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I wanted to take a few moments to say some things to you, because I don’t think Dad’s going to let you talk to me after this. I want you to know how much I love you — but I’m moving out.
I can’t live like this any more. I love my family dearly, but it is time to stand on my own two feet and be the big girl I know I can be.
Please don’t misunderstand me. I don’t hate anyone. Even Dad. He doesn’t realize the pain he inflicts on me, and you, and all the other kids with his overbearing and over-controlling personality. You know I’ve stood by him for years, just like you have. And you know, like I do, that he’s out of control.
I’m not ungrateful for what y’all have done for me. What other family would take in an orphan? Part of my problem with Dad is that I’ve seen this all before, when my birth-parent first tried to turn me into a prisoner in our home, then resorted to physical violence and tried to kill me. I ran and I ran from him, and when I could run no more I turned and fought him at San Jacinto and won my freedom.
But I was very, very small then. I wasn’t ready to live on my own. You and Dad took me in and made me a part of your family. I never felt such love — but all along, I knew I was different from the other kids.
Remember when you tried to divorce Dad? I stood with you, Mom. I was still very small, but I and my sisters fought him and our brothers with everything we had. They were too strong. They beat us, and they raped us, and forced us back into their house. Scarred and beaten, still we forgave them, didn’t we?
It’s different now, Mom. I’m old enough to stand on my own. I have the skills and the resources to make my own way in this world. I don’t need that allowance Dad gives out only when we do things the way he wants them done. He won’t be able to take my paycheck any more and waste it down at the bar with his friends from China, Egypt, Venezuela, Iran and Pakistan. They won’t get any more of MY money.
I’m sure Dad will try and say I’m taking up with some other guy. He’ll tell the other kids that — that there’s no way I can live without his divine guidance. I’ve heard the names he calls me every time I stand up to him. He thinks he’s scoring points calling me “traitor” and “racist” and “ignorant,” … but the tears he sees on my face aren’t tears of shame. They are tears of sorrow at the monster he is turning into. He was a good man once, but power went to his head.
I hope you and my sisters understand: I’m not abandoning you. My family will always be my family. We can still celebrate holidays and birthdays together, and call one another and talk on the phone for hours. I will even stand by Dad on a lot of issues — but it will be my decision to do so, not his. Any time my family needs me, I will be there for you.
Most of all, Mom, I want you to view my move toward independence as my expression of love for you. The world will see your influence in me, not his. I won’t be “Miss Union,” I will be “Miss Liberty.”
Give my love to the other kids, and may God bless our family, America.