There has to be as many reasons for writing a book as there are writers who write them.  As I sit alone on this New Year’s day with my children thousands of miles away from me, as yet another day dawns with my precious grandsons also being nearly two thousand miles away from me up there in the frozen north, I think about what would set me free.

It is not the final telling of the saga I did not choose to become a part of as abuse targeted me out of the six possible choices my mother had in our family that would free me.  It would also be some money coming into our family that would give me a freedom I do not have.  My oldest daughter told me the other day as she spent time with the youngest of my grandsons that his newest ability to laugh and laugh and laugh made her laugh so hard that her cheeks hurt.  I want to be a part of that joy!

I want to be a part, now and then, of the goodness that is flowing along in the river of my family’s life. 

Oh well.  Another day of patience, of trust that the book publishing process is taking whatever time it needs to get itself done – and to get itself done right.

Meanwhile, I focus in my thoughts on this sunny morning as the frost melts and drips from the world outside toward the continued work of creating a title for this first book.  If I ever thought that naming a newborn was a difficult job, I am finding that task pales in comparison to naming a book!

An unanticipated difficulty for me…….

So today I think about the greatest common thread between my mother’s childhood of abuse and my own:  We were both the child in our family chosen for abuse.

The choice was made by our mothers.

That choice and its consequences changed my mother’s life, and her same choice regarding her abuse of me changed mine.

Maybe on its most essential level this is the essence of what my book, ‘Story Without Words’, is about.  I was going to use the word ‘chooses’ — but at this moment that choice feels like ‘targets’.

A choice is a choice, but targeting someone for abuse conveys more of the actual reality of what such a choice is about, what it is meant to do, what it does.

I am the kind of person who always begins a project and works through that project until it is done.  Then I move on to the next project.  Being in limbo in the midst of a project is obviously very difficult for me, primarily because I am not the one who can complete it!  And yet a book stuck without a subtitle does involve me.  It’s my book.  I SHOULD know what the dang thing has for a title!

But I don’t.  And I want the day to come soon when I DO know!  Is today that day?


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  1. This would be for subtitle version –

    Story Without Words –

    When a mother targets one child for abuse



    I give words in this book to a very specific story about two mothers I know of who each targeted one of their children for abuse. One woman was my grandmother who targeted my mother. The second was my mother who targeted me. The generally accepted statistic is that of those abused in childhood 65% do not go on to abuse their children while 35% do. I am among the majority while my mother was a part of the minority.

    For all the forensic autobiographical and biographical work I have done to examine the patterns of abuse in my family I have not discovered anything I can claim to be a fact that would explain why my grandmother and my mother both chose to target one of their children for abuse. All I can do is offer this part of my family’s history with the hope that removing this Story Without Words from its invisibility and silence will offer something uniquely helpful to the study of the intergenerational transmission of trauma through infant and child abuse.

    This book also describes my mother’s severe and unrecognized mental illness, most likely Borderline Personality Disorder with psychosis, as it created a split ‘good/evil’ mind within her that then directly generated and orchestrated her horrendous abuse of me.


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