A recent Globe and Mail article describes how a disgraced Roman Catholic priest is being flown back from his native Belgium to face 30 year-old charges of sexual abuse in Canada’s tiny northern community of Igloolik.
Father Erik Dejaeger was charged with nine counts of sexual and indecent assault in Baker Lake, NWT and was sentenced to five years in prison. That was in April 1990. In 1995, Father Dejaeger was charged once more – this time for buggery and sexual interference during his tenure among the Innuit in Igoolik as an Oblate priest. Read more
I broke the standard pattern for victims of sexual abuse by being attracted to a man whose personality and values were very different from my family’s. Harvey was not the promising young man from a socially prominent family my mother and I had hoped for. Nor was he given to alcoholism like my male relatives.
I met Harvey on my first day at university. He lived over an accordion academy in the Little Italy area of Toronto with his mother and siblings. His dream was to be a physician. To make enough money to stay in school, he worked at Canada Packers, carrying butchered bull fronts on his strong back. Harvey talked about doing good in the world. I was in awe of his determination and his view of the world. By comparison, I was a spoiled rich kid looking for a husband. Read more
At the end of high school, I was desperate to get away from home. My parents were offering me the apartment at the back of our house as well as a car if I’d stay home with them. Every fiber of my body knew I needed to burst free. Once I left home and entered the world of university, my life changed dramatically.
My roommate was Sue. Night after night Sue and I lay awake at opposite ends of our long, narrow residence room with its posters on the walls, two desks, and two dressers and talked about our lives and our families. I told her about my perfect family: how my mother was beautiful and clever, my father wise and witty. They were the perfect couple. Sue heard all about my aunts, uncles, nephews, and the characters who peopled my hometown. My idealized family was glamorous and gifted. Read more
By the time I got to school, I’d learned to live in a fuzzy world where I daydreamed or simply disappeared inside myself any time life became stressful. This skill allowed me to survive a childhood of incest and confusion.
Most years my marks were mediocre. I never caused anyone any trouble, yet the teachers didn’t like me. I wasn’t popular with the other children in my class either. Somehow I always felt different. Read more
Friends and colleagues, I’m working on a Facebook page so that we can meet and talk and help one another heal. It’s a place where you can meet and talk and ask me questions—I’ll respond regularly. I’ll also post updates for any events such as speaking engagements or book tour appearances. This is a page for victims, survivors, the friends, family members and supporters.
Please visit, comment and share the Confessions of a Trauma Therapsist Facebook Page.
It’s a work in progress, but the page is open to you right now. I look forward to hearing from you.