Damage lasts a lifetime

Hi Madeline

It was good to speak to you, whilst i was laboring through my letter to Steve.

If there is any good to have come out of all this, it is that we have all found each other again.

It seems at times, as if Terry, Margo, yourself and I, have used this hiatus in my condition to get to know each other properly (possibly for the first time)

It is also, so nice to have Chloe finally entrenched back in the family fold, with her now; well established and endearing dottiness.

Our children have found their cousins after years of not really knowing them, and this is something we can revel in.

Family is a wonderful thing, and with what we now have; we can only deeply regret the times when our family was so divided.

Your marriage to Steve must have been extremely hard, firstly at the farm; where both Dad and Mum for different reasons; seemed to resent your presence in the family

The tensions between Jerry and Steve would have only exacerbated this situation and you must have felt so isolated.

Later, when you and Steve left the farm and things really unraveled, I can only imagine the pain of a very traumatic divorce and the acute problems associated with the aftermath.

Thanks for your email below, written after we spoke; I really appreciate it.

Hi Bruce,

Great to speak with you yesterday and catch up on your family and yourself.  Hope you are keeping well and escape this flu thing that is happening around the country right now. 

Speaking with you yesterday, you said that writing this letter was going to be the hard one to write about.

Bruce, you can write whatever you like as it will NOT offend me.  The whole thing gets to me at times and I go over and over it to myself every now and then trying to work out just what did go on at the farm. 

To me it was a very troubled place.

Apparently Steven was engaging in this activity as a primary school child; where did he learn it from?  he must have been taught. 

Chloe had mentioned over in Mandurah last year, that Jerry had told her back in 1977 when we split, of his activities as a child.

So one really wonders; with the number of workmen around the place for many years it could have been anyone.

Happy writing you need to do what you feel and don’t think twice about it.

Talk to you later.


Madeline, it was many years later, that Terry confessed to me over a very late night of Bourbon and Cokes, that he too, had a similar experience with Steve. Your letter indicates that Jerry may have suffered the same fate and I wonder if this contributed to his almost demonic anger at times.

Jerry and I have never been able to talk honestly, so I guess I will never know.

I have known for years that the chain of damage was always much longer and deeper than just me; I know the very worst of this, fell on you and your children.

In many ways, I may have been the least affected; this only adds to my culpability in ignoring my suspicions and not acting more decisively at the time.

I will regret my weakness forever.




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