Letter to the World: Sharon Speaks told family, friends, and church community the childhood sexual abuse of a Catholic priest and her brothers. Now she is telling the world. She journaled the healing, betrayal, loss, the empowerment, the devastation, and the finding of her voice as it was safe.
This partial autobiography is a gift of tools and ideas for supporting a survivor. Writing comes, and then poems and songs, as she moves from wanting someone to understand to understanding. We gain a different perspective of why violence, abuse, or assault happens and whether criminal and civil court proceedings help or hinder.
Remembering the abuse as an adult, and having it confirmed by offenders, isn’t often out there for public discussion. Sharon sees the book assisting families, communities, government law makers, as well as historians. It has a ten year (1992–2002) perspective of society’s ways of dealing with sexual abuse.
Whether it be educational curriculum for advisors in law, gender studies, medicine, counseling, social sciences, church and church leaders, family relationships, justice/offenders rehabilitation, domestic violence, cultural studies, residential school survivors, current affairs media, reporters in sports and recreation, schools and universities, seniors, or teenagers, this is relevant.
Society no longer sweeps abuse under the rug when it’s daily front page news. The book relates to those on a spiritual journey as well as adult survivors of child sexual abuse. It speaks to those seeking self-help or inspiration to support a family member’s healing. It’s here for parents of someone raped or assaulted, or for anyone who has ever felt alone, a loss, or betrayal; it is for anyone who felt different, expendable, who wants to be understood, who feels battered and bruised, used and abused.
Sharon sees this as a letter to the world assisting us, communities and church leaders, to create new ways of being there for children. This is a book where healing happens, joy replaces despair, and there is hope for our world—a reason to go on!