When I ordered 100 copies of my poetry collection, that deals with my story of sexual abuse and other related issues, I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to find enough people who wanted a copy of the book.
When you self-publish your own book, you take on the responsibility for selling and or giving away the copies, so you don’t get stuck with boxes of books taking up space in your home. When I took possession of the first lot of books, I was pumped up ready to sell my book, and eager to talk to people about my story. I stayed that way throughout the year since the book first came out. I had a book launch, talked to people and found new homes for the books. Then a couple of months ago I checked my stocks of books left, and realised I only had a handful of copies left.
That’s when I decided it was time to bite the bullet and order another print run! Exciting stuff, and I’ll be looking for opportunities to talk with people about sex abuse. In a caring way, of course. There are so many people, both men and women, who have been holding onto stories of shame. When you think you’re the only ‘bad’ person this has happened to, it’s a terrible thing. But there are so many of us, all with our own secrets, that are eating into our happiness, leaving shame and despair.
I’m sharing my story, because I want people to know they’re not alone, and that there are people who know how it can be. Knowing you’re not the only one, and that it wasn’t your fault, can bring some inner peace to you. I found my inner peace by sharing my story, and I hope others can do the same.
My dream is to run creative writing workshops with people who have been hurt by these terrible things. I’m not a counsellor, but I’m a writer who knows how to listen with empathy.