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Publisher Description

“A riveting memoir that takes readers on a roller coaster ride from the depths of hell to triumphant success.”—Dave Pelzer, author of A Child Called It

Michelle Stevens has a photo of the exact moment her childhood was stolen from her: She’s only eight years old, posing for her mother’s boyfriend, Gary Lundquist—an elementary school teacher, neighborhood stalwart, and brutal pedophile. Later that night, Gary locks Michelle in a cage, tortures her repeatedly, and uses her to quench his voracious and deviant sexual whims. Little does she know that this will become her new reality for the next six years.

Michelle can also pinpoint the moment she reconstituted the splintered pieces of her life: She’s in cap and gown, receiving her PhD in psychology—and the university’s award for best dissertation.

The distance between these two points is the improbable journey from torture, loss, and mental illness to healing, recovery, and triumph that is Michelle’s powerful memoir, Scared Selfless.

Michelle suffered from post‐traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression, and made multiple suicide attempts. She also developed multiple personalities. There was “Chelsey,” the rebellious teenager; “Viscous,” a tween with homicidal rage; and “Sarah,” a sweet little girl who brought her teddy bear on a first date.

In this harrowing tale, Michelle, who was inspired to help others heal by becoming a psychotherapist, sheds light on the all-too-real threat of child sexual abuse, its subsequent psychological effects, and the best methods for victims to overcome their ordeals and, ultimately, thrive. Scared Selfless is both an examination of the extraordinary feats of the mind that are possible in the face of horrific trauma as well as Michelle’s courageous testament to their power.

Biographies & Memoirs
March 21
Penguin Publishing Group

Customer Reviews

Serrina1216 ,

Best book ever... truly

I read this book for a Child Psychology course at my school. I loved it, and this book is now one of my favorites. I felt all the emotion that Michelle expressed, and almost wanted to cry multiple times. This is the story of a true warrior.

chancedoggie ,

Scared selfless

Great book of hope for people with past trauma. A good looking in to MPD I hope you have a blessed life

No Saturday ,

Couldn't put it down

I first read about this story in People magazine with a photo of a pretty little girl taken right before she lost her innocence and immediately bought the book. This is an intense, heart breaking and heartwarming biography exposing the shocking reality of a world no one wants to admit exists. Captivatingly written and enlightening, this book should be read by everyone. We all need to be less judgmental of other's behaviors, we never know how big their iceberg really is beneath the surface
Thank you for writing this
And thank you for that short tease in the magazine.