Grow Through It: Loss & Grief
Allison Moorer, author of Blood: A Memoir, tells her story of surviving her parents’ murder/suicide, which occurred in 1986 when she was 14 years old. Her father was an abusive alcoholic, among many other wonderful things, who could not control his drinking or his behavior. Her mother was traumatized and could not remove Allison or her sister from the situation. When she finally left him, he could not handle it and ended up shooting Allison’s mother and then himself on the front lawn of the house her mother had rented to get herself and the girls away from him. After her parents’ deaths, Allison went to live with her mother’s younger sister. She began a new school and lost her grandmother all in about 10 days after losing her parents. Both families were shattered after this unfathomable circumstance. She was not put into therapy or cared for any differently than if event hadn’t happened. Allison carried on and went on to graduate from high school, earn a bachelor’s degree, enter the music industry, and make records. She became very productive and tried to figure out something to hold onto to bolster her poor self-image and identity.
She has had many ups and downs in her life and has had difficulty having relationships. She has not felt OK or safe in her life. Allison realizes now that she still has work to do to figure out some things and untangle things that never had the opportunity to be untangled. She learned that personal safety and agency is important, no matter what your age, and that we need to evolve to protecting everyone’s development. She learned that giving and receiving love is the most important skill. And she learned how important it is to be able to effectively express yourself. Allison’s advice to someone going through something similar is to get the child into treatment immediately. Do not let their openness close. Do not let them feel responsible or alone because they will have abandonment issues throughout their life. And for others, whatever gets you to recover sooner, do that.