I get mail from readers of my first book In Sheep’s Clothing several times a week. The comments are frequently quite similar but every now and then one stands out and inspires me to continue the work I’ve done for many years. Recently, someone wrote:
Dear Dr. Simon,I just finished reading your book, In Sheep’s Clothing. No words can express the gratitude that I have for this obvious manifestation of your love and hard work. From your introduction onward, I sensed that you were, not only enlightened about this subject, but that you had a sound, moral and ethical motive for writing the book. That’s what drew me to you.I’ll spare you the details of my life, but as you have probably heard thousands of times, I am a victim of a covert-aggressive, manipulating person. And to make matters worse, I now realize that I am a very neurotic individual. I didn’t know that before seeing myself in your book. And I’m not ashamed of it, but I see how it made me vulnerable all my life. Now, I think I am on the way to reclaiming my life, and finding self-respect and confidence. Your book has equipped me to do that and to take on the challenges that still lie ahead.The person who manipulated me for years was incarcerated last year for a serious crime that came to light 2 years ago. At first, I played my typical role of the sympathizer/empathizer, and offered to get this person “help” him and to support him. But I finally realized that I’d been enabling him to be irresponsible all his life and to get away with all the things he’d done to cause me pain throughout my life! When I finally drew the line, he used all the tactics you explained in your book. In the past these tactics have left me completely depressed and my family and business suffered. But now I am aware of the tactics and also aware of myself enough to know that I need to be more assertive and rid myself of the burden of his irresponsibility.To the point: Your book helped me understand why I am such an “approval junkie,” how I got manipulated, why I always hated confrontation, and why I had so little confidence and self-respect – even though I have done so many good things in my life and achieved a measure of success in my pursuits. I intend to spend many days meditating on the new perspectives your book offers and connecting them to my life experiences with people of all different characters. And I will strive to no longer sabotage myself by allowing the disturbed characters I encounter to manipulate me.You may not ever fully know the overwhelming feelings your work is helping people like me to experience. But I wanted to let you know how much your work has meant. I wish you the best, and thank you again.M.K. Virginia
Notes like this are why I continue my primary mission despite health issues that have forced me to cease active practice. And the need for more information prompted me to strike a deal with Parkhurst Brothers Publishers to release a brand new edition of In Sheep’s Clothing (hitting stores March 31st) and to distribute a new, more in-depth book based on material compiled some years ago, Character Disturbance, set for wide distribution on June 30th.
My sincerest thanks to all the patrons of my books, blogs, website and other works.