Posts tagged ‘domestic abuse’

I have no skeletons in my closet: they're all hanging from the yardarm

The day started with a post from Nicky to my Daverana Page. He revealed that one of my employees was secretly accessing files on the main company computer and then sending them to him.  So I checked the logs (I’m the only one who can access those) and the most recent person to have a look at my Nicky files was Bob. He had also tried to pry into sections and documents that I had passworded.  I may never know whys of it all, but I am appalled by what I do know.

I had a big fight with Bob and then he threw a link in my face and called me a ‘bitch.”

The link was to a new page that Write Agenda has up on me. I tried several times to make my screenshots larger enough to be easily read.  So, in case you cannot read<a href=”"Photobucket"” target=”_blank”> this one, I’ll post what it says beneath my name in tiny type:

Protected: T.W.A.N.G.: Janrae Frank Dossier Project

In Accountability, Alcohol Abuse, Alternative Lifestyles, Cocaine, Drug Abuse, Emotional Instability, Gay Lifestyles, Hollywood, Illegal Drugs, Incitement, Interviews, Intimidation, Investigations, investigative journalist, Janrae Frank, Journalism, Journalist, lawsuits, Legal Issues, Lesbian, Lesions, Polio, Poliomyelitis, Propaganda, Rehabiltation, Sex Change, Spinal Column, The Washington Post, Therapy Sessions on November 9, 2011 at 10:10 pm

They got all of this off my blogs and put some spin on it to make it look like I”m mentally ill. It seems that having been trapped in an abusive marriage for 15 years and developing PTSD as a result of that abuse makes me all kinds of crazy. What does this say about their opinion of other abused women who found the strength to escape dangerously abusive marriages like I did? What does this say about what they believe about women who have survived male violence (as I have) and come out of it battered, but sane?

If people who have had PTSD and dared to talk about it are disparaged as “emotionally unstable”, how does this reflect our returning soldiers? Are they saying the ALL of our returning soldiers are to be treated badly and subjected to their derision?

I may have abused alcohol at times before I got meds for depression, but I was never an alcoholic. I was laughed out of my attempts to join AA. You see, all of the true alcoholics could recognize me as a normie with just a single question. “If you had some money and no groceries to feed your child, what would you spend it on? Your child or booze?”

Sovay never went hungry once I escaped from her father.

I have talked openly about my experiences with meth and cocaine and how I went cold turkey off it in 1988, because I wanted to show others that it was possible to stay clean. I have been clean since August of 1988. But they want me punished for ever having done it.  They want to turn my victories — and by extension all those like myself who overcame their addictions — into defeats.  Guess what, Write Agenda? It ain’t going to happen.

My ex is a transsexual and out of the closet. But by putting that one word there, it suggested that my c-section scars don’t really exist.  If any of the voyeurs reading this want pictures, feel free to ask.

No, I’m not a Lesbian. I’m bi-sexual. There IS a difference. I’m the B in GLBTQ, not the L.  So apparently they are homophobic also. Like the good people who are going around burning queer folks alive and dumping their remains on street corners.

And let’s take a look at how they mention my polio as if that made me mentally ill and of questionable worth.  Are they trying to insinuate that by having had polio at age eight I ought to be condemned?

The only one this reflects badly on is them. Not me.

How I lost my name.

My awareness of the situation began with a phone call. It was February of 1986. Roughly two weeks after my second piece, War of the Worlds came out in the Washington Post Bookworld. A friend of H’s called to congratulation him on several articles he had out in prestigious spots.

To my knowledge, H had not had anything out in several months. So I asked which articles H’s friend was referring to. As the answers tumbled out of the fellow’s excited mouth, into the phone, and down my ears; I became sick to my stomach. I was so stunned I could barely speak and my mind stopped working. I excused myself from the conversation and hung up the phone. I barely made it to the bathroom before throwing up.

H was telling his industry friends that every article with my byline on it was written by him, including the Washington Post pieces.

H had robbed me of my name.

It Should be self-evident

They say “write what you know.”

At this point it should be self-evident why the books I write are so dark and violent. I am writing what I know.

I chose to write dark fantasy as a metaphor for my own experiences to a degree. I tried to write both mainstream and at once point a real memoir, rather than just tossing the bits and pieces into a blog.

However, I can’t get too close to the memories without putting myself into a bad state of mind accompanied by flashbacks. The memoir posts are as close as I can get to lancing the septic wounds.

I have started putting them into drafts and saving them there, trying to just post them one or two at a time as the need is on me to talk about them. My demons won’t let go of me.

A close friend of many years was reading them yesterday and he said, “I don’t know the half of it, do I?”

I replied, “You probably don’t know a third.”

I lived in fear for many years that my family would find me again with an eye to settling old grudges.

There are periods when I write obsessively in an attempt to outrun the memories. Sometimes I can and more often I can’t.

Smoke and Mirrors

Sometimes families and relationships are a matter of smoke and mirrors, illusions that are created by us and by others. I can’t say whether they are deliberate or accidental. But until the illusion is shattered by events, it is possible to go your whole life without realizing what is really there.

The glue holding an extended family together in relative harmony is often a single individual. For mine, it was Mama (my grandmother). She raised me, and until I was in first grade, I did not know that she was not my mother. She was strong, tough as nails, and to some, intimidating. My mother was her daughter, Mickey, whose custody I had been removed from because of abuse when I was two years old. That story was told here

I always thought I was loved. I thought I meant something to my various aunts, uncles, and to a degree my mother.

When Mama died in January 1984, I learned that all my relationships with my family had been illusions. I was the black sheep of the family and I had to face that when she died.

I had left H, and through a series of misadventures landed back in Texas with Mama in November of 1983.

While I was there Mickey kept telling me i owed her a child and made several attempts to snatch Sovay with male relatives to back her up.

Mama had left me everything in her will, even naming me her executrix. While Mama was in the hospital with a massive stroke and not expected to survive (she died a week later) I started getting threats from uncles who I had once believed cared about me and the attorney, with whom Mama had filed her will with, phoned and said he could not represent me because I was a lesbian.

Frightened and with no one to turn to, as my family turned completely against me, I phoned H and he flew out to Fort Worth.

Two days after H arrived, Mike and Mickey arrived on my doorstep. I had locked the door, but Mike broke the knob off and walked on in. They had come for Sovay and a bunch of Mama’s papers. Mickey slammed my bad leg into a table so hard that it crumpled. H was a slender wuss and could not fight to save his life, but he grabbed Sovay and fled out the back while i was attempting to hold them off. A baptist minister hid them for a day and then helped H book a flight to California. Before he could get back to Texas after getting Sovay to safety, they had locked me up in the loony bin.

Bjo Trimble watched over Sovay while H contacted Robert Adams for advice. Adams suggested getting in touch with John Steakley while he made a bunch of phone calls to rally the troops. Then H flew back to Texas.

I was not allowed phone calls while i was locked up in the loony bin. My first clue to what was going on came when the shrink my mother had persuaded to lock me up got nervous, smelling a possible lawsuit, because editors and authors were phoning and faxing and jumping on him. I should have sued. But I was in bad shape from everything that had happened to me and just grateful to go into hiding in California.

I suppose the highlight of the entire thing was when I showed up at the probate hearing on the will with John and his very large friends acting as bodyguards. Mickey was hysterical and kept trying to get close to me, but John refused to let her get anywhere near me. John was my Knight in Shining Armor that day.

The Night I Became Expendable

This post continues the events posted here Let’s talk about my drug abuse

After drinking the bottle of Mr. Clean, I sat down and waited to die. My five-year-old daughter had been put to bed hours earlier. There was no way to anticipate what happened next. Normally she slept through the night, but that night she woke up and came into the living room where I was sitting alone and crawled onto my lap and told me she loved me.

I consider the thoughts that ran through my head next to be a moment of satori.

I could not abandon her that way.

I was not expendable

By the time that i got her back to bed and headed for my car to get help, I was staggering around and barely able to keep my feet. I had no business driving. However, six blocks away was a family friend, the guy would later be a president of HWA. He had been a close friend for many years. Or at least I had believed him to be.

I had helped him get his green card when he first came to this country.

It was all I could do to stay conscious as I went to his home.

I told him what I had done and asked for help.

His response was to get a friend to help him shove me into the back seat of his car. He drove me to my home and dumped me on the front lawn.

H came out, screamed at me for embarrassing him and ordered me to bed.

Instead, I make one last attempt to find help.

I was so out of it that i did not know I was walking through broken glass that sliced the bottoms of my bare feet open. The pain simply did not register at all. With the last of my will power, I staggered onto Van Nuys Blvd. My legs started to buckle.

A car full of young hispanic males swerved close and one of them grabbed me. The next instant a man shouted from the top balcony of a tall apartment building, “let her go. I’ve called the cops.”

And for emphasis, he shook the cordless phone he held at them. “I have your plate number. Let go of her.”

The young guys shoved me to the pavement and sped off. A pair of drag queens came and sat with me.

Paramedics and a patrol car arrived. That was my first encounter with that white haired cop mentioned in an earlier post.

The police officers waited at the hospital while the emergency room staff patched me back together. The officers told me they were going to take me home. Drugs were too prevalent in that area to bother arresting someone for an OD. It just crowded the otherwise crowded jails up.

I begged them not to take me home. Instead they took me to the county hospital for nutcases and I checked myself in.

H had very good medical coverage and the next day I was transferred to a private hospital near Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills.

A note on the literary side of the Hollywood parties.

One of the reasons that I am reluctant to name names about those parties is that they included a former president of SFWA, a former president of HWA, and a major figure in the cyberpunk movement.  Two of those three no longer live in the US, and I have lost contact with all of them during the years that I withdrew from those communities and stopped going to the parties.

I continued for many years to avoid everyone, partly because I felt that I would not be believed if I spoke out concerning what had gone on in my life.  My fears were borne out when an editor said to me, “I can’t take sides.  Staying on good terms with H is important to my magazine.”  That was in response to my asking why he would no longer assign me to write articles.

The non-fiction agent I had at the time, also represented H.  He dropped me as a client because H was the bigger draw, and once the divorce went through I was persona non grata.

Patterns of insanity?

Although I have read a great deal on mental health and taken a couple of basic college courses in psychology, I can only make guesses about a lot of things.

H had patterns that I only recognized as patterns after I had been free of him for many years. It took time and distance to begin to figure out what had actually been going on.

He cried at movies, cared for animals, and wrote Sovay christmas stories. Each December, on the first of the month, he would write a new ‘chapter’ of a story that featured her stuffed animals, adding another chapter each morning, and by Christmas morning the story would be complete and the stuffed animals would save Christmas. He did that from the time she was four until she was ten. We left him successfully three months after she turned eleven so, of course, there was never another story.

It delighted her.

I was married to him for fifteen years. He had cycles, just like a bi-polar, but instead of them taking days, weeks, or months; they took years. Nothing I have been able to find in researching this in the years since we parted matches up with it.

All that I can do is describe the pattern. At one end of the swing, he was sweet, caring, almost vulnerable. At the other end of the pattern, H was a raging maniac, destroying everything around him in a borderline delusional fit, certain that anything he wished to do was right and just.

As far as I can tell, the swings progressed from the bottom of the curve to the top for periods of around two to three years, cycled down and came up again. So it took years to make the complete circuit. There was always a major disaster when he hit the top of the curve.

It has been postulated that because H was a transsexual, what I was really seeing was the outward manifestations of his inner war between the female and male sides of his personality, with one half being ascendant over the other at various periods. This may well be true, and somewhere in this is the key to it all.

Certainly, once he had fully become she, the anger and rages ceased. But that happened long after we broke up. Five years ago, I received a weeping apology from H, which went on for hours. She hated the person that had been H, as much as I did at the end.