When I look in the mirror, I see a boy. A boy with tousled, wild hair and piercing gray eyes. I see someone with a great smile and an even greater personality. When they look at me, they see a guy that is friends with everyone, who goes out of his way to tutor a friend after school. What they don’t see is that that boy is just a façade and the boy stays after so he doesn’t have to spend more time in his own personal h*ll than necessary. When I look in the mirror I also see someone crying out for help. I see someone who is sickened by the despair he witnesses. Someone who is tired of being battered and abused and someone who is tired of watching his mother being battered and abused. Someone who is sick to his stomach as he watches his masochistic mother crawl back to his sadistic father. I see a man-child with a dark secret hidden behind a smile. Someone who laughs because it’s the only thing to stop the tears. I see someone who is treated less than human in his own home who must make life a little bearable for the little girls, his baby sisters, in the room next to him. I see an animal trying to break out of his cage. And, most of all, I see a boy who is holding onto the brink of sanity, not for himself but for the people he calls family.