Every person has 6-8 key stories that have shaped the trajectory of their life. The 4 common types are Sexuality, Social Harm, Personal Trauma and Family of Origin. These stories are shared with permission.
Story Type: Sexuality - events that shaped your sexual identity and understanding or your sense of what it means to be a man or a woman. This type of story will impact future relationships with men, women, family and marriage.
"It was dim inside and as my eyes adjusted I was amazed to discover on the floor, stacks and stacks of porn magazines. Probably, several hundred magazines in all. It was like a lightening bolt in my brain and my excitement shot up. I had found the gold mine! I started looking thru the stacks of magazines and grabbed a few. It didn't take long to realize these were not the normal Playboys and Penthouses we were used to finding...HERE
"My cousin Sam was 4 years older and Scotty was 10 months older. They were always busy playing. I tried really hard to fit in to what they were doing. I was not always interested in playing war, Matchbox cars and exploring the field but I did everything I could to be accepted. One day while we were playing up in the tree-house...HERE
"She said, "Janie, you are a good solid player and I believe that you would like to play varsity next year. Is that true?" "Yes, it is. I would very much like to." "Well," she continued, "there are a few things I would like to see you improve. You need to improve on your speed. If you lost weight you could be quicker on the court."...HERE
"Julie was a cheerleader and a model. When she said yes to ‘going together’, I hit it big. We quickly became enamored with each other, passing notes every day, trading lockers to get closer to each other and kissing after school. While her parents were home, we'd sneak kisses while watching TV. She really enjoyed teasing me with ‘Young and the Restless’ style passion and then walking away suddenly leaving me with an endless desire for more....HERE
Story Type: Personal Trauma - loss of a loved one, first love, betrayal of a friend, physical or emotional harm.
"February 14th, 1976, I was up at 6AM and had all my valentine cards ready to go. I was showered, dressed and ready way ahead of schedule. Mom had not come home in the night, but that wasn’t that unusual. The phone rang and I answered. It was Pete. I knew Pete because he had been in law enforcement with my stepfather, Elmer. His voice sounded grave and flat and he said, “Cindy, I don’t want you to go to school today....HERE
"My stepmother, Carol, weighed about a hundred and twenty pounds and was five foot nine inches. The woman was crazy when it came to food. Whatever she put it in front of you, you ate it. I would sit at times for two hours staring at a bowl of cold, mushy, canned spinach, until finally, exhausted, I would gag and gag it down....HERE
"A sense of dread filled my stomach. Being a smaller than average kid and very awkward athletically, I knew I would be one of the last kids chosen, as usual, by the designated team captains. I did not having any experience playing little league baseball, or any sport, like many of the other boys. I figured I could strike out quickly and go to the end of the line and be back to...HERE
Bicycle 911 - the lost dream of a stunt man
"I’m OFF! Off to seek out a great adventure with a boy I didn’t really care to be around, but it was better than staying at home alone. I zoomed in and out of winding road corners and down roads as fast as I could. One corner in particular had a dip at the intersection that was fun to whip in and out of....HERE
Story Type: Social Harm - an event that unfolded at school, on the playground, church choir practice, in class, at camp etc.
The General - basketball dreams, pissed away
"When we walked in, his office was huge. A mahogany desk at one end, a den like sitting area with 3 full leather couches and a big coffee table where we were sitting and then closer to the door, a ten-foot conference room table with chairs and a white dry eraser board with red trim, just as long long on the wall. “Sit down.” He said as he pointed to the leather couch....HERE
"I had watched the weather forecast and talked to everyone I could think of that lived on my side of the spread out, Indiana farming community. There were a handful of friends that lived in the small town of Clayton. I knew that if I could get them all to buy in to the idea we would have a great crowd with others that would meet us from outside of town. It was all about including everyone....HERE
"Why come to school and take a nap? However, there was one cool thing about nap time and that was that my mat was next to Karen Cook’s. When the lights were out, she and I would pretend to be napping and look at each other and whisper. A time or two we touched hands. It was a pretty special time, I suppose....HERE
Summer Fun at the Pool - Big nose
"I was strong. I wanted to be noticed by girls. I liked girls. I couldn’t see it from a straight on view in the mirror, but my nose was growing. I began to hear comments like “You have a big nose.” The men in my family had big hooked noses. The remarks got more creative. If I stated a strong opinion amongst my 7th grade friends, the comments changed to something like, “Oh.. ok, the Nose knows.” Well that hurt and I couldn’t figure out what to do with the feelings. So, I just took it as my friends having fun. ....HERE
Family of Origin
Story Type: Family of Origin - a family trip, night around the dinner table... a story that exemplifies how you fit into your family and the role you played.
"My parents were fighting over who would take us. I wondered for a brief moment where he thought he would take us. This was not the first time they had fought like this. I just sat there. Numb. Completely numb to the fighting. I had been here before. My sister rested her head on my shoulder. She was so young and tired. I felt sorry for her, “No 7-year-old should have to get out of bed like this on a school night.” I thought. At least I was 3 years older. I looked across the room. The box fan sat in front of the window.....HERE
"The song, “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” came on. This song was so much fun! It’s so fast paced and has so much attitude. My brothers and I were enjoying singing it and I, for sure, was trying to keep up the tongue twisting pace. “The devil went down to Georgia. He was looking for a soul to steal…devil’s in the house of the rising sun…I done told you once you son of bitch I’m the best....HERE
Thanksgiving Secret - lost in family chaos, boobs, fans and fireworks
"At 15, she knew more than I did. At least she seemed to think so. I was smarter than her and I knew it, but I kept my mouth shut. We weren’t arguing test scores. After a few minutes, she closed her bedroom door and said, “Hey, I wanna tell you about my boyfriend.” Her whispering told me that Aunt Edna didn't know something about him or didn't know about him at all. I said, “Sure” and watched her intently. ....HERE
"I looked up and it was too late. All in a flash, my right front wheel went over the edge of the road. It was one of my worst fears since we moved out to the country. A blink later, the underside of my van was skidding on the rocky edge of the road, down-hill at fifty miles an hour. I had no control as a few wet trees, from the falling rain, ripped down the right side of my van. As both hands gripped tight to....HERE
"I didn't think it was time. At 44, in the middle of the road, with my vision starting to blur, before collapsing, I decided to lay down and hope for someone to find me. I thought, "I could lay on the side of the road and no one possibly find me soon enough, but if I laid in the middle of the road, they may run over me as they come over the crest of the hill." I decided to lay on the edge. Then, as I struggled to breathe, I gazed to my right and there it was.....HERE