Tonight's special guest is Kathy Picard from Western Massachusetts, a childhood sexual abuse survivor, coach and advocate. She's the author of 'Life with My Idiot Family: A True Story of Survival, Courage and Justice over Childhood Sexual Abuse.' She says she hopes her book, “will inspire people to speak out and add their voices to the nationwide cry for reform in the way sexual abuse is investigated and prosecuted in the U.S., and remind us all that one person can make a difference when it comes to preventing incidents of this kind from occurring and robbing innocent young people of their confidence, self-esteem and ability to trust." As an advocate for education designed to encourage children to speak out when they are confused, scared, or being victimized, Kathy Picard has formed alliances with other courageous survivors of sexual abuse, including individuals affected by the widely publicized sexual abuse of children by clergy of the Catholic Church system in Massachusetts. There is no denying the disturbing statistics of childhood sexual abuse. According to the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, with children 18 years and younger, one in four girls and one in six boys is a victim of sexual abuse. For author Kathy Picard, the pain and lasting impact of this horrendous crime was an inescapable chapter of her life, one that shamed her into silence for many years. In her book 'Life with My Idiot Family' Kathy Picard tells the story of how, at the age of seven, her sexual abuse began and became a painful and relentless part of her life well into her teens, robbing her of her innocence and childhood. Gradually, Kathy was able to find the courage to speak openly about what she had endured.
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