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The coronavirus pandemic has made vulnerable people more vulnerable, and brought trauma into many lives that were already unsteady. A powerful testament to personal survival, this story of sexual violence and its effects on mental health, abuse, and addiction also offers insight into how the recovery and mental health treatment communities can change to address these issues more effectively.
In this brutally honest and compelling memoir, Jennifer Storm revisits the trauma of her childhood rape and ensuing addiction and how she channeled her pain into a healing life of advocacy.
Sexual assault, addiction, and other traumatic experiences can leave both physical and emotional scars. For Jennifer Storm, these scars serve as a reminder--both of the darkness and suffering she once experienced, and of how far she has come. When she was first assaulted at age twelve, Jennifer turned to alcohol to dull the emotional pain. After a string of childhood traumas, she fell into crack use and self-harm. Once Jennifer finally found treatment after surviving the last of multiple suicide attempts, she discovered that it was possible to heal her shame. She could start to recover by uncovering the secrets she had kept hidden for years. Blackout Girl is the heartbreaking, enlightening, and inspiring story of Jennifer’s narrow escape from her own self-destructive instincts when all of the odds, and systems, were stacked against her.
Since Blackout Girl was first published in 2008, Jennifer has seen the #MeToo and Times Up movements empower countless brave survivors to reveal the truth of their experiences. Yet, our society is only just beginning to truly understand and support victims and recognize the importance of trauma-informed care. Now more relevant than ever, Jennifer’s story and professional insights expose the societal failures these victims have endured, and how we can all help each other heal. If you are still experiencing or recovering from victimization, Jennifer’s story shows you are not alone. For those struggling to understand a loved one’s experience of addiction and trauma, Jennifer’s recovery provides hope. This new edition of Blackout Girl includes additional chapters with more details of Jennifer’s story, new insights on the societal changes of the past decade, and a powerful foreword by survivor advocate and founder of the End Rape Statute of Limitations movement, Caroline Heldman, PhD. Blackout Girl is a must-read both for those looking to learn about the personal effects of widespread sexual assault and addiction and for those who already hold these issues dear.