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The Bucket of Tears is Empty

Your perfect wife
abused me as a child
abused her son
told her boyfriend’s friend he could have sex with me.
I was 12.

Your perfect wife
called the mother
she supposedly loved so much
to tell her she was a horrible parent.
The night before major surgery.

Your perfect wife
tried to drown me–twice,
and falsely accused her son’s father
of a crime her boyfriend committed.
He is not the only one.

Your perfect wife
is not a victim
of anything more
than her own lies, choices, and manipulations.
Yet I keep forgiving her.

Your perfect wife
has never apologized,
takes no responsibility for her actions,
and keeps trying to pretend the past never happened.
But it did, far more than you know.

Your perfect wife
is still my sister,
the mother of my nephew,
and a woman trying to recover.
From misdirected pain.

I keep forgiving her
and forgiving you,
without reciprocity,
and I’m drained.

Nance L. Schick, Esq. is an attorney, arbitrator, and mediator based in New York City. She is the founder of The Law Studio of Nance L. Schick, where we create resolution. Her holistic, integrative approach draws from her experience as a human resources supervisor, as well as her legal, ADR, EEOC, FINRA, and ICERM training. She is creator of the Third Ear Conflict Resolution process, author of DIY Conflict Resolution: Seven Choices and Five Actions of a Master, and an award-winning entrepreneur, who has been acknowledged by the New York Economic Development Corporation/B-Labs (Finalist, Best for NYC 2015 & 2016), U.S. Chamber of Commerce (2015 Blue Ribbon Small Business), Enterprising Women Magazine (Honorable Mention, 2014 Woman of the Year awards), and Urban Rebound NY/Count Me In (Finalist, 2013 Pitch Competition). She currently serves as the Main ICERM Representative to the United Nations.