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I was 16

The feeling of grass strands in between my bare foot.

The smell of freshly roasted nuts at the Christmas


The touch of human kindness skin to skin

The taste of cherries on my longing tongue

Snuggling up in fresh cotton bed sheets after a nice

warm bath.

The once familiar safe smell of my mothers scarf she'd

never leave the house without.

That one pair of comfort joggers that I would wear to


The sound of my dogs bark. I was scared of it when

I was a child but now it grew comfort to me. I don't

even remember what most of these felt like. I don't

remember how wholesome a hug was or even the taste

of cherries. But not remembering my mothers over-

powering smell makes me the most mad.

How am I supposed to re enter a world after having

all my basic rights stolen?

How can I wake up in my own bed and not even

recognise it?

Why do I startle at knocking on a door?

Why do I jump at my fire alarm?

Why can I not listen to a school bell chime without it

taking me back to that place?

An environment meant to protect me has only made

me a freak in society.

i had to reteach my self skills u develop as a new born.

Wis whole personality was stripped and lam this frig

He piece of China that will shatter at any loud noise,

alarm or touch.

Tam this big messed up monster of ptsd and discom.

fort. My home is not my home atleast it doesn't feel

like it.

What type of person feels more comfortable in a psy-

chiatric ward than their own home.

What type of person misses a place that scarred me in

ways I will never be healed


I was 16 years old stopping my friends from suffocat-

ing themselves to death

I was 16 years old with wrists bloody and scarred.

"I was in a shark attack" "it was my cat"

"I really like


When are these excuses going to wear thin

Most people are scared of death or spiders where I am

scared of short sleeves I am scared of Summer.

I am scared of my phone pinging at 2 in the morning

incase i have to be a suicide helpline and try to

convince my friend there is more to living when we

know in a world as fuck up as this you have the right

to give up.

At 16 I had the ambulance on speed dial.

At 16 was trying to save everyone around me while I

was the one needing saving.

What did they think was gonna happen when u put

a bunch of suicidal teenagers in the same place for


What was the actual logistics for this.

I can't be chased up stairs without thinking it's my

friend chasing me with a knife again.

I can't listen to knocking without thinking of my

friends head banging the walls.

I can't have my fire alarm go off without thinking it's

the incident alarm.

And I can't ever get that childhood back that I missed.

I can't ever get those social skills back that I lost by

being a ptsd driven warning sign.

Everyone keeps their distant like I'm a hazard like I'm

a ticking time bomb about to have this massive break-

down if they get to close.

So I fake a smile I fake a laugh and I fake a personal-

ity because I don't know who I am anymore. I don't

who they want me to be. I please them with a smile.

I please them with a hug. I please them by making

them laugh. Because as long as they think I'm normal

I am as long as they don't know how screwed up I am

I'm not. And as long as they are happy I am.

By Saffy Cox


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