One of my Alaska brothers sent me this article yesterday published in the Anchorage Daily News.  He told me it reminded him of me and of our childhood.  Although my mother kept an insanely clean house, although she was the abuser and not our father, although there were no criminal charges against my parents, no criminal sexual assault, and no alcoholism, the grim-beyond-words environment this young man was raised within – coupled with the failings of any kind of “system” or individual that could have spared this young man – will sound extremely familiar to many of this blog’s readers.

In case of Alaska teen who killed dad, self-defense argument takes shape By CASEY GROVE

It has taken me nearly 24 hours to decide to highlight this article of the account of the horrible mess one young man is now in as he picked up a gun and slaughtered the madman that was his father.  Such a horror story raises thousands of questions for which I certainly have no answers.  Does anyone?

I am reminded that my writing work about my abuse history is, as one of my sisters called it yesterday – what I can do.  But it is hard to find a perspective that lets me know what I can do is good enough.  It will take a combined investment of many, many people to create solutions to the kinds of troubles this young man faced/faces – and that I and so many others also face.

My sister wrote me:

And the words that you have worked so hard to craft and your story which is so hard to tell WILL help many people I am sure. Just think of the ripple of the stone in the pond affect…how each small thing works to bring large change. I am so proud of you and the absolutely heroic effort you have made!

The ripples.  This newspaper story and the very real people that belong to it are also part of the rippling.  I cannot completely ignore this young man’s plight just because I don’t know how to do anything to help him!  That young man needed help a long, long time ago.  Yet how are we as a society going to find a way to protect children within the home of their parents as long as our standards are so incredibly low for what we believe ALL infants and children need and deserve?


I am reminded of one of my “crime report” stories that I suppose will need to be rewritten when I reach that point in the books I am working on now.  For now, this is a part of my own experience that is resonating with the history of the young man in the above article:

One of the absolute stupidest questions people ask me is “Why didn’t you fight back against your mother.”

I am not even going to begin to write here what I have to say about that question.  What is in this post is enough to give anyone who asks that question a run for their pitiful money.  There are reader comments at the bottom of the newspaper article written by people who I would most certainly add to the “pitiful” category.

For as positive as I try to stay while working through trauma concerns I would have nothing coherent to say in response to some of those readers’ words.  Sometimes this entire subject DOES seem impossible.  I NEED to find ways to believe that it is NOT!


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  1. I keep forgetting this, but wanted to mention it. Somewhere on this blog I read about what we deal with and “anti-seizure” meds. Four years after breast cancer, in 2004, I still couldn’t “snap out of it” and went to a psychiatrist & was prescribed Lexapro. I have been on it ever since. It has somewhat calmed my “constant vigilance”, but not completely. The other med I was prescribed long before that was Klonopin, an anti-seizure med that was prescribed to me for my panic attacks while driving.
    I only take that “as needed”. However, Klonopin helps me to “calm the storm” during crises and at night when my brain just won’t stop. It is not a panacea, but any tools that are available to us are welcomed by me.
    Use of Klonopin is closely monitored so I can only get prescriptions refilled at a two-month interval, but since I don’t need it every day, that’s quite sufficient. I have not endured the abuse at the same level as you, so I feel like the impact on me is not as intense as it is for you, but this might be something to look into.
    Enjoy your company and garden!

    • Yes – interesting….. “Limbic kindling” is the term that made most sense to me….. a kind of seizuring in the right brain regions affected by early trauma during brain development birth to age 2

      I am contemplating doing something I have never done before after I return from my early June travels. I spoke with a woman in town who cured her cervical cancer with an all-green vegetable diet for 90 days – with 3 oranges added per day

      that diet lowers the body’s acid levels – cancer, evidently, cannot survive in alkalyn body

      I also have osteoporosis as my mother’s mother had, which is also connected to too-high acid

      I am ordering the book this woman mentioned by Robert Young, the Ph Miracle — this is a detox diet – I take some homeopathic assists for sleeping, helps in at least 7 days out of 10. Otherwise…. nothing but cigarettes, which are killing me and so far that I can not leave behind me

      there is a massage therapist doing chair massage at our local farmers’ market Sat morns – $5 for 5 minutes – and in one session my shoulder has improved impressively!! All is fascinating!!!!

      thanks for the info, too!

  2. My heart breaks for you and all you have endured, but I believe you do know all of what has happened in your past and that your current journey is a sort of “knowing” process. While you cannot save all the children from what goes on in their parents’ homes, you are saving many grown children, including me, every day by what you do!!! I believe there are others who gain from your blog who wish to remain anonymous and not post. Would you really be surprised by that?
    I would bet that anyone on this site would never ask you why you didn’t fight back and the others will never understand. It reminds me of a response years ago from Dear Abby, “If you’ll forgive me for not answering, I’ll forgive you for asking.” I don’t mean to be glib, but I hope you understand what I mean by quoting that. People do not have the RIGHT to ask questions of us, only we can give that right to them.
    I will choose to whom I tell my stories and how much I tell them. I believe that your current path may actually help that poor boy in Alaska at some point. Maybe not directly, but maybe still.
    I have spent days poring over all of your writings and it has given me such perspective that it actually calms me.
    It’s ironic, isn’t it, that that boy wanted to “save” his mother?
    I’m sure you noted the part of the article that talked about no PHYSICAL abuse. You wrote in one of your posts, “As I have written about the chemical that signals our body that we are in pain — Substance P. Pain, the physiological signaling of it and the experience of the pain itself, is equally as real for emotional pain as it is for any physical pain.”
    I am willing to bet that this will become recognized more and more because of the work you do. So the work you do now may not have am impact in our lifetimes, but, “a journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”. You are that one step. Hurray for you and please don’t stop for any reason, except to take a break and re-group when you need to.
    I said yesterday and I’ll say it again, this site is the best gift I have received, possible in my entire life. It is that important, what you are doing. Not that you are “saving” me, but that you are saving yourself and so many others. Your journey will be painful, but nothing I value in this life was handed to me, so trust that you are on the right path, your instincts are right on, and you do know where you’re going. You are a beautiful human being and still generous enough to share with us, despite what you’ve endured.
    Take care of yourself today and every day!
    With endless gratitude, Lisa.

    • I wanted to include reference to the verbal abuse material — just don’t have the energy to hunt it up right now – online search for “teicher verbal abuse brain” should bring that up

      I have a friend coming out to tour the rose garden in a little bit — that, and reading such words as yours sustain me — oh, thank you!

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