Often times I feel trapped. No one will listen. No one cares. If I talk to my mom, she won’t understand. If I talk to my best friend, she won’t listen to me or worse, she’ll think I’m weird. I put my heart into almost everything. Friendships, poems, singing, family. But one way or another I get dragged down for just being me. I know that everyone has a voice that needs to be heard. Sometimes, I can’t always speak because of fear, sadness, happiness, love, or something else entirely. But mostly, I can’t express myself because of fear. Fear of being left alone, fear of making someone mad, fear of losing friends. Fear, fear, fear. It never goes away. If I ask you to listen, will you? If I start talking about my day and you really don’t care, will you stay and listen to what I have to say? Probably not. And that’s the problem. I have a lot to say. Most of the time, it stays locked away in my head, forgotten, unsaid. Sometimes it comes out through poetry or stuff like this, or the journal I write when I can’t keep everything inside anymore. For anyone reading this, are you a good listener? Do your friends come to you to talk about their problems? Do you like helping them rather than thinking about everything going in your life? This is me. I’m the one people come to, the one people know will listen to them, the one that cares to much and so often gets hurt. But I want to give you all some advise. Sometimes, you need to repay that person you run to for help by listening to them. Don’t be oblivious and not notice when they are wearing that mask we all wear sometimes, that mask that has a smile you can fake. Ask them about their day. Talk to them. Ask them what’s wrong or what’s going on. Let them talk to you while you just listen to them. When someone wants to talk to you, let them. Listen to what they have to say. Everyone has a voice. Sometimes they want to speak up but can’t. Encourage them to do so. It’s not healthy to keep everything in. eventually, it drags you down, drowns you even. Sometimes, all anyone needs is for someone, anyone, to listen. Don’t silence them. JUST LISTEN.