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Shy Keenan was not meant to survive her childhood. Her mother beat her so severely that she was deaf and nearly blind by her first day in school. Her stepsister thought nothing of pouring boiling water over her, and virtually every day she was raped by her stepfather. At age 10 she was sold to a gang of dockworkers, viciously attacked, and left for dead in a field with a fractured skull. Today, Shy is an internationally respected advocate in the fight for justice for victims of child sexual abuse. Six years ago, her testimony secured the imprisonment of her stepfather and his associates for a catalogue of crimes against children. This success was achieved only after a journey through extensive psychiatric care, prison, and near-suicide. Shy's experiences expose the extreme wickedness of which some are capable, but also tell a story of hope, strength, and courage.
The story that captivated a nation'how a horribly neglected little girl was rescued by her loving adoptive parents In July 2005, a six-year-old girl named Danielle was removed from her Florida home after authorities found her living in bug-ridden squalor, subjected to horrific neglect and so damaged by her own mother that recovery seemed hopeless. But hope was waiting for Dani'and help. In October 2007, Bernie and Diane Lierow, a hard-working couple with five boys of their own, adopted her and utterly transformed her life. This book tells the moving story of how the Lierows rescued Dani and helped her recover to the point where she can not only communicate, something once thought impossible, but can say of herself, "I pretty." Dani's story was featured on Oprah and the subject of a Pulitzer Prize-winning article published by the St. Petersburg Times The Lierows describe their struggle to adopt Dani, how they bonded with her and made a home for her, how they satisfied her craving for contact and stimuli, how Dani began to overcome her severe learning disabilities, how she learned she no longer had to steal food, and how their son Willie may be the greatest brother ever For readers who enjoyed Mistaken Identity: Two Families, One Survivor, Unwavering Hope; Hope's Boy; and Sickened: The True Story of a Lost Childhood Charting a perilous journey from hardship to hope, a new family, and a second chance at life, Dani's Story is a book you cannot put down and will never forget.
"He says you'll never be hurt as much by being open as you have been by remaining closed." The messenger is a school janitor with a master's in art history who claims to be channeling "from both sides of the veil." "He" is Adam, a three-year-old who has never spoken an intelligible word. And the message is intended for Martha Beck, Adam's mother, who doesn't know whether to make a mad dash for the door to escape a raving lunatic (after all, how many conversations like this one can you have before you stop getting dinner party invitations and start pushing a mop yourself?) or accept another in a series of life lessons from an impeccable but mysterious source. From the moment Martha and her husband, John, accidentally conceived their second child, all hell broke loose. They were a couple obsessed with success. After years of matching IQs and test scores with less driven peers, they had two Harvard degrees apiece and were gunning for more. They'd plotted out a future in the most vaunted ivory tower of academe. But the dream had begun to disintegrate. Then, when their unborn son, Adam, was diagnosed with Down syndrome, doctors, advisers, and friends in the Harvard community warned them that if they decided to keep the baby, they would lose all hope of achieving their carefully crafted goals. Fortunately, that's exactly what happened. Expecting Adamis a poignant, challenging, and achingly funny chronicle of the extraordinary nine months of Martha's pregnancy. By the time Adam was born, Martha and John were propelled into a world in which they were forced to redefine everything of value to them, put all their faith in miracles, and trust that they could fly without a net. And it worked. Martha's riveting, beautifully written memoir captures the abject terror and exhilarating freedom of facing impending parentdom, being forced to question one's deepest beliefs, and rewriting life's rules. It is an unforgettable celebration of the everyday magic that connects human souls to each other. From the Hardcover edition.
A psychiatrist asserts that childhood personality disorders don't necessarily result from parental cruelty. Supporting that belief with the story of the impact of her son's antisocial personality disorder on his loving family. This book will help untangle one of the most difficult of parent/child interactions.
'Had we had just one wish to be granted in the past in coping with Mark's autism, what would we have asked for? We would have asked for the gift of wisdom. The wisdom that comes with knowledge.' - Ann Hewetson, Chapter 19. Laughter and Tears is a first-hand account of parenting Mark, a young man with autism, and also of a mother's struggle to understand and appreciate her son's condition. Ann Hewetson's moving and thoughtful account describes Mark's communication problems, sensory integration and food allergies, shared by many people with autism, but also tells of Mark's associated problems like rheumatoid arthritis and bipolar mood swings.The author recounts how she dedicated her life to finding out more about autism. Aided by her background in research and biology, she delves into the available literature and interweaves the narrative of Mark's life with illuminating pointers drawn from the work of Leo Kanner, Hans Asperger and Carl Delacato among others. Cutting-edge developments in the field, for instance co-existing psychiatric disorders, cognitive behaviour therapy and brain research, are also explained in a way that will be easily understood by any parent. Ann's journey from initial incomprehension and a desire to find a `solution' to her son's autism concludes with a resolution for both Mark and Ann as they arrive at a deeper understanding of autism and an appreciation of its strengths.This book will be indispensable to both parents and professionals in offering a unique, reflective account of Mark's exceptional life and also a wide-ranging exploration of useful and innovative approaches to autism.
When Jamie Berube; was born with Down syndrome in 1991, he was immediately subject to the medical procedures, insurance guidelines, policies, and representations that surround every child our society designates as disabled. In this wrenching yet ultimately inspiring book, Jamie's father, literary scholar Michael Berube, describes not only the challenges of raising his son but the challenge of seeing him as a person rather than as a medical, genetic, or social problem.
"Alexander Faludy is severely dyslexic. He is also the youngest person to pass English Literature GCSE - at the age of nine - and A Level, at the age of eleven. Now twelve years old, he is also the youngest ever to be accepted on an Arts degree course." "A Little Edge of Darkness tells Alexander's remarkable story from a double perspective: that of his parents as they gradually became aware of his combination of dyslexic disability and his exceptional intellectual ability; and that of Alexander himself, who recounts the isolation and confusion of a child who is progressively and puzzlingly rejected. His diagnosis as dyslexic at the age of seven came as a relief to the family, providing as it did a coherent explanation of Alexander's difference and his intelligence, and this book describes how, from being a child unable to function to his potential in the educational system, Alexander has become an example of a new approach to dyslexia. By concentrating on his abilities rather than using the conventional method of remedial treatment for his weaknesses, Alexander and his parents broke the mould, providing a dyslexic child with a unique opportunity to fulfil his potential." "The book will be of interest not only to parents of exceptional children, but also to teachers, educational psychologists, and other professionals working in the field of special needs."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved
Marni pulls. Pulls her hair, that is. Unable to deal with the mounting stress at home, in school, and with friends, Marni's compulsion to pluck out her eyebrows, eyelashes . . . even the hair from the top of her head, helped her to quiet her mind and escape the pressures of the world around her. Marni first began pulling the summer just before entering high school, and she was immediately hooked. Unfortunately, by the time she discovered that her habit was an actual disorder--trichotillomania or "trich"--it was way too late. "When I stared at the mirror and tried to recognize the girl without eyebrows, eyelashes, and bangs as myself and failed, I knew something had gone horribly wrong." Because Truth Is More Fascinating Than Fiction.
Lissa Weinstein made a career of helping others understand the nature of learning disabilities, but when her own son was diagnosed with dyslexia, she found herself just as frustrated and confused as the parents she counseled. In their own words, Lissa and David Weinstein express the confusion, fear, faith and love they found on a journey that taught David to read, and brought mother and son closer than they had ever been.
Biography of the author's oldest daughter, Tammy, who pursued drugs and anonymous sex, and died by suicide. The book contains many of Tammy's diaries, poems, and letters, with commentary by her mother.
In the early hours of March 11, 2001, seventeen-year-old Will ingested a near-fatal dose of his antidepressant medication, an event that forever changed his life and the lives of his family. In Wills Choice, his mother, Gail Griffith, takes us down the very personal road each of the family members traveled to renew Wills interest in life and to regain their equilibrium in the aftermath of his self-destructive act. Griffith intersperses her own finely wrought prose with dozens of letters and journal entries from family and friends, including many from Will himself, allowing us to bear witness to Wills attempts to explain what even he cannot fully understand: why he did it. A memoir with a social conscience, this book not only examines one familys struggle to overcome depression and an attempted suicide, it lays bare the social, political, and economic challenges that American families face in combating this most mysterious and stigmatized of illnesses. In Gail Griffith, depressed teens have found themselves a formidable new advocate. And in the evocative and fiercely compelling narrative of Wills Choice, we all discover the promise of a second chance.
A profoundly personal account of the impact of complex trauma on a man's life. Larry Ruhl's father sought comfort from his only son, smothering him not only with his affection, but his sexuality--blurring critical boundaries that would prove deeply debilitating. Larry's mother, with her spiraling, ever-changing mental illness kept the family in a constant state of anxiety. By the time Larry graduated from high school, overwhelming sadness and suicidal thoughts took root, plaguing him for decades. Breaking the Ruhls will resonate deeply with many who have experienced similar trauma, boundary violations, and abuse within the family. Ruhl mines his own experiences with sexual confusion, addiction and recovery, relationships, career struggles, and therapeutic breakthroughs, while demonstrating it is possible to heal and thrive. Ninety-three percent of juvenile sexual assault victims knew their perpetrators. For 80 percent of those, that perpetrator was a parent. Shines a spotlight on complex trauma involving sexual abuse and help others shed the shame that sexual abuse survivors unfairly carry. Larry Ruhl serves as a board member for Taking Back Ourselves, which facilitates weekends of recovery for survivors of sexual abuse, and is a registered speaker with RAINN (Rape Abuse Incest National Network). He previously served as a board member at Male Survivor, a leading organization in the fight to improve the resources and support available to male survivors of all forms of sexual abuse. Today he takes meetings into addiction treatment centers as a way to shed shame and draw the parallels between addiction and sexual abuse.
Having experienced firsthand the horror of female genital mutilation (FGM), Soraya Miré reveals the personal violation and immense challenges she overcame. This book is at once an intimate revelation, a testament to the empowerment of women, and an indictment of the violent global oppression of women and girls. This forthright narrative recounts what it means to grow up female in a traditional Somali family, where girls' and women's basic human rights are violated on a daily basis. Forced into an arranged marriage to an abusive older cousin, Miré was also witness to the instability of Somalia's political landscape--her father was a general in the military dictatorship of Siad Barre. In her journey to recover from the violence done to her, Miré realizes FGM is the ultimate child abuse, a ritual of mutilation handed down from mother to daughter and protected by the word "culture." Despite the violations she endured, her words resonate with hope, humanity, and dignity. Her life story is truly one of inspiration and redemption.
Having been sexually abused by a boxing coach as a teen, and not knowing who to trust or tell, Roland Vandal found solace in drugs and alcohol. His battle with addiction, and his unwillingness to speak of his demons, led to failed relationships, bad choices, crime, trouble with the law, and PTSD. After a night of partying with friends in 2001, Roland found himself alone in a Winnipeg hotel and attempted suicide. When he woke, plagued by guilt and shame at what he'd done, he knew he had hit bottom. He dialled the phone and sought helpClean and sober for over a decade, Roland is now living a life he never dreamed possible. Filled with moments of humour, sorrow, despair, and triumph over adversity, Off the Ropes tells his story in the raw, from the abuse, to his addictions, to his successes in business and as a motivational speaker and advocate.