Unraveling Charlie: By Understanding His Abuser This Victim Got Back The Power To Control His Own Life

In In The News by Barbara Jacoby

LLH network pressNew York, NY,  June 24, 2013 -Donald McLean was twelve years old when his older sister’s favorite teacher Charlie Schoeler asked if he wanted to go to the beach. Within a month Mr. Schoeler began molesting him; it was an act that would be repeated many times in the next three and a half years.

Unraveling Charlie (CreateSpace) by Donald McLean is the powerful story of the damage a pedophile inflicts upon his victim and the struggle required to overcome that abuse. While the book originated as a way to help Donald heal by writing down his thoughts, feelings and emotions, it ended up being a remarkably moving account of the day-to-day trauma a victim suffers as they try to find a way back to some kind of normalcy. Unique in this genre because while most are full of anger or need for revenge, this book is filled with infinite understanding, insight and even humor; more a true coming of age tale that has allowed the abused to see the abuser through clear and sympathetic eyes. A compelling story that is sure to help anyone recovering from childhood sexual abuse, find hope for better tomorrows.

Unraveling Charlie is a well-written story of child abuse, survival, acceptance and understanding of his abuser’s mental illness, by a victim of a pedophile. McLean not only grew up strong and (astoundingly) normal, but he maintained a curiosity about his molester that enabled him not just to see him as the sick and destructive person he was, but to appreciate the disease that lay behind the horror; even to establish an adult relationship with Charlie, who had become by then the drunken, disturbed, powerless figure who had always lain behind the artificial mask of power.

McLean describes the initial years when he was subject to Charlie’s whims, through the time when the teen-aged boy began to grasp the insidiousness of what was happening. That understanding was what allowed him to escape; to become a well adjusted, full-grown man, one who has been happily married for 25 years.

While the effects of the years between twelve and fifteen had a great impact on Don’s life, it took him until his mid-20s before he started putting his life back together. He had been a drug dealer and had difficulty maintaining any kind of relationship, even becoming estranged from his large and close family for some time. Children who endure the kind of sickness that Charlie Schoeler forced on this young man are often warped for all time. But this is what makes Donald McLean and his life so exceptional; he was able to break from Charlie and assert a level of power and independence, and go on to lead an extremely satisfying life.

McLean is the co-founder of Ági Brooks, the Soho boutique started by his wife. His longtime interest in karate – he is a 4th degree black belt – has led to a separate career teaching at the Matsumoto Dojo in New York City. He and his wife Ági live in New York City but have a country house in Pennsylvania, their escape for inspiration; she paints and he writes. One of five children, Don is most appreciative of his wonderful parents, whose unfailing intelligence and love allowed him to survive molestation with rare normalcy. For more information on Don McLean or his riveting book, please visit: www.unravelingcharlie.com.

Unraveling Charlie
by Donald McLean
CreateSpace Publishing
ISBN-10: 1483972860
ISBN-13: 978-1483972862