JUDGE NOT, THAT YE BE NOT JUDGED!

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Judging Me: One Woman’s Journey From Abuse And Betrayal To Triumph, by Mary Elizabeth Bullock (CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, North Charleston, South Carolina, 2013, 162 pages).

Book Review by Dennis Moore

“The test of the morality of a society is what it does for its children.”  - Dietrich Bonhoeffer                                                   

November 30, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - Honorable Mary Elizabeth Bullock’s inspiring memoir describes a hard-won life of achievement. In the face of overwhelming adversity, Bullock – who is blind and has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and systemic lupus – made her name as an experienced trial litigator, respected business law professor, and federal civil rights judge. Her motivation for becoming an attorney and later a federal judge, actually started in East County San Diego, as she became an elected official for a pilot program stemming from the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), referred to as Utilities Consumer Action Network (UCAN).

But in Judging Me, the dark suits and proverbial black robes are off. As a helpless child, Bullock suffered her father’s sexual abuse for ten years. She was beaten and molested in physically and psychologically unbearable ways. Perhaps worst of all, her father taught her to believe this evil was her own fault.

This heart-wrenching memoir takes the reader from a childhood of horrific abuse where Bullock, despite her chaotic home life, garners high academic honors and earns the necessary education to advance her from the degrading life she grew up in. As a young woman, she is driven to succeed, attaining a successful career where she makes conscious choices to build a life that would make anyone proud. Donning the armor of achievement and success, she rises to a position of power and influence. However, ghosts of the past continually pursue her, as evidenced in her relationships.

At last finding her own peace, Bullock made truce with the unforgotten past and gained the self – concept to build genuine relationships. Judging Me is a vital story – passionate, terrifying, inspiring, penetrating, insightful, and sensitive – with the intensity to change your life forever.

Having written more than 150 book reviews, I thought that I had read and heard it all, but Bullock has written a book that is so graphic and candid that it makes me blush. She actually caught me off guard with this well-written and insightful memoir, as I actually expected something different from a former federal judge. The author is unflinching in her candor in the telling of this story about the horrific acts perpetrated against her starting as early as 6-years old, as she gives us “A PRIMER ON CHILDHOOD SEXUAL ABUSE”, stating: “Childhood sexual abuse is not a disease or disorder but rather an experience. A sexual act is imposed upon a child who lacks maturation and emotional and cognitive development. Authority and power, silence and secrecy enable the perpetrator to coerce the child into sexual compliance.”

This well-researched and documented scholarly work, that balances eroticism and morality, is the most profound book that I have ever read. Certainly not to condone or rationalize childhood sexual abuse, it does give us insight as to why and how something like this might occur. Bullock indicates by statistics, and states: “This book is further dedicated to the forty-two million survivors who, according to the Center for Disease Control, suffer from sexual abuse: a malignant cancer that still manages to lurk in our society relatively unnoticed and that victimizes one in every six young boys and one in every four little girls.”

She further emphasizes a study comparing the post-traumatic stress symptoms in Vietnam veterans to adult survivors of childhood abuse, specifically stating: “The study revealed that childhood sexual abuse is traumatizing and can result in symptoms from war-related trauma. This study was done by J. McNew and N. Abell in 1995 in an article titled ‘Posttraumatic Stress Symptomology: Similarities and Differences between Vietnam Veterans and Adult Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse,’ published in Social Work (Volume 40, Issue 1, pages 115-126).” From Marvin Gaye’s iconic song Sexual Healing to Bill Clinton’s sexual escapades with Monica Lewinsky in the White House, our preoccupation with sex and eroticism is emphasized in this book, although grossly perverted.

Additionally, the author has shared with me medical documentation; "Chadwick's 'Child Maltreatment' 'Sexual Abuse And Psychological Maltreatment" which has direct bearing on her experiences, and the "Adverse Childhood Experiences" (ACE) study, championed by Dr. Vincent J. Felitti.   

The author further states, and it puts her story and this book in perspective: “This book focuses on familial childhood sexual abuse. Familial relationships – such as incest (for example, father and daughter or son), uncles, other close family relatives, or close family friends – are one type of abuse. Incest is the most common type of childhood sexual abuse. Most sex between children and adults involves a grooming process in which the adult, known by the child, skillfully manipulates a child into participating in a sexual act.”

What Bullock describes happened to her as a little girl borders on the barbaric, and she is unflinching in her graphic detail and depiction of it. She speaks of being beaten and sexually violated by her father thru every orifice of her young and tender body. And for punishment, she speaks of being tied to a tree in a snake-infested swamp by her father overnight.

Bullock makes an “Author’s note” which is significant, by stating: “This book was not written as an intellectual endeavor, per se. The author concludes that the definitions that experts hale as necessary and sufficient for sexual abuse are weak and pathetic. Where, I must ask, are the outrage and the bloodcurdling screams that come from such an atrocious act perpetrated on a child? Where is the horror? Significantly absent. The author understands that any definition is flatlined and can only be aided by proper adjectives and further explanation; even then, the definition remains two-dimensional. Since this book is not an academic treatise, the remaining sections of this chapter delve into symptomotology.” With that said, this entire book by Bullock reads like “A Primer On Childhood Sexual Abuse.” She bares her body and soul in the telling of this memoir.

This is the most horrific and depraved story that I have ever read or heard about, and done by a father to his little girl. My heart goes out to the author to have endured so much over her early years, and yet to have accomplished so much thereafter. It is nightmarish and hard to conceptualize that man’s inhumanity to man can carryover to these acts against their children. Sigmund Freud would be turning over in his grave after reading this book.

The author states in Judging Me: “My father sadistically raped me, and forced me to have sex with total strangers and physical objects for ten-plus years. He made me have sex with the family dog.” Bullock’s story reads like a modern day Sodom and Gomorrah. She further states: “My family – all but me – usually ate what was cooked for dinner. My father made me eat hamburgers from Skippy dog food. In a tension-filled dining room I sat down with everyone else. My father made me to eat these horrible Skippy dog food hamburgers every night.”

This book compares favorably to Joyce Reed’s Hurt Used to Live Here and MJ Payne’s The Remembered Self, two earlier books that I have reviewed, but what separates them from Bullock’s Judging Me is the unbelievable violence wantonly perpetrated against an innocent and helpless little girl by her father during the course of an incestual act. The common core and theme of all three of these books was the fathers taking indecent liberties with the childhood daughters. Bullock’s father would take it to another level, which bordered on bestiality. This book by the author has impacted my thoughts on sex and sexuality and raises questions about morality and spirituality.

Having interviewed the author I am amazed that she was able to achieve so much in life professionally and academically, yet I am left wondering how she kept her sanity through it all. In the case of Reed, she writes in her book that she was molested by her father at the age of 11, and actually impregnated, only to have the baby aborted. Payne alludes to in her book her father allowing indecent liberties to be taken with her by other men at a similar age as when Bullock had her initial occurrences. 

Parts of this book reads like a TV police crime drama such as Law and Order SUV, where the author actually admits to exacting revenge against men for the sins of her father, with her body and sexual inclinations as the tool for that revenge. Bullock actually devotes a chapter in this book to that revenge; “Revenge For The Sins Of My Father.” She goes into candid and graphic detail as to how and why she would use sex and her body to punish men, possibly for some perceived act against her by her father. Mind you, this is an esteemed and well versed former federal judge.

The material in this book is definitely movie material, and I would not be surprised to see it on screen one day. I can actually see Natalie Portman in the role of Bullock. Despite the sordid nature of this story, it is so well written and delves into the psyche, that it is bound to resonate with many readers for a variety of reasons. Clearly, there is still some deep psychological drama going on in the mind of the author, resulting from the acts of her father, that the course of time has not removed.

In one particular chapter in this book, Bullock gives a very revealing portrait of herself and the aftermath of her earlier sexual abuse, as she states: “If my bed could speak, it would relay some of the most hair-raising adventures – jungle sex at its best and the most unspeakable acts of eroticism – all that transpires behind closed doors. In my own defense, I am forced to seek out electrical tape to ensure the silence of my bed. I turn shades of red when I flash back to some of the things I have done to pleasure men. The bed was where I waged my wars. I sought revenge, ensured my own punishment, and discovered my womanhood while holding the only trump card I later discovered was mine: addicting these men into a sexually erotic relationship. God help those sinners that thought I was ever so compliant to their desires. I more than met their needs. Men feel that women are replaceable: one easily substitutable for another. About needs, men are clueless. Ruthlessly exploiting these men, I brought a whole new meaning to the word need. Soon, they craved the very thing I had to offer. Men, I learned, are genetically predisposed to sexual perversions – no different from an addict genetically predisposed to drug addictions. This reality is as basic to a man’s everyday ability to survive as the air he breathers and the water he consumes to hydrate. I was wicked, shameless, and deadly. God help them. They never had a prayer.” Mind you, this is from an esteemed and experienced trial litigator, respected business law professor, and federal civil rights judge!

It is perhaps revealing that when I inquired of Judge Bullock as to a particular case that she was involved in that stood out, and why, she pointed to Veronica May Williams v. John E. Potter, Postmaster General, United States Postal Service, EEOC Case No.: 340-98-3576X, USPS Case No.: 4F-900-1164-96. Her earlier suffering has made her a champion for civil rights and the disenfranchised.

Throughout Judging Me the author references and speaks of help from a Higher Power, specifically stating: “With your ‘Higher Power’ you will be back on solid footing” and “Only with the help of your Higher Power can you continue to go on in life’s journey, ready for the unexpected.” There is a particular poignant passage in this book when it seems as if God, or this ‘Higher Power’ has deserted her, as she states: “Bad things happen to good people. Diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and systemic lupus in my late thirties, I was so mad at God that I refused to speak to Him. A friend purchased a book on healing through positive thinking. For the first time, I surprised myself by throwing the book right back at him and with enormous bitterness and sarcasm stated, ‘You think positive; God and I are not speaking.’ To make matters worse, well-meaning people told me: ‘God would not give you more than you could handle.’ I bitterly laughed in their faces. I wept, I begged and pleaded with God; I had not signed up for this. Wasn’t it enough that I was so grossly violated as a child; that I lost my husband very tragically; my brother murdered; that I suffered a battle with cancer; and that I buried the most important people in my life? ‘What did I do in my last life to deserve all of this?’”   

In summation, and to borrow from a term often used in the author’s former profession, she states: “A normal woman, for whom there is no benchmark, comes into her sexuality in her search for womanhood: a process that is secret, complex, and often delayed by detours. There is no societal rite of passage or societal etiquette. How much more complicated it is for the sexually abused woman whose childhood was one of violence, betrayal, and torture. Oftentimes, the sexually abused woman is devoid of feelings: both physically and emotionally. Physically, she equates pain with pleasure. Moreover, more stimulation is necessary based on being highly stimulated at such an early age. These facts require an intimate discussion with a partner. She will stay away from any sexual discussions since the operative word is intimacy. A sexually abused woman is fearful of intimacy because she has been betrayed by the very people entrusted with her early care. She feels that emotions are sticky; feelings are best left for others to experience. Abandonment and rejection are two emotions she will do anything to avoid. If she interacts with men and allows feelings to surface, she must deal with issues of abandonment and rejection. She is incapable of doing so. Thus, the sexually abused woman is a participant in an activity that is fraught with overwhelming challenges.” I can’t wait for the movie to come out!

Dennis Moore is an Associate Editor for the East County Magazine in San Diego and the book review editor for SDWriteway, an online newsletter in San Diego that has partnered with the East County Magazine, as well as a freelance contributor to EURweb based out of Los Angeles. Mr. Moore is also the author of a book about Chicago politics; “The City That Works: Power, Politics and Corruption in Chicago.” He can be contacted at contractsagency@gmail.com or you can follow him on Twitter at: @DennisMoore8.

 

 


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Comments

This review actually took my breath away.

Wow! My heart went out to Ms. Bullock when I read this; but I must say, my admiration for her far exceeds any sorrow I felt. She is indeed, an extraordinary woman. To Ms. Bullock I would say, "You are awesome!"

Judging Me By Mary Elizabeth Bullock

Dennis thank you for your fabulous review of my good friend Mary Elizabeth Bullock. Mary Elizabeth's speaks for so many who cannot speak for themselves. As a survivor of incest, I applaud her, and you have stated it so well. I too wrote my review of her book: JUDGING ME MY 5 STAR REVIEW The Honourable Mary Elizabeth Bullock, a crusader for those with disabilities, fighting for their dignity, for her own dignity. This is a memoir of one courageous, “no holds barred” woman, who fought for her life as a little girl, under the clutches of a wicked monster, and is still to this day fighting for her life. How at 6 years of age, her father tied her to a palm tree, in a snake infested swamp, why? Well that you will have to read to find out. Rising above her fate, never giving up, Mary Elizabeth embraced life, her life and all that happened. Mary released the heaviness she felt within herself, helping her to move forward, not to be defeated in any way, no matter what was thrown at her. God for a while was left out of the equation of her life, at a time when her very being seemed so challenged ~ an incomprehensible feeling flooded her mind with that one question; Why? Why me? Mary shut her mind too God ~ Mary Elizabeth always thought God was just too busy for her and thought He had given up on her. But that was farthest from the truth ~ He never gave up on her, always there talking to her ~ reaching out to her in her darkest times, but she didn't hear Him at that moment in her life. Upon waking one morning Mary’s heart felt lighter than it ever had. Reality did its check. Mary Elizabeth accepted what was put in front of her ~ Multiple Sclerosis ~ blindness ~ Systemic Lupus ~ cancer ~ and so much more ~ Whatever her fate ~ she now accepted it. Mary Elizabeth knew where her vision really lived ~ not within one’s sight ~ but within one’s mind ~ and that was okay. She did not carry a Fixed Mindset ~ but a Mindset of Growth ~ to move forward in her quest to achieve what was now and beyond her very reach. Mary Elizabeth looked for all the attributes of her father in the men she chose ~ tall dark extremely handsome ~ like out of a Danielle Steele novel ~ only to find they were the “devil in disguise” ~ she was drawn to them, as if she believed she needed to be punished for the sins of her father. Mary Elizabeth had strength of character ~ determination to work through the demons of her past ~ courage saved her from staying stuck. She had the courage to move forward one step at a time ~ taking those “baby steps” we always tell each other. Determined to thrive ~ Mary Elizabeth did just that ~ by hard work ~ by grabbing on to a strong will, that keeps you from failing or drowning in the deep abyss called ~ life. Fighting for the injustice of others, never wallowing in what was, determined to move forward, proving she could do something that would give credit to all those who suffered, to support them, show them, they too could thrive and win against the horrific life they endured. Letting them know that they are not alone, she is right there beside them, guiding each survivor along the way. There are many curves in our road towards healing. At times giving up is so much easier. Mary Elizabeth chose to take those bumps and curves and straighten them out by being positive, knowing her future was mapped out for her. God had a plan even through all the turmoil she faced, the next chapter of her life would be fulfilling ~ rewarding ~ but still hard ~ removing choices in her life, in her past, to be who she now is, strong, a fighter, a real warrior for humanity ~ for the disabilities of others, for herself, being her own person, not afraid to speak openly about anything. If something wasn't right, Mary Elizabeth would say just how it should be, her words sometimes biting, but got the point across. She once told me “I need you to put tape over my mouth, as I tend to say too much.” But no, that would not be Mary Elizabeth, that would not be her true self ~ no one was ever going to use her, take away her true self ~ that was done to her too many times ~ now she is her own unique self. A warrior for justice ~ a fighter of the monsters who hurt women ~ fiercely she went after them ~ with a vengeance!! Now she fights the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission), fighting the corruption ~ to this very day Mary is in a combat for herself where the government thinks that they are winning, hoping she will give up, but no, Mary Elizabeth will NEVER give up and no doubt knowing her she WILL win. Mary Elizabeth says “Where are the real heroes of today? The government has changed their power from enforcing civil rights to Americans and turned it into a “circus” into abuse, illegal government practices and corruption. This changed her life forever. Determination and the will to keep going is what has kept Mary moving onward, from that little girl who once was told “ you will be nothing,” to a powerful force to be reckoned with. She rose above and like a “show and tell story” Mary was indeed someone, not a “nothing.” She tells her story like it is, true, harsh, with reality and with strength of character. This is one memoir that is a harsh ~ brutal of the life of an abused little girl that blossomed to become one of the most respected federal civil rights judges in the country. A memoir with inspiration for others, helping them on their journey where their paths can become so narrow they don’t think the end will ever be in sight. A memoir that lets you see that you can move forward ~ you can be yourself. The horrors of your life happened, but Mary Elizabeth shares so much wisdom, that helps you rise up and say ~ “Yes, I can become a better person; ~ I can move on and not look back.” Judging Me ~ a must read for all survivors who question what and who they are ~ where they may go in life ~ a book that gives you so much capabilities ~ a book true to yourself ~ Mary Elizabeth asked me not too long ago while we were talking on the phone, “Mary, have you ever written a poem called Grace?” I answered back no, but I can.” Mary Elizabeth, here is your poem, I hope you enjoy it. (Mary hasn't seen this poem yet). God Bless you my dear friend, I love you, and respect you. ~ Mary E. Graziano © GRACE Grace so beautiful Self loving, contentment Within oneself, Loving who we are To be the best That we can, Enriching our lives, God’s work of art. Grace is love, kindness A virtue given To us by God Himself, His loving gift Unconditional In every way Always there Never ending. Grace is faith Both entwined One will never work Without the other, Challenges that we meet So hard to attain But gives you the courage To go on, to have faith. Grace is that Special gift given By God, A spiritual freedom That comes to us When we acknowledge The power it has To feel love in our heart. Grace is courage When you otherwise Feel there is no use To go on, But the love And drive of others Wills you To continue. Grace is peace, In knowing love, We know peace The feeling of love All around us, In nature, In the love we feel For others. GRACE ~ A BEAUTIFUL WORD THAT THE HONOURABLE JUDGE MARY ELIZABETH BULLOCK LOVES SO MUCH Mary Graziano ©

Judging Me By Mary Elizabeth Bullock

Dennis thank you for your fabulous review of my good friend Mary Elizabeth Bullock. Mary Elizabeth's speaks for so many who cannot speak for themselves. As a survivor of incest, I applaud her, and you have stated it so well. I too wrote my review of her book: JUDGING ME MY 5 STAR REVIEW The Honourable Mary Elizabeth Bullock, a crusader for those with disabilities, fighting for their dignity, for her own dignity. This is a memoir of one courageous, “no holds barred” woman, who fought for her life as a little girl, under the clutches of a wicked monster, and is still to this day fighting for her life. How at 6 years of age, her father tied her to a palm tree, in a snake infested swamp, why? Well that you will have to read to find out. Rising above her fate, never giving up, Mary Elizabeth embraced life, her life and all that happened. Mary released the heaviness she felt within herself, helping her to move forward, not to be defeated in any way, no matter what was thrown at her. God for a while was left out of the equation of her life, at a time when her very being seemed so challenged ~ an incomprehensible feeling flooded her mind with that one question; Why? Why me? Mary shut her mind too God ~ Mary Elizabeth always thought God was just too busy for her and thought He had given up on her. But that was farthest from the truth ~ He never gave up on her, always there talking to her ~ reaching out to her in her darkest times, but she didn't hear Him at that moment in her life. Upon waking one morning Mary’s heart felt lighter than it ever had. Reality did its check. Mary Elizabeth accepted what was put in front of her ~ Multiple Sclerosis ~ blindness ~ Systemic Lupus ~ cancer ~ and so much more ~ Whatever her fate ~ she now accepted it. Mary Elizabeth knew where her vision really lived ~ not within one’s sight ~ but within one’s mind ~ and that was okay. She did not carry a Fixed Mindset ~ but a Mindset of Growth ~ to move forward in her quest to achieve what was now and beyond her very reach. Mary Elizabeth looked for all the attributes of her father in the men she chose ~ tall dark extremely handsome ~ like out of a Danielle Steele novel ~ only to find they were the “devil in disguise” ~ she was drawn to them, as if she believed she needed to be punished for the sins of her father. Mary Elizabeth had strength of character ~ determination to work through the demons of her past ~ courage saved her from staying stuck. She had the courage to move forward one step at a time ~ taking those “baby steps” we always tell each other. Determined to thrive ~ Mary Elizabeth did just that ~ by hard work ~ by grabbing on to a strong will, that keeps you from failing or drowning in the deep abyss called ~ life. Fighting for the injustice of others, never wallowing in what was, determined to move forward, proving she could do something that would give credit to all those who suffered, to support them, show them, they too could thrive and win against the horrific life they endured. Letting them know that they are not alone, she is right there beside them, guiding each survivor along the way. There are many curves in our road towards healing. At times giving up is so much easier. Mary Elizabeth chose to take those bumps and curves and straighten them out by being positive, knowing her future was mapped out for her. God had a plan even through all the turmoil she faced, the next chapter of her life would be fulfilling ~ rewarding ~ but still hard ~ removing choices in her life, in her past, to be who she now is, strong, a fighter, a real warrior for humanity ~ for the disabilities of others, for herself, being her own person, not afraid to speak openly about anything. If something wasn't right, Mary Elizabeth would say just how it should be, her words sometimes biting, but got the point across. She once told me “I need you to put tape over my mouth, as I tend to say too much.” But no, that would not be Mary Elizabeth, that would not be her true self ~ no one was ever going to use her, take away her true self ~ that was done to her too many times ~ now she is her own unique self. A warrior for justice ~ a fighter of the monsters who hurt women ~ fiercely she went after them ~ with a vengeance!! Now she fights the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission), fighting the corruption ~ to this very day Mary is in a combat for herself where the government thinks that they are winning, hoping she will give up, but no, Mary Elizabeth will NEVER give up and no doubt knowing her she WILL win. Mary Elizabeth says “Where are the real heroes of today? The government has changed their power from enforcing civil rights to Americans and turned it into a “circus” into abuse, illegal government practices and corruption. This changed her life forever. Determination and the will to keep going is what has kept Mary moving onward, from that little girl who once was told “ you will be nothing,” to a powerful force to be reckoned with. She rose above and like a “show and tell story” Mary was indeed someone, not a “nothing.” She tells her story like it is, true, harsh, with reality and with strength of character. This is one memoir that is a harsh ~ brutal of the life of an abused little girl that blossomed to become one of the most respected federal civil rights judges in the country. A memoir with inspiration for others, helping them on their journey where their paths can become so narrow they don’t think the end will ever be in sight. A memoir that lets you see that you can move forward ~ you can be yourself. The horrors of your life happened, but Mary Elizabeth shares so much wisdom, that helps you rise up and say ~ “Yes, I can become a better person; ~ I can move on and not look back.” Judging Me ~ a must read for all survivors who question what and who they are ~ where they may go in life ~ a book that gives you so much capabilities ~ a book true to yourself ~ Mary Elizabeth asked me not too long ago while we were talking on the phone, “Mary, have you ever written a poem called Grace?” I answered back no, but I can.” Mary Elizabeth, here is your poem, I hope you enjoy it. (Mary hasn't seen this poem yet). God Bless you my dear friend, I love you, and respect you. ~ Mary E. Graziano © GRACE Grace so beautiful Self loving, contentment Within oneself, Loving who we are To be the best That we can, Enriching our lives, God’s work of art. Grace is love, kindness A virtue given To us by God Himself, His loving gift Unconditional In every way Always there Never ending. Grace is faith Both entwined One will never work Without the other, Challenges that we meet So hard to attain But gives you the courage To go on, to have faith. Grace is that Special gift given By God, A spiritual freedom That comes to us When we acknowledge The power it has To feel love in our heart. Grace is courage When you otherwise Feel there is no use To go on, But the love And drive of others Wills you To continue. Grace is peace, In knowing love, We know peace The feeling of love All around us, In nature, In the love we feel For others. GRACE ~ A BEAUTIFUL WORD THAT THE HONOURABLE JUDGE MARY ELIZABETH BULLOCK LOVES SO MUCH Mary Graziano ©

Vincent Felitti MD & Kaiser Study re: Adverse Childhood Experien

I have written a paper "Trauma & Taboo" that is on my LinkedIn profile dealing with statistics related to child maltreatment. Dr. Vincent Felitti deals with this subject matter as a doctor and expert in great detail and is a tremendous resource regarding the Kaiser study in San Diego where a broad based, multi cultural mostly college educated middle class aggregate of over 17,000 persons, about half men and half women are studied regarding the impact of degrees of childhood trauma and its effect on their adult health. These persons were encouraged to talk about their experiences and it has had a positive effect on their health. The higher the number of different types of abuse they endured, the worse the impact on adult health. Dr. Felitti discusses the fact that even with high achievers like Judge Bullock, time does not heal and resilience is partial. Autoimmune diseases are prevalent with abuse survivors and Judge Bullock suffers from systemic lupus. There are higher levels of coronary heart disease in persons experiencing hopelessness without the usual underlying causes. Ill treatment affects the nervous system and other physical balances so as to be a significant cause of disease. Dr. Felitti discuses the fact that when stresses are sufficiently high people will trade the future for current relief that comes from a wide variety of addictions, including work, which Judge Bullock turned to as a positive avenue to deal with her stress that still negatively affected her health. Amnesia is a well recognized unconscious response to trauma and that certainly relates to my experience. Events of the past that are lost in time are further protected by shame, secrecy and social taboo, as recorded by Dr. Felitti. It is essential that the subject be studied scientifically so that intervention can help people who are stigmatized morally by events that are treatable if health care professionals can get over their squeamishness and society is willing to see that treatment that supports the emotional health of survivors will help us all. It is time to take action that will help law enforcement authorities and the legal system deal with intractable problems that present themselves daily. Thanks to Dennis Moore for sending me the files on Dr. Felitti's work and bringing these issues into the discussion of the problem of childhood trauma. Judge Bullock has paid a high price for her exceptional contributions to the legal and judicial system. MJ Payne Author The Remembered Self: A Journey into the Heart of the Beast www.buytherememberedself.com

Re: Cortina's comments to Judge Bullock

Judge Bullock, I am really looking forward to reading the book! As you, Linda Lee King, and other of the authors with the similar circumstances have stated; forgiveness is a task that often has to be learned. I had to learn the hard way, and I chose to carry the burden in the pit of my stomach, my chest, and my mind for years. The victim often feels that it is not fair that they have to be the one to carry the scars, physically and emotionally, while the other person moves on with life, seemingly happy. However, forgiveness is not for them it is for you. A friend told me that holding on to unforgiveness was like drinking poison, and waiting on the other person to die. You ladies are truly remarkable. Judge Bullock, I am so inspired by you. Thank you again for your voice and the courage to share your pain, your fear, your triumph with us, because it incites the bravery for me to speak out. Linda Lee King, MJ Payne, and all of the women who have had to endure, but now advocate for others, thank you!! I hope that we are able to touch and inspire others living in fear!! Cortina Jackson Author of "On Earth As It Is In Hell"

Judging Me

Dear Judge Bullock, I was reading new comments on my review of Sticks and Stones and Broken Bones when I saw your name mentioned, naturally I had to read this review and now will buy it the first of the month. What I find interesting is similarities to my story. Forgiving the ones who cause great harm. I have learned to forgive for the sake of my own humanity. I am driven by the force of kindness and forgiveness. And, believe me it was easy. 40 years ago, my life was destroyed and the horrible realty was - it was a long road (childhood traumas) before my life was put back together - then to have it taken away by a .357 Magnum. Hand's Up was demonstrated by local residents. I saw the officer nearly a decade after the shooting, he never knew it was me but as I sat in my car - I heard loud and clear, "you need to forgive him." It has been my mission promoting better quality law enforcement, helping others learn to forgive while speaking out against violence and sexual atrocities worldwide. We are breeding broken people. I am looking forward to reading your story. Thank you for writing your story - a bond exists among survivors. Linda Lee King Author Sticks and Stones and Broken Bones

To Judge Bullock Re: Mj Payne comment, Dennis Moore Review

Dear Judge Bullock, I just got to your answer to my review comment. I am sorry I did not get to it earlier - hospital visits all day yesterday. Your comment brought an upwelling of feeling, a combination of tears, grief, and hope. Dennis gave me your phone number and I must have copied it incorrectly as I wanted to thank you in person for your valiant fight and for your victories in your profession despite all the torture. Justice is really what you are about and I was not surprised that someone of your broad intellect who had been so grievously hurt would choose the field you did. Your work was actually enhanced by experience and has given you a depth that few people have. Such depth comes with a price tag that is close to being too high to pay. Some of us are called to pay that price and do something almost beyond our reach with the knowledge we get from it. You were called, chosen, and have responded at the highest level in all areas of your life. Dennis knows about these prices as I remember his comment about how he felt after viewing the photos in the lynching book. There is no recovery from lynching, and often there is no recovery from the pain of child abuse. It must have a face and a life behind the stories that do come to light for it to be anything other than a statistic. I read this morning about some murders associated with abuse in the BBC news about an abuse ring comprised of persons of very high rank. It is these things that people do not want to believe, but they are true. I took my comment and put it on Goodreads as a review of your book if you would like to see it. The story must move on, it begs to be told so that people will understand why it is necessary to stop these atrocities against the young and helpless. Thank you for your courage. It is of the immortal kind. MJ Payne Author The Remembered Self: A Journey into the Heart of the Beast

MJ' comments

Nice work MJ, helping other authors get the word out, to speak out and not hide from the truth. Many of us have and always will be dealing with repercussions from such extreme violence. It is united we become a forceful movement for positive changes to occur in our society. Sadly, it takes many victims before anyone really listens, which is why protests are running like wildfire. Like me, the experience is, "one too many dead bodies," someone and something is bound to break. We are a nation of broken people, mending takes forgiveness - this is the first rule to thrive and survive healthy. Forgive those who trespass, cause bodily harm and emotional batter - to be kind in the face of anger is supreme. Linda Lee King Author

To Judge Bullock Re: Mj Payne comment, Dennis Moore Review

Dear Judge Bullock, I just got to your answer to my review comment. I am sorry I did not get to it earlier - hospital visits all day yesterday. Your comment brought an upwelling of feeling, a combination of tears, grief, and hope. Dennis gave me your phone number and I must have copied it incorrectly as I wanted to thank you in person for your valiant fight and for your victories in your profession despite all the torture. Justice is really what you are about and I was not surprised that someone of your broad intellect who had been so grievously hurt would choose the field you did. Your work was actually enhanced by experience and has given you a depth that few people have. Such depth comes with a price tag that is close to being too high to pay. Some of us are called to pay that price and do something almost beyond our reach with the knowledge we get from it. You were called, chosen, and have responded at the highest level in all areas of your life. Dennis knows about these prices as I remember his comment about how he felt after viewing the photos in the lynching book. There is no recovery from lynching, and often there is no recovery from the pain of child abuse. It must have a face and a life behind the stories that do come to light for it to be anything other than a statistic. I read this morning about some murders associated with abuse in the BBC news about an abuse ring comprised of persons of very high rank. It is these things that people do not want to believe, but they are true. I took my comment and put it on Goodreads as a review of your book if you would like to see it. The story must move on, it begs to be told so that people will understand why it is necessary to stop these atrocities against the young and helpless. Thank you for your courage. It is of the immortal kind. MJ Payne Author The Remembered Self: A Journey into the Heart of the Beast

Judge Not Lest we be Judged

Thanks Dennis for this book review and thank God for His grace and mercy and His healing virtues He's showered on this author. Also, what the devil meant for evil, thank God Judge Mary Elizabeth Bullock has used her experience for good, as she shares her healing journey that helped her and now others through her published work, "Judging Me: One Woman’s Journey From Abuse And Betrayal To Triumph."

Judging Me Dennis Moore Review of Judge Bullock's book

I have purchased and read Judge Bullock’s book, and feel that “Judging Me” is basically a book about ethics, an analysis of thought and behavioral patterns as they relate to healing from sexual abuse, insights into the legal system, and a discourse in favor of taking responsibility for actions and changing to facilitate healing. For victims of sexual trauma Bullock sees the bed as the battleground. It is the place that both suffering and revenge for past injustices often occur as well as a place for birthing children and for dying. Bullock is obviously a brilliant woman to be able to have such a stellar career while battling depression, panic, and in the midst of destructive relationships where sex was a weapon and took the place of love and affection. She did not miss a beat professionally and says that work was her drug of choice. Her book shows how she values kindnesses to others in the form of civil rights legislation and redress of grievances from injustice. She discusses the problem of impossibility of intimacy that results from sexual abuse because it threatens a person who has been victimized with the possibility of being engulfed by the pain of memory. Thus both love and work become addictions. I have heard it stated that a person who can both love and work is emotionally healthy. This book shows her battle to find firm footing and her final insight that without reliance on God it is not possible to unsnarl the damage done to the nervous system of a person dealing with traumatic stress. I congratulate Dennis Moore on an excellent and perceptive review and I came to the same conclusion he did that the book lends itself to being made into a movie quite naturally. The book is starkly honest and startlingly frank, but I do not consider it to be actually graphic. The author basically outlines her anger at men and the double standard with regards to how men and women are judged about sexual activity. A movie would take her outline and a skilled screenwriter would soon have graphic scenes of what she outlines imported into the movie. Bullock is essentially an analyst and is comfortable and well suited to dealing with facts and understanding how they can be used to put together a puzzle. It is most interesting and informative to see how she uses her outstanding intellect in her own defense. The book is an outstanding analytic work and well worth reading. I highly recommend it as an example of how a brilliant woman confronts horror and it is so compassionately reviewed by Dennis Moore with his usual intuitive understanding of the human condition.. MJ Payne Author The Remembered Self: A Journey into the Heart of the Beast

You Gifted Me With Kindness and Insight I Never Would Have Had

Dear MJ Payne, Your kindness felt like rain on my barren soul. I learned new insights about myself after reading your review some ten times over!. Insights that I never would have had were it not for your taking the time to respond to Mr. Moore's review of "Judging Me." I very much look forward to ordering and reading your book. You can tell so much about a person from the way they write or their use of words. I can see I will learn a lot from you as you too have experienced, and risen greatly above your own personal set of circumstances. We all agree that staying in the past serves no one but our lesser selves. Like when a needle is stuck we can no longer find the tune. But for us and some of the other reviewers the needle is not stuck and we found our own tunes and what beautiful tunes they are. I try not to dwell on the past but rather focus on the unmet yet to be discovered potential of today and tomorrow. To take the good from the bad, to have a sense of humor and to know that God is always there. I cannot thank you enough for your thoughtful, analytical and very thorough review of my book. Mr. Moore is a wonderful gift to all who have traveled through life. He is a conduit for spirituality, oneness and humanity at its best. Very few people have the talent possessed by Mr. Moore, that pureness that radiates a light, a beckon of hope that all humanity will one day hate no more, kill no more, but only find love and peace. Respectfully submitted, Mary Elizabeth Bullock

You Gifted Me With Kindness and Insight I Never Would Have Had

Dear MJ Payne, Your kindness felt like rain on my barren soul. I learned new insights about myself after reading your review some ten times over!. Insights that I never would have had were it not for your taking the time to respond to Mr. Moore's review of "Judging Me." I very much look forward to ordering and reading your book. You can tell so much about a person from the way they write or their use of words. I can see I will learn a lot from you as you too have experienced, and risen greatly above your own personal set of circumstances. We all agree that staying in the past serves no one but our lesser selves. Like when a needle is stuck we can no longer find the tune. But for us and some of the other reviewers the needle is not stuck and we found our own tunes and what beautiful tunes they are. I try not to dwell on the past but rather focus on the unmet yet to be discovered potential of today and tomorrow. To take the good from the bad, to have a sense of humor and to know that God is always there. I cannot thank you enough for your thoughtful, analytical and very thorough review of my book. Mr. Moore is a wonderful gift to all who have traveled through life. He is a conduit for spirituality, oneness and humanity at its best. Very few people have the talent possessed by Mr. Moore, that pureness that radiates a light, a beckon of hope that all humanity will one day hate no more, kill no more, but only find love and peace. Respectfully submitted, Mary Elizabeth Bullock

Judging Me, Dennis Moore Book Review

Mr. Moore, what an excellent review! The review was well done, as I could see myself when you described, "dark suits and proverbial black robes are off," and "as a helpless child, Bullock suffered sexual abuse for ten years." As a law enforcement officer, my role was to protect and serve, showing mental and physical toughness. While hiding behind my badge, was a sexually and physically abused child and woman! It prompted me to write an article in a magazine called Spotlight on Recovery, as I describe the abuse that occurs in childhood, and how it carries on to adulthood, where; oftentimes, it is concealed in silence and pain, affecting us in different ways. It also prompted me to write a book,"On Earth As It Is In Hell" I feel that people would identify and relate to this fictional tale because a lot of Hell on Earth that is experience; abuse, suicide, corruption, job issues; everything that a person views as horrific is described in detail. I am so happy to see your views that really touch a lot of emotional issues that people deal with, bringing awareness and hopefully change! "On Earth as it is in Hell" Cortina Jackson www.cortinajackson.com

Masks, Reply to Cortina Jackson re Dennis Moore Review

We all try to put our best foot forward socially, and it is normal to want to have life be civil and orderly. Sometimes this goes beyond politeness and becomes a mask a person wears to hide pain and hurt they do not know what else to do with. It is sad that many think that dealing with feelings to facilitate healing is "Having a pity party". I have heard this comment until I am quite sick of it. I have met very few people who enjoy feeling sorry for themselves. It is a good way to ensure that people will remain silent about the deeper feelings we all share in our human condition. The failure to listen to others because of discomfort allows problems to develop when they could have been nipped in the bud, or prevents a person who has been victimized from seeking help. It is normal to want reassurance that we are "OK" in our attempts to make our lives better. Cortina makes this clear in the comment she has made in this forum. I hope these discussions will lead readers to do positive things to make their lives better, and realize that when each person finds healing it has a ripple effect that helps others and is a responsible pursuit. MJ Payne Author The Remembered Self: A Journey into the Heart of the Beast

Reply to MJ Payne and Dennis Moore

Thank you so much for sharing your story with the world Michal Payne! Oftentimes, people do feel as if no one would care or sympathize with an uncomfortable subject such as physical or sexual abuse. Unfortunately, its not just a feeling, I have watched people become callous, cold, and insensitive to people dealing with horrific hurt in their lives. The victim is left to deal with a lot of bottled up emotions. Everyone deals with it in their own way, some try to move on and forget, some fall into depression, some become angry and take it out on others. You never know what will spill over as you try to contain the evil that is imparted in you. I kept it hidden for so long until it just about consumed me. The evil attracted further evil, as I accepted volatile relationships, self destructive actions and deeds, and evil people who confirmed for me that no one was good; sending me into an even deeper depression. When I left my husband, I drove from Houston to Dallas, and while I was driving, I asked God to set me free! I am striving each day to make sure I impart joy whenever I can, so thankful for my future. Again thank you MJ Payne and thank you Dennis Moore, my heroes!! Nothing but good things ahead for us my friend!

"Judging Me" by Judge Mary Elizabeth Bullock

Thank you Cortina for your comment on my review of this revealing book by the Honorable Judge Mary Elizabeth Bullock, as your comments and book "On Earth as it is in Hell" will hopefully shed light on an insidious illness in the world, domestic and sexual abuse. This issue needs to be seriously addressed by all. I can't wait to get and read your book, and hopefully write a review of it in our East County Magazine.

Re: Mr. Dennis Moore

Sir, you are a wonderful gift! You give people a voice who may never be heard! You are hand-picked by God! I appreciate you! Thank you for your wonderful reviews! "On Earth As It Is In Hell" by Cortina Jackson www.cortinajackson.com

Moving and mortifying

It is extremely disturbing to me what people are capable of doing to each other. But what is amazing and uplifting and empowering to me is that this woman has the power to survive, and thrive, despite all the horrible things that were done to her. It just goes to show that the human spirit is stronger than any negative force. Thank you Dennis, for the wonderful and heartfelt review of this book. Stacy Thunes Krieger Screenwriter, Editor, Translator The Scriptory.com www.thescriptory.com https://www.tumblr.com/blog/stacythunesblog

Re: comment by Donalie Beltran

I agree that Dennis Moore has written a riveting review of a young girl's life that was on a continuum of mind-numbing abuses. Sadly, though, based on media accounts, there are far too many more stories of girls and young women becoming prey to those on whom they should be able to trust and depend for safety and protection. As an author and journalist whose focus largely concerns Native American women, I find it equally sad that the horrible abuses described in Mr. Moore's review are no respecters of race, family ties, ethnicity, or even gender of children and young adults who are preyed upon. In Mary Elizabeth Bullock's case, her accomplishments in spite of the abuse she endured portray the triumph of human tenacity and will over some of life's worst circumstances. As Donalie expressed in so many words, even though we do not understand the ways and timing of God, and even when the darkness seemed so complete, He had not abandoned Mary. Perhaps part of His plan was to demonstrate that great good can triumph over abject evil; perhaps the author, whom He knew to be a courageous witness, was assigned to expose the fact that horrors done in secret will someday be brought into the light, as well as that which is good. KB Schaller, Author 100+ Native American Women Who Changed the World Winner, International Book Award, Women's Issues http://KBSchaller.com/

Judging Me: One Woman’s Journey From Abuse And Betrayal To Trium

Mr. Moore, You have done it again. What a great review. This book review, and the contents of this book reminds me so much about yet another book review you had done on the Remembered Self. It was a tough read, and to think that a parent would do that to his offspring, an offspring who looks up to him for guidance and protection but got neither is troubling, and disturbing. What a brutal childhood, and innocence lost, thankfully Ms. Bullock did not wallow in self pity, but educated herself and moved on. Parents/adults who inflict such sexual abuse on innocent, defenseless individuals have a history of being abused as well. Ms. Bullock's father is/was a sick man with emotional and psychological problems. I say this because I cringed when I read about the acts of bestiality - who but a sick mind will allow this to take place? Mr. Brown suggests that this book is movie material. I sincerely hope that it's not made into a movie. It would be difficult to watch, and I can't see what benefit it would be to society, except to show the horrors of sexual abuse on the innocent, but it's debatable as to whether this in itself is a benefit to society. I am happy that Ms. Bullock has done well for herself in the academic arena. I am also grateful that she had the courage to write this book, and to relay the statistics about sexual abuse to children. Hopefully it will encourage others to tell their story, and bring the perpetrators to justice. Kudos to Ms. Bullock for penning her story. I wish her all the best. And to Mr. Brown, thanks for doing a brilliant review of such a sordid story. Jacqueline Carr Author A Selected Few Just For You

Judging Me, Dennis Moore Book Review

I have ordered Bullock's book and will make further comments after it arrives and I have read it. MJ Payne Author The Remembered Self

A life of horror

I can't possibly imagine what this woman has gone through. Just the review is enough to bring on despair... What this woman accomplished with her life is absolutely remarkable. Most little girls who have been so badly sexually abused end up on the streets as drug addicted prostitutes..... Trying to pull yourself out of such depravity is very hard to do. For her incredible accomplishments, I salute her. To Mary: Don't give up on God. He certainly hasn't given up on you. Donalie Beltran, Author MURDER IS A FAMILY AFFAIR

The Problem of Pain, Judging Me, Dennis Moore Book Review

Thank you Dennis for this excellent review. I said of my own book that if I had not written it someone else would have. These stories of horrors of the utmost destructiveness are coming out now. I am not sure why now, but they are emerging. Life is filled with hidden tales beyond the pale I need to buy this book and read it to fully comment on this very fine review The issue of abandonment makes true intimacy almost impossible and it always comes with great pain if it ever comes at all. "Why is love always mixed with pain?" is the question Peach asks in my book. It takes great courage to write books that delve into the roots of being. I must read this book and will order it and comment further. Anyone who has the nerve to write about these awful things deserves to be listened to carefully as others with similar experiences will follow. Sadly, the commonness of these experiences has to be brought into the open. I will listen to this woman and read her book because it is necessary to do it to prepare for others making their way out of such ordeals. MJ Payne Author The Remembered Self