This year the topic for Blog Action Day is inequality. If there is anyone who has had experience with this it is definitely me. I came from a household where if you had money you were able to buy your way or slither your way out of anything. For me that played a huge part in how I view money and power.
I come from an abusive dysfunctional background tempered by neglect and abandonment. Growing up I was painfully aware of the haves and the have not’s. I didn’t fit in because of what happened to me as a toddler and I didn’t fit in because we were raised by grandparents who had the time and money to do things with us that the other kids parents didn’t get to do like take trips across the country during the summer. Small towns can be very cruel places to live.
As some of my readers may know I have been very verbal about my abuse growing up and my double mind fuck I received when I was three. Yes I just dropped an F Bomb here for the first time ever on my site but that is what it was and is the only way to explain what we went through. I touch upon this in my speech I have given before the #140 conf but I never have really elaborated on it. I have also touched upon it in my contributing piece to Confessions of a Welfare Mom Vol. 2.
We lived like poor, trash heathens because my mom was too lazy to take care of us. She didn’t want to take care of us. In my “moms” own words “he wanted more kids. I couldn’t take care of what we had.” She didn’t want to take care of us. It was easier to let everyone else do the work for her which is what ended up happening. My grandparents, the priest, everyone tried to help us out but it all went to the wayside once they left the scene. So we were taken from our parents in August of 1975. The same night we were taken from them our dad was either killed or committed suicide. Then, two days later we went to his funeral and then went right back to our foster homes. This doesn’t set one up for an easy childhood by any means.
I don’t know if it was all in my head or if the kids I went to school with were really that mean, but once in 5th grade I knew they really were that mean because a kid was picking on me and when he saw I was getting ready to hit a boiling point he said, “what are you gonna do kill yourself like your father did?” To this day it still haunts me. How can kids be that cruel? I knew that I just wanted to get out of that school, that town, my house more than ever but I was a minor so I was trapped.
Then as if things couldn’t get worse they did when my grandfather started molesting me. After a time I knew I really had nowhere to go because he was the all mighty Bud Olberding and he couldn’t possibly do any of these things and he was going to make sure I looked like a troubled little girl looking for attention. When I finally got out he used money and my oldest brother against me to get me to try to feel guilty for outing him. My oldest brother would say to me when the school I was in a foster home at played against my now former hometown, “You know you gave up being included in the will?” I didn’t care. I was glad to be free of my grandfather. Since then, stories of men with money and power performing acts of abuse of powers against children and women hold a special interest for me.
I don’t think that just because you have money and power you are exempt from consequences. This goes for women also. However, it still seems more prevalent with rich white men.
The other thing that is bothersome is that those of us who are in the system using it legitimately to take care of our kids are made to feel that we constantly have to defend our living situations. The recent rant by Jon Stewart where he talks about being black in America, well the word black can easily be substituted for poor, single parents, disabled etc. Imagine how exhausting it is to live the situations every day and then not only have to live it every day but also to have to defend why you’re in the situation. Until someone has walked in my shoes and been through what I go through on a daily basis with a special needs child and raising him on my own without any-if at all-help from his father then they have no right to judge me for raising my son the way I see fit. I love my son and would do anything to make sure he gets the care and attention that he needs.
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