Hoping for the Future
My mom divorced my real dad when I wasn't born yet. She married my stepfather and he was very abusive to me and my older brother. He got sent to prison when I was 10. When I was 15 my mom met my younger siblings' father and he was very abusive too. That resulted in us being placed in foster care.
Growing up my family moved around a lot, but my family was close. We always had each other. We lived in Washington, California, Las Vegas, and eventually moved to Kansas. My mom is very sober and always has been. She had a full time job and worked really long hours. She'd leave at 8 in the morning and return at 8 in the evening.
In school I have always been an honors student. In 6th grade I was placed in the gifted program, but I started to get in a lot of trouble. When we moved to Kansas I met some people that probably weren't the best to hang out with. My brother is three years older than I am and they were his friends. When I was in 7th grade I got expelled for getting into a lot of fights. The problems got even worse the next year. Only two weeks into my 8th grade year I got expelled for fighting. I was sent to an alternative school and was able to finish all of the work after a couple of months because I could work at my own pace. My freshman year I started to calm down and it went really well. I got mostly all A's in school. During my sophomore year of high school things got hectic when I was placed in foster care.
I was probably about 12 years old when I started to have some drinks here and there. My next door neighbor was 23 and he was providing it for me. At first I was scared but then I saw that my older brother was doing it. I thought if he was doing it then I could do it. It just sort of escalated from 1 or 2 beers to shots and marijuana. I was probably drinking and smoking everyday. There were multiple times when I would be doing one thing and then don't know what happened. There were nights I don't remember at all. At the time I didn't think anything about blacking out because I thought that's just what happens when you drink. I had experimented with ecstasy but I don't remember those experiences because I was really out of it.
I just wanted to forget everything that was going on in my life. My stepfather had molested me and my mom wasn't around enough for me. I honestly believe I was doing it just because I knew I could get away with it. Part of me wanted my mom to see what I was going through and say something, but she never did so I just kept doing it. No one ever talked to me about my drinking or drug use. My brother was also doing it off and on, plus he moved out of the house when he was 15. My mother was working all the time. That's really the only family I had here and all of my friends were doing it with me.
There have been a lot of little things I did when I was drinking or getting high that I later regretted. One time I was out drinking with my friends and I came home really late. My mom was up waiting for me and I remember saying some really hurtful things to her. I knew it wasn't true but for some reason I was just really angry and started yelling at her. I know that really hurt her.
I think people drink or do drugs as a way to cope. I think drinking even a little bit is bad. A lot of people think that people drink or do drugs just because it is fun. They think it is easy to quit. They think that if you really want to quit you will, but I think it is a lot harder than that. I was really young when I started drinking and smoking. I went through a stage when I was 14 when I wanted to stop but I just couldn't.
It is important to have a support group and to see how your actions affect other people. By drinking and doing drugs, people aren't just hurting themselves but other people around them too.
My step-dad was drunk when he raped me, and I know what it's like to not know what you are doing. My family is really important to me and I could see that my drinking and drug use was hurting my siblings. There were times that I was supposed to take care of my little sister but I was too drunk or too high. I would just leave her at the house to go with my friends to get messed up. Eventually, I started to grow out of it. I realized what I was doing to my family.
Just recently I was with one of my friends and she invited me to her house. She ended up taking me to a party and I just told her she needed to take me home. I don't want to be around it anymore. It was hard because a lot of my old friends were there. I used to hang out with them everyday, but I know what's right now. I've come a long way. I've come too far to go back to that. I plan to go to college. Ultimately I would like to start a children's theater. I participate in dramas at school and I enjoy my job at a daycare.