They suffer silently, often too afraid or embarrassed to tell anyone what is happening. In co-authoring the book “La Bella Mafia” I gained an understanding of the horror they endure. ~Morgan St. James, Co-Author, La Bella Mafia
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children’s Bureau. (2011): “Children are suffering from a hidden epidemic of child abuse and neglect. Every year 3.3 million reports of child abuse are made in the United States involving nearly 6 million children. The United States has the worst record in the industrialized nation – losing five children every day due to abuse-related deaths.”
Such was the childhood of Bella Capo, who has now come out of hiding to tell her story in the upcoming book La Bella Mafia (release date October 15, 2013). Bella not only survived but went on to co-found a movement to help adult abuse victims and to offer counseling, hope and support. Sometimes simply the knowledge that others walk in their shoes and are willing to help is the catalyst for survival.
The statistics are shocking, but how many people are actually aware of the numbers? A report of child abuse is made very ten seconds, and every day more than five children die as a result of child abuse. Sadly, 80% are under the age of 4. About 80% of 21 year olds that were abused as children met criteria for at least one psychological disorder.
Abuse hardened Bella into a survivor. As an adult she ran clubs on Hollywood’s Sunset Strip clubs and became a power in that world. Later, in a bold maneuver to save her own life, she became a white female boss in the Crips, but was eventually forced into hiding by death threats from her ex-husband and his mob buddies. Today she dedicates her life to helping those who endured what she did, and sometimes worse through the online movement La Bella Mafia.
Excerpt from Chapter 5 of La Bella Mafia
When he found out about the party, I endured the beating of my life. I’d been naive enough to think I had already experienced my father’s worst rage. As often happens with PTSD, I have no memory of what happened first, but I do remember that we were upstairs and he was drunk. He suddenly picked me up by my hair, called me a slut, and kicked me all over my body with his steel-toed boots. Then he tossed me from room-to-room by my hair, kicking me all the while.
I remember flying through the air as though I weighed nothing. He’d drop me hard and pick me up again, throw me in the air once more and when I landed, slam me with full-blown punches to my face. Finally, he threw me from my room into my bathroom and I landed hard in the bathtub. I tried to shrink away from him as he came back at me, but he pulled me by my hair again and kicked me down the winding stairs that led to the first floor. I bounced like one of those lightweight bouncy balls and landed in a crumpled heap at the bottom of the steps.
For more information, appearance schedule and early reviews, visit http://labellamafiabook.wordpress.com
Release date: October 15, 2013