I am a child of domestic violence Born into it in the year 1991 Mommy and Daddy fighting day in, day out Blue and Red lights flashing at least once a month "Yes, sir. Everything is okay, they were just arguing. No, no one was hurt. We were in our room"
I am a child of domestic violence She would recite la biblia loud enough for all to hear As a way to annoy Daddy and drown out whatever he was saying He- he would come home from work and drink while watching the soccer game He didn't like what was for dinner or she didn't like that he didn't give her his entire check before paying the bills They'd argue and voices rise, louder and louder announcing to the world their unhappiness
And yet refuse to walk away. "Arruinaste me vida" Mother reminds me so I always know I'm the reason she stayed with him. "La amo" Father says even though I know he's having an affair and even though that other woman looks a lot and I mean a lot like my mom.
I remember once my dad was drunk and upset about el futbol He didn't like what mom cooked and started yelling at her She got in his face and he angrily pushed her She screamed bloody murder and los vecinos called the police "Yes, sir. Everything is okay, they were just arguing. No, no one was hurt. We were in our room"
I used to be ashamed and if I'm not careful, I still am See, my momma and dad would fight and scream and break things We would get yelled at or hit and then sent out Out into the harsh neighborhood Stares and gossip and pointing fingers “No jueguen con esas niñas. That family is bad news” Tears streaming down my face and red as a jitomate, I'd have to go downstairs to check on the laundry or get my mom the 2-liter soda she asked for “Coca-cola,” she ordered. “If it's anything else, I'll send you back.” And she would if we returned with anything else even if she chose something else and then changed her mind. I'd have to walk, trying to hold in my sobs Past the kids whispering and laughing Past the adults shaking their heads Into the warmth of the laundry room or the video store where we'd get the soda
Help me, I screamed in my head. Hoping someone or something would hear Make it stop, I silently pleaded with my eyes
I am a child of domestic violence Home life was a mess Visiting extended family didn't help My abusive abuelita beat me for anything my cousins did while she babysat us Daddy ordered her stop because she wasn't allowed to hurt us but she called him weak and called it discipline She told my mom that he was disrespecting her which just started another argument between my parents Abuelita didn't stop and I learned to stay silent or mommy and daddy would fight again
It was violent and loud and scary as fuck Sometimes my mom would just scream and scream “no me pegues! Para! No me toques, le voy a llamar a la policia” even if my dad wasn't touching her or even close but he was yelling. The neighbors would call the police thinking she was in danger Once again “Yes, sir. Everything is okay, they were just arguing. No, no one was hurt. We were in our room"
I am a child of domestic violence Even though they argue Day and night They always told me “Never let a man put his hands on you. Never let anyone make you feel less than you are” Hipócritas, I thought But I thank the universe for the life I had because I'm stronger and smarter now