MEMOIRIST AND CREATIVE NONFICTION WRITER
I HAVE A B.A. IN FRENCH AND A MASTER IN EDUCATION FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF MONTANA.
MY WRITING AWARDED ME THE 2018 MONTANA HONORARY FELLOWSHIP AT VIRGINIA CENTER FOR THE CREATIVE ARTS.
I LIVE WITH MY HUSBAND IN MISSOULA, MONTANA AND NEWPORT BEACH, CALIFORNIA.
I thought it was depression, then I learned it was my childhood.
As Indira Gandhi said, “Nothing that is worthwhile is ever easy.” For decades, I believed something was wrong with me. I felt inferior to everyone, and was often unable to shake the waves of sadness that accompanied stressful times. I solved my problems by turning to self-limiting beliefs, thinking if only this part of me were different then everything would be fine. I put on a good face, believing this was normal. Little did I know I was stuck in a cycle of trauma, burning precious energy and time in the trenches while the world seemed to grow in importance and significance around me.
When I finally faced my mental health, I uncovered a childhood filled with hostility and negligence. The story flipped, and similar to the first time I went to France, I grew by learning to live in unfamiliar territory. Once the culture shock dissipated, I embraced my trauma as a beacon of light and hope for dramatic change. I hope to share what I learned with you. Thanks for being here.
PACES CONNECTION: PACEs Connection amplifies and supports the worldwide positive and adverse childhood experiences (PACEs) movement by sharing its stories, solutions, and science, growing healing communities, and valuing equity and diversity.
My writing aims to shine a light on a psychiatric disorder that affects women more than twice the rate of men. Our culture draws a perception of PTSD from soldiers and war veterans while the stories of women with PTSD often go untold. From the entertainment industry to the medical industry, little attribution is paid to moral violations as an underlying source of mental distress in women. Globally, sexual assault is the most common cause of PTSD. I believe humanity stands to benefit from exposing PTSD as a human experience, and to truly address it as a society requires viewing it through the eyes of sufferers.
MADNESS; A MEMOIR OF PTSD is an unforgettable story of the prolonged effects of childhood trauma and a testament of PTSD’s gravity on women. When an invisible disorder wreaks havoc on a woman’s life, what would save her from her madness?
- Please seek professional help if you or someone you know experiences any type of abuse.
- For child abuse, please visit childhelp.org
- National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
PHOTOS BY ATHENA LONSDALE
I ENJOY TRAVEL, DOGS, FIGURE SKATING, HIKING, CASHMERE SWEATERS, AND BELGIAN BEER.
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