Is it like the United States of Tara?

GirlFromTheTreeHouseThis article was previously published in “The Voices in the Tree House Blog.” I put it here for two reasons. 1) I’m interested to hear what people thought about the TV series. There are so many conflicting opinions out there, including some very nasty stuff. I can only shake my head when I read some of the venomous comments.

2) I’d like to spread the word about the book I’ve written. It’s in the post-production phase they would call it in the movies. A few more weeks. I have worked with multiples–I still call it multiples… the term DID never DID jell with me. I guess I’m oldfashioned like that–for 25 years and am deeply saddened by the misconstructions and misunderstanding multiples have to deal with. Not much has improved since I started this blog 11 years ago. With my book Girl From The Tree House, I’m portraying the inner world of a multiple (written from the alters/parts point of view) and how they deal with some nasty stuff that equally nasty people throw at them.

This is what Elise, one of the characters of the book, had to say:…

“We’ve had a long discussion among us about who should write this post. Nobody wanted to step up. All these people speaking about us is not what we anticipated. Yes, we wanted to take part in portraying a more realistic life of a person who has multiple parts to their personality and is diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder than what is often found in books or the movies. Honestly, I’d rather buckle down and move on to the next book. I’ve been told it takes getting this one finished first, and it takes some more polishing before it can be published. *rolling my eyes*

I, that is Elise, drew the short straw. We are often asked if the GIRL FROM THE TREE HOUSE is like the ‘United States of Tara’, you know, the TV series that ran from 2009-2011.

The short answer is, I don’t know. I never watched the series. I watched the trailers and several bits and pieces online recently. To some of what we saw we can relate. Although, most of it is like… whoa over the top. They called it a comedy-drama. I completely missed the comedy bit.

Either way, living with DID is not funny. It’s not a Peek-a-boo game we forgot to substitute with Cluedo or Chess as we got older. It’s pretty hard work to keep functioning as a team and making life work for us.

What surprised me was that parts behaved badly without consequences or regard for the system and others around them. If we would have done only s.o.m.e of what ‘T’ or ‘Buck’ (Tara’s parts) got up to, Sky would have stepped in and Ama would have given us a piece of her mind. (No, not the belt, we don’t do that nasty stuff.) Perhaps some people with DID might behave like that (or kill people like in the movie SPLIT) but they would be exceptions and not the norm.

Overall, from what I watched, I feel the series let people with multiple personalities down. I guess, showing ‘normal’ life wouldn’t be exciting enough for the makers of TV series. For us, though, our ‘normal’ has enough hair raising moments, especially when the people from our past show up.

What can I say? You’ve got to wait until the book comes out. It shouldn’t be too much longer.”

If you are curious about the book and its release date, subscribe to my newsletter here. I’m not sending them out very often (I rather keep writing on my next story).

Ending the Silence for Sexual Abuse Survivors

The Lamplighters, a movement for sexual abuse survivors, started in
the small town of Cottonwood, AZ now has 34 chapters in three countries

Repair_C2  Marjorie McKinnon is the founder of The Lamplighters, a rapidly
growing movement for recovery from child sexual abuse and incest.  The
Lamplighters, originally conceived as a support group for those going
through the REPAIR program, soon became a stand alone movement that has
grown in the space of a few months from one chapter in the small
northern Arizona community where McKinnon lives to 34 chapters in three
countries.   With so much recent news regarding child sexual abuse, the
Lamplighters is a badly needed resource. 

Continue reading

Courage in Patience: By Beth Fehlbaum

Courage in patience
Ashley Nicole Asher’s life changes forever on the night her mother,
Cheryl, meets Charlie Baker. Within a year of her mother’s marriage to
Charlie, typical eight-year-old Ashley’s life becomes a nightmare of
sexual abuse and emotional neglect. Bundling her body in blankets and
sleeping in her closet to try to avoid Charlie's nighttime assaults,
she is driven by rage at age 14 to to tell her mother, in spite of the
threats Charlie has used to keep Ashley silent. Believing that telling
will make Charlie go away, instead it reveals to Ashley where she lies
on her mother's list of priorities.

Continue reading

Beyond the Tears: A True Survivor Story

Beyond tears
A true story, Beyond the Tears begins with the suicide attempt
of an abused and addicted twenty-five-year-old woman. In the aftermath,
she commits to counseling to recover from anxiety and depression. The
author engages the reader in the therapy sessions, where the young
woman reveals dysfunctional family relationships, including mental
illness, domestic violence, and sexual abuse. The reader not only views
the horrors that caused the author's hopeless condition, but also
experiences the wisdom that lead to health and happiness.

Continue reading

Ending the Silence for Sexual Abuse Survivors

Repair_C2 The Lamplighters, a movement for sexual abuse survivors, started in the small town of Cottonwood, AZ now has 34 chapters in three countries

Marjorie McKinnon is the founder of The Lamplighters, a rapidly growing movement for recovery from child sexual abuse and incest.  The Lamplighters, originally conceived as a support group for those going through the REPAIR program, soon became a stand alone movement that has grown in the space of a few months from one chapter in the small northern Arizona community where McKinnon lives to 34 chapters in three countries.   With so much recent news regarding child sexual abuse, the Lamplighters is a badly needed resource. 

McKinnon is also the author of four books on recovering from child sexual abuse, and has lectured on her subject around the country. 

It is a subject she knows well.  McKinnon was raped by her father when she was thirteen and ran away from home at the age of eighteen after a beating by her father that almost killed her.  She spent the next almost three decades going from one abuser to another before she entered a program of recovery at the age of 45.  Half-way through recovery she found out that her two older daughters had been sexually abused by her second husband. 

Her youngest daughter had been raped at gunpoint when she was 17.  This underlines the reality that children of an untreated child sexual abuse victim stand a five times greater chance of being molested themselves. 

Her book, REPAIR Your Life: A Program for Recovery from Incest & Childhood Sexual Abuse (adult version) has recently been released by Loving Healing Press and is a compilation of everything she learned in her own recovery.  

"Anyone wanting to recover from the life-long trauma of childhood sexual abuse will benefit from this book,” says Marcelle Taylor MFT, a well known child sexual abuse specialist in the Los Angeles area.  “It will become the reader’s wise and trusted companion along the road to wellness.”

The children’s version has also been released by Loving Healing Press.  It is titled REPAIR For Kids: Ms. Taylor has this to say about the children’s version:

“Margie, your Repair book for kids is awesome!!! dynamite!! and I wish I had had something like this a long time ago for my sad and shamed "little girl" within. I can't think of anything I'd change. You have covered it all and with wonderful sensitivity, perfect timing and terrific repair exercises. I love the cartoons and the colorfulness of your book as well.”

Repair Your Life McKinnon says, “We need an army, a united voice!   Starting a Lamplighter chapter is so easy, costs nothing and is a wonderful opportunity to make a difference in this war against child sexual abuse.  You don’t have to be a therapist or a survivor.  You can be an advocate.” 

REPAIR Your Life and REPAIR For Kids is available through all major book distributors as well as off the Loving Healing Press website and The Lamplighter website at www.thelamplighters.org .  

Ms. McKinnon can be contacted at Margie@thelamplighters.org. Reviews for the children’s version can be found on Amazon.com under REPAIR for Kids: A Children’s program for Recovery from Incest and Childhood Sexual Abuse.   Click here for the link to the Reuters review of the adult version 

Shattered Reality

Shattered reality A wonderful read for all parents, teachers, counselors …. we need to open our eyes to child sexual assault and help put a stop to this silent epidemic.

He is a master manipulator, our perpetrator, our destroyer of dreams, the one who Shattered our Reality…. This is my story, a mother's story, about the abuse of my daughter and my struggles to over come. I thought I could trust my family members. I thought I knew and could trust the legal system. I was wrong.

As a parent, dealing with my daughter's pain, the hardest part is trying to keep all the pieces of my life from spinning out of control. It's like my life is broken into pieces like a jigsaw puzzle and when I get some of the pieces put together and try to reach for more pieces the first set flies in the opposite direction….I feel like everything is in a state of brokenness…

Readers of Shattered Reality will:

  • Realize a deeper understanding on the effects of child abuse not only on  the victim but on the family
  • Learn that hope is always within reach and others who have been there that can help
  • Discover how surviving abuse (even as a parent/caregiver or family member)can become personal strength.
  • Gain insights into putting the pieces back together again and reclaiming your rights
  • Believe that happiness can be achieved \

Shattered Reality

Shattered reality "A wonderful read for all parents, teachers, counselors …. we need to open our eyes to child sexual assault and help put a stop to this silent epidemic."

He is a master manipulator, our perpetrator, our destroyer of dreams, the one who Shattered our Reality…. This is my story, a mother's story, about the abuse of my daughter and my struggles to over come. I thought I could trust my family members. I thought I knew and could trust the legal system. I was wrong.

Continue reading

Beyond Tears: A True Survivor Story by Lynn Tolson

Tears A true story, Beyond the Tears begins with the suicide attempt of an abused and addicted twenty-five-year-old woman. In the aftermath, she commits to counseling to recover from anxiety and depression. The author engages the reader in the therapy sessions, where the young woman reveals dysfunctional family relationships, including mental illness, domestic violence, and sexual abuse. The reader not only views the horrors that caused the author's hopeless condition, but also experiences the wisdom that lead to health and happiness.

Continue reading

Courage in Patience by Beth Fehlbaum

 Courage Cover With Border                              

Ashley Nicole Asher’s life changes forever on the night her mother, Cheryl, meets Charlie Baker. Within a year of her mother’s marriage to Charlie, typical eight-year-old Ashley’s life becomes a nightmare of sexual abuse and emotional neglect. Bundling her body in blankets and sleeping in her closet to try to avoid Charlie's nighttime assaults, she is driven by rage at age 14 to to tell her mother, in spite of the threats Charlie has used to keep Ashley silent. Believing that telling will make Charlie go away, instead it reveals to Ashley where she lies on her mother's list of priorities.

Continue reading