October 29, 2006


Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse: It's the Fifth Edition!

Welcome to the fifth edition, October version, of the Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse. Today is Monday, October 30, 2006. (Okay, I admit my ignorance. How do I change the post date when I finish a draft I started the day before?) Since October is Halloween and "Fright Night" month, I asked for some submissions about overcoming fear. I got one. I'll start the edition off with that.

Please use caution when viewing these linked posts. Child Abuse is an ugly subject. It is up to us to shine the light on this darkness, but it may be triggering for some. Use care.

April Optimist at Thriver's Toolbox offers some insight on survivors overcoming fear in her post, "What it Takes to Be Happy."

I also received a Halloween submission. It's from Dr. Deborah Serani and it's entitled, "Happy Stigma-Free Halloween." Dr. Deb remarks, "This post looks at how mental health can be further stigmatized by Halloween." I think the post is appropriate for abuse survivors. Like other mental healthcare recipients, we are often ridiculed, shunned, punished and/or penalized--often, simply for having the courage to get the recovery assistance we need to heal.

This month we've actually got four Survivor Stories. I usually have to scrape around to get these, but we've got some brave bloggers coming forth with their own stories this time. Kudos to you all!

Three of these courageous blog writers of Survivor Stories are New to the Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse. We have eight new carnival participants in all this month! Exciting, huh? Please visit their blogs and make them feel welcome, won't you? I'll flag their post entries so you know which ones they are.

Survivor Stories

First, we welcome back Emily from Doing It All Again. The post she's written is called, "Submerged Memories Resurface."

Next, we have our first *New* Blog Carnival contributor, Karma, at
JewBu Quest, the Jew Exploring Buddhism blogspot. Not only is this a survivor story, it is an explanation of the quest and is aptly named, "What Is The Quest?"

Also *New* is
The Baggage Handler, with the blogspot of the same name. I received this entry back in September--apparently it did not make the last edition deadline. I'm happy to include it now. This survivor story is simply called, "Tension." I think most of us can relate to a title like that, don't you?

Last, but certainly not least in the Survivor Stories category, is
Baggage That Goes With Mine (also with a blog by the same name). Interesting that we have another blogging survivor with a name that includes the word, baggage. Hhmmm...I've heard the term somewhere before, along the way on this recovery journey. This is our third *New* carnival contributor. This entry has been sitting in the carnival coffers since August. I apologize for the delay. Thank you for your patience. The post is called, "No One Would Blame You" and the contributor remarks, "I am a sexual abuse survivor who adopted a 9 year old abused and neglected child from foster care."


Brian, or "Hummingbunny," is a prolific poet. I always look forward to his poems. The poem he submitted is quite meaningful. He says, "This is a poem, a breakthrough poem for me that I wrote when I finally understood that my friends loved me. " It's from his blog,
Truth Is Freedom (which has recently moved to Wordpress). The poem post is called, "It's like trying to chase your tail, all you do is get dizzy."

Madd, another *New* contributor, has the blog called Maddspace. She has contributed a poem of sorts called, "I am, We are, Survivors." She remarks, "This is posted under poetry, however I like to call it a life statement...Our Life statement."

In The News

My dear blogging friend, Marcella Chester, is a prolific advocate and writer for many causes. She is the blogger who introduced me to blog carnivals. The post I've chosen for her entry this time is called, "The Sexual Education of Mark Foley." It's from her blog--a name I love--called, Abyss2Hope. Marcella remarks, "This post shows the need for children to get sex education from someone other than an abuser. "

Did you know, dear bloggers, that you can nominate a blog post for submission into our blog carnival? Well you sure can and I received one from Marcella. It is a blogger *New* to me and her blog has a wonderful name: View From The Sandbox. She has also written about the Mark Foley Scandal. I didn't get any remarks from this nominated post, but in the sandbox permalink, the author states, "This topic truly strikes a chord with me." The post is entitled, "Foley Scandal: How Letting the Attack Dogs Blame the Victims Plays to Past Victims."

Another news item comes from my friend WW, a past host of our carnival, at PTSD Today. For her post, CNN.com - Teen pushes change in youth sex offender laws - June 9, 2005, she simply remarked, "Great Courage!!"

April's post that I put under the Halloween "Fears" category could have gone under "Healing & Therapy." I did not, however, receive any other posts for this section this time.


I've got three entries for the Aftermath category. Two of them are new carnival bloggers. But, the first I'll mention is an old hand at this: Mike at Child Abuse Survivor. I'm hoping he's still interested in hosting the sixth edition of our carnival in November. What Mike has submitted this time is a powerful, open and insightful post called, "The Power of Touch."

Now we welcome another blogspot therapist, *New* to our carnival. Her blog has a name that tickles me: Everyone Needs Therapy?. She's got a question mark at the end, but I think I'd put in an exclamation point. In this world, I think everyone does need some form of therapy. I'm no expert, doctor or therapist, of course (just my humble opinion). Her post talks about a type of abuse that shouldn't be overlooked: "Humiliating Others-Deliberate Abuse that Cuts Deep." Her submission remarks were: "This post explores humiliation, why parents emotionally abuse their children in this way, and why children pass these borderline traits along to their children. "

I want to also extend a warm welcome to *New* carnival contributor, Heather at Chaos & Order. She has submitted a post called, "Chaos & Order: Effects of Abuse on Children." In her remarks, she states, "This was part 1 of 2 on the effects of child abuse... and was the first time I posted anything on abuse, knowing that my father would see it. "

Advocacy & Awareness

Our last *New* contributor is Tracie of From Tracie or, Where I Was Today. She has submitted, "Stop Online Sexual Abuse of Children!" Yes! Please, let's stop! It literally makes me sick that our world keeps coming up with new ways to abuse kids. Let's keep shining the light! Thanks, Tracie, for doing your part.

My dear friend, Jumping In Puddles (or JIP as I fondly call her), at Life Spacings, has submitted an important awareness post. It's about learning more about DID--Dissociative Identity Disorder (formerly called Multiple Personality Disorder). It is another post that's been sitting in my coffers for a while. I hope JIP will forgive the delay. It's not because I think this issue isn't vastly important; I do. I urge you to educate yourself about this coping mechanism that amazingly strong, courageous survivors of extreme abuse create in order to survive. It is not nearly as rare as previously believed. In fact--it reminds me of the "False Memory Syndrome" scandal--many claim that it doesn't exist at all and/or is now over-diagnosed. This doesn't take away from the challenging reality that my friends like JIP must live every day of their lives. The post is called, "lifes spacings: Helpful hints in learning about D.I.D."

Last but not least is another post from WW at PTSD Today. I've got to give her two posts this time. She is such a thorough and prolific researcher and writer. I've got to double up on her or some of her posts will get moldy waiting around in my carnival coffers. This is a post from June about the Objective Documentation of Child Abuse. Here, WW remarks, "This article was published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, December 1997. Dorothy Otnow Lewis, Professory of Psychiatry at NYU, conducted the most thorough investigations into the allegations of child abuse by 12 murderers on death row. All 12 had been diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder. This study corroborates the stories, and provides a strong premise that DID does exist. " (How appropriate that these last two posts should end up together!)

This didn't turn out to be a slap-dab, last-minute, lean carnival at all! Thank you, all, for your wonderful participation. I think we are doing a great job of spreading awareness and increasing the reach of this carnival.

October 25, 2006


Hurry! Time Is Running Out For The Fifth Edition of the Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse

Howdy, Bloggers! I have had several requests to give more info about my experience at the Colin A. Ross Trauma Program, and I'm gonna get to that. BUT! We can't forget about the Fifth Edition of The Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse. It's supposed to be in October and the month is fading fast!

I had a request from the October host to postpone her hosting date due to health concerns. I had decided to just host it myself, but then I got a little distracted down in Dallas. Fortunately, I've got about ten submissions just sitting in my coffers that I can easily pull up for a quicky carnival. They were submissions that didn't quite make the deadline cut-offs for previous carnivals and ones that just showed up and didn't coincide with a particular carnival edition deadline.

I've got submissions already from:
Jumping In Puddles, Emily at Doing It All Again and WW at the PTSD blog. I've also got a referral post from Marcella at Abyss2Hope and then some submissions from a few bloggers new to me.

Anybody else want to jump on in real quick? It would be nice to at least have an even dozen. As usual, the categories for posts are: Survivor Stories, Poetry, "In The News," Healing & Therapy, Aftermath and advocacy & Awareness. Also, since October is Halloween "Fright Night" month, I thought it might be appropriate to have a focus on dealing with fear(s), overcoming fears and phobias...that sort of thing.

Let me know what you think or just get on over to Blog Carnival dot com and use the submission form here. Make sure to provide the permalink to your article and remember: you can simply provide me with a post from the past (you don't have to write something new if you don't want to--I know we don't have a lot of time). I'll make the deadline midnight Sunday (10/29) and I'll get 'em up quick on Monday October 30. (Like I said, I've already got nine or ten ready to go, so it won't be such a stretch.) Thanks, guys!

October 23, 2006


How It Goes

Now that I feel a bit more rested, I'm going to try to give some more detailed updates here. The first big news is that I am, indeed, getting some rest. Hallelujah! I even slept last night without any cold medicine. Whoo hoo! I slept about eight hours with only one interruption to go to the bathroom. It feels like a miracle. I'm sure I'll be getting over this cold quickly now.

My son seemed to be testing me a bit when I returned from Dallas, as children are prone to do. It seems, however-- now that I've been able to observe him and love on him for over a week of being back--that he's doing quite well. I don't know if it's the medication or just a cumulative effect of all the things we've all been working on together as a family. One thing I've noticed is that he's much more of a morning person now. He's actually been quite cheerful of late while getting ready for school in the morning. What a blessing!

The bad news is that my beloved twin is in a suicidal phase. I spoke to her yesterday and she seemed at least as overwhelmed as I did before I went away for trauma recovery work. I wish I could magically take her pain away. We seem to go through these recovery stages in tandem quite often. Well, we are identical twins after all . Send a prayer up for her, won't you?

I want to address some of the inquiries I had about my stay in the trauma treatment program in Dallas. First of all, it's the program started by the internationally-renowned trauma expert, Colin A. Ross. I knew a bit of him previously, because he's linked on my dot com site, under Research Resources,
here. My first impression, in cyber land, was that he has a fairly large ego. His name seems to be stamped on everything! Well, I guess that's one of the ways one becomes a "household" name, isn't it? (And, no, I didn't think you were too nosy asking about him, Keepers.)

Meeting with him in person was rather nerve-wracking. First of all, he has the unusual m.o. of having the entire trauma outpatient group sit in on the session. No pressure there, huh? Secondly, he is intimidating. This is my personal feeling, but I'm sure many would agree with me. I don't like his personal therapy style at all. I certainly wouldn't choose him for my personal, ongoing therapist. I had to be quite assertive with him several times during our session. At one point, I told him that I felt badgered. Not a warm, comfy feeling. Another time, I felt like one of those defense attorneys in a courtroom drama and wanted to shout back, "Asked and answered!" I told him he had asked me the same question at least five times and I felt I had answered it at least two or three times. Can we move on??

Having said all this, I must admit, the man is a master at getting to the heart of the trauma issues. He is, indeed, an expert at helping patients identify their distorted thinking. I was surprised and amazed that he really helped me get at a core issue. It was a realization that had quite a ripple effect and led me to a major revelation of sorts on my trauma and trauma recovery process. The realization is this: I still have yet to completely forgive myself for what happened to me as a child. I still have yet to completely accept and embrace, forgive and love that wounded little girl who was and is me.

It took me a day or two to wrap my brain around this concept. I thought I had "been there, done that" with all the inner child work I did years ago. I guess that was another tip of an iceberg I had only whacked a few chips off of so far.

I need to think some more about how I will word what happened to me next. It may be quite triggering for some, so I'll put that warning out in advance right now. (I'll be sure to put up another trigger warning when I put up that upcoming post.) Gonna run now; I promised my Sis I'd call her this afternoon. I'll be around to visit blogs for sure in the next couple of days. Thanks, all for waiting for me and not giving up on me!

October 17, 2006


Making My Way Back...Slowly

Thank you, cyber support angels, for all the well-wishes, healing vibes and cyber hugs while I was doing the trauma program. I am home now, and it's good to be back.

I was a little anxious coming home. While I was gone, really all I had to concern myself with was recovery. I'm nervous about getting overwhelmed again.

I'm determined to take good care of myself as I transition back. I got slammed with a nasty cold a couple of days ago. It is actually a blessing, because it is forcing me to transition slowly and with great care and comfort. I'm not surprised I got physically sick. I haven't slept much over four hours in a night for about a month now. And even the four hours is interrupted. I think once this cold subsides and I can breathe, I'll probably sleep for about 12 hours.

I'll be back with more info on what the trauma program was actually about and what it meant for me, when my nose isn't so red. Thanks, all, for keeping me close--you truly are angels to me!

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