From the August 2014 magazine.

Sober Ink

A sober mom makes a trip to the tattoo parlor to clear up a bit of the past

I was born in 1974 to a military family that loved and cherished me. At some point, I stopped feeling that love and started to feel like I was a burden. My father was a drinker and my mother was a control freak. I remember feeling like I couldn’t get enough attention.

I had my first drink at age 9. One day when my parents left to go to the grocery store, I invited the soccer team to my house to drink my dad’s beer. We got caught right away.

At 15, I realized I was attractive to men, so I showed off. Once I was taken to a barracks party full of G.I.s. and got drunk and...

-- Catherine M.

Jessup, Pennsylvania