M Dolon Hickmon is a child abuse survivor, a writer and an anti-abuse activist. He married his wife in 2007, and they have one daughter together. Mr. Hickmon dedicates his time and skills to advocating on behalf of mistreated children, often in cooperation with children’s rights groups and other advocates. His writing has been amplified on news websites including AlterNet, Salon, and via The Spiritual Abuse Survivor’s Blog Network, and his opinions have appeared in newspapers such as The Scotsman, The South Lake Press, The Post-Searchlight and the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Mr. Hickmon’s original research continues to be cited by many and was included in a 2010 civil rights presentation to a committee of the US Congress. (see footnote 16.) His hobbies include pleasure reading, songwriting, and playing acoustic and electric guitar.
Published Biographical Information
Mr. Hickmon has shared his personal story of surviving and overcoming religiously motivated child maltreatment in articles and interviews seen and heard around the world. Below are a selection of publicly available information about the author of 13:24 – A Story of Faith and Obsession.
My father’s old-fashioned discipline was rooted in the advice and example of his community, his parents, and his church.
For me, the photos of the injuries Adrian Peterson inflicted on his young son stirred a particularly difficult memory: In it, I stand at the foot of my parent’s bed, frail and blond. Behind me, my father utters yet another masculine grunt of exertion. The belt licks my bare skin, and the pain is alarmingly severe — something of a surprise for a preschooler who’d grown accustomed to losing count after forty lashes. The edge of the belt rips a gash, and a slick of wetness forms on my back. I plead: “Daddy, stop! I’m bleeding!” He goes on chopping, not missing a beat. With each lash, I grow more certain that this is the time that he will go on long enough to kill me. Read the rest of this article by M Dolon Hickmon, Author of 13:24 – A Story of Faith and Obsession at OnFaith.
Breaking The Generational Cycle of Child Abuse
by M Dolon Hickmon
“How do you approach parenting in order to not replicate the abusive patterns of your past?”
This question was most recently posed to me by philosopher and Patheos blogger Dan Fincke, but as a father, who is also a survivor of- and an outspoken campaigner against religiously motivated child maltreatment, it’s a question that I am often asked. Or, rather, it’s the question that polite people should ask. Unfortunately, the sentiment is more often presented, not as an inquiry, but as a seemingly sympathetic statement: “You must feel very strongly about protecting your daughter from the horrors of your childhood.”
The constraints of time usually prevent me from properly answering.
I don’t want my daughter or any human being to suffer maltreatment. But the unspoken assumption that underlies such questions and statements is that survivors’ pasts exert an invisible pull that they must continually struggle against, lest they fall into the trap of behaving like their abusers.
As a father, I have never struggled – not even a little bit – with that.
Indoctrinate my daughter with the scary, demeaning religion of my childhood? Wouldn’t even consider it. Whip my preschooler until she pleads to heaven for mercy? Don’t even want to think about it. Allow my daughter to witness her parents verbally and physically abusing one another? Never going to happen.
And that is why this essay is not about how I fight the undertow of my past, but rather about why I don’t have to…
Read the rest of this article by M Dolon Hickmon, Author of 13:24 – A Story of Faith and Obsession at Camels with Hammers.