neglect

‘When they flinch from the stapler dropping, it’s because they weren’t sure if you’re throwing it at them.’: Foster mom pens powerful note to teacher warning of her children’s trauma

“They come from a really, really hard place. The kind of abuse you think can’t be real. They duck for cover. You’ve heard of fight or flight? There is also freeze. One of my kids responds with ‘freeze.’ Her eyes grow wide and her voice silences. It’s how she’s trained herself to survive. My kids need to know you are safe.”

‘Here we go again!’ My son’s principal called me. He’d been written up.’: Adoptive mom ‘cried and cried’ after learning her ‘trauma-ravaged’ son was rewarded for being ‘courageous’

“‘Ms. Pollard, we’re having another bad day. Can you come?’ My boy is silent. Something seems different. I pull him in close, ask what’s going on. It’s mid-September and he’s asking if he can have a race car for Christmas. But it’s not about the gift to him. It’s about his need to feel safe. If I can reassure him he’ll get that race car for Christmas, he knows he’s safe until then. No one will come pick him up. At least for 3 more months.”

‘To my child who gets dragged from place to place because of your siblings, I have guilt. We go to THEIR play spaces, sports, summer camp pickups. And you are constantly waiting.’: Mom apologizes to her ‘drag-along child’

“You wait as I get your siblings ready for the day. You wait as I break up their fights. You wait as I load them into the car, in tears of frustration because you need me, but I need to get them somewhere by a certain time. I don’t get enough chances to take all of you in, to enjoy your coos and smiles. You don’t have all of me.”

‘My father sent me out for cigarettes. With no shoes and one shirt, I decided to run away. I needed to find a place he’d never find me.’ Man rescued from abusive family, returns favor by fostering children in need

“After a year of living on the street, strangers approached me and said, ‘We want to take you to school.’ Coming from an abusive household, I had never really learned to trust. I said yes, not really sure what I was agreeing to. I had no home, hope, future, and they gave me all of that and more. I knew I wanted to do the same for other kids.”

‘Momma, can you please call the judge? He’s moving too slow. Does he know I need you to be my momma? I’ll tell him. I need to be adopted. I can’t wait anymore.’ My boys waited 3 long years.’

“We started making visits with his siblings. This one forever changed my life. I felt a little tug on my shirt. He said, ‘Are you Jeremy’s mom?’ I said, ‘Yeah buddy, I am.’ And then his crushing response was, ‘Will you be my mom too?’ I cried. I hugged him. I was speechless.”

‘My brother started paying extra attention to me. I didn’t think much of it until he began coming into my room at night. He took every chance he got to touch to me.’ Assault survivor shares heartbreaking journey to peace

“It began out of nowhere. I was frozen, unsure of what was happening. He told me not to tell. I knew something wasn’t right but he was my older brother, so I did what he said. Until one day, we heard my uncle’s car pull into the driveway. As he quickly opened the quickly, my brother rushed to get off of me. ‘What’s going on?!’ My stomach was in knots.”

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