written by young people at NRG Youth Club
Instigator: Do you know dirty Ells?
Instigator: Well, I can only tell you what I saw… And I saw her going into the clinic, she had her hood up and it wasn’t even raining
Instigator: She’s got AIDS you know
Passive: Oh that’s sad really….
Instigator: And she has bi-polar, diabetes, got fingered when she was on her period and I think she is pregnant….
Instigator: I’m friends with the boy who did her, I called him up as soon as I saw her to ask and he was like hesitating, not giving me an answer. You know what that means, she is pregnant. Dirty manky Ells in them dirty alleyways… she must be on meth
Instigator: Her brother thinks he’s a ‘big man’ too, sad really….
I love my sister very much. I hate what’s happening to her and those bitches at school. I want what’s best for Ells and I will work hard at helping her achieve this. If it means beating up the bullies, I will do it. Anything to make her less worried. I’m going to look after her, even though she’s meant to be doing that for me. Even our mum isn’t brave enough or in the right mindset of doing something for her own flesh and blood. I have to step up and be a man, the man of the house, and protect my sister from any danger. I couldn’t believe it when Ells told me that she might have AIDS. I had to be strong for the both of us and not get angry. If I ever find out who did this to my sister, I will kill them and make sure their mother felt it.
Confiding with the audience, she feels consoled
I love my daughter dearly but I don’t know how to show it. I have never had to deal with a westernised child as per say…. I don’t mean to put her down, I just want what’s best for her, I don’t want them mean girls to rip her to shreds with their double edged bladed tongues.
I know Ells has issues… who doesn’t? I have a few of my own. I don’t even know when my next batch of money is coming from. These gossipers can talk about me, but I wish they would leave my family alone. My issue is my issue, but I got two kids to provide for, no steady job, no husband, my parents hate me and its just madness living on this estate. I fear Ells will be a victim to these hungry hoodrats and fit the stereotypical estate girl.
My son is being exposed to Ells and her crazy antics like sleeping with another girl. Why does all this happen to me, my mother told me not to rebel and look what happened, what if Ells goes down that same road as me? Why does she hate me so much? I don’t understand, I’m just doing right by her or at least trying. Why won’t she talk to me… tell me what’s going on, I have been there before…. I can help.
At the clinic
Ells is seated opposite the clinician. She feels nervous about being there but wants to get clarity and information about HIV and AIDS, she thinks she might be at risk.
Clinician: Hello Elizabeth, what do you like to be called? Elizabeth, Beth…
Ells: I like Ells
Clinician: Ok, Ill just change your notes. I see by the form that the receptionist has given me that you are not feeling very well at the moment?
Clinician: Is there a reason that you came into the clinic rather than going to your doctor?
Ells: I’m scared I’ve got something.
Clinician: ok…. Is there a reason why you’re scared that you’ve got something?
Ells: I did something with a boy and I’m scared that I’ve got something…
Clinician: Don’t worry, lots of people come here who have done all kinds of things and I am sure I will be able to help you. Did you have sex with this boy?
Ells: Yeah… I had sex with him.
Clinician: Ok, now I know you might not want to answer this, but it’s really important that I know so we are really clear about what we are looking for… do you want to tell me how long ago this was?
Ells: About 2 weeks ago…
Clinician: Ok, if it was two weeks ago… we can do some tests today, this will include Chlamydia, Gonorrhea and Syphilis…. Now they are both bacterial infections…
Ells: What about AIDS?
Clinician: We wouldn’t be able to test for HIV…. because when someone is exposed to HIV, they have to make something called antiviral antibodies in their blood and that takes a number of weeks to for those antibodies to show up on our tests…
Ells: Oh…. I feel really weird. We didn’t use anything…
Clinician: Ok… this might be a difficult question, but did you have penetrative sex with this boy?
Ells: ……yes…. I found a cut on my… look, I don’t know if you are able to help…. But I’m pretty worried about my mum…
Clinician: Why are you worried about your mum?
Ells: Because I don’t want her to know about this, she might kick me out…
Clinician: The only time I might have to tell someone about this is if I am worried you might hurt yourself….we want to be able to help you Ells.
Ells: I just want to do something about it…. Get this sorted out. It took a lot of courage to come in here….
I hate when you walk into the room and the room becomes hushed. I get scared when that happens because I know they have been talking about me, it makes me paranoid. What makes them so high and mighty? What makes them better than me? Who can have that many issues? I hurt too, just like them.
When I hear them talk about me, I know that what they are saying is not true. I WISH I could confront them and tell them that it is none of their business. I feel that there is no light at the end of the tunnel. I’m sick and tired of people judging me, I hate it. Crying and thinking about ending my life.
Giggle. Giggle. Giggle