Read Me: Spilled Milk, based on a true story

(Trigger Warning: sexual abuse, domestic violence)

When I started my career in the child welfare arena back in 1999-2000, some of the required readings were books like Dave Pelzer’s A Child Called It and Kaye Gibbons’ novel, Ellen Foster.

What these books gave us were glimpses into the experience of abused children, and a first hand account of what survival was really like for them. Living with unimaginable abuse, surviving in foster care, carrying their inevitable physical and psychological wounds into adulthood. As a young social worker, their stories showed me what it was I was fighting against, and who it was I was fighting for.

Now, 20 years into my social work career, when I found KL Randis on Instagram earlier this year, I resonated with her immediately. She is a speaker and advocate against domestic violence and child abuse. She is a wife, a mother, and a writer. And she makes great Tik Tok videos.

Little did I know, she is also a survivor.

Spilled Milk is her autobiography, written as fiction, which chronicles her childhood with a sexually abusive father, an inattentive and addicted mother, and her fierce dedication to protect her siblings from the ongoing trauma and terror inside their home.

It is a story of strength, resiliency, and an ongoing bravery that I am in awe to witness. Kelly Randis uses her story to shine a light on the darkness that is childhood sexual abuse and educates professionals in the legal community, child welfare system, and law enforcement to better handle the most difficult of cases; cases like hers.

Kelly Randis tells the story of what happens after a child tells.

Protective orders, criminal court, testifying at trial, and ultimately her father’s sentencing, which sent him to prison for his crimes against her.

Of further note: Kelly has always been a writer. She began keeping journals at a very young age (6-7 years old) and credits writing as a protective outlet to process trauma and help deal with her pain; something that we can all tap into for healing.

For those of us who have been through hard things (and we have all been through hard things) let us gain strength and inspiration from this incredible young woman by bearing witness to her story and her ability to overcome.

Spilled Milk by KL Randis

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