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Enlighten Me: Learning how ‘healing is possible’

Lockey Maisonneuve1.jpg
Lockey Maisonneuve

A New Jersey woman is sharing her experience overcoming childhood trauma.

Lockey Maisonneuve’s A Girl Raised by Wolves chronicles how she was neglected, abused and ultimately sold into sex trafficking by her father.

In this week’s Enlighten Me, she joins Delaware Public Media’s Kelli Steele to discuss surviving that past.

Delaware Public Media's Kelli Steele interviews author Lockey Maisonneuve

Lockey Maisonneuve recently joined Wilmington University’s Human Trafficking Symposium webinar to talk about survivor resilience.

Maisonneuve’s memoir, A Girl Raised by Wolves, recounts the neglect and abused she suffered starting at 11 years-old and how she was ultimately sold into sex trafficking by her father.

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“My father was a raging alcoholic; (he was) very neglectful. And his booze and his gambling came first. So I don't think he had a very well thought through plan," said Maisonneauve. "At first it was my father who sexually abused me. And then - like he owed money to a friend - he would just send them into the house while I was sleeping and that person would abuse me.”

Maisonneuve also survived aggressive breast cancer, undergoing a double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery.

Only a few weeks into her recovery, Maisonneuve's estranged mother was brutally stabbed to death, leaving her the stress and burden of a murder investigation.

Maisonneuve involuntarily blocked out the memory of all of the trauma for years, given her young age.

It was only when she gave birth to her daughter that she began experiencing visceral flashbacks of the many violent assaults she endured. This was the point at which she began her grieving and healing journey.

Maisonneuve now travels the country telling her story and talking about how “healing is possible.”

“The first thing I say is, I have been doing this work for about nine years and never in my life have I met a broken person; because I work with people on both sides of the trauma spectrum - whether they experience the trauma or were the victim of it or they put the trauma on someone, meaning they were the perpetrator," Maisonneuve said. "And I think the first thing you have to realize is - we're not broken.”                           

Maisonneuve adds that healing takes time and is a commitment to yourself.
 
She now guides trauma-informed yoga programs for incarcerated men, participants in substance recovery, mental health patients, gang members, and at-risk youth in inner city schools.

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Kelli Steele has over 30 years of experience covering news in Delaware, Baltimore, Winchester, Virginia, Phoenix, Arizona and San Diego, California.