Lived Experience: Amanda Carlson
“My name is Amanda Carlson, I am 12 and in 7th grade at Central Middle School. I can’t remember a time when my dad didn’t hit my mom. They think that we don’t know about it, because most of the time it happens when we’re in another room, but we always know. I knew from when I was little, and so did my brother Brian.
I love my dad, and my mom, but I really wish that dad could just move out. He has, for a few weeks, before, but then he came back. He always does come back. I have friends whose parents are divorced, and it’s not such a big deal. But mom and dad always talk about keeping the “family together.” I think they love both of us, but I think they would just be happier apart. But I’m scared to say anything – to them, or to my teachers, or even my friends. I worry they’ll take me away from my mom, really. She’s messed some stuff up in the past, and she needs me. You see stuff in the papers and on TV about kids being taken away from their parents and that could be us. I couldn’t let that happen, so I have to keep my mouth shut.”