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Leaving Neverland, Wherever You Are

Lots of TV talking heads screaming about how shocked they are that the adults in HBO’s “Leaving Neverland” documentary all seem to have just gone along with Michael Jackson’s predation; but sexual predators are experts at grooming entire families, and it happens slowly, over time.

This was certainly the case with what happened during my own youth. These people can sense when space exists between a child and their parents, perhaps created from previous abuse, neglect, some other type of trauma, or a need that isn’t being met at home, and they shapeshift to fill that empty space, meeting the need — not just for the victim in their sights, but for all of the grown-ups around that child. It’s easy to judge looking in from the outside, but make no mistake: These parents and families are victims of the monster, too.

When I was 16 I had a much older teacher start showing me special attention and eventually openly seduce me during a summer art program for teens that I was attending at the Pacific Northwest College of Art, and literally nobody gave a shit. Grown-ups offered me rides to and from this man’s house, where he regularly fed me and my underage friends drugs and alcohol, and had sex with me. None of this happened in the shadows. I was openly sleeping over at this teacher’s house, in his bed, showering in his master bathroom. Nothing was a secret; not to his friends, roommates, family, and coworkers — and not to mine. Read the rest of this entry »


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