If you had been there would you have known something was wrong? Would you have checked where I was staying and made sure I got home safely? Would you have seen the deep criss-cross of cuts on my arms and legs and talked to me instead of pretending they weren’t there or getting angry with me for hurting you? Would you have given me a safe space to be me instead of giving me another reason to get out of my head? Would you have left me all alone in my room dealing with the loss of a love you didn’t even know about?
When I was late for my lift home – something so out of character because I was so scared of Mum – instead of being angry with me would you have known that something bad had happened and asked if I wanted to talk? Would you have told me about love and loss and how to look after myself when my heart was broken and I was feeling rejected and alone? Instead of leaving me alone in my room to cut would you have made me a hot water bottle and a cup of tea and stayed in my room until I fell asleep? The next day would you have taken me out to distract me and made sure I felt beautiful and loved and held, even if not by him?
When I was wasted on a school night and hadn’t told you were I was, would you have looked past your anger to the fact that I was broken? Would you have known I felt suicidal and like giving up and tried to help me? Would you have helped me make sense of how I was feeling and explained that it hurt me more to lose people because of my childhood? Would you have helped me find other ways to release my feelings? Would you have saved me from going through the same thing over and over again? Would you have knocked on my door and asked if I was okay and not shuddered and turned away when you saw the blood?
When you found lighters in my pockets and rizlas in my bag would you have accepted my lies or asked me why I was smoking, helped me love myself enough to not want to hurt my growing body? Would you have left me alone in the house for whole weeks at a time when I was 14 and made it so easy for me stop eating for days at a time? Would you have cared that I was letting men I barely knew stay the night? Would you have cared that I kissed random men in the street just to make myself feel a little less self-loathing? Would you have asked me why I let my best friend belittle me and embarrass me and put me down? Would you have cared that I had stopped studying, stopped caring, about the thing that had always mattered most to me?
If you had been there would it have been enough to stop me hurting myself with razors and alcohol and one-night stands, or was it already too late?