"Misunderstood" – SR

I am 14 years old. I go to Excel Academy PCS and this is my first year here at Excel.

I live in a neighborhood where boys and girls get killed. My 8th grade year has not been so good, because I was not always focused on my work.  I kept getting suspended. Also, my last 3 or 4 years at home have been rough because I lost my Aunt, Uncle, Grandfather, etc. I have 4 other siblings at home and sometimes it feels like I don't get the help I need at home. I have 2 brothers,  who live with their mother, and I have 2 younger siblings who live with me. When there are 5 kids in the house, everyone does not get everything they want and it is kind of unfair. Sometimes, I feel happy to come to school because I know that I have help at school, they want me to do well in life and they don’t want me to be a bad person.

When I'm home, I stay in my room.  Every time I leave my room,  I always get mad at someone, or I want to throw something, or just sit in my room and think about bad stuff and  I start to cry. So when I do come to school, I sometimes think that I am Bipolar or that I have ADHD. I'm scared that as I get older, I will not be able to control my anger and I’m scared that it will get me in a lot of trouble as it does now.  My mother and I get in a lot of fights and arguments. Sometimes, I just want to run away and never come back because it puts a lot of stress on me.

Ever since I was little, my dad did drugs and I have seen stuff that I should have never seen. My younger brothers are scared that one day my dad will smoke and die. We are afraid that we will have to deal with more death than we already have.

If, you ever see me smiling, it's because either I'm scared to talk about something or I'm just happy to still be alive. There have been times when I just don't want to do my work. It is because I'm not always focused on my schoolwork. I know that I'm smart but it's like the work is hard so I just say forget it and don't do it. I know I can do it but there’s just a lot of noise in the background that distracts me and I can't really focus. Some people think that I’m a bad child because of all the things I have been through. I’m really not a bad child. I just have a lot of things on my shoulders. I have a lot of anger in me and I don’t know how to control it. I’m scared that the way I let it out may hurt me or someone else and I don't want that to happen because that may cause me to be put in jail or worse, killed.

When I was 12 years I tried to commit suicide and it did not work. There were a lot of things going on in my head. I feel like it is unfair to me because I can't live the life I want to live. When I smile,  that is a good thing because there is so much pain behind my smile.  A quote that suits me is, “I am just a soul whose intentions are good. Oh lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood.’’

– SR