Amador, Bernard. “To Know a Fallen Angel”, AuthorHouse, 2004.
Dealing with Sexual Abuse
This is a true story about how a young boy deals with sexual abuse. Michael is a child who lived in poverty with his family in the South Bronx. He grew up being sexually abused and had to deal with incest propelled by alcohol. His days were times of domestic violence. As we read about him we see that what he experienced separated him from his father and he harbored the desire of having a “normal” relationship with his father but it also put him at the risk of becoming a sexual predator himself. He eventually was able to escape his home and the terrible life that he went through there. School became not just a place of learning but a safe haven for him. Michael tried very hard to balance his life but the abuse became so bad that he was affected both mentally and physically. As he tried to block out the memories he had to deal with, he almost had a complete mental breakdown.
I have never understood sexual abuse of minors. I consider sex to be an act to be enjoyed by the participants and there can be no enjoyment in forced sex (in my mind). As an adult, Michael was motivated to understand the roots of his abuse and begins genealogical therapy in order to retrace his youth and as he does he learns about what causes a person to become a predator as well as the methods used, the motivation for abuse and how victims are sought out. When he was able to identify the kind of predator he had dealt with and who had abused him, he learns how he had developed aspects of predatory behavior. This helped him to understand the mind of a predator and by doing so he was prevented from doing the same to others. He also learns of various kinds of treatment. He was then not only to come to terms with what had happened to him and is able to finally reconcile with his father.
This is not a pretty read and if this review sounds a bit formal in referring to the issue of sexual abuse, it is because this is a study yet it is told in story form. While I have read other books dealing with this kind of behavior, Amador does fill in some of the gaps in what I already knew.