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Creating A New Normal; Book for Sexually Abused Black Survivors

March 26, 2009

Sylvia Coleman


Online Support Group, and Book Offer Support to Black Sexual Abuse Survivors

Sylvia Coleman, chronicles her recovery from sexual abuse in her debut book, Creating a New Normal.

Sylvia Coleman, award-winning health journalist created an online support group and book for black sexual abuse survivors.

Philadelphia, PA ( - Thanks to a grant from the prestigious Leeway Foundation (, black sexual abuse survivors now have an online resource to help them heal. Black Sexual Abuse Survivors (BSAS),, just launched, making it the first official, national online support group for black male and female, adult sexual abuse survivors.

Up until now there have been very few resources for African-American sexual abuse survivors. With this new online support group, black men and women can make up their own online profiles so that they can participate in the online support group anonymously. This key feature is very important for sexual abuse survivors who are often still marred by feelings of shame and secrecy, but desire to get help with their recovery.

Other useful tools on the site are: the user online surveys, which poll the opinions of users as it relates to sexual abuse in the black community; how sexual abuse has specifically affected the black community; how black sexual abuse survivors cope; specific resources for healing for black sexual abuse survivors; and a list of famous black sexual abuse survivors.

Currently, one in 4 women and 1 in 6 men report they were sexually abused as children. Of that statistic, 3.3 million African-American women have been sexually abused and 1.9 million African-American men have been sexually abused. Family members and acquaintances account for 93% of predators.

BSAS was created by Sylvia Coleman, BA, an award-winning health journalist ( and sexual abuse survivor, who teaches the "From Victim to Victor" workshop for black sexual abuse survivors with the Temple University PASCEP program in Philadelphia. Coleman is also the author of the recently released memoir, Creating a New Normal: Cleaning Up a Dysfunctional Life. The book chronicles in extraordinary detail her recovery from sexual abuse.

Coleman has been featured on "Wake Up Live" in Boston, Praise 103.9 and WRNB 107.9 discussing sexual abuse. On Friday, April 17, Coleman will be featured at Borders Bookstore, 8701 Germantown Avenue, Chestnut Hill, PA, for a book discussion and signing, 7 p.m. For book, logo, images or interviews, please contact:; 267-307-3320.

Coleman takes a bold, daring and honest look at the series of tumultuous experiences that shaped an unhealthy perspective of her life. Sylvia delves deep into vulnerable and ultra-personal moments of back story, extracting and examining flaws, tragic paths, wrong turns, epiphanies, enlightenments, and roads to recovery, all while trying to establish herself as a successful writer. In this book, Sylvia identifies her outstanding courage and willingness to survive dysfunctional situations including sexual abuse, homelessness, severe clinical depression, overeating, and enabling chemical dependence.

In Creating a New Normal, Sylvia approaches the concept of repair and recovery with a clever, detailed, and often humorous self-introspection that has enormous ability to inspire us all to change and engage in a reflective self-cleaning. Remarkably, Sylvia has extraordinarily managed to sculpt a new paradigm of self, while recreating her own new normalcy in a world filled with chaos and confusion. By simply positioning the magnifying glass on herself, Sylvia shares the potential of life transformation with everyone.


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