People often do bad things. In some cases, the bad things they’ve done have long-lasting consequences for other people. Bad things done to children always have the most devastating consequences.
“Her Alibi” is a revealing, heart-wrenching memoir written by a person with a truly brave heart. Mary L. Schmidt doesn’t spare the details of what has turned her childhood into a nightmare. She doesn’t try to pretend that she’s come over it and no scars have been left on her soul.
When a child feels – and children always feel it – that the most important person in their lives doesn’t love them, it leaves marks that cannot be erased. When your mother doesn’t love you, it leaves the kind of wound that never heals. It doesn’t matter if after you grow up you understand the reasons behind her behaviour. Even if you realise that she had mental problems, which if untreated escalate causing other people’s sufferings, it doesn’t really help to completely come over the trauma.
I know that it works vice versa as well. I grew up surrounded by such deep, unconditional, and all-encompassing love that none of the hardships I had to go through later in life has scarred me irreversibly. This proves – at least to me – the profound meaning of a mother’s love in every person’s life.
“Her Alibi” is a book that will shock you. This dysfunctional family’s story will make you feel a plethora of unpleasant emotions. When the worst aspects of human nature are revealed, we always instinctively want to close our eyes hoping that ugly things will go away. True, some stories are better left untold. But this is not that case. I applaud the author for not closing her eyes and taking the courage to share her story with the world.