Sunday, March 20, 2011

Book Review: "Damaged" by Cathy Glass

It didn't take long before the author's long-suffering patience and selfless goodness on behalf of yet another abused child pegged the needle on my should-be-nominated-for-sainthood-NOT meter. Come one. The author writes under a pseudonym. I wouldn't put my real name on this delusional piece of self-stroking egotism, either.

However, the book is not a total loss. To the critical, inquiring mind, it is a treasure brimming with her blissfully-ignorant, unintended expose's of the inside working of child welfare agency practices, the malpractice, the malfeasance, the non-feasance and the just plain dopery, mopery and idiocracy.

I cite as one example: Foster carers taking child's statements about sexual abuse? Without proper training? Without documenting it? Without insuring that the interview techniques are proper? (They weren't). Inappropriate to say the least. Shocking to the astute observer. Damaging in the extreme.

This is not to discount the child's reported experiences, but rather, to expose the admitted failures of the system to protect, and effectively treat the child. It is safe to presume that while this child was being studiously ignored by the agency in her abusive home, they were too busy to rescue her because of all the non-abused children being swept into their nets. This child will never be a functioning, normal adult, if the author is to be believed. That is a tragedy that the author indicates was avoidable, if the system was doing its job. This is a powerful indictment against the wholesale removal of children without proof of serious harm.

The heartless cruelty of this system is well documented. As a foster carer, she boldly exposes her attempts to make the child hate her parents, ignorant of the harm that causes the child's ability to form attachments, and love herself. She sees no wrong in making a child doubt her own identity, her origins, her feelings for her parents (which cannot be denied no matter how sick the parents were), because it is more expedient for the agency to emotionally alienate the child from her parents rather than teach the child to recognize and refuse the sin, without having to hate herself because the sinners were her parents.

It shows the practitioner's systemic denials of the harms caused to the innocent victims by the child saver's well-intentioned <ahem> services, non-services, wrong-services, delayed services, inappropriate services and outright failures to provide services, yet they can pat themselves on the back and walk away bureaucratically secure in a job well done, as the human toll mounts.

I am glad she wrote the book. She had no clue the hero she tried to convince the world she is was more accurately exposed as one of the villains perpetuating the abuse of children under the guise of protecting them.

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Leave the emotions, propaganda and rhetoric at the door. This blogger is only interested in intelligent, logical, well-thought out, factually based comments which are on-topic, indicating the writer has an open mind and a mature ability to reason.