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Denton author hopes to make change through her book about child abuse

Denton author hopes to make change through her book about child abuse

Denton author hopes to make change through her book about child abuse
February 05
11:55 2022

Content Warning: this article contains language and content related to domestic and child abuse. Reader discretion is advised.

Denton resident and teacher Chelsea Nicole recently self-published her book “Cry, Little Girl,” and has a mission to bring awareness to child abuse. Published in December 2021, Nicole’s book is about her experience growing up with a mentally ill mother and an abusive father.

Nicole chose the title  “Cry, Little Girl” because she felt she could release all the sadness she had experienced as a little girl while writing this book.

“When I was growing up, I could not show emotion,” Nicole said. “This book was me finally giving myself permission to feel sadness and pain and allowed me to process what happened to me.”

Nicole said she grew up in a physically, mentally and emotionally abusive home where she experienced pain and suffering. Her book describes her emotional journey through it all while being determined to build a better life for herself.

Nicole said she did not plan to write this book. She started writing “Cry, Little Girl,” as a personal journal meant to help her work through her emotions.

“The further along I was in the writing process, the more I realized my story might help others,” Nicole said.

After reading “A Child Called It” by Dave Pelzer, she realized she was not alone in the abuse. Nicole said she wanted to share her story because she understood how many kids experience similar situations every day and was determined to advocate for change.

“I am going to make a change in this world,” Nicole said. “I am going to continue to shed light on these uncomfortable conversations about child abuse until the entire system is fixed.”

Educator and Nicole’s friend Amber Johnson said Nicole’s journey writing her book was amazing to watch.

“Being on the outside looking in and seeing her step out of her comfort zone was mind-blowing,” Johnson said. “You have to have people that are going to speak life into you even when it’s tough or scary.”

Nicole also hopes to bring more attention to the importance of mental health after experiencing pain from her mentally ill mother while growing up. Nicole said if talking about mental health issues had been more normal, then her mom would have received help and it would have changed the trajectory of Nicole’s life.

“We should talk about when we are not feeling okay,” Nicole said. “I want people to get help with the stressors that are becoming too much to carry.”

Pastor and Chelsea’s husband Chad Merritt said Nicole now knows her purpose in life and that is a great joy to witness. Merritt said Nicole is a huge inspiration and her story shows no matter how you grew up you can make positive choices.

“I tell her all the time that I can’t believe how she grew up and could have turned into exactly what she came out of,” Merritt said. “She could have been part of the cycle, but she isn’t. She broke that in her life.”

Currently, Nicole is working on her website where books can be purchased. Nicole said she hopes to have her book carried by Barnes & Noble and other businesses in Denton. For now, her book can be bought on Amazon.

“This is going to help me gain the attention needed to build a platform and hopefully start a movement,” Nicole said.

Nicole said anyone can make a difference in a child’s life. From communities, groups, schools and individuals, anyone can raise their voice and speak up if they see something suspicious.

“Children are innocent,” Nicole said. “They are meant to be loved and protected. They need us to help them.”

Nicole has topped Amazon charts at #83 in biographical fiction and #62 for dysfunctional family genres in its first month since release. She has also sold over 100 copies of her books in the month of January.

Those in Denton can purchase “Cry, Little Girl,” by sending a message on Instagram to @chelseanicolewriter.

“Share my story,” Nicole said. “Talk about child abuse. When we unite and stand together for a cause we can make a difference.”

The Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) provides the Online Texas Abuse Hotline as a secure website for reporting suspicions of abuse, neglect and exploitation of children, adults with disabilities, or people 65 years or older. 

TEXAS ABUSE HOTLINE:  1 (800) 252-5400

Featured Image: Local author and teacher Chelsea Nicole poses with her debut novel outside Golden Boy Coffee Co on Jan. 26, 2022. Photo by Sarah Hogan

About Author

Cristina Sandoval

Cristina Sandoval

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