Domestic Violence Awareness:  Sidonia The Worthless Child

Dr. Allana Da Graca

I always get angry when people ask me to share my story. Sidonia, I want to know your story, says the friend.  Immediately, I halt because I know that they have no idea of what I had to endure. There are no words to express what it feels like to be hit with a pot cover, pushed out of a moving vehicle, and smothered with the fist of an adult who appears like Hulk Hogan to a five year old!  No amount of words could capture the deep knot that intertwines between reality and illusion as the present environment of yelling and screaming accompanied with the feeling of someone pulling your stomach out to remind you of the power that they hold over you exists.

No amount of words can convey the deep disdain and rejection that is felt when your parent tells you they should have killed you when they had the chance.  No amount of tears can let the clergy member or therapist know the deep fear that overwhelms every daily task, as the post traumatic memories of the insults, beatings, and degradation persist to haunt one in their dreams.

I do

Telling the story makes me think I am talking about someone else.  The days of not cleaning the bathroom correctly would mean another beat down and reminder of how worthless I was.  Of course I would also be reminded that I had no one around so there was no point in reaching out to people who would not believe me.  My stomach would turn at the thought of my caretaker coming home. I hated it.

Yesterday we were at a restaurant with the siblings and this person stared at me and reminded me of how ugly and black I was. She said I was a tar baby and had a terrible father that I looked like as well.   I never wanted to be a part of this person. 

Any day of the week I could be found picking lint up from the red carpet with hopes this would prove my worthiness. I was too little to vacuum so this was my way of offering my sacrifice of service with hopes things would get better.  As time went on I could tell the years that would be good vs. the terrible ones. If a new lover was in town I knew things would be ok.  More attention to keep this person around was placed on that situation and this gave me more time to understand my experience. In those days I could go to school and not worry about another beat down.


When beatings were not present, name calling was. I was ready to be called stupid and ugly on any given day. My existence was like a person using a black marker to write on a black board. I was utterly invisible. The rage intensified as I was reminded of my apparent worthless existence. I accepted my place and thought this was the norm….

To Be Continued



Domestic Violence Hotline

1-800-799-7233 | 1-800-787-3224 (TTY

*This piece is a fictional characterization that I created in hopes of shedding light on the real experiences of children and adults who have experienced child abuse.  Onwards to healing!



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