Behind the Smile This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

     It will always be you, the one who never opens a gift in front of the person who gave it to you. It will always be you, the one who dreams, but never hopes or has faith in anything. It will always be you, the one who goes to school and holds out your hall pass tentatively, knowing that it would never be enough to explain the situation. It will always be you, the one who is constantly called to the guidance counselor to discuss your problems, even though they already know that you hate when people try to analyze you, your actions, and your emotions. It will always be you, the one whose mother eats homemade pancakes for breakfast and never wakes you until they are gone.

You will always be the one who considers all the downsides before you try something. You will always be the over-analyzer, the pessimist on Monday and the optimist for the rest of the week. You will always spend your nights at home over the toilet erasing everything that went into you that day. You will always be the one who needs someone to define who you are, what you were, or where you came from, because you realize you don’t know. You will always be the one to waste away summer days sitting on the futon dreaming you are somewhere or someone else.

You will always be the one to tell your friends that everything is fine at home even when you have lost the sense of home. You will always be the one whom your younger sisters and brothers admire because they don’t understand your mistakes. You will always be the one who misses the good things in life because you want change. You will always be the one who loses sight of your many aspirations because you will constantly try to change yourself to impress others. And then you will always be the one who ends up committing suicide when you realize that you don’t know yourself because you tried to impress everyone else, but they didn’t even care who you were or what you were.

You will always be the one to go home and write in your diary about how much your boyfriend loves you even though he is constantly giving you black eyes. You will always be the one to go looking to the streets for love and a strong male figure because you can’t find it in your home or father. You will always be the one who sits at your computer and stares at the blank screen, hoping for inspiration to suddenly flow. You will always be the one who hates everything but pretends to love it.

You will always be the one who will read this and think that the writer is talking directly to you, but you will also be the one who won’t admit it to your peers. You will always be the one who will keep this piece tacked on your wall forever. You will always be a bit like me, hoping to live another day, to have another start, and to make something out of yourself. At the same time you will always be scared of the future and its unknown opportunities and disappointments. You will always be like me and millions of other girls who walk around hoping to be free from the stereotypes and from everything else that makes your life seem worthless.

You will always hide your secrets behind your smiles, but together we can define the hidden truths that linger in the unknown world behind them.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 16 comments. Post your own now!

CrosswordKid176 said...
Sept. 1, 2015 at 3:11 pm
Beautiful and true.
AlieshaMarie1122 said...
Oct. 28, 2014 at 8:52 am
im totslly in love with this article, i feel the exact same way
Animatrix said...
Dec. 24, 2013 at 6:17 pm
I , I feel thesame way. I hope that you have found or will find happiness.
Deej6595 said...
Nov. 16, 2013 at 9:29 pm
One word:Truth.
ramfthomas4 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jul. 1, 2013 at 5:40 pm
The truth is such that you wish it weren't true.
TargonTheDragon said...
Apr. 9, 2013 at 4:02 pm
its sad, becuase i cannot relate to you, but  i almost want to! i want you to know that all that is so true in this poem is also just a lie! the limitations that the intended audience has, is self inflicted! your a special, amazing, loved individual, and no one can change that other than yourself! have faith in yourself. and dont you dare tell me you cant do anything, because youve proved yourself wrong already. if you can do anything, you can write.
Splitpersonality said...
Mar. 13, 2013 at 2:45 pm
 I love how you wrote this!!
LoveHappens This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jan. 8, 2010 at 5:07 pm
Absolutely stunning and SO true. I haven't been able to relate to something so deeply as I have in this for quite some time. You will be a writer some day for sure!!!!!!!
Animatrix replied...
Dec. 24, 2013 at 6:18 pm
She's already a writer
tgir85 said...
Jul. 6, 2009 at 5:40 pm
MyChey5 said...
Jun. 28, 2009 at 5:12 pm
This piece was every extravagant!! It reminded me of the book Speak. But dont worry you had your own words and way of forming them that made this your own.
Good work!
Keep Writing!
Anjo! said...
May 18, 2009 at 7:06 am
When i read your title, it triggered a poem inside of me.. i started writing it before i even read the story.. And wow.. that last line hit me. Thank you so much for writing this.
loveisfriendshiponfire said...
Feb. 25, 2009 at 3:13 pm
Wow. I can really relate to this. It's an amazing piece of writing. Good job.
nanciee.writes.about.all. said...
Dec. 26, 2008 at 3:15 am
i love this! it is amazing. i infact will have this pinned to the wall some day, even though i dont relate to all of it, but i totally get it! it is amazing every step of the way. you need to make this into a novel of some sort. it is amazing. thanks for writing it and wasting 5 minutes of my life dazzling me! love it! i wish i can do this!
misunderstood12 said...
Dec. 21, 2008 at 5:07 pm
This world is filled with non-stop drama and people who cant get over themselves! I feel the same way you are filling! Like you dont belong in this world and it would be better without you! Always about to run away but not having the guts to do it! That you have friends who know somethings wrong but dont say anything, your friends seem like they love you more and care for you more then your family does! You know that your friends will always be there even though your family dosent think so! Like... (more »)
AnmolJazz said...
Nov. 20, 2008 at 1:48 pm
This book sounds intersting and mysterious.I would love to read it.
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