Lived Experience: Amanda Carlson


Read Amanda's Story

I can’t believe this. My mom and dad are getting back together, again. Mom let him move back into the house last week. They’re acting all kissy-face with each other and it’s gross and horrible and I can’t believe her. It always happens like this though. They get mad, and Dad hits Mom, and she says “never again” but then she takes him back. It will be great for a few weeks—you’ll see—and then it will get awful. Again.

My stomach hurts just thinking about it. Sometimes I can’t sleep because it hurts, and the other day, in choir, I felt so sick that I had to go to the school nurse and lie down. It helps me to just have a place to be safe and rest. She was asking me all sorts of questions about stuff—I’m in there a lot, especially recently. I can tell she cares about me, but of course I don’t tell her anything. I mean, I know my dad went to jail and stuff for a while, so it’s out there what he does, but I don’t want everyone knowing, especially not at school. I don't want people talking about me like I am a problem kid. 

What I really hate is that I can’t go home and relax like other kids. I go home and I want to slam the door and yell and tell my mom how mad I am at her, but he’s there most of the time, and I don’t want to make things worse. I’ve been spending a lot of time after school at my friend Avery’s house—her mom doesn’t mind. I wish I could just live there. It's calm at her house. But I would miss my mom and my brother too much.