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How Much Do You Know About Polygamy In America? Interview with Author Susanna Barlow

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Susanna is the 23rd child of 46 children, the quintessential middle child. Growing up in a fundamentalist religious home shaped her life, her values, and her views on literally everything. Although she is no longer affiliated with any polygamous group on a religious level she is surrounded by family and friends who are practicing polygamists. Susanna lives in Bluffdale Utah with her husband, six children and their dog. Young Susanna didn’t know anything other than the family environment that was created for her; a system without regard for society or man’s laws. Raised in a sequestered home in a busy city neighborhood, everything beyond the front gate was off-limits. The isolation proved to be a breeding ground for abuse and Susanna struggled to reconcile her desire to escape and her need to belong. The book recounts six critical years of Susanna’s youth during which she struggled to come to terms with the conditions of her life. This coming of age story is as much a testament to survival as it is to surrender. Pushed to the limits of her coping abilities, Susanna tried everything she could think of to bring about the peace that always seemed out of reach. In an impulsive moment and an act of daring, she contacted a newspaper journalist and found herself in a predicament that she never before considered. That decision became the impetus that propelled her to where she wanted to be and to finally find personal peace. Although Ms. Barlow is no longer affiliated with any polygamous group on a religious level, she is surrounded by family and friends who are practicing polygamists. She says, “Although I suffered abuse at the hands of one of “the mothers”, I currently know many decent people who are living this lifestyle.”

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