Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Recent email to author
Ms. Colleen Hoover,
I haven't felt compelled to write an author in a long time, but your book, Finding Cinderella, inspired me. The story was phenomenal, but left me desperately wishing for a follow-up novel. I enjoyed the touching, down to earth story.You'd be surprised at how often such stories occur, maybe not as dramatic, or specific, but close.
The following is a brief glimpse into my life feel free to delete, the main purpose of my letter was in the first paragraph.
I was a 15 year old bride, and a 16 year old mother. I kept my son, married, and will celebrate our 27th wedding anniversary on Christmas day 2013 with a 26,14,11,& 10 year old boys to happily show for it. We love each other very much, but our friends were not so lucky. Kids our age,and some a few years older, and one a year younger went through the same unplanned pregnancy traumas.One, a cousin 14, pregnant, was married, and soon divorced (she went on to marry twice more before finding love and two more kids 11 years later), another 16 year old on acne medication, pregnant with an incompatible-with-life child she was forced to abort, was devastated. Yet another two pregnant at 16 to 17, married, living hand-to-mouth as most of us did and still are. Another of my 15 year old friends chose abortion the first time, she also was devastated even though it was by choice, she went on to have another child at 16 (I'm not sure if that was subconsciously intentional through guilt, and sadness, or not) she married a while after the girl was born (the father took a while to decide, he was young too, but finally stepped up to become serious, and financially support her), a few years later she had another that was still-born, she blamed herself (thinking it was punishment for her previous abortion), then a third healthy boy was born, she still works as a waitress at 42 years old, just as her daughter does.Yet another girl,13 or 14 years old went to our church, was raped, and became pregnant by her DAD! She left the community and I don't know what became of her. There were many others but I was not close to them.
Please remember this occurred in the 1980s in a bible belt, small community where you couldn't just go to the pharmacy to get condoms because everyone would know before you left the store. Abortion was considered a grave sin equal to murder by all the churches. One road has 13 churches within 15 minutes of each other on only ONE ROAD.
This is only a few occurrences I knew fairly well all attending the same small town high, and jr high school within a four year span of time. Some adults tried to get the school to provide a place for child care on school grounds with bus transport, or near it so they would be able to graduate, but the principle said it might encourage such behavior and was even quoted as saying 'they've made their bed, now they'll have to lie in it. '. Such statements are born of ignorance, arrogance, self righteousness, and just plain evilness in my opinion. Yeah, real Christian-like in the small community of ------ County, NC. Some of the adults were able to get 'home bound' where a teacher would come to your home to keep you up on school work after your seventh month only during pregnancy if unable to come to school due to complications (I finished 10th grade that way because I had preeclampsia). Other adults provided GED counseling at the library (I got to go to that also later).They were the few who didn't turn their backs on us. My own mom told me I should apologize to my sister for the shame I caused her. My friends shunned me, said their mom's wouldn't let them talk to me! As if it was contagious! I had to get up in front of the church and apologize, but the preacher said we were 'doing the right thing' by getting married. HA! I guess after all these years I still have demons to purge. I worked hard, took night classes at the high school, until the other teen mom I was riding with had to quit to go to work, she didn't have enough family cash support to finish high school, my husband, and I only had one car and he worked two jobs so even at night I had no transport. I eventually worked my tail off, got my GED, worked hard at McDonald's for five years, went to nursing school, and became an LPN (only one fifth of the original students graduated, it was that hard). I was lucky, not many of my friends have had such a great life. These struggles happen every day, the results vary, but one thing they all have in common is that the sacrifice we all made for our children changed our lives forever. My husband never got to go to the NAVY, and I never became the architect, and designer we both dreamed of becoming as kids. Our eldest never had the cash to go to a four year college. The effects of an unplanned pregnancy lasts for generations, unfortunately. I hope you see how your stories reflect our lives, and I thank you for such a moving tale. I have rheumatoid arthritis and am now bed bound with bathroom trips, or sitting up only ten minutes at a time all I'm capable of doing. I have only your, and other author's stories to take me from reality, and I thank you. Please don't make public my name, but if you wish, feel free to use my info as inspiration. I know you would do it justice. I wish I could write my own story, maybe I will some day. I wish you the best.

No comments:

Post a Comment