Superman: Behind the Lives Of Teenage Boys
Based On True Events
'Superman (It's Not Easy)' - A song by Five For Fighting. I thought that it fit this book very well.
I can't stand to fly
I'm not that naive
I'm just out to find
The better part of me
I'm more than a bird
I'm more than a plane
More than some pretty face beside a train
It's not easy to be me
Wish that I could cry
Fall upon my knees
Find a way to lie
About a home I'll never see
It may sound absurd but don't be naive
Even Heroes have the right to bleed
I may be disturbed but won't you concede
Even Heroes have the right to dream
It's not easy to be me
Up, up and away, away from me
It's all right You can all sleep sound tonight
I'm not crazy or anything
I can't stand to fly
I'm not that naive
Men weren't meant to ride
With clouds between their knees
I'm only a boy wanting to be a man
Looking for special things inside of me
inside of me ...... inside of me ...
I'm only a boy wanting to be a man
I'm only a boy looking for my dream
It's not easy ...
It's not easy to be me...
I decided to write this set of short stories after meeting other teenage boys and talking to them about their struggles in life. Most of the boys ranged between the ages 13 - 16. I was deeply touched and heartbroken to hear about all the things boys are faced with every day. I, myself have never had to face what many teenage boys have had to face.
Some of these stories are true and some are fictionalized. I have changed the names of the real people out of respect. But most of the events that happen in each short story is true. I wrote these stories in a down-to-earth way and some are graphic. But I only did this to convey the emotion and realism of the stories.
Story 1: Timothy Dalton
(A True Story)
April 2, 2003
Elizabethtown, commonly known as E-town, is a beautiful and welcoming town. Fourteen-year-old Timothy Dalton had lived there all his life. Once, when he was little, his life had been like a fairy tale. He could remember his mother, Kasha and father, Mark who had been very much in love. Timothy was an only child so his parents had spoiled him a lot. But Timothy hadn't turned into a little brat, but instead he was very kind and thoughtful. But all of that changed one evening. . .
Timothy had been twelve years-old. He lived in a small four bedroom house with his mom and dad. They lived out in the country and Timothy loved it. He would go and play with the neighborhood kids and life was good. One evening when Timothy had come home from playing basketball with some of the neighborhood kids.
As he stepped into the house he called out, "Mom, I'm home." The house was unusually quiet and Timothy grew worried. "Mom are you here?" he called out. As he neared his parent's bedroom he could hear noises. Not knocking Timothy stepped in. The sight that lay before his eyes were too much to bear. He saw his mother with another man kissing and when he saw them his heart felt as if it was breaking. "Timothy. . .what are you doing here?" his mom asked startled. Turning and fleeing the house, Timothy ran. He ran out of the house and down the country road. Tears fell down his cheeks and all he could feel was confusion and pain.
That night Timothy finally came home and when he stepped into the house his mother was sitting in the living room smoking a cigarette. "Timothy, come here," she said and Timothy slowly made his way over to her. She reached out and took his hand in hers and smiled, "Honey, I know that. . .what you saw today. . .was probably shocking to you. And I know that it is hard to understand but when you are older you will." "Mom, you were with another man. Why? I thought you and Dad were in love," Timothy said as tears formed in his eyes. "Things change and. . .I think it's time for me to leave. Your dad and I have been having problems," Kasha said. "Leave? But. . .what will me and dad do without you?" Timothy asked, now afraid. "You're going to come with me," Kasha said smiling.
When Mark, Timothy's dad got home that night from work Kasha broke the news to him that she wanted a divorce. "What!? You can't leave!" Mark yelled. "I can and I am," Kasha said as she went and packed her suitcase and Timothy's. Angry and confused Mark yelled and chased Kasha out of the house with her suitcase in hand. Just as she was stepping out of the house, Kasha grabbed Timothy by the arm and pulled him outside with her. "Where do you think you are taking my son?" Mark asked angrily. "He's coming with me and that's final," Kasha said heatedly. "You can't take him. He's going to stay with me," Mark said as he reached out and grabbed Timothy.
In the midst of all this Timothy was completely terrified and confused. His parents were too busy arguing to notice the tears streaming down his face. Finally Kasha and Timothy climbed into the old brown station wagon. As they drove away Timothy looked out the car window. He could see his dad standing in front of the house looking baffled and angry. In one instant everything had changed for Timothy's whole family.
Now one year later Timothy was fourteen-years-old and a completely different person. His attitude had changed drastically since his parents' divorce. He lived with his mom during the week and went to his dad's on the weekends. It was a tough life but he soon got used to it. He lived in small apartment with his mom in town. It was very small and the living conditions weren't very good, but it was all they could afford. His mother had a new boyfriend every week and Timothy sometimes wondered if she would ever find someone she could actually love.
It was a sunny day in E-town as Timothy stood looking out the small window in his room. "Another day of life," Timothy said sighing. He glanced over at his little alarm clock and the red letters said '12:01'. Lunchtime and Mom isn't home, Timothy thought to himself. But he was used to his mom not being home. She was always going places when she wasn't working at the local library. Timothy often wondered where it was she went too but soon he stopped caring.
Sitting down on the small green cot that was his bed, Timothy heaved another deep sigh. "Well, I think I'll go out," he said as he picked up his billfold. He looked down at the $5.00 in it, "Well that should be enough to get some pot," he said as he turned and left the small apartment house. He stepped out onto the streets and went into the alleys. It was in the alleys that Timothy found peace. There was an rough looking man that was always in the alley ways who sold marijuana and other drugs. Timothy, along with several other teenage boys, would go and buy drugs from the man.
As Timothy walked through the alley ways he found the man. Several other teenage boys were standing around the man holding out money. Timothy joined them and when it was his turn the man asked, "How much you got?" "$5.00 that's it," Timothy said pulling out his money. The man grabbed it from his hand and handed him a small plastic bag of marijuana. Timothy took the small bag and put it in his pocket. Drugs was the only thing that could help him escape the miserable life he lived.
Walking along the street Timothy ran into three teenage boys. One of them smiled at him, "Hey dude, I've seen you before. You live in that apartment house on fifth street right?" "Yeah that's right. I live on the top floor with my mom," Timothy said as he pushed his hands down into his jean pockets. "My name's Hanson," the boy said. "I'm Timothy." "Well, how would you like to hang with us Timothy?" Hanson asked. "Sure! I'd like that. I don't do hardly anything all day so it will be great," Timothy said smiling. "Okay that's good. Meet us here by this ice cream shop at 12:00 tonight," Hanson said as he and the two other boys turned and walked away.
Back at home in the apartment Timothy found his mom and yet another one of her new boyfriends laying on the little brown couch. "Where have you been?" Kasha asked angrily as she inhaled the cigarette in her hand. "Just around," Timothy mumbled as he stepped into the kitchen to get something to eat out of the refrigerator. When he looked into the refrigerator Timothy saw that there was no food. Anger rushed over him and he went back into the living room.
"Mom, why haven't you gone grocery shopping?" he asked angrily. His mother sat up on the couch, "I haven't had time and don't you talk to me like that." "What is wrong with you!? We have to eat," Timothy yelled. "Shut up! I'll get food tomorrow. You'll survive I'm sure," Kasha said as she lay back down on the couch into the arms of her new boyfriend, who appeared to be high and completely oblivious to the whole situation.
Timothy turned and went into his room. He slammed the door behind him angrily. Grabbing a pocket knife that his father had gave him a long time ago, out of a drawer, Timothy began stabbing his blanket. Anger was rushing through him as he stabbed the blanket over and over again with the knife. Finally he left the blanket and took the knife and began to cut his arm hoping to die from blood loss. As the sharp edge of the knife sliced his arm blood trickled out of his veins and dripped onto the floor. He finally stopped and threw the knife at the wall where the tip of it stuck in the wall. Trembling Timothy fell to the floor where he lay for a long time sobbing. Soon he cried himself to sleep.
When Timothy finally woke it was dark outside. He sat up and looked around the room. Standing up he turned on the light and looked down at his arm. It was hurting and he could see the cut marks from the knife. Glancing down at the floor he saw dried blood from his arm on the carpet.
He went to the bathroom and washed the dried blood off his arm. Stepping into the living room Timothy pulled on his worn tennis shoes. Already his mom and boyfriend had gone to bed so it was safe sneak out. Already it was 11:56 and he had only a few minutes to meet Hanson outside the ice cream shop.
Stepping outside into the darkness Timothy sighed. He made his way to the ice cream shop and was glad to see Hanson and the two other boys. "Hi guys," Timothy said smiling as he came to stand beside Hanson. "Hey there Timothy. You're right on time. Come let's go," Hanson said as the boys turned and took to the alley ways.
As they walked along Hanson pulled out some marijuana and the boys took turn smoking it. They smoked away their troubles for it was their only escape. Just like Timothy, Hanson and the two other boys lived miserable lives. Drugs was their only means of escaping their troubles and trials. The four boys walked down the streets and alley ways laughing and smoking marijuana. When they came to a nearby park they began to climb over the fence and past the sign that said 'Keep Out After Park Hours'. In the park the four boys fell down onto the grass laughing as they smoked the last of the marijuana.
The next morning Timothy was awakened by the sound of a bird singing. He sat up quickly and when he did the world began to spin and he fell back down onto the wet grass. He didn't know where he was at first but then it finally registered to him that he was in the park with Hanson. He saw Hanson and the two other boys lying in the grass asleep beside him. Timothy ran his long fingers through his jet black hair and sighed.
At that moment he heard someone yell, "Hey you kids! What are you doing here?" Timothy's heart seemed to stop when he saw that a policeman was opening the park gate and coming towards them. "Quick wake up!" Timothy said as he shook Hanson. Finally Hanson and the two other boys woke up. When he saw the policeman Hanson jumped up, "Hurry we've got to get out of here!" The four boys took off running and escaped barely. Out of the park and in a nearby alley way they all stopped to catch their breath. "That was close," Timothy said breathlessly.
The boys soon had to go their own separate ways and Timothy went home. In the apartment Timothy pulled off his shoes and started to go to his room. "Hey get me a beer," his mom's boyfriend, Chad said groggily from where he lay on the couch shirtless. "Get it yourself," Timothy said as he turned and started to go to his room. Chad jumped up from the couch and grabbed Timothy's arm. "When I tell you to do something you had better do it!" Chad yelled angrily. "Let go of me! I'm not your slave," Timothy said as he tried to pull out of Chad's strong grip. Chad squeezed Timothy's arm more tightly until he cried out in pain. Raising his free hand, Chad struck Timothy across the face. The blow stunned Timothy and for a moment the room began to spin.
"I'm going to teach you a lesson," Chad said angrily as he pushed Timothy up against the wall. Timothy struggled and cried out trying to get away but Chad's grip was too strong. With Timothy pinned against the wall, Chad began to strike him. As one blow hit Timothy on the cheek, he could taste blood in his mouth and felt it trickle out of his mouth. Chad continued to strike him but finally Chad stopped and released him. Timothy fell to the floor unable to move. His arms were hurting and his eye was slowly swelling along with his bleeding lip.
An incident like that was not the last. With every new boyfriend came pain. They treated Kasha and Timothy like dirt but still Kasha continued to date. She always picked rough and bad men who would pay her money. Timothy remained locked in his room most of the time smoking pot.
One night when Timothy and Hanson were sitting on a bench along the street Timothy asked, "Is there any other drugs better than marijuana? I need something else." "Sure there's better drugs. Here, I'll let you rent this," Hanson said as he pulled out a needle from his breeches pocket. "What do I do with this?" Timothy asked as he took the needle. "Just stick the needle in your arm and inject the drug in your arm. This drug will make you feel great, but be sure not to inject too much," Hanson said as he showed Timothy how much to put in. "How much do I have to pay you to rent this?" Timothy asked. "Just a dollar but in the future if you rent anymore you're going to have to pay more," Hanson said smiling.
That night in his room Timothy pulled out the needle and inserted the drug into it. He rolled up his shirt sleeve and as he pushed the needle into his arm he flinched. It stung as he injected the drug into his arm and pulled the needle out. A few minutes later Timothy lay in the floor on his back completely unaware of where he was and who he was. The drug had taken over and had enslaved him
Events like this happened almost every night when Timothy came home and sometimes during the day. He spent most of his time high on drugs. A lost and lonely young boy engulfed in a miserable life. But the thing that tortured him so much was the fact that he could not escape, except by the freedom drugs gave him.
Timothy continued to live that terrible life. But a year later he moved in with his father who had finally gotten full custody of him. The only reason Timothy's father had gotten full custody was because Kasha was proved not a good parent nor a good guardian. Timothy's life got better when he moved in with his dad but things would never be the same. He had grown addicted to drugs and had to go to counseling. Even to this day he is having to go to counseling to help him with his addiction and for other problems. He is only one of the hundreds of young teenage boys who are addicted to drugs.
Story 2: Steve Kenton,Coming soon. . .