Tuesday October 5, 2021 – 6-7 PM EDT
Price: Free · Duration: 1 hr
Public · Anyone on or off Facebook
Website: Facebook Event Page
The Pat Conroy Literary Center will host a virtual evening with Deborah J. Cohan, author of the memoir Welcome to Wherever We Are on Tuesday, October 5, at 6:00 p.m.
This free event will be hosted on Zoom. Please register at Eventbrite by October 1 to receive the video link.
Order copies of the book through Bookshop.org.
ABOUT WELCOME TO WHEREVER WE ARE:
How do you go about caregiving for an ill and elderly parent with a lifelong history of abuse and control, intertwined with expressions of intense love and adoration? How do you reconcile the resulting ambivalence, fear, and anger?
Welcome to Wherever We Are is a meditation on what we hold onto, what we let go of, how we remember others and ultimately how we’re remembered. Deborah Cohan shares her story of caring for her father, a man who was simultaneously loud, gentle, loving and cruel and whose brilliant career as an advertising executive included creating slogans like “Hey, how ‘bout a nice Hawaiian punch?” Wrestling with emotional extremes that characterize abusive relationships, Cohan shows how she navigated life with a man who was at once generous and affectionate, creating magical coat pockets filled with chocolate kisses when she was a little girl, yet who was also prone to searing, vicious remarks like “You’d make my life easier if you’d commit suicide.”
In this gripping memoir, Cohan tells her unique personal story while also weaving in her expertise as a sociologist and domestic abuse counselor to address broader questions related to marriage, violence, divorce, only children, intimacy and loss. A story most of us can relate to as we reckon with past and future choices against the backdrop of complicated family dynamics, Welcome to Wherever We Are is about how we might come to live our own lives better amidst unpredictable changes through grief and healing.
“Welcome to Wherever We Are is a brave memoir that sheds light on the challenges of caring for an abusive parent. This volume is bound to offer solace and support to those in similar situations. Deborah J. Cohan’s honesty and compassion make this a unique and valuable memoir for anyone who has survived abuse by a parent and struggles to make sense of the conflicting feelings of love and responsibility as well as anger and resentment toward their abuser.” ―Ms. Magazine
“This memoir of caretaking unspools so many of the complicated emotions wrapped up in helping a parent as they die. Writing about taking care of her father, Deborah J. Cohan details the realities of what it means to get sick and the toll it takes on the people around the ill person. A compassionate narrative, the book shows us how life doesn’t stop when we are providing care to sick loved ones — it only gets trickier.”―Buzzfeed
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Deborah J. Cohan is Professor of Sociology at the University of South Carolina Beaufort. Alongside her many academic publications, she is the author of the popular blog “Social Lights” for Psychology Today. You can learn more about her at www.deborahjcohan.com