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September 29, 2013
"You should be worse." That's what my son says whenever details of my childhood escape, or whenever he reads one of my autobiographical essays. I've heard versions of this my whole life--the university counselor shaking her head, amazed that I was so "normal," back when my mother was showing up for profanity-screaming 1 a.m. visits. And recently, when I confided about my mother's schizophrenia to a priest, she blinked, changed the subject. My son said no, it wasn't because she thought I had three heads coming from such a background--no, she probably had trouble believing it. I should be worse.