Look Away.

I have a few mixed emotions today about my book. Today I have heard three times from people, sorry, but they can’t read it because of its content. While part of me understands that. And really I do, sometimes things upset others too much and it’s easier to not read or look, or put yourself through the trauma.

My emotions come from why? Why do people have to tell me? Why say it like a shrug, oh sorry I can’t read that but good luck with it anyway. Am I being harsh that sometimes hearing it upsets me? Sometimes it feels like the child inside that wrote this is being turned away from again.

Sometimes I hate him. Sometimes I feel him and sometimes I am him.

Sometimes it feels like people are turning their backs because they don’t want to look. Looking at a hurt child is too much for them. But they don’t think about the child. I guess in ways that makes me feel upset.

It’s amazing the rollercoaster ride my story being out in the public has taken me on. On the flip side of this, I have gained so many supporters that I feel their heartfelt words. I feel their empathy and care. I thank them.

I’m not saying people have to read. I’m not saying people have to be pleased or whatever. I think where my feelings lie, is that I am a real person, this is my real story. Please don’t tell me you cant look at me. I’m ashamed enough.

I guess I should really say that this isn’t directed at anyone. So please no one take offense. I’m just rambling the random thoughts I have from time to time.

11 thoughts on “Look Away.

  1. 😦 maybe some don’t realize that it’s YOUR story!!! I can relate though. I had never wanted to read a book about such abuse, torture, etc. It was too heartbreaking. I didnt want to invite that into my life. I didnt want to imagine that kind of horror in the world. I was selfish in that regard and EXTREMELY naive. I was always the one that would squeeze my eyes real tight and think “if I dont see it, than it doesn’t exist” Shame on me!!!!! I will tell you this. The ONLY reason I picked up your book and read it was because it was YOUR book. I was extremely hesitant because of the subject matter, but I wanted to read your story and wanted to learn of your journey. I am glad that I did. It has opened my eyes and made me realize myself as a person. How wrong it is for me to want to live in my own naive little mind and imagine that life is all moonbeams and rainbows while I find trivial things in my life to complain about. You always hear that someone has it worse than you and you made me open my eyes to realize it. I am so sorry for your childhood and even more sorry for the struggles you continue to endure. However, I am glad you told your story (and continue to do so), and am glad that I cared enough about you to pick it up and read it. It changed me. I view things more differently. Not just situations just around abuse, but everything in general. I am happy that I allowed something that horrific and sad to enter my mind because I know the true meaning of strength, endurance, bravery, and survival. Sometimes its not always Bear in Man Vs. Wild.. Sometimes its just man suriving life and now I can try my best to help.

  2. Yes, some things are indeed, better left unsaid. And it’s exactly that attitude of, some not being able to look, that you should continue to make your voice heard… even louder.

    Although the reasons may be varied, the common thread is usually that some people are simply stronger than others. And in my opinion, you are one of the strongest, James.

    Whether they realize it or not, people need to hear what you have to say. Other survivors need to know they are not alone; especially from a man like yourself. I think the number of people who don’t want to look, is far less than the ones who want to see you … and to hear you.

    I cannot even count how many times I cried over the months you told me your story. Some days I didn’t want to hear it, because of how you had suffered. Some days you shattered my world. But still I listened. Why? Because it was you who was doing the telling. Because of my own life of abuse. Because I found that I could relate to you, and that I could share without shame. But most of all, because even though I had been abused, I too was naïve in the thought that such things (you endured) actually took place in this world. I had no idea that a child could go through such horrendous things, and survive. I felt, (and still do feel) that I needed to know what you had to say, and how you felt about all of it.

    You have heard me say it a thousand times over the years, but James, you have taught me so much. Because of you, I see life differently… much differently; and I appreciate it so much more.
    You made me understand.
    And I appreciate you.

    And so, focus upon the ones who WANT to look. Have any doubts? Take a look around at the children you mentioned in your last post. The ones you have helped. Most of them didn’t even know your story. Can you imagine how you have helped some that DO know? … and / or have read your books?

    You may never know the true impact of your story. Think about that, the next time you have someone tell you, they can’t or won’t “look” at you.
    It is their loss.

    As I have told you before, your voice is unique, and it is needed. I too, am sorry you were hurt by this. I hope that by knowing how many people you have helped, that your pain from the somewhat insensitive and uninformed few, is eased soon.

    ~ Hugs ~

  3. This troubles me also. It actually pisses me off when I see it, but you dont need that…so I’ll leave with this. If they were drowning and you walked on by because you didnt want to wet your new shoes….Maybe they would get it.

  4. I am glad I opened my eyes and read your books. I’ve gotten to know a man of such courage and character that has changed me

  5. I am with Gloria on this,I all so am very pleased you are writing your story,you might never no how many young people will pick your books up and realise its ok to talk to some one about abuse,to them selves,you JD are one gutsy guy to put your story down,yes its hard to read,but read it I will so I can fully understand this man JD I have got to like and respect..you are doing a great thing my friend.;-} ((((HUGS}}}}

  6. Don’t ever feel bad for “your rambling” as you call it. This is your blog, your outlet to get things off your chest.

    I think the only emotion your should feel about your book is pride. I’m proud of you for putting yourself out there. That takes more courage than most people have to do such a thing.

    I’m sorry that your feelings were hurt by some of the reactions from people and their choosing to turn their backs on such an important story. More so I’m so sorry you sometimes feel ashamed. You have nothing to be ashamed of!

    The people that follow this blog are 100% behind you. You have our love and support always.

  7. I know you were not just talking to ME here, but I know I did tell you that I was going to read the books, but I really had to get my gumption up to start. I had purchased the first book about 2 weeks ago where it was been hiding on my Kindle. I think for me it was that it was about somebody I now sorta KNOW. That made it harder for some reason to begin — not because I think it was in ANY WAY whatsoever your fault, but because it breaks my heart.

    Also, as I said, my father was bipolar, and he was MEAN to me. He would scream at me, called me names, he slapped me for minor infractions, spanked me with a thick leather belt doubled up for what HE considered to be major — but what was really nothing much at all. Did weird stuff like not letting me sit on his lap, while letting my friends sit on his lap instead while it gloated in my direction. Made me wash the floor in gasoline with the windows closed and a pilot light on. Also stir a pot of lead to make bullets on the kitchen stove with the windows closed. WEIRD, WEIRD off-the-wall stuff all my life. I used to think later it was an accident when my mom came home and flipped out that he was about to kill me. Now I’m just not SURE.

    But having said that, I realize that your parents were so much worse, and I do feel for you tremendously. I know you’re a grown man now and yet this will probably never leave you completely.

    A friend once told me when I was about 40 years old (I’m 54 now) that I was to repeat over and over ever day while looking in the mirror, “It’s NOT my fault.” because I was so guilt-ridden about whatever I was or was not that somehow kept me on my father’s radar for mental torture. It has finally sunk in as a revelation. I hope that one day it sinks in for you too because I can tell that you are a really cool, nice person!



  8. Hi JD.
    When I wrote “The Boy” – well, the 1st times were rather graphic. Later on through the years I toned it down to be more acceptable by the “general audience” – and the story was about the effects of the abuse as well as the abuse – and an adventure, and a love story, and THE story of how “I” and my “little boy” came to terms with ourselves (in some ways).

    Some people aren’t able to stomach graphic descriptions; thus in mine they are left to the reader’s mind – with enough information (I hope) to relay what was going on.

    I know some people can not handle “the facts”. I, for one, rarely read graphic ‘stuff’ anymore just for a visceral thrill. Lord knows I’ve seen enough for real. But that doesn’t mean I mind reading it either. As an abuse survivor (or I prefer “thriver” – or perhaps even better, just “people” sometimes) – I think we are inured to the horrors of abuse ‘stuff’. The graphics. Some aren’t.

    Good post, BTW: there is always that delicate balance between audience and the story – you are not going to meet everyone’s “taste” or satisfaction – and you know better than to let someone else’s opinions become your own by now – I hope!

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