This guide is about you, and me, and the other survivors you will meet. It's about healing from the damage that follows us into adulthood. Some survivors, like me, blackout all knowledge of the abuse for much of our lives. Some remember, but deny its emotional impact. We say, "It wasn't so bad. I got over it."
My book, My Father's House: A Memoir of Incest and of Healing (1987) was one of the first to break the taboo on Western society's shameful secret. After it became an international best seller, I heard from hundreds of other survivors wanting to share their stories. I spoke at therapists' conferences, and on TV panels across North America and Europe. This became my crash-course on sexual abuse as a disease of our times, and on healing.
In this shared voyage of self-discovery, we'll explore how child abuse continues to steal our adult happiness. I'll suggest exercises and ask you questions. Why? Because you - not me or anyone else - are the world's leading expert on you. This guide is about you - your past, your present, your future.
You'll meet Claire, who couldn't believe her father had abused her even though he'd been jailed for molesting other children. You'll meet Loretta, who remembered her seduction, at age 12, by the church organist, as a love relationship, until she learned the truth behind her throat hemorrhages. Since Georgina liked the things her abusive uncle gave her, selling sex for her college tuition seemed sensible, until miscarriages forced her to deal with her emotional damage.
An important step in healing is self-forgiveness. We'll also consider: Does healing ourselves mean forgiving our abuser? We'll examine how abuse may have affected our bodies. We'll look at insights, available to us through our dreams and even through fairy tales. We'll discuss whistle-blowing - to our families, to our abuser, and by writing a memoir. Our goal is a simple one: to better love and appreciate that face you see in your mirror.
©2017 Sylvia Fraser (P)2018 Sylvia Fraser