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Not long ago I was bound by homosexuality, anger, resentment and low self-esteem. Basically, I did not know who I was, or whose I was and had no idea I had a set place in the Kingdom of God.

Growing up without a father, being physically abused by my stepfather, and rejected often from my own family, caused me to act out in school. I was labeled as being “Behaviorally Emotionally Handicapped” (BEH). So teachers and counselors convinced my mother to put me on medication—Ritalin, to be exact. This prescription was to help keep me calm and focused during school hours, but only made me paranoid and zombie-like, which resulted in me being teased by other kids.

But even with all my challenges, I eventually met a young man in high school and fell hard for the 21-year-old. We were so close, he pleaded with me to have his child, though I wasn’t ready to be a mother so soon.

But, naiveté and love mixed together will make you do strange things. Convinced that he and I would be together for the rest of our lives (My family thought the same thing too.), I went ahead and had his baby.

I barely graduated school and had no idea what would happen next.

When our daughter, Patience, was 3 months old, we parted ways, which devastated me. Although he is a great father and has never left my daughter in her 9 years of life, he started fresh with a new woman.

The two had a son together and my ex gave him the name we had selected in the event that we had a boy. Though the new couple made a slight change to their son’s name, the pain of knowing where it came from was too much to handle. It was a reminder of what I had lost and felt like a sword piercing my heart.

I was young and did not know how to express the pain I was feeling. Besides, I felt I had to hide the fact that I was in love with him. I knew no one would understand my feelings, particularly after my ex-boyfriend had done to hurt me.

So, here I was: a single parent by a man I thought loved me, raising the child he begged for, only to have him up and leave me. Sisters, I should have dealt with those issues, because pain begets more pain and hurt begets more hurt, if it is not dealt with properly.

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