something to tell your counselor about.
Throw on your dress and put on your doll faces.
~one year ago~
I remember when you were spanked with a belt every day, even though you didnt do anything wrong most days.
So you remember that, too? Weird…I asked mom why they did that, and she said it never happened. I thought there must be something wrong with me.
Do you remember that one time that mom slapped your face until you had cuts and bruises, and I had to pull her off of you?
I know it happened because you and our other siblings were there, but I dont remember it.
You blocked it out?
I guess so. Anyway, she said she was so sorry, and it would never happen again.
Did it happen again?
Yeah, but I was asking for it then. I was a disagreeable boy when I was going through puberty.
Dont you think maybe moms shouldnt hit their kids over and over until they bruise?
Our parents arent that bad, Cynthia. You need to stop saying that theyre abusive.
I see things that nobody else sees.