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My parents have violent fights

 
I love my parents, and they love each other. But when they get mad, they are a millisecond away from ripping each other's guts out. I think I usually start the problems, and they start screaming at each other.

Every vacation is ruined because of this. Sometimes they get violent, and sometimes I get abused. The only person stopping them is me. I can't stand it any longer. It's affecting all of our heath. I cry, beg, and plead for them to stop. I'm scared to talk to a counselor because I am afraid my parents will get arrested, and I don't want that. I am in desperate need of help.
 
Hi girl, I'm so sorry this is happening to you. It's one of the hardest things you could go through. The people you love most in the world are hurting each other, and hurting you.

Abuse and domestic violence leave lasting scars, but they are scars that can heal. It's heartbreaking, and I know that there are probably times when you feel hopeless. But I want you to never give up hope. Always remember that you will get through this and go on to lead a happy, meaningful life.

Own your emotions

As someone who has also gone through abuse as a child and teen, I know that the emotions you are feeling can be very confusing.

You might feel guilty for starting an argument that led to violence. You might feel angry that a parent isn’t protecting you. You might feel anxiety waiting for the next fight to happen. You might feel ashamed that your family doesn’t seem happy and normal like your friends’ families. You might feel scared that you are going to be taken away from your parents.

Try to write down what you are feeling in a journal. If you have a trusted friend, ease yourself into explaining how you feel.

Never blame yourself

It’s not your fault. Remember that. Even if you started a fight, you were probably just acting like a normal teenager or kid. Your parents are supposed to protect you, and they have no right to abuse you or expose you to violence.

You have nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed about. Domestic violence is a huge problem all over America, affecting people like you, me, and even famous people. You might be surprised how many people are going through the same thing as you.

Help yourself

It's your job to protect yourself and make sure your parents know what they are doing is illegal and wrong. Please see a counselor. You need someone to talk to. Every session you share with a counselor can help you heal and prepare for happy relationships in the future.

Tell a teacher or trusted authority figure what is going on. Don't be afraid that you will be ripped away from your parents and thrown into foster care. A lot of the time, social workers want to work with a family to create a better environment. They might do regular check-ins, or require your family to go to therapy. It will NOT be a fun thing to do. But your family needs professional help.

Contact the National Youth Violence Prevention Resource Center. The center provides help and info for dating, family, and school-based abuse. Call 1-866-SAFEYOUTH or visit safeyouth.org.



Trust in the future

Stay focused on the day you go off to college or start your life as an adult. It’s not that far away. Do everything you can to get ready for being a woman who makes her own decisions and doesn’t take abuse from anyone.

Get involved in school. The more time you spend in after-school activities, the less time you spend at home. When it comes time to fill out college applications, you'll be looking great.

Try not to act out. It’s normal to feel so angry that you want to escape into doing dangerous things. Don’t do anything that will hurt you or make it harder for you to grow into your awesome future self.
 
Love yourself

Remember, you are an important person. Going through the stuff you've been through gives you a better understanding of the tougher parts of people's lives. That might make you a great writer, guidance counselor, psychologist, teacher, volunteer, or mentor one day.
 
You can channel all of your feelings into making the world a better place. So plan on one day taking everything bad that has happened to you, and turning it around into something meaningful.

Good luck, girl. You're going to be ok. And one day, you are going to help someone else get through this.
 

GOT YOUR OWN TOUGH STUFF SITCH? CLICK HERE to submit your own problem to be answered on Girl Talk!

BY GL ON 6/15/2010 2:22:00 PM

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