One survivor’s chilling memoir of her stolen memories and her childhood secrets. Rural isolation and inherited belief systems collide to create a perfect storm of intergenerational abusive incest within her family tree. Putting a face to what is often called a victimless crime, Independent Author Michelle Barry invites you to share in her remarkable journey to discover the duality of vulnerability and the complexities of family and broken relationships. Throughout her life, we see Michelle battling grief, depression, alcoholism, and domestic violence, all stemming from her childhood sexual abuse. With steely grit in the face of unspeakable shame, she speaks out to spur on higher levels of engagement through candid dialogue, thereby shattering the deafeningly silent taboo of incest. Forever breaking its power helps Michelle to advocate for all survivors who are in differing stages of recovery. For those who’ve been abused, Michelle’s memoir shows others that they can reclaim their own voices and personal histories.
“We Stay In Our Own Tree provides a raw and painful look at the tragic consequences of incest and the far-reaching arms of its damaging generational effects. The graphic nature of this work is not for the faint-hearted, but Michelle Barry exposes the reader to the vivid thoughts and feelings of a little girl struggling to understand a distant and angry father, a manipulative and abusive brother, and to find her place in the world. The honesty in this book hints of Frank McCourt’s Angela’s Ashes as we follow Michelle Barry through early childhood and we see her struggle to understand her sexual self in the midst of sexual abuse. As she gets older the reader watches her manage numerous tragic losses, experience a multitude of bad decisions and abusive relationships, and fight a long battle with alcoholism. This is the book to read if you want to know what it is like for survivors of incest.”
Gregory K. Moffatt, Ph.D., LPC,CPCS
Child psychologist and award winning author of A Violent Heart, Wounded Innocents and Fallen Angels, and Survivors.
“Michelle Barry has shown great courage in crafting this memoir, taking the reader through a difficult but necessary journey to better understand how all victims can overcome the most terrible circumstances through faith, determination, and a willingness to speak the truth. Family is at the heart of her story. There is loss, and pain, and trauma. Family is also a source of great joy and love. Michelle penned a story that takes us through all of these ups and downs in rural America. The telling of this journey will be inspiring for anyone who reads it, including victims of abuse. Michelle’s story outlines a path forward not just to happiness, but to triumph as well.”
Glenn Puit, national author of Ghost, Father of the Year, and In Her Prime