Blood Brothers

We are both named Ben.


We both respond. People say my name the same way they say his name.


It’s 3 letters (it’s almost like it should be a part of speech {the, an, a, ben – see? it’s right at home}), there’s no nickname for it (unless you get creative and call one of us “Beh” and the other “En”, but you’re adding a syllable, and it’s a nickname, for goodness’ sake; it’s supposed to be shorter), there’s no possibility of differentiating between us, two people with two eyes and two hands and two feet – God, we have a lot in common, don’t we?

No. We don’t. He’s a sex offender. I’m not.

I think about this, sometimes, when he’s sitting in my car, singing along with Chris Daughtry or talking about his Xbox. I think about him inserting things into his little sister’s little vagina. Was he rough? Did he say anything while he was doing it? Did she? What kind of men will she be attracted to? He did that, and now he can’t go to parties where there will be children and will always struggle to find housing and cannot have internet access in his apartment.

A co-worker once said to me, “imagine you had to write the most hideous thing you’ve ever done on an index card, and every job interview you went to, every apartment lease you signed, you had to hand it to the person and watch them read it. That’s what it feels like to be a sex offender.”

What would I write? I’m sure I’d use up the front side of the index card with excuses and explanations and emotional appeals. Then on the back, in the most modest and firm penmanship, I would write: “I thought my sin was better than someone else’s.”

5 thoughts on “Blood Brothers

  1. It seems so horribly inappropriate to leave this comment on an entry like this, but now’s when I noticed it so now’s when I’m posting it:

    I love you new layout.

    There. I said it.

  2. Ben sounds like he’s about 18 or 19. He’s probably not, though, is he?

    As strange as it may be, I was looking at the national sex offender registry yesterday. I found a man that lives down the street from where I work. He was convicted of sodomizing a five-year-old. Then I saw his file. He’s a patient of ours. It makes me think…the next time he’s in, will I say anything about it? Like, how’s the sweet ass been?

    But that’s just inhumane of me, isn’t it? I mean, they’re people too…right?

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