Shattered Reality by Kimberly Cheryl

United States criminal justice system flowchart.Image via Wikipedia


About the Author:

Kimberly Cheryl is a master public speaker, successful sales person, business owner and author of three novels. In addition to writing her own books, she contributes articles to various magazines and news columns.
After a school career that included years of failed chemistry classes that began too early in the morning, she switched from a pre-med career to one of business administration. She graduated with an MBA and, later, a Ph.D. in Criminal Justice.

Born into a family of readers, Kimberly had never known a time that she wasn't reading or making up stories. Therefore, after a major life altering auto accident, the need for back surgery, a long recovery period, no respite in sight and a dwindling supply of chocolate, she decided to pull out a pencil and notebook and began to write about her experiences and share some of the knowledge she had gained throughout her career.

Kimberly lives happily in Missouri with her amazing husband, two spirited children and a "zoo" of animals including a Newfoundland, three cats and a rabbit. She enjoys traveling, swimming and reading.

For more information please visit http://www.kimberlycheryl.com/

About the Book:

A wonderful read for all parents, teachers, counselors...we need to open our eyes to child sexual assault and help put a stop to this silent epidemic. The sexual abuse of a child creates a devastating family crisis. Parents want to know what to do and say to help their child but they also want to know how to respond to and heal their own emotional turmoil. As a parent, you need to know it's okay and natural to act with disbelief and denial. This is my story, a mother's story, about the abuse of my daughter and my struggles to overcome. I thought I could trust my family members. I thought I knew and could trust the legal system. I was wrong. As a parent, I couldn't find help for ME...what to expect on this journey with my daughter and her recovery. I didn't know how much pain I would suffer as well. This is my story and my struggle toward recovery. Somehow, some way, I hope it gives you hope for your journey as well.

Excerpt:

With one strange twist of fate, my life was changed,

This morning, when I woke and saw the sun mocking me, I realized what a National Football League running back must feel as he heads toward the defensive line. Don't get me wrong. There isn't a three hundred and fifty pound opponent of unnerving muscle waiting for me, but a petite and sweet one hundred and ten pound dynamo that I call daughter. It goes to show that all things in life aren't of the physical realm. One can get trampled and mangled in life without once having a bruise to show. Despite recent events, deep inside I still have hope that life isn't made only of slings and arrows. I'm just not ready for another day to slay the dragons again. My mind ponders the state of my life and how it has arrived at this chaotic state. Am I only moving within "life" and in fact being operated by the vengeful and barely caring gods? Try as I might, it seems I can only slightly alter my life's path. I remember a time when the important thing in my life was wondering whether I might make it through that mud puddle down the dirt road while remaining atop my bike. I miss those days.

I rise and follow her down stairs. Picking up the paper, I read about yesterday's football game. What a sad and depressing game it was. If my life is anything like my favorite team, it makes me wonder at the futility of my existence. Twelve points ahead in the fourth quarter. Then, those two fumbles take all thought of winning right out the window.

Somewhere, somehow, I also seem to have fumbled the ball of life. I'm glad I don't have pizza left over from that game. Who would want to finish yesterday's stale leftovers and be reminded of how horribly games can end. To again show me what little control I have over the small things in my life?

Never mind the large things...like Child Sexual Assault.

The sexual abuse of a child creates a devastating family crisis. Parents want to know what to do and say to help their child but they also want to know how to respond to and heal their own emotional turmoil. As a parent, you need to know it's okay and natural to act with disbelief and denial.

This is my story, a mothe's story, about the abuse of my daughter and my struggles to over come. I thought I could trust my family members. I thought I knew and could trust the legal system. I was wrong.

This is my journey, my lost "game", and my steps toward recovery. Some how, some way, I hope it gives you hope for your journey as well.

I was lucky enough to be able to interview the author. These are her answers:

Could you please tell us a little about your book?

A wonderful read for all parents, teachers, counselors .... we need to open our eyes to child sexual assault and help put a stop to this silent epidemic. The sexual abuse of a child creates a devastating family crisis. Parents want to know what to do and say to help their child but they also want to know how to respond to and heal their own emotional turmoil. As a parent, you need to know it's okay and natural to act with disbelief and denial. This is my story, a mother's story, about the abuse of my daughter and my struggles to over come. I thought I could trust my family members. I thought I knew and could trust the legal system. I was wrong. As a parent, I couldn't find help for ME...what to expect on this journey with my daughter and her recovery. I didn't know how much pain I would suffer as well. This is my story and my struggle toward recovery. Some how, some way, I hope it gives you hope for your journey as well.

Did something specific happen to prompt you to write this book?

My child was sexually assaulted by my uncle from the ages of 8-13 and the legal system did not prosecute the case because it was a family matter and a he said/she said case – harder to prove so they didn’t want to work with it.

Who or what is the inspiration behind this book?

My 15 year old daughter who is the main character of my story. I admire her strength, courage and love of life despite the tragedy she has had to endure.

Who is your biggest supporter?

My husband and immediate family (parents, sisters, aunt, cousin and in-laws)Your biggest critic? The perpetrator and their family (unfortunately this is a portion of my family that I was very close to for over 40 years – people I looked up to, admired and loved)

What cause are you most passionate about and why?

Preventing Child Sexual Assault and helping Rape victims as well as educating young girls to avoid situations that may make them vulnerable to a rape.

In the last year have you learned or improved on any skills?

I have been working on “adding more” to my stories by developing the characters, scenery and emotions. To show rather than just tell my story. To draw the audience into my story with me, making them passionate enough to want to help the cause and make a difference in our society when it comes to protecting women and children against sexual assault.

What is the most important thing in your life right now?

Family and close friends continue to be the most important thing in my life. Enjoying every minute that I am blessed with while on this Earth rather than taking anything for granted. Nothing is promised or guarenteed to us – we need to make the most out of what we are given.

What are some of your long term goals?

My long term goal is to speak out more on personal safety, changing laws to protect more children against predators of sexual assault and helping educate individuals on the Health Care industry in the U.S. & the need for more affordable, accessible medical care for all – especially those with chronic diseases and children who are currently uninsurable or insurable at such a high rate they can’t afford it.

What do you feel has been your greatest achievement as an author?

The recognition it has given me in the areas of 1) Pharmaceutical Industry 2) Child Sexual Assault. In being recognized as a specialist through my books, I have had the opportunity to do multiple radio, TV and speaker programs locally, nationally and internationally.

What do you feel is your biggest strength?

My marketing and communication abilities.

Biggest weakness?

My english – I am an awful speller and am not the best with sentence structure and development. I have always joked that English is my second language (yet the only one I know)

What do you feel sets this book apart from others in the same genre?

The reason I wrote Shattered Reality is because there just isn’t much available for family members. There are several stories about helping your child deal with and recover from Sexual Assault and there are many stories written by the victims but there just isn’t anything available for parents that will let them know how they will feel during this roller coaster of events and what type of road blocks both physical, legal and emotional they will encounter and how it feels. I have also had a few counselors use my book during their sessions with offenders to let them know the damage they have done not only to the victim but to entire families.You know the scenario – you’re stuck on an island.

What book would you bring with you and why?

Judith McNaught – Whitney My Love. It was one of the first historical romances I read and I have read it so many times now that I know almost every word by heart. It is one of those books you can’t put down, you identify with the characters, fall in love with them and their “story” and root for the heroine.

If you could go back and change one day, what would it be?

I would change the day I lost my grandparents and I would keep them forever. I would also change the day of disclosure by my daughter of her sexual assault. Since I can do neither of these things, I have had to find ways to deal with the consequences, learn from the experiences and make the most out of what I have to work with in life.

Are you a different person now than you were 5 years ago? In what way/s?

Yes, I am more judgmental. I do not like nor trust many people any more and am very skeptical of individual’s motives when it comes to just about anything. I am angry and cynical but working on that – I’m a work in progress :)

Nothing is as it seems. And that you can either be angry, depressed and hateful over what challenges have been placed in your life’s path or you can learn from them, find a way to cope and use that to help others so they don’t have to suffer the same way you have.

Is there anything you regret doing/not doing?

I regret not knowing my “true” uncle better. I regret not protecting my child against his behavior. Even though I know it is not my fault for his behavior and his choices it is hard as a protective, loving parent to not blame yourself for your child’s pain and anguish.

What is your favorite past-time?

Swimming, reading, watching professional baseball/football, cheering my children and nieces on during their various activities.

Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

Please take a moment to learn about Child Sexual Assault, the need for better education – not just stranger danger, believing in your child if they disclose abuse and help enforce the many laws we currently have on our legal books that are not being used to prosecute child predators – especially that 90% who are involved in incest cases. We need to open our eyes as a society rather than continue to sweep this issue under the rug as it has been for decades.

WIN PRIZES!!!

SHATTERED REALITY VIRTUAL BLOG TOUR '09 will officially begin on March 2 and end on March 31. You can visit Kimberly's blog stops at http://www.virtualbooktours.wordpress.com/ in March to find out more about this great book and talented author!As a special promotion for all our authors, Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour to a published author or a $50 Amazon gift certificate to those not published who comments on our authors' blog stops. More prizes will be announced as they become available.


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2 comments:

Dorothy Thompson said...

Man, no one prosecuted because it was a family member? Shudders. I would get back at him somehow, someway. Maybe his conscious is doing the job for you. Nice interview, Kimberly, and it's nice to get to know you!

Cheryl said...

Wonderful interview ladies. Kim, you have some excellent long-term goals.

I wish you all the best.

Cheryl