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Understanding Deep Vein Thrombosis: Risk Factors, Signs, and Management

Recently I heard that a family member in her early 50s was being seen by a doctor for DVT and that she was hoping that there was a more natural way of dealing with it than the medications her doctor was prescribing. When I had digested this scrap of family ''information,'' I thought about my own lax position (denial, really) and how it would make sense for me to make some changes in my life while I still have some shreds of health and potential fitness. And, of course, I have inherited my mother's compulsive pop reading habit (in my case, the Internet mostly). So, I decided to research and write an article that would incorporate some preventative and alternative health principles into my life that might make DVT somewhat less likely to catch up with me than is likely the case now. I would also like to see our family member above and others benefit from these principles if they decide that they want to. Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a critical health concern that af

Fathers Who Harm

Father's Day has become a more highlighted day of celebration than when I was a child. My father was born in 1927 and lived a pretty long life: he died in 2013, a few months into his 86th year. He was not a bad father. He did struggle with alcohol addiction and was imperfect in other ways, but he was basically loving and kind. He was a workaholic, so we did not have access to him for emotional affirmation, but he told me in his old age that he always loved everything about us kids and felt sad that he had not been a better parent, and he was sorry he was most of all that he had not spent more time with us. 


Other men in my family– my grandfathers, my husband, son, uncles, brother– have all shown themselves to be good guys and have adult children whom they love(d) and who love them back. 


But I think to myself, having been a social worker to women and children who fled lives with men who put them and their children through Hell, that there are probably a fair number of children, teens, and adult children who do not have a warm-fuzzy response to the idea of celebrating a father who has been hurtful, maybe sadistic, indifferent, and or narcissist. Maybe Father's Day– like Christmas for some– is a painful reminder of the relationship with a loving father that they never had– a poke in the eye that they could live without. 


Here is a list of books by adult children who shared the miserable experience of an abusive, neglectful– or even downright evil– father. Some of these stories include a resolution in the father-child relationship, but most do not. Most of them are a story of coming to an understanding of strength, and the ability to live a satisfying life despite having endured abuse or abandonment by a father.


Why would you want to read such a book, you ask.... well, we are born interested in wanting to see what makes people tick. We want to measure our experience up against someone else's Sometimes we read these books because (alas) we want to know what worked for the person in the story with the nasty father-- how did they survive, what wisdom can they pass along to us. Books are teachers.


"The Glass Castle" by Jeannette Walls - A poignant memoir depicting Walls' tumultuous upbringing with her brilliant but deeply dysfunctional father, who led his family on a nomadic journey filled with poverty and instability.


"Educated" by Tara Westover - Westover's powerful memoir recounts her escape from the grip of her abusive and erratic father, who isolated his family in the mountains of Idaho and denied them access to education and modern medicine.


"Chasing Eden" by Cherilyn Christen Clough- A memoir in which a strict Adventist father controls his family through isolation, physical, and spiritual abuse. Clough recounts her childhood up until leaving home to find the *normal life* she craves. A second memoir about her life after leaving her family is coming out soon and will be listed here then.


"Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China" by Jung Chang - Chang chronicles her family's experiences living under the oppressive rule of Chairman Mao, including her father's struggles as a loyal Communist and the impact of his political choices on their lives.


"Infidel" by Ayaan Hirsi Ali - Ali bravely recounts her tumultuous upbringing in a strict Muslim household, dominated by her authoritarian father, and her journey to escape his oppressive control and find her own path to freedom.


"Lucky" by Alice Sebold - Sebold's memoir explores her harrowing experience of surviving a brutal rape as a young woman and the strained relationship with her father as they both grapple with the aftermath of trauma.


"Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight" by Alexandra Fuller - Fuller offers a candid account of her unconventional upbringing in war-torn Rhodesia, where her hard-drinking father's erratic behavior and racist beliefs shaped their family's tumultuous existence.


"Angela's Ashes" by Frank McCourt - McCourt's memoir, written from the perspective of his mother Angela, vividly depicts the poverty and despair of their Irish upbringing, overshadowed by the alcoholic antics of his father.


"A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius" by Dave Eggers - Eggers' memoir reflects on his tumultuous upbringing following the deaths of both his parents, particularly focusing on his complicated relationship with his father, who struggled with mental illness.


"The Liar's Club" by Mary Karr - Karr recounts her turbulent childhood in East Texas, marked by her father's erratic behavior, alcoholism, and the secrets that lurked beneath the surface of their seemingly normal suburban life.


"The Year of Magical Thinking" by Joan Didion - Didion's memoir delves into her grief following the sudden death of her husband and the illness of their daughter, examining the complexities of her relationship with her stoic and distant father.


"Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body" by Roxane Gay - Gay's candid memoir explores her struggles with weight, trauma, and identity, shaped by the absence of her supportive but distant father and the abuse she suffered at the hands of other men.


"North of Normal: A Memoir of My Wilderness Childhood, My Unusual Family, and How I Survived Both" by Cea Sunrise Person - Person shares her unconventional upbringing in the Canadian wilderness, where her charismatic but unstable father led their family on a journey filled with drugs, poverty, and isolation.


"The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts" by Maxine Hong Kingston - Kingston weaves together myth and memory to explore her Chinese-American upbringing, shaped by the silence of her immigrant father and the stories of her female ancestors.


"Sour Heart" by Jenny Zhang - Zhang's collection of interconnected stories offers a raw and unflinching portrait of the immigrant experience in America, focusing on the lives of young Chinese-American girls and their fraught relationships with their flawed fathers.


"Daughter of the Queen of Sheba: A Memoir" by Jacki Lyden - Lyden's memoir explores her complex relationship with her brilliant but mentally ill mother and her absent father, offering a poignant reflection on identity, family, and the search for belonging.


"Sickened: The Memoir of a Munchausen by Proxy Childhood" by Julie Gregory - Gregory bravely exposes the dark truth of her childhood, dominated by her mother's Munchausen by proxy syndrome and the emotional neglect of her passive father, who failed to protect her from harm.


"The Book of Disquiet" by Fernando Pessoa - A collection of fragments and musings reflecting Pessoa's inner world, exploring themes of identity, existence, and the nature of reality, written under various heteronyms.


"Negroland: A Memoir" by Margo Jefferson - Jefferson's memoir delves into her experiences growing up in Chicago's elite black community, navigating the complexities of race, class, and identity while grappling with the expectations of her demanding parents.


"The Chronology of Water" by Lidia Yuknavitch - Yuknavitch's lyrical memoir traces her journey from a turbulent childhood marked by abuse and addiction to her emergence as a writer and survivor, exploring themes of trauma, redemption, and the power of storytelling.


"The Kiss" by Kathryn Harrison - Harrison's provocative memoir explores her controversial relationship with her estranged father, who initiated a sexual relationship with her when she was a young adult, blurring the boundaries between love, desire, and betrayal.


"Lit: A Memoir" by Mary Karr - Karr's memoir chronicles her struggle with alcoholism and her journey to sobriety, interwoven with reflections on her tumultuous relationships with her parents, particularly her charismatic but volatile father.


"The Language of Baklava: A Memoir" by Diana Abu-Jaber - Abu-Jaber's memoir offers a rich tapestry of family stories and recipes, exploring her complex identity as the daughter of a Jordanian father and an American mother, and the cultural clash that shaped her upbringing.


"An American Childhood" by Annie Dillard - Dillard's memoir reflects on her idyllic childhood in Pittsburgh, marked by her insatiable curiosity and her complex relationship with her aloof and intellectual father, who inspired her love of nature and literature.


These memoirs offer poignant and often heartbreaking insights into the impact of parental behavior on the lives of their daughters, showcasing the resilience and strength of these women as they navigate their complex relationships and forge their own paths to healing and redemption.


Most of these books can be found on Amazon, but you might also find them in your local library, tiny libraries or thrift bookstores.  *If you click and purchase through Amazon, I receive a small fee (at no cost to you). Thank you for your support.

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