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I am not an object to be owned. I'm only one person and I deserve to be loved.


In this drawer, joined discernment, and even a tone of regret. And pain. I recognized the desire that was behind that behavior as aggressive.

Nothing hurt more than the pain of helplessness, knowing the love of my father and his distorted form of care as parent. In fact, he fought when he wanted to protect. He only knew how to deal with people like that, as if they were cattle. For years, he did not want to give me his name, thinking that I was not his daughter, because I was born female.

I learned to read alone. As I needed to go to school, my father was forced to register me and to recognize me as his daughter. I was nine years old, so I could finally attend school.

I read everything I could find, but often did not go to school because my body was always marked by physical aggression. I was often admitted to hospital with bronchial asthma attacks.

My father wanted to read and write, and could not. It seems he had neurological limitations that prevented him from understanding the content.

My dad would not let me go outside talk to people He said I would get lost in the world. I had a brother 1 year younger than me, and he could get out; go to school.

My father said I should not have been born but that my brother was a good son.

I had a temper. I said, "Wrong!" I did not agree, but if I spoke I was beaten. I never shut up even when I was covered in blood.

Who created me? If I disagreed, I spoke, yes! I did not care to be good; I just wanted to be respected. If we were playing ball in the street, and it was around the time my dad got home from work, my brother ran home. He was very afraid of my father. But I forgot and continued to play. I thought I should not hide from him what I did. I was sure what I did was correct.

I liked going to my father's work. I would help make a list of the players' uniforms. See it working, stirring in máquinasde fix-industrial washing machine, moving to make piles of uniforms and joining the pairs of meões, coordinating employees under their responsibility.

And I was proud of him. He could not read, but he needed to He was very clever. With numbers, he was able to play and multiply. But with the letters, he had barriers up to make him cry.

I used to watch and think, so hardworking, beautiful, and intelligent. He sometimes had a loving gaze, held my hand tightly. But his hands were my problem: both kneaded clay, he forgot to learn how to nurture a child.
Affection, like building a life, may be natural or conquered. I went in search of love.

A child who does not have love or feels unloved, arranges a way to satisfy the need. In my childhood, I always created a way not to suffer.

I created a drawer of substitutions, I could count the strokes that wanted me.
My godfather was summoned to replace the male figure, which I desperately needed, and he was the representation of a parent.

He was affectionate, took me to travel, always went to Campos, along with my godmother. How many times he was riding and I climbed on his coat? He ran after me in the Lighthouse beach, took me to see the dances, laughed, walked jeep . Jipe it is a car without bonnet for walking in mountains and mud.

He had a cheerful demeanor and very affectionate. My godmother was the educator. I loved hiding, hiding, and wearing her wigs. I would look for the mirror. I wanted to see myself. In my house, we did not have mirrors.

This is an excerpt from my book Stuck Heart. In my troubled life I made a comfortable life. I use the language of poetry to talk about pain.

In the book I talk about my life story as if speaking of a closet full of drawers I open the drawers and arrange the problems of the past along with the solutions I found.

"This is an excerpt from my book stuck Heart - On the dresser troubled life. Poetics use the language to talk about the pain."

"This is an excerpt from my book stuck Heart - In the troubled life comfortable life. Use the language of poetry to talk about pain.

In the book I talk about my life story as if speaking of a closet full of drawers, I opened the drawers and arranging the disputes of the past.

This story was written for World Pulse’s Ending Violence Against Women Digital Action Campaign.

World Pulse believes that women's stories, recommendations, and collective rising leadership can—and will—bring an end to gender-based violence. The EVAW Campaign elicits powerful content from women on the ground, strengthens their confidence as vocal grassroots leaders, and ensures that influencers and powerful institutions hear their stories.
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lydiagcallano's picture

You are loved!

Valeria, I could not believe at first that you are a victim of domestic violence and gender bias in your family because you are appear to be a happy person. You are not only a poet and a social activist but you are good in concealing your pains beneath that beautiful smile!

It takes a woman of courage and iron will to overcome her bitter past and turn it to something productive and fruitful. How you are helping the disadvantaged people of your country is just awesome! People might not be able to say it but they appreciate and love you. Continue to speak out and give more of yourself to others because you are precious and what you do is valuable.

You are not owned by any person but by God alone. You are His child and He will never leave you nor forsake you! He will not give you challenges which you cannot bear. You are strong, intelligent, talented, creative, and generous. You will shine and those around you will be blessed. Press on, My Inspiration! Wave that Banner of Victory! Show that Valeria Barbosa is a winner and she is loved!

Ma. Lydia G. Callano
Iloilo, Philippines
+63 33 3158137 or 5138830

Valéria Barbosa da Silva's picture

Love is a gift from God.

Dear friend, how much your warm message left me full in love. I thank you for your kindness and ask God to bless you always. Thank you for such sweet words and that filled me with joy.

Mukut's picture



Your story is so hopeful. I feel every woman should read this and find encouragement in your words to move on in life.

Thank you for sharing.

Much love,

Mukut Ray

Valéria Barbosa da Silva's picture


Grata querida irmã.

Como não ter esperança se ao acordar consigo ver a luz do sol, sentir o calor que ele manda e saber que o ar me rodeia. Ter a certeza que estou viva e que o outro dia será melhor é diariamente um presente de Deus em nossas vidas.

Abraços afetuosos e muito carinho em nossas vidas.

Thankfully dear sister.

How not hope to wake up I can see the sunshine, feel the heat and sends it to know that the air around me. Making sure that I'm alive and that the next day will be better every day is a gift of God in our lives.

Affectionate hugs and lots of love in our lives.

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