If you haven’t read “A Beautiful World” by Gregg Tyler Milligan, which is his first book, you can read that along with God Must Be Sleeping. He has been very generous including the first book in with “God Must Be Sleeping.” I think that it is a much more accurate title for both books. If you are expecting the first one to be about a beautiful world you will be sadly mistaken. That is not to say that Gregg hasn’t turned his horribly abusive childhood into a beautiful world for him and those around him. He has to be one of the most amazing people that I have ever met. I too am a survivor of sexual abuse but nothing near the extent that he has survived. He was not only physically abused to the point of near death but he was sexually abused and starved. If I didn’t meet him in person at Siena University where he spoke about his life and how he triumphed over the evil and despair, I would not believe that he could have survived all the abuse that he endured.
This is not an easy book to read. Gregg and his siblings were held captive by an alcoholic, abusive, vile mother. Their father wasn’t any better but was not living with them after he left their mother; although he put in appearances to take out their drunken mother to drink with him. He beat her in front of them one time to the point of knocking her eye out of it’s’ socket. She had to be resuscitated by the paramedics. She wouldn’t press charges so he went Scott free to continue his reign of terror on other women.
Gregg’s older brother Carter tried to protect Gregg and his younger sister Lynn. The brothers both tried to protect her. They found her hiding in the attic, the most terrifying room in the house once. She was terrified of coming out because their mother told her that their father was going to rape her. They found out later that he had raped their other older sisters. This terror on top of the fact that her own mother molested her was more than her little soul could bear.
I am amazed that Gregg was able to keep such a compassionate loving spirit. In spite of the horror and torture that his mother inflicted on him, he still loved her. He saved her from drowning in the bathtub and was constantly hyper vigilant about trying to protect her. In return he was molested, abused and tortured. He had a pet cat that he and his siblings nurtured to health. It was the runt of the litter and he had to watch it slowly die because his mother wouldn’t take it to the vet. This is just one of the things that they had to live with.
When Gregg and his siblings were finally rescued from the house of horrors, they went to their sister Lauren’s house. She and Tim, her control freak husband and she took every opportunity to work and humiliate them. They were never shown love or compassion. Gregg worked like a dog trying to learn because they were all very behind in school. Many times they were not in school and when they were they were humiliated and bullied. Gregg overcome many things, got involved in sports and finally was able to catch up academically. His sister Lauren, I believe was very jealous of Gregg. When he continued to strive to better himself, she belittled him and never encouraged him. He still worked and studied as hard as he could. When she saw that she couldn’t break his spirit, she made him move you, without any explanation.
When he was sent to his other sister Jessica’s house he was sent from one hell to another one. She was drinking and was viler in some ways than Lauren. Gregg cracked under the hopelessness and started fighting. All the rage that he had built up inside was acted out on other guys who were abused young men too. It is amazing that he was able to overcome that. He later was able to bring his grades back up, got out of drinking, and self-destructive behavior and through a set of miracles was supported, loved and encouraged by two men along with many other professors at Siena University. One was a coach, Pat Palmer. The other was another amazing man, Dr. Ed Skinner. He helped Gregg work through a lot of his trauma and pain. Pat Palmer and Ed Skinner are a couple of God’s angels that worked in Gregg’s life. If it weren’t for them and their love and encouragement, I don’t know if Gregg would have been able to make it.
Gregg is also honest about behavior that was not so flattering, his promiscuity, and inability to emotionally connect in his relationships with young women. This is no surprise considering his relationship with his monster mother. I am sure he is better today. The kind of damage that he and his siblings endured does not go without leaving some severe dysfunction. It can be overcome and I am sure that if anyone can overcome it, it is Gregg.
This is a must read if you have ever been abused. This is a must read if you know anyone that has been abused. This is a must read if you are an abuser and you want to change. It will show you what your actions against children have done to murder their souls. Most children don’t survive at least mentally, emotionally or spiritually. Gregg has triumphed and has gone on to become an advocate for children, giving them love, hope and encouragement. He was able to help his little sister, “Pug,” whose real name is Lynn. He has lost a lot of unhealthy, toxic relationships with many family members and has gone on to create healthy loving relationships with others today.
I consider Gregg to be a friend, a fellow survivor and it has been an honor to meet him and to do a review of “God Must Be Sleeping.” You can buy it at Amazon.