smile + apologize

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I’ve committed numerous petty thefts throughout my life. The stealing began in middle school, when I would steal cash out of fellow students’ bags to fund my binging and purging episodes. But even after recovering from my bulimia, my impulsive urges were as strong as ever, and I began to shoplift.

I come from an upper middle class white family, where money has never been an issue. I don’t steal out of need; I steal because I know that I can. I’ve never been concerned about getting caught because I know that I could easily talk my way out of it. The sad fact is that because I don’t look like a criminal, I wouldn’t be treated like a criminal even in situations where people of a different race or social status wouldn’t stand a chance. But me? A white, well-educated, upper middle class, twenty-something female? All I would have to do is smile, politely apologize, and claim that it was a simple mistake, and I’d get off scot-free.