My name is Emily, I just turned 27 years old. I'm a single mother of two boys, a professional pinup model, Internet personality, YouTuber, and I have a full time job. When I was 16 I never would have thought in a million years my life would be where it is today. I never thought I would be divorced or a strong image for women to look up to. I never thought I would be a single mother or a pinup model. It's crazy the turns our lives make depending on our choices. I can honestly say I haven't always made the best choices but due to the situations I was put in at such a young age I think I handled the best my young heart and mind could.
I grew up in a very sheltered home. I was home schooled my whole life, had zero friends, and spent most of my time involved in studying make up and fashion. I met my ex husband in the last few months of my 16th year. Our relationship lasted nine years. In that nine years I experienced many forms of abuse. Control, manipulation, mental and verbal abuse, infidelity, soul crushing heartbreak constantly. I allowed someone to come into my life and 100% steal and dictate who I was, what I did, who I was allowed to be around, where I was allowed to go. My self worth was beat into the ground and I was constantly alone. I became a mother young and thought it would fix my relationship but only a short year after was the first time I discovered my husbands affair, which was being carried on in our home, around my child and while I was struggling through a miscarriage, alone.
For almost a decade from the age of 16-23 I made excuses, I defended, I ignored, I cried, I hurt and I thought there was nothing else for me in this world because that is what my innocent mind had been trained to think by someone I loved and lived for.
Looking back now I just want to scream. What are you doing!! You don't deserve this!! Yell at him!! Defend yourself!! Tell him to get lost and you deserve better! Stop letting him use you and hurt you!! Stop letting him get away with such horrible behavior!! Say something!! I almost don't even know who that girl was. She doesn't feel like me anymore because she isn't me.
If I could give my 16 year old self some advice it would be to realize how much you are worth and to never allow anyone to devalue that. That you deserve the love and appreciation you put in to be given back to you. That you shouldn't settle for less or robe treated poorly because you think it's your soul responsibility to make something work. I would tell myself that sometimes you have to be brave and allow yourself to hurt and cry and embrace those emotions so you can get better and move on to what your life is meant for. I would tell me that you need to stop doubting yourself and realize that you are strong and capable of anything you want in life and to never let anyone tell you different. Life is going to be hard and you are going to face things that literally feel like they are going to suck the life right out of you but you are going to be ok and you are going to make it. That you are going to be judged for things you have no control over like your body type, your image, your personality, and you can't let any of it break you because only you control your future and how you live it, not others. You have to stop saying "I can't" and realize that you can and you don't need anyone else to prove that but you. Stop living for others and live for yourself. Live for your children and enjoy the life you are given. Let go of negative and hate and don't hold onto it. Learn to love and never let that go.
When we are young we see things so differently. I feel like my 16 year old self walked in pure innocence and love and didn't realize how it could be manipulated to be used against her. Sometimes we just have to walk out our choices and let the pieces fall were they may and then after take what's left and make a better life out of it. 16 year old me was clueless and just a baby and now I feel like she had grown into this woman who has this image of strength but is still working to have the level of strength others see in her.
I think to many of us grow into adults holding our youth against us. You can't live like that. No matter what you go through that is hard or painful it will only be your future if you let it. You can't live as a victim but you can take your past experiences and turn them into something that fuels your life in a better direction and make yourself a survivor. You have to rise above things and move on. You have to use your pain as a tool to build a road of success and keep moving forward.
16 is only a year in your life. It isn't forever. Remember that when you are making your choices. Choices are important and dictate our future. Poor choices will happen and you can't stop that and you can't take it back but what you can to is take responsibility for the choices you made, learn from them and take control of what's to come for you. I promise you are going to make it, you just can't stop believing in yourself. The day you give up on yourself is the day your future ends.
Emily Doll - TVD
Blog Entry Originally Published on Miss Evelyn Jo's Blog with Dames For Dreams
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