It's (Not) Okay
She mounted me. The hotel room was dark, isolated. I'd volunteered to share the room with her. Volunteered. Dad and my brother shared an adjoining room, but the door was locked. Their room was quiet. She was quiet. I was quiet. I was twelve. She was eighteen. She'd been doing this to me for six years. No one was there to stop it. Or no one cared to try. I submitted, as always, but there was something different this time. She stopped. Eventually. She cried. Eventually She rolled off me, faced away. Cried, eventually "I'm sorry," she said, her voice hitches, moans, and (maybe) regret. "That's okay," I said, my voice confused, hurt, and neglected. She'd given me the attention no one else had. She'd taken the meager childhood joy no one had bothered to give. Years later - decades, a lifetime - she told me she realized then that she didn't want to be that person. But she'd left me there, twelve, scared, confused, neglected. She changed, but she never put the hand down to help the drowning boy she'd left to her negligent father, her narcissistic mother, her dysfunctional family. The boy she'd left dying in her abuse. That last time I'd told her, "That's okay," but I've spent a lifetime learning to tell people it's not okay. Not okay to control people. Not okay to hurt people. Not okay to leave the broken and bruised in the dust of history. It's not okay, sister. It was never okay.