Category Archives: Sexual Abuse

Co-authoring Adventures

ANNOUNCINGAuthor photos and more 016

2 pm / Saturday,

January 31st, 2015

Jeffery Kirkendall will speak

at the Peregrine Book Company

In Prescott, Arizona

 

Five writers present their adventures collaborating with a spouse, friend or sibling.  Hear the struggles, conflicts and laughter that each writer experience on the journey to complete a book.  One has to do with developing a transatlantic friendship.  Another is a coming of age experience.

The other authors share about soul-mates finding one another and sibling harmony.  These story tellers reveal how in co-authorship their stories and poetry exceeded what one could have accomplished alone

TO LEARN MORE CLICK HERE.

 

AUTHOR SUNDAY

It is hard to write The Great American Novel . . . fifteen-minutes-at-a-time.

I provide 24/7 care-taking for a disabled seventy-five-year-old woman who has been my best friend, lover, wife, and the most influential woman in my life for thirty years.  It is the only paying job I have had for the last four years.  Medicade nets me two-hundred-and-forty-five dollars a week to care for my wife, and that will soon be cut to about two-hundred.  We live and love in our vintage thirty-foot Holiday Rambler travel trailer that my cousin bought us a year ago after we lost our home.

My life-style is close to that of a single mom with a disabled child at home.  Every hour of every day has a list of things that need attention, and I know that I will not get to them all.  What is important?

On Sundays I practice a role-playing routine.  I pretend that I am a noteworthy writer, that writing is my forte’, my profession, my Calling, if you will.  I put on my New York City writer’s hat, dress like an author going to meet his agent, and act like I would imagine someone would act who has something to contribute to the world, even a  legacy to leave.

I still get my sweetheart her meds on time, food on time, exercise, reading, resting, getting to the bathroom on time.  But I do not sweat the small stuff on Sunday.  No rent, utilities, leaking faucet, laundry, dirty floors, or creditors.  I have to work at blocking these things out of my mind while washing the dishes.

While my partner sleeps, I write, or think about writing, meditate, pray, and attempt to discern what is most important to get down.  Then I do it.  I never know how long I will have to finish before I have to move on to my critical responsibilities.  Will I get to complete my thoughts?

So this is what I have done this Author Sunday. . . . Excuse me, she has pulled off her oxygen hose.

Okay, I’m back, but she will need to get to the bathroom soon, so let me say this before the day takes off in another  direction.

The long-term effects on aging victims of childhood torture and terrorism are profound, even mind-boggling.  Being beaten, choked, shocked, kicked, burned, sexually-impaled, over years, . . leaves damaged spines, brain trauma, organ-tissue damage, deformed joints, hearing and sight impairment, and then there are the nightmares, flashbacks, and the relentless, soul-challenging physical pain.

And all this suffering, all of it, is for the sins of others.

That has to make it one of the most tragic scenarios Life can deal a human being, don’t you think?

I have to go now and put my arms around the love of my life and slow-dance with her to the commode.  She laughs when I whisper in her ear the way I did when we were newly weds.

Younger Days
Younger Days

So here is my finale’.

Make a difference where you can. 

Love the one you’re with. 

          And remember, . . .

                    Living Gracefully

                                is the best revenge.

J. Kirkendall

Happy Anniversary to Us!

Note from JK:  The following is a letter written by the little girl (as an adult) whose childhood abuse I partially described in the previous posting – “A Legitimate Rape Question.”  As in that article, I have used pseudonyms to protect people’s privacy.  The letter addresses the question, “Can victims of sexual terrorism find true love?”

 

Dear Mom & Dad,

Well it has been nineteen years and what a ride!

There we were, on a beautiful spring day, sitting on the porch at your house in Payson. Dad made a call to someone he called Raymond to ask if he could meet us for dinner. Dad said he was a poor man with a deformed back. Well, I figured what harm could it do?  Afterall  I was poor, and I had a deformed back!  Dinner at El Rancho Restaurant sounded like an innocent enough night out.

I had been feeling pretty ill from physical and mental stress. I was underweight, depressed, afraid of life as I knew it. Well, we went to the restaurant, and we waited…..After a bit we thought that maybe he wasn’t going to show, so we ordered.

Two men were near our booth talking, one of them a very big man, with a strong voice (Later I was told that man was a radio disc jockey). The other man was very, very handsome! Smooth voice, slender body, mature looking, a mustache that reminded me of my favorite cowboys, Doc Holiday. I tried not to stare, not knowing this was the man I was about to meet and spend the rest of my life with.

I was completely flustered that he sat down right next to me!!!! I couldn’t breathe. I looked at his profile and saw his chiseled face, black hair, slight receding hair-line, and handsome as ever, eyes that were like that of a Greek god that swept away the innocence of any thoughts I was thinking.

I looked for the deformity in his back, of course, and it was not as I had been told. As a matter of fact, this man had the body of an athlete. I swept my nose across his path to smell him without being noticed, and he smelled deliciously of musk, amber, and the smell that must be what they say attracts a man to a woman and vice-versa. I became so nervous and suddenly realized I hadn’t done anything with myself to show that I was even in existence. I slowly became more comfortable and began to converse.

After dinner we retreated to Mom and Dad’s place. I could see Mom approved and Dad was quick to give me a glance of approval too. The three of us went up into the tree house out back, the most beautiful tree house ever, to this day, been up in. We shared stories, and we laughed. We shared things in the night air, things about ourselves that would forever stay with us.

Mom decided to go inside and await Dad’s arrival for the night. Dad had set this all up. He had known that Raymond was a gentle and beautiful man. He loved Raymond. He had gotten to know Raymond before I did. When Raymond said his goodbye’s and prepared to go home to the little trailer he shared with his big dog Dakota, he started to walk away.

I walked him out, and asked him if I could hug him. He looked so surprised, yet turned to me, put his strong arms around me. I smelled his scent again. Wow!!!! I went to bed that night with the feelings I had never had before. Dad came into the room with a smile, approaching the bed to hug me goodnight. He asked me if I enjoyed the night, if I liked Raymond, a smile on his face, and then we both laughed in synchronicity.

I told him I was in love for the first time in my life, that I was scared, that I was happy. “What do I do?” I asked him.

His reply was perfect, “Just be yourself. Just let it happen. If it’s meant to be, it will be.” He turned to me as he left the room and said “I love you. I’m so glad to see you happy. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen you smile and laugh like you did tonight. Remember to just be yourself. You are beautiful just the way you are. Take it slow. Let him call you. Don’t chase him. I’ve got a feeling he will be calling you soon. Goodnight my daughter. I love you.”

I looked at him with tears in my eyes, with only joy and an overwhelming sense that my life was going to be changed forever for the better. For once I was alive with a healthy and functional love. Also I felt an exceptional amount of love from a father, a father figure I never had in my life before he married my mother. He was looking out for me.

A beautiful night in March, four people got together and changed the course of my life forever for the better. What a wonderful night. What a great father. What a great mother. What a wonderful man named Raymond that sat down next to me and said, “Hello, I’m Raymond. Nice to meet you.”

He said yes to going to the tree house. He took a chance. We all did. Thank you Dad. Thank you Mom.

You are in both of our hearts tonight, in our memories of that wonderful time, that wonderful night we all connected in a restaurant booth, in a tree house, in this goofy world, . . we had a great experience that will last a lifetime.

How does “Thank you” do justice? I love you forever for all that you give, all that you are, all that you have been to me. Thank you for life as I now know it – happily married, happy with the family we have become.

Happy Anniversary to the four of us!!!!!

We were all there when it happened.

Goodnight.

Forever you daughter,

I Love You,

Emily Fawn

Las Vegas Review Journal !

I have the honor of being referenced in an article by an old colleague of mine.  It is related to the “Legitimate Rape”  article which follows this post.

Check this guy out.  His name is Steven Kalas.

Great brain, reliable moral compass, well-read, prolific writer, talented teacher, truly fine father of three fine sons — making a difference in the world fighting the forces of ignorance and arrogance.

And oh, yeah, last but not least, . . . probably the most intellectually courageous Christian I have had the privileged to know in the past thirty years.

The subtitle of his first book tells us about the man who wrote it.  HUMAN MATTERS: Wise and Witty Counsel on Relationships, Parenting, Grief and Doing the Right Thing.

Click below to read his article.

STEVEN KALAS: Sometimes, to cover our words, we ‘misspeak’

I am Jeff Kirkendall, and I approve this message. . .

A “LEGITIMATE” RAPE QUESTION

Recently a man running for the Senate in Missouri made the statement in public that women who are victims of “legitimate rape”  cannot conceive.  He claimed that some kind of science exists to support this notion that during “legitimate” sexual trauma, as he puts it, “the woman’s body shuts down,” and the egg is not fertilized.

Since hearing this defiance of biological science in the national media, I learned that this falsehood is being passed off as fact and justification for support of abortion being illegal, even in the cases of incest and rape.  As a staunch opponent of ignorance and deception, and as a retired trauma therapist with thirty years of experience, I felt compelled to address this moral issue in writing.

Let me be clear, I am not advocating for or against abortion.  I am stating that there is no such thing as “legitimate” rape, no anti-conception mechanism in the female body and I am asking, “Do you want state/federal government making this choice for you, your child, and family?”

*

Let me describe in generalizable terms a true case I dealt with  years ago which we might all agree falls into that much-discussed category of “legitimate rape” and even has enough trauma to qualify as “sexual torture” or “sexual terrorism.”

A twelve-to-fourteen year-old female child of an average middle-class American family is held in a remote location out-of-state against her will.

Imagine someone you know and love in this  scenario.  Visualize her there.  Say her name out loud.  Set a photo of her next to your computer as you contemplate this scene.

I will call this child Emily.

Emily is heavily drugged and gang-raped for three days.  She is then left naked in a public park at dawn, dazed, bruised, and stained with dried blood and semen.  She is held in a jail cell for the ten hours it takes for her parents to come and pick her up.

In spite of the fact that Emily knows some of her attackers and will see them in her community, no one is arrested, even questioned by police.

Emily’s mother soon discovers her beloved child is pregnant.

What we know is that, regardless of what happens next, Emily and her family will live with the events of those three days for the rest of their lives.  It will permanently change all their major life-decisions and family/friend relationships.  The horror Emily endured will forever periodically haunt her dreams and waking state.

*

QUESTION:    Should Emily and her mother and father be forced by law,  under penalty of imprisonment, to bear the child of her rapists?

ANSWER:        Yes       No     Undecided?       

“Emily” at age 4

*This is not a scientific study. This is a simple inquiry of those who have an opinion.

Forward this question to everyone who might be interested in this issue.  I will post the  results on my website as they come in.  Thank you for your time and considerations.

Respectfully,

Jeffery Kirkendall, L.P.C. Ret.