We received a touching email yesterday (text at right). We especially appreciate the sender’s closing comment, “I know you never thought sharing this story would help someone try to understand a dear childhood friend but thank you for writing it!” Thank you for writing.
“When I was in growing up in a very small town, I gathered a rather unique group of friends. They were all in the top of the class, with various religious backgrounds, who were just trying to get through the least damaged as possible. In our junior year, 5 years after our motley crew formed, we were all blindsided by one of our silly, kind-hearted pals. She literally had gone from one day saying that she wanted to go to BYU for science or writing because they were her loves, to being a wife and mother. She wasn't one for drama or depression. She was the most level headed of our group. So where did this come from?
“A week later the news started trickling in. Her father stood up in church on Sunday and denounced the LDS faith and its exclusion of polygamy. Another member of our group spilled the secret of her changed dreams. Her father was making her marry a man twice her age who already had one wife. To a group of teen girls it was the worst tragedy we could imagine. We were all shocked, sickened, saddened for our friend. We also didn't realize that the Friday before was the last time we would ever see her again.
“I have done my best to keep up with her online and through the news. She also occasionally pops up on Facebook for a couple of months and then vanishes again. I know the [“Judith”] I knew in the 90's is not the same person I hear from occasionally. I found your book Joanne in the search for anything new I could find on her.
“Though I have only read the free parts of your book, I do plan to buy it after Christmas. I have to see where I lost my best friend [“Judith”] to the polygamous [“Judith”]. I know you never thought sharing this story would help someone try to understand a dear childhood friend but thank you for writing it!”
The writer’s name has been withheld per her request
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