It's something like a mask that you use to hide from the world; you pull it over your face, obscuring your features, blurring them until they are unrecognizable. And it's like seeing you through a gauzy fabric, because you aren't you and you don't really look like the girl everyone used to love, you are distorted, and it's killing your family because your own mother can't remember what your face really looks like.

And maybe you're not happy, but really, nobody is. And maybe you feel ugly, but we all have moments when we don't feel perfect. And maybe you feel unlovable, but that isn't true because everyone around you can't help but fall in love with the little, insecure, beautiful girl you are and always will be.

But you are hiding behind a face caked with lies. You are digging yourself a grave, each beautifying product another shovel full of dirt down, a little bit closer to putting you six feet under. And we're worried. You don't understand that but we are so worried. Because you're killing yourself and we don't know anymore if it's on purpose but I'm starting to get the sinking feeling that it is.

You won't listen, you never listen, but I love you. And I always have. But you with your dye and make up that covers your imaginary flaws is making you different, alien from the girl I know. You're slipping though my outstretched hand and I'm reaching, I'm reaching, but I can't quite grasp your pale hand.

I know you are scared. I know that it's terrifying, that it feels like you are sinking and falling and nobody is watching you disappear bit by bit, but I am. And I want to help you. Because you are not alone, and when you can't be so strong anymore, when you have to break down and cry, I'm here, I'll listen to the words fall like shining pearls from your glossy lips. I'll help you wash off that mascara and remove those piercings. I'll hide the traitorous mirror so you can no longer witness imaginary wrinkles and fight mythical blemishes.

And it's so difficult. It's so hard because we can't get you to see what you are becoming because all you can see is how far you are from being what you want to be. I'm wondering if you actually want to be dead, if that is actually what you are doing. I don't know anymore and you won't provide any answers and we're at an impasse but I have no control so it feels more like a cliff and I really don't want you to teeter off the edge.

But you're smearing more products on and telling me I'm wrong and that lipstick is a noose around your neck and that blush is pulling it a little tighter and it's so real, it's so real to me, I can almost see it chocking the breath from your lungs. All I want is for you to put down your nail polish, to unload the gun that is pressed to your head, but you cherish the chemicals that adorn your fingertips so I watch as you coat every shell-pink nail with red goop and I wonder if you know that it feels like you are cutting out my heart.

You try to educate me on this product and that cream and I don't really care what it all means because it's stealing you away and I hate it for that. I don't know what bargain I have to make, what logic I need to present when reasoning with you, but I'm desperately trying to think of something because you are applying more and more and you're disappearing under the layers of foundation and falsehoods.

When you try to tell me that you are fat, that your nose is crooked, that your lips are uneven, you make me want to pound some sense into your head. Because you are perfect. Even if you don't feel like it, you are flawless because you are you. And that goop isn't going to make you invincible, and that cream isn't going to make the ugliness you feel inside go away.

I think you know that you are, piece by piece, giving yourself away. I think you know that those lies that you are feeding everyone around you, everyone who cares, aren't convincing anyone. And I think that, maybe, that scares you. Because you don't want us to see that you are having difficulty coping with what you have become.

And I'd tell you it was okay, I'd soothe you and hold you tight and whisper that we are going to make it better, that we are going to take a broom to the dark corners of your mind and sweep out all the cobwebs of self-loathing, but I can't open my mouth to speak because you would never listen, anyway.

So when you tell me that you're finished, that you can't do this anymore, I am relieved because I've missed you, the you that didn't hide behind a mask. And so I tell you to do it, to shed this skin and move past all of this. I tell you that we love you no matter what. And I don't think about what you are thinking about because I think it's going to get better, that you are going to get better.

But you wanted to move on. To escape. And you weren't talking about the fa├žade you've created. You tried to get away using that razorblade and the bottle of pills. And I couldn't help but think that you looked more beautiful than you had looked in years drenched in blood and tears because you finally looked human again.

I found you and my mouth could open and my lips could move and I cried for help because you needed it and I hated myself because you needed it before this display. So I cried and I prayed and I whispered broken sentences just because I was worried you would stop hearing them, and I said your name over and over because I wanted you to remember, remember who you were, who you need to be.

And without the make up, without the mask that you used to hide from the world, you struggled for breath. It wasn't your pricy creams or your toxic bleach that saved you; it was the love for you that we all have. It was, I think, the tears we shed waiting for you to come back and the smiles we gave you, tucked them into the pockets and the pillows so you'd never be without joy that kept you whole. And without the make up, you began to find yourself again. And so we collected the shattered remains of our family and started to put it back together, shard by jagged shard. And it hurt sometime because we all had to face what we did wrong, but it was okay because we were all together and we had never thought it could be that way again.

So it was something like hope and something like family that picked you up and repaired you and it's always going to be family who accept you even though you are scarred and scared because it's something like love that holds us all together.

This one was inspired by a girl I know. It's true. It is true, the suicide attempt, the make up, all of it. No, I am not her sister, no, I'm not even close to her, but she is the kind of girl that is so in trouble everyone just wants to help her, to make her whole again. But, as I tried to make this point out, she's never going to be whole. There will be scars and tears and it's not going to be easy but she can do it because she is loved. Okay, rant over. Now you review