100 Book Club Countdown
Sexual abuse and sexual assault are in the headlines...again. By adding Denial to your book club's reading list -- and scheduling a live discussion with author Nanette Kirsch -- your book club can enter a timely and important discussion intended to broaden our understanding around the suffering of victims, the cost of living in denial and the opportunity to ensure this open secret remains a secret no more.
Denial gives a voice to victims through the story of one man's life, lived in the shadow of an abusive past. It approaches the topic sensitively and respectfully, yet never shies away from the important, if difficult, truths to be learned.
Reserve your club's spot today:
What Can the Weinstein Scandal Teach Us about Sexual Abuse?
At the time of publication Harvey Weinstein's list of accusers stands at 30, and certainly will grow in the relative safety of the national spotlight.
While this is a new and shocking story, The New Yorker acknowledged that Weinstein's perverse, violent and potentially criminal behaviors were "an open secret to many in Hollywood and beyond."
My hope is that this might be the moment when our eyes are opened, our hearts broken for the long-term suffering of victims, and our minds ignited by the urgent need to change our outlook, conversations and response to sexual violence in all its forms.
So, what can we learn from the Weinstein scandal about where to begin?
David Wagner is living the life: perfect family, successful career, millions in his bank account, and always the life of the party. But he has one more thing...a secret, with the power to derail it all.
Based on a true story.
Denial tells the story a life lived in the shadow of an abusive past and the mounting cost to Wagner's relationships, well-being, achievements and sense of self.
Denial adds light to the "open secret" of sexual abuse by giving a voice to victims that is sure to ignite your compassion for the estimated 60 million men and women survivors in the U.S., while encouraging survivors to speak their truths, free of shame, to begin the hopeful journey toward recovery.
Denial exposes the lies planted in the hearts of many survivors.
"It's my fault." The most insidious lie for any survivor is that she or he somehow caused or contributed to the abuse. Self-blame fosters shame, denial and self-contempt, which inevitably lead to despair. This lie -- more than any other -- sustains the abuser's power over victims even into adulthood, while grossly mischaracterizing the violent crime committed against them.
- "Intimacy is the enemy." Their eyes opened prematurely to the dangerous world around them, survivors often misidentify intimacy as the enemy, rejecting healthy love relationships for unhealthy ones, lashing out at those they love out of misplaced self-protection, and ultimately derailing themselves from the path to true healing.
- "Where was God?" In addition to not trusting others with their vulnerability, survivors also struggle with trust in their spiritual relationship as well, struggling with how a loving God could turn his back on innocent children in the grip of evil.
Praise for Denial
Meet the Author
Meet author Nanette Kirsch and learn more about where her passions and her work intersect.
Learn how you can begin a crucial conversation in your community, group, organization or church...one that can make a difference in the lives of survivors you know, as well as those you don't know about, and begin a positive shift in how we respond to childhood sexual abuse in our communities and society.
Consider hosting a fund-raising event for a non-profit that serves survivors' needs and/or promotes prevention/awareness of childhood sexual abuse.