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Anna R is one of the teens I consider to be very emotionally intelligent, even an emotional genius. She comes from an emotionally incompetent, neglectful and abusive family. She lives in what I would call an emotionally toxic culture. We started talking around June of 2003, when she was 13. In July of that year she said "most people say i'm too sensitive".
Update July 2007 I just found this file which has her journal entries from teenopendiary.
Here are some samples of our chats, emails, her writing etc.
Some comments about social services at 13
Sept 1 2003 mail
Chat June 9, 2004 - when she wrote about the child psychologist and other things
A school authority complaining about Anna's hair
Update - Feb 2006. Chatted with Anna the other day. She said she was doing a lot better. She is in a new school now where she feels more accepted. She has a boyfriend and she said it is going well.
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sep 1, 2003
i miss kinda having that time where i just do stuff in my room cause i cant face opening my door which acts as a barrier against the things that most people call their parents who cause me so much pain.
the simplest things done by them can upset me so much.
for example today my girl best friend rang me and i was so pleased cause i was worried shed forgotten all about me and i talked to her for 40mins and just talking to her about everyday stuf like what her hair loked like and stuff really lifted me spirits and cheered me up. then i went into the kitchen to get a drink and my mum asked whats xx been up to. and i said i don't know (cause i didnt) and then my dad went, "um im sorry did u just say u don't know?. you talked to her for about 5 hours. how can you not know? (all said in a very sarcastic im better thn u way) and i said well we didnt talk about that sort of thing. and my mum said well what did u talk about then and i said stuff. and that upset me. u mite think im being over sensitive and i probably am but i was thinking it is none of ur business what i was saying. if i wanted u involved in my conversation i would have asked you to listen in on the phone upstairs but i didn't and may b u have boring conversations about every single thing uve been doing in the past mounth but i don't i have far more interesting things to say and opions to express so piss off. harsh i know but a lot of the thoughts in my head are.
and like my mum had a go at me because so photos came in the post and i was really excited cause i thought they were mine so iu took them into the kitchen. my mum was watching, me and i started to open them and she had like a stroppy todler fit. she was like No stop! they're MY pictures, they're not urs YOU CAN'T open them cause there MINE. and she was like may b urs will come on monday i was like okay then she started yelling at me and saying she drove all the way to the post box to deliver them for me when actually i was justb planning on going to a shop in xx and paying for it myself.and she had 4 films and i had 1 disposable camera so i hardly think she did it for me. i find that very hard to believe.
my parents -- i dont wnat to talk to them, see them, even be in the same room as them. i really do despise them that much at the moment.
ugrh my mum just burst into here when she knew i was in here. didnt bother to knock.uh privicy!!!!!!!!
i really dnt wnt to tlk to them about anything i dnt even want to say hi.
.i hate them.
and i was talking to my mum early, i just said i saw that this programe was on later and she made a huge thing about what i said and was like u speak too fast. i can never understand what ur saying u need to sloooooooow down when u talk cause no one can understand u.
in this sitation i was thinking oh rite so you speak for the whole nation now do u and actually you don't understand what im saying or me come to think of it because you don't listen to me. im not even sure you have been made with the ability to listen.
sorry i no ive been slagging off evrything but im just in a really pissed off mood. i seem to be in a piss with everyone except you and xx. also i was online and just decided to block evryone i just couldn't face talking to these people about stupid things when i can't help thinking about the bigger things which no one does really think about if u no what i mean.
ive been blacking out quite a lot these past few days and have the worst headaches. i collapsed ealrlier.not sure y.
i hope your well. im really sorry this has been quite
a depressing email but i just feel so fucked up today
like the world is collapsing in on me and im trapped i
cant see the light. i feel like ive been blanketed in a
sea of nothingness. i feel so much like i dont matter and
see ara for notes convo about psych lady in canada. also archatsa for another chat; armails1, armisc
Feeling upset at how students were talking about a girl who could sing well
in assembly this girl was gonna sing to the school and shes
really really good and these girls behind me were like
"erugh bring out miss perfect", just cause shes really
talented, which i thought was so mean just cause they cant sing
like she can
Some comments about social services from when she was 13
"social services r coming to my house on thursday. i hate them"
"i like one of them but the other one said i was making it up for attention which really upset me. i started crying. i hate crying in front of people"
When I asked her to name three feelings she had about the social workers she said: pissed off, hurt, thrown. She explained....
thrown off. like i trusted her to tell her stuff and then she accused me of being a lyer. so i felt like she'd thrown it back at me and like I shouldnt talk to her and kind of rejected and surprised at what she said
Then when she was 14 she wrote this
i was thinking id like to become a social worker so i could change their whole way of doing things and their system of working to make it better for children cause there not very good to put it nicely. (email nov 11 2003)
Some feelings at age 13
I asked her to take a look at my list of common negative feelings and tell me which words apply
Stereotyped - by my mum, and dad,
offended - by my parents and brother and spcial workkers and police ,
k, how do u feel sterotyped by ur mom
shes like oh teengers ur age.....
i just wana shout im not a teenager but im anna. im not like everyone else. everyones different
Lectiured to by my family
Imprisoned - by my parents
Alone, Ignored, Insignificant
these words r really good they describe how i feel
thanks. i made this list myself, i am pretty proud of it
its good, u should b
i have listened to people like u for about two years now and i have just been gathering the llist
Punished -- by my parents - not talking to me. slagging me off to my friends mums and social services, screaming at me ignoring me
and making me feel guilty on purpose
and like im the bad one which i guess i am but.....
my mum constantly telling me ive ruined the family
unsafe w/ my dad
i feel really unsafe round him. cause i dont no what hes gunna do and he always looks so angry at me like he wnts to slap me or something
and my brother and my mum doesnt believe and really doesnt
give 2shits bout me, she cares more bout my dad
has he ever hit u
when i was a child but thats if i didnt tidy the room or something. he used to slap my arse for no reason till i was about 12
Then she told me she is usually thinking about something else in school and not paying attention.
well i think bout how i cant wait to get my own house.and have my own life and leave my family.
i told my mum my dream bout my house and what it would b like and she laughed at it and then started pulling it apart
Another file with some of the original chat - ar_chat_feelings_list.htm
Chat June 9, 2004, when she was 14, almost 15
In this chat she sent me something she was writing. Before she sent it she wrote this:
i wrote some stuff when i was at school crying. im gonna type it up.
I told her I was sorry she was crying, she wrote:
its ok i was kind of pissed off with myslef for crying. id been putting it off for days and something
tipped me and i couldn't stop it and i then i got really panicky and started shaking loads and i couldn't really
breath and it was bad cause i was sitting on the floor in the toilets and then someone came in and i couldn't stop like gasping for air
Later she added
i hate crying in front of people cause it makes me feel really vunerable and scared and like they can see straight through me
and its really horrible cause i feel like they can see like how scared i am. i just dont like it when they look in my eyes
cause i find that when you look in peoples eyes you can kind of tell how there feeling and stuf
We were chatting more and then she wrote...
i finished typing. its actually relaly short cause i got
disturbed, well actually thats kind of my fault, my emotions kind
of took over my body but
anyway, also it might not make any sense
Staring at a chair leg seems to be all I can do, I cant speak nor do I really want to speak,
my mind seems to be doing all the talking for me along with my tears. water bleeding.
And Im not exactly blessed with the ability to speak, my words dont seem to echo my feelings.
Why does it have to be one or the other, why dont they believe in a balance.
Tears set my words, sharp intakes of breath leave a long lasting effect on the rest of my body.
Feel my insides being sucked in and spilled out through shaking hands.
My heart feels warm and sad. I dont want this feeling anymore, its unbearable.
I want it to end, just end itself but if I want to do that I have to end me.
When I read this, I told Anna she was a good writer. She wrote, "Really, I thought I was a crap writer."
Then I asked her how much she liked herself from 0 to 10. She said 3. I asked what parts she liked and what parts she didn't like.
i like my eyes cause there big and green and i
think there quite expressive ummm i like my lips now cause
there quite red but i used to be self conciouse bout them
cause there quite full. i like the colour of my hair cause
its unusual and i like the fact that its curly and soft. i
don't like my figure cause im curvey umm i dnt like the fact that
not many people seem to understand me which fustrates me.
i don't like the way that i find it hard to say how i feel
sometimes i dont like the way im scared alot and get really
nervouse and i hate the way i feel i have to pretend to be
happy all the time when im really not. i like some of my
writing. i did some the other day which i was really pleased
with. i like my giggle cause ive been told a lot that its
cute lol. i hate the way that in some situations i dont say
what i really think or if soemthing really upsets me cause
im worried im gonna hurt other people although on monday i
just went i don't wana talk to u anymore but i dunno
i dnt like myslef too much cause i dont think im that nice and i really
hate falling out with people soo much!! i get soo upset
when i fall out with people
A school authority complaining about Anna's hair
From chat April 18, 2005
i had my hair tied up today and the head of year was like can
u put the bits that are hanging down at the front behind your
ears? So in the end i just took it donw all together, i dont care
anymore about their stupid petty rules so they can feel like that
they have power
like that is really important
thats exactly how i feel
its like u spend so much time worrying about how my hair looks that u dont even notice that i dont actually want to be alive anymore part of the time it just really bothers me how they openly care about your appearence becuase they want others to come to the school. THE SCHOOLS SHIT!!! OUR HAIR ISN'T GOING TO CHANGE THAT sorry im jst a bit pissed off
i am glad u realize it
Feeling upset at how students were talking about a girl who could sing well
in assembly this girl was gonna sing to the school and shes really really good and these girls behind me were like "erugh bring out miss perfect", just cause shes really talented, which i thought was so mean just cause they cant sing like she can
The Duke of Edinburgh Training
There is something which teenagers, I think especially females, do in England called "The Duke of Edinburgh." It seems to be some kind of outdoor program which teaches war preparation survival skills to teenage girls there. I have heard they have to do things like walk for hours. I need to get more info on this but here is one comment I found from Anna. I am not at all opposed to girls learning to go camping for enjoyment, but it seems there is a lot of pain involved for teenage girls in the way they do this. And if my hunch is right, a girl who complained would likely be called a wimp or looked down upon. This another systematic way of desensitizing females in England and of creating conformity.
About duke of edinburgh i dnt wnt to do it again, i thought it wld be more bout like helping people but its not so i dnt relaly wana do it. u no?