Eve Ensler on what made her sick

Eve Ensler is the brilliant author, playwright, feminist (the list goes on) who is best known for The Vagina Monologues, which she wrote and performed along with countless other well-known women. She is currently on a book tour to promote her memoir, In the Body of the World.  Eve is an incest survivor whose writing focuses on the female body, violence and sex, so it is ironic that much of her recent history is taken up with her struggle with uterine cancer.

from The Globe and Mail
“She has a theory about what may have made her sick: The sexual abuse she suffered as a child, as well as the countless stories of horror she has heard over the years, may have contributed. So she has made a decision: She’ll still listen to those stories as she signs books or meets people at fundraisers, but she is not seeking those stories out any more.

“I just can’t. I have to protect myself,” she says. “I feel like I spent 15 years absorbing the stories. And I’m committed. I signed up. I don’t need to be convinced any more.”

Wise woman. She listened to the messages her body was signalling. To survive, she stopped dwelling on things that make her sick. There’s a message here for anyone. Eve Ensler also contributed a terrific chapter to Goddess Shift: Women Leading for a Change. (See the book elsewhere on this page.)

From Wiki
“This is a ravishing book of revelation and healing, lashing truths and deep emotion, courage and perseverance, compassion and generosity. Warm, funny, furious, and astute, as well as poetic, passionate, and heroic, Ensler harnesses all that she lost and learned to articulate a galvanizing vision of the essence of life: “The only salvation is kindness.””

5 thoughts on “Eve Ensler on what made her sick”

  1. This hits home, Rossa.

    Constantly hearing/reading psychiatric survivor stories really gets to me sometimes.

    I ride my bicycle a lot.
    A lot.

    That’s what helps me keep my sanity… deal with the stories. In fact, I’m going to ride my bicycle to a local light rail station today, and then take the train to my alma mater (where our son attends university).

    But I really need to get away from the stories. There are too many… and, at least for me, they are *too much*.


    1. Sometimes, I wish we could all come together and put together something that would make the psychiatric survivor stories come to an end…. as in *no more*… *not one more* needless horror story.

      But we’re up against a lot of money and power… And ther’s the ignorance, the denial… It’s a lot more complicated than meets the eye.

      Off on my bike ride.


    2. “But we’re up against a lot of money and power… And ther’s the ignorance, the denial… It’s a lot more complicated than meets the eye.”

      That’s why we keep going, Duane.

  2. I, too, find it all gets too much at times, so I back off. It’s a survival instinct that most of us have. It’s also a reason that I put a positive spin on “schizophrenia.” There’s much to be positive about (it’s interesting watching people grow) and there are too many bloggers who dwell only on the negatives. I often don’t print something that seems too depressing or negative. Occasionally I do. When Chris first got diagnosed, and I was hit with all the negative feedback from the medical profession, I actually was beginning to experience creeping paranoia, which is a stress response. Had I not dug myself out of that state, who knows where I’d be today health wise?

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