Life Stories #103: Michelle Stevens

Life Stories: Michelle Stevens

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.

Listen to Life Stories #103: Michelle Stevens (MP3 file); or download this file by right-clicking (Mac users, option-click). Or subscribe to Life Stories in iTunes, where you can catch up with earlier episodes and be alerted whenever a new one is released. (If you’re already an iTunes subscriber, please consider rating and reviewing the podcast!)

photo courtesy Michelle Stevens

25 July 2018 | life stories |