Hi everyone. I really don’t want to say this to anyone, but my feelings are going to crush me if they stay inside. So here it is. I had a huge fight with my parents on Friday. And it was all because we had school on Saturday and my father wasn’t ready to drop me there. It went to really, really bad places, and somehow all my insecurities and frustrations just came out at once, and it hurt really bad. My parents keep nagging me to get better grades, even though I get the best grades in my class. My father keeps demoralising me all the time, because he thinks it’ll help me improve myself. But that’s not true. I’m not that type of person. I wrote this poem the night after the fight, and it’s very emotional to me, because it makes me cry everytime I read it. All my emotions, my insecurities, my fears, everything is in it. So here I put it before you, for your reading pleasure. And with the hope that no child suffers this again.
The Deep Abyss
‘This year, if you get less than 95%…”
I am no longer a human being
I am a mere machine which churns out marks.
‘When you get angry, stop. Be calm.’
All my frustration, comes out
Like lava, but it burns only me.
‘Your art, your dance, your music, it’s affecting your studies.’
I got a 91% last year, dear mother, even though I wasn’t mentally fine
But you never seemed to care, did you?
‘From now on, stop participating in all this sports, art, etc.’
In other words, have no fun
Stay in your house, in your room, like a good girl, and study.
‘Are they teaching anything tomorrow? No? Then stay home.’
You criticise my school for being too focused on marks
When you’re awfully concentrating on them too.
‘Why can’t you go to school by yourself? Everyone else does.’
Their parents taught them that
But you can’t be bothered by that either.
‘Talk to your teacher, if the school bus doesn’t come, then you will not go.’
Even if I may be the star student
In the end, I’m just a student, I have no special privileges.
‘We let you read books, draw everyday, and still you complain and be angry?’
Oh thanks, I never knew
That my drawing and reading books was a boon given by you.
‘I do so much for you, I left my whole life for you, and this is how you repay me?’
Well, I didn’t ask to be born to you
So, I’m not in a debt, am I?
‘Cross your legs, sit properly. Do not let your mind wander off when there are guests.’
Sit like a proper lady, do not let them know
That there is something wrong in this house of cards.
‘Come. Learn a chapter in front of me, and if I don’t fail you in that chapter, then I am not your father.’
Well, that is the way I have been taught to learn
So I’m so sorry that you didn’t wake up from your slumber before.
‘In my school, they taught the how and why, not the what.’
Then you shouldn’t have put me in this school
You should have put me in your precious school instead.
‘Did you get the Academic Excellence Award?’
No his, no hellos, just a question
Because my worth is just a mere piece of card, nothing else.
‘When you become a doctor, you can save lives. You don’t understand anything.’
I can join an NGO for that as well
But becoming a doctor will end me.
‘A graphic designer? That industry will be ended by robots.’
Robots do not possess that creativity, that spark of imagination
Which you are slowly killing in me.
‘You will have to study very hard this year if you want to get in a good college, else your life will end.’
For once, dearest mother, you are right
Because I will probably kill myself from regret, which you have planted in me.
‘She got more than you? How? Both of you study in the same class.’
Not concentrating on the fact that I got 85, no, she got a mark more
Both of us may study in the same class, but we do not face the same struggles.
‘I bought you art supplies, now you have to get good grades.’
My passion is nothing without my grades
In a different context, my mental stability is worth nothing.
‘Why cry over such a small thing? It’s just a notebook.’
Yes, it maybe just be a notebook
But being a perfectionist is killing me, even a small mistake means days of torture.
‘Why did you go and blabber that to everyone? We’ll be shamed in society.’
You were the ones who told me society didn’t matter
But here you are, shutting my mouth for some respect which you never deserved anyway.
‘Thank you for telling me. Now, have you told anyone? No? Good. Don’t either.’
I reveal to you my biggest secret
And this is how you react? Shameful.
You may think my life is easy
Because I get good grades
I draw and paint well
I do almost everything well
I’m not ugly either.
But the price of all this?
Hiding a secret for an entire year,
Only for your mother to tell you to not tell anyone
When you finally get the courage to tell her.
Your parents always nagging you about grades and school
As if your life is worth a mere degree.
Expecting good grades
When your mind is in circles, and it doesn’t stop.
Hiding facts like feeling constantly dizzy and in pain
Because of the pressure on your brain, and the ever aching hand
Spent from writing endlessly for school.
You never think about that, do you?
You’re only after the next honour I can get you
The next laurel I can attach to your name.
Is she even alive inside after this?
I may get a degree, dearest parents
And a good job too
Maybe a good husband
If I am lucky enough when you marry me away against my will
As you keep saying time and time again
But will I have my mental sanity?
No, that has never mattered to you.
And neither will it ever will.
I first used to think
You will feel heartbroken
If I took the final step
But now I think
You will still be heartbroken
But not because you lost a daughter
But because you lost your trophy.
How many times do you all look at my face
‘Ah, that girl? She has everything. I wish I could be her.’
Well, you are welcome to my life, if you want this hell
For I won’t be here much longer anyway.
I just read this entire poem again, and I feel depressed. Great. I was furious with my parents yesterday, because of one more thing. My mother told me that my father was feeling guilty. I said he deserved it. And my mother said that my father would rather hit me instead of arguing with me, so at he doesn’t feel guilty. Like I’m an animal. I’m a 14 year old girl, and I understand things my parents never would. But he isn’t ready to help me understand, or to debate with me, rather hitting me, all so that he doesn’t feel guilty. But I have made my peace, because I have only one more year to live in this place, since my father is considering shifting me to another state for schooling. I welcome his decision, so that I can stay away from the pressure. But no matter what, they are my parents, and I can’t hate them. Ever.