The Center for Hunger-Free Communities

Solutions Based on Science and the Human Experience

Stress

That’s the ceiling in the bedroom, and actually it fell down from the snow last winter. My kids’ dad, he came over and fixed it up but it still is not safe. It [worries me] a lot. I want to actually go into a shelter, but right now I’m on a waiting list for a shelter.

"She died on my 18th birthday   I never celebrated my birthday after that.  I missed six months of school when she passed away.  I just sat in my room in a corner in the dark for six months.  I wouldn’t eat.  The only time I came out of my room was to go to the bathroom.  And I rarely had to go to the bathroom ‘cause I wasn’t eating or drinking anything."

I was on my way to the overtime job that I was doing when I got my food stamps cut off.  They had called me to work there for one day.  So, I was thinking to myself, “Well, if I go down here this one day, are they going cut my food stamps off?  I really didn’t know what to do.  At the time I was walking through there, it made me think, “Was I going to get cut off again?” What kind of programs can the City do to help us stay on the food stamp program when we do extra work?  I don’t think it’s fair for us to get reprimanded for doing something positive.  That’s why I chose that picture."

"I’m struggling and the depression and the sadness I think really just comes from my harsh life.  When you’re trying to do positive things and move forward and make things better, it’s discouraging and it’s hard and that’s depressing.  It makes you sad.  It makes you tired.  It makes you want to give up.  It makes you wonder "why?" "what's the point?" I want people to see that that’s a person who was just really having a bad day because of everything that goes on.   It’s not always easy for us, period.  Single women.  Minority women.  Women, period.

Even though that’s empty you can smell the embalming fluids.  It’s the worst smell in the world.  It smells like mint from far away, but when you get closer if you know what “wet” smells like you know it’s wet.  My kids are like two feet tall, and they’re right next to it, so they’re smelling that.  That’s disgusting.

This is a picture of an empty "wet" bottle.  Ashley found it under the slide of the play ground.  "Wet" is marijuana soaked in embalming fluid.

 

"Misunderstood by many, loved by enough. I stand on my own two feet like a grown woman. Single mother of one and barely making it but never struggling."

-Excerpt from a poem by Whitney

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