Sexual abuse is ugly. It’s no wonder no one wants to talk about the matter, and when it is talked about, codes are used, voices come down to a whisper. Growing up in a Haitian-American household, Vie Cine (Ciné) suffered sexual abuse. Years later, she’s written Memoirs of A Forgotten Child, an autobiography that she hopes will help others who have experienced sexual trauma know that there are better days ahead of them.
Kreyolicious: When you set out to write your book, were there times when you had qualms about the subject matter?
I had qualms before writing Memoirs of a Forgotten Child. I felt like most people; my life is private and that it’s no one’s business. Also, I didn’t want to offend my family, but as I committed to telling my truth, I didn’t focus so much on what anyone closely related to me had to say but more so on the impact that my story would have. It’s kind of a double edge sword. You want to be as authentic as you can, but you don’t want to delve into too much information were you reveal certain conversations, events, or stories that may not benefit the flow of the story or it’s not your story to tell. Having a set structure on what I wanted to share and how much I wanted to share kept the story grounded as to the purpose of Memoirs of a Forgotten Child. This book isn’t an exposé book to besmirch anyone or to be used as propaganda to disparage Black people.
Kreyolicious: Memoirs of a Forgotten Child is the title of your book. Rather interesting. How did you come up with it?
I was thinking of a name that accurately summed up my life from 0-13. At the time I discovered a YouTuber named Issa Rae and was trying to do a spin-off title of her webisode series Awkward Black Girl, but it didn’t form well. I felt forced and complicated. I told myself in due time I’ll figure it out. It’ll just come to me. Fast forward to roughly six months…I was talking to an associate who asked me about the synopsis of my book. I described Memoirs of a Forgotten Child as “a memoir based on my life”—because as a child—I was forgotten.” Then it came to me like a brightly-lit light bulb representing a brilliant idea. Memoirs of a Forgotten Child became the book’s title.
Kreyolicious: What reaction have you gotten thus far from readers?
From the excerpts I shared on Instagram and Facebook many readers felt empowered by Memoirs of a Forgotten Child because they could see themselves in my story regardless of gender and race. One woman commented on a post that I was telling her story. That’s what I wanted to get across that we all may have different backgrounds, but we all faced the same result, trauma. I didn’t want people to get wrapped up in the characters, conversations, and grammar but more so on the events that took place along with how it affected my upbringing as a survivor.
This concludes PART ONE of the interview with the author…LOOK OUT for PART II! Meanwhile, if you know someone who grew up in the Haitian-American community (or any other community for that matter), can you please direct them to this article?