This is a story of a young, brilliant girl. She was a good kid - the apple of her daddy's eyes, her mom's golden child. But nothing stays gold.
Her parents didn't seem to hug each other more, what more talk. No more than a grunt nor a curt reply. Daddy her hero, she realised, was starting to be friendly with women who are not her mom.
Before she knew it, a strange woman entered her house, and into her life. A few kids, younger and older than her seemed to be taking much of her room, her space. She was also told to call them Brother and Sister.
Everyone was friendly to her, she sighed with relief. Especially Brother. Maybe these strangers could be her new kin. Till one day Brother asked her to do something she knew wasn't right. But how could it be wrong when nobody had never told her that it is or isn't? Even Brother said it was okay, don't be afraid. She loved Brother. She didn't want Brother to go away if she didn't follow what he asked of her.
And so he touched her. She was afraid a little. Worried a little. But it felt good. Weird, but good. Then he placed her hands on him. She was afraid a little. Worried a little. It didn't feel any good, but Brother seemed to like it. Weird, but as long as he is happy, she thought. Then she felt a sudden sharp pain. She was very afraid. Very worried. She started to cry. But Brother promised her it's going to be okay. It will only be for a while.
Brother kept his promise. She was no longer afraid. She was no longer worried. And it felt really good. Really, really good. There was nothing weird about it. She felt happy. She felt loved. Like her family had never fallen apart.
Brother soon needed to go somewhere far. She was devastated. Who is going to love her now? Caress her? Touch her? Make her feel good? And above all, to make her forget?
Soon, she found a boyfriend. Boyfriend gave her the love that she needed. Every day, whenever she needed him. But sometimes, he was not always there. What was she going to do? Who is going to fill her longing? Who is going to make her feel loved when her boyfriend is not around?
Friends suggested they go to a place where there's loud music, dim lights and possibly free drinks. You just have to smile and wink at them. If they place their hands where they not ought to, respect it. Ignore it. She inhaled the intoxicating sweet smell of cigarette and cheap perfume. She savoured the poisonous taste of alcohol on her lips, and felt her world spin under the burning sensation in her stomach. There were even vitamins that her friends offered to her. It was truly magical. It made her dance under the flashing lights and she could hear people cheering at her. She never felt so beautiful. It was a beautiful world, that place. 'Coz it made her forget.
Suddenly, a man approached her. He smiled at her. She smiled back. He told her she was beautiful, and offered her a sweet drink. She thanked him - for the compliment and the drink. He reminded her of Brother, though a bit older. But the way he talked to her, it was like Brother. She missed Brother suddenly, and she missed her boyfriend. She missed being loved. The man smiled at her again. In his eyes she read, he was going to show the love that she needed. She left with him.
She woke up next morning, reeking of stale cigarettes and alcohol, with her makeup stain on the pillow. She reached for that loving arms, but the only thing she felt was a piece of paper. It was a 50 dollar bill.
She just had love, and cash. She could get love and cash. She never knew how simple it was. She didn't need Brother nor her boyfriend. She could get love anytime, plus with some extra cash. She never knew how simple it was.
She learned Science in school, and she knew what could happen to her. There is always a way out. Abortion is a normal thing. Everyone is doing it. HIV? That would never happen to me, she thought - so why are all these old men so crazy about condoms, she thought, since the younger men enjoy it without the gloves.
So here she is now, waiting at a back alley somewhere. Waiting for someone to give her the love and attention that she needs. Waiting for someone to make her forget.
The apple of her daddy's eyes, her mom's golden child.
She is only 15 years old.
Nothing gold can stay. ~ Robert Frost
Teen prostitution and sex addiction are serious matters. They are real issues that need to be addressed by the authorities. However, we live in a culture where we need to care for other people's feelings, for example, the parents' feelings. How can you break it to their parents that their child is an ill, promiscous being who goes out every night for sex and money - when they think they are out at a friend's place to study?
I am sadden by this issue, frustrated with the authorities, and burden with guilt.
'Coz when the child dies of HIV, who is to blame?