22 min

Life Stories #103: Michelle Stevens Life Stories

    • Books

I first met Michelle Stevens in 2014, back when I was an acquiring editor for a startup book publishing company. We took a meeting with her and her agent after reading the proposal for her book, which combined a memoir about surviving childhood sexual abuse with solid explanations of the psychology involved in the dissociative identity disorder that Stevens, among others, developed as a result of that protracted trauma. I was impressed by the proposal, and the meeting, but I wasn't the one who got to make those sorts of decisions, so we ended up passing on the book—fortunately, Scared Selfless wound up with a great publisher who was able to support the book in a way it deserved, so chances are that, sometime in 2017, you might have seen her in a magazine you were reading, or on a daytime talk show...



Happily, she and I were able to keep in touch, so when she came to New York City to do some media, we were able to get together for a frank conversation about—among other things—what dissociative identity disorder is (and what it isn't), about how surviving her trauma motivated her career in psychotherapy, and about what it's like to come forward with a story about surviving sexual abuse in a country where, let's face it, the outcome of the most recent presidential election suggests our concern about sexual assault is not what it should be. I'm delighted to finally be able to share this conversation with you.

I first met Michelle Stevens in 2014, back when I was an acquiring editor for a startup book publishing company. We took a meeting with her and her agent after reading the proposal for her book, which combined a memoir about surviving childhood sexual abuse with solid explanations of the psychology involved in the dissociative identity disorder that Stevens, among others, developed as a result of that protracted trauma. I was impressed by the proposal, and the meeting, but I wasn't the one who got to make those sorts of decisions, so we ended up passing on the book—fortunately, Scared Selfless wound up with a great publisher who was able to support the book in a way it deserved, so chances are that, sometime in 2017, you might have seen her in a magazine you were reading, or on a daytime talk show...



Happily, she and I were able to keep in touch, so when she came to New York City to do some media, we were able to get together for a frank conversation about—among other things—what dissociative identity disorder is (and what it isn't), about how surviving her trauma motivated her career in psychotherapy, and about what it's like to come forward with a story about surviving sexual abuse in a country where, let's face it, the outcome of the most recent presidential election suggests our concern about sexual assault is not what it should be. I'm delighted to finally be able to share this conversation with you.

22 min