I was home for a visit from college. I was with my parents in the living room. We were watching TV and there was some unrelated discussion going on.
I had a very smart mouth. The older I got the clearer things became and I was getting really angry about how my father had treated me all my life. Still, I didn’t have a label for it. I just hated him. I hated him with all my being.
I said something sassy and condescending and he flew across the room at me. Before he reached me, my mom threw her body over mine to protect me. He beat her back black and blue trying to get at me. She didn’t move.
The crisis passed. I went down to my room in the basement where there was a phone. I thought about calling 911 but almost immediately ruled it out. Why? Because I didn’t think they would help. Because I didn’t think I had a right to get help. Because I didn’t think I deserved to get help.