Why did you get married at fourteen?

Because no one proposed when I was twelve or thirteen. Seriously, my mother was emotionally abusive. She’d also been physically abusive until I was ten, and I wanted to get away from her. She was not a bad person or a crazy person, and I don’t believe she was fully aware either of what she was doing or of how it was affecting me, but by the time I reached adolescence, I found it unacceptable to continue living with her, and I thought I could get away from her and make my life right by falling in love and getting married. Of course, I ended up in another troubled, problematic situation from which I also had to escape.

My cell at juvie was midway down a long corridor with tiled walls. Just to the right of the doorway there was a small washbasin beside a toilet with no lid. At least it had a seat! At the end of the room, on the left side, a small table and plain wooden chair stood in front of a barred window that looked out on a grassy hillside behind the building. To the right of the window was a hard, narrow bed with a single gray blanket, a flat pillow, and yellowed sheets. The room stunk of Lysol; periodically, I heard heavy doors banging shut.