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  • Justice101

    Mac, I am at a loss at the total absence of basic humanity from the negative, vicious, sanctimonious, not to mention narcissistic comments below: from the lady "jumping on the emotional bandwagon" to steal some free advertising,(had she genuinely felt compassion to help, she'd have emailed privately)! Plus a good professional therapist would NEVER allege a guaranteed "quick fix" for anything, let alone a condition involving such deep rooted traumas that clearly necessitate a long, exhausting journey of dedicated efforts from both the patient and the therapist together! Having worked in crime, and "only" entered the world of each victim through crime photos and the horrific written evidential words that followed, (I say "only" because I'm not that soul) and, irrespective of the horror I'm feeling, or the need to weep, as well as vomit, I'm "getting off lightly" in comparison to those souls who have had to survive the experience, or not, as is tragically often the case. No other individual can ever begin to actually comprehend a survivor's/non-survivor's personal experience, including those of us who have experienced traumas of our own. No-one can say "I know how you feel" because you can only "feel" your own feelings and share what you feel - sometimes with other survivors of similar events where you can empathise together but never actually "feel" the feelings of another. As for those who, for some unfathomable reason, feel the need to accuse or allege the authenticity of what is actually a courageously brave heroic piece of writing, by someone who has, in a heartbeat, put herself on the front line of danger to hold the hand of a survivor whilst walking alongside them to seek medical help, who has risked her life, (along with other courageous journalists, some of whom have tragically lost theirs), to bring the nasty truth of reality that is happening out there into the homes and conscious awareness of the world at large, just hoping to find a piece of humanity to help take a stand and make a difference in the fight against inhumanity; to read a comment questioning the moral conscience, integrity and honesty of such a heroic individual leaves me to the only conclusion that the commentator is expressing their own personal feelings of negativity and worthlessness from within their own personal lives. It can be difficult sometimes to read brave courageous works of someone who has gone out into the world to make a positive difference whilst putting themselves in the way of many dangers and horrors. Someone who has refused to take the easy route and is profoundly inspiring. The reason some find it difficult that they feel an urge to attempt to invalidate everything stems from the personal inadequacy they feel about their own daily lives. When I first read an article written by Mac, I actually found myself questioning my own 55 years on this planet and what great difference had I ever made in the life of another? Her writing resulted in me questioning everything there was about what makes a life valued and worthwhile. I felt worthless next to the courageous stranger I was reading about. But I can state that, not even for a heartbeat, did I feel the necessity to bite out of reading of a life bravely lived for humanity from someone so young. I felt inspired, completely in awe, and with an unexplained strange emotional empathic feeling that she must feel immense loneliness, pain and sorrow. I continue to be moved by the power of her words, and the power and strength of her indefatigable courage to stare right into the abyss. And for those who suggest Mac should really take a less braver, less darker career/life journey, and believe they are experts in how she should embark on her life and what's best for her, I suggest you do what I did..... go look in the mirror, dive deep into your own personal abyss, and review the validity and impact of your own life as opposed to attempt desecration of the life of another - particularly one who is probably the precise reflection of the very person you'd feel proud to be!

  • mbat1

    The original comments to this post have all been deleted, so restoring an important point: The author, McClelland, is a fabulist. Don't believe a word she writes.

  • living2tellthetale

    This is a shocking story but one I really identified with. "Vicarious trauma" is real and doesn't deserve to be dismissed or treated lightly. See, for example, about the effects of violence on those who work in the courts. (Why are lawyers taken seriously on this issue, but journalists are not? Hmm ... sexism, perhaps?)

    It is not possible to hear about or witness horrific acts of brutality without being affected. The larger point is that violence hurts everyone it touches, and none of us are immune. I realize this discussion is past, but I'm sad to see this obvious truth was dismissed so readily in some of the reactions to this piece.

  • Alystar Mckenneh

    What a well written and real article. I know exactly what you're talking about! I grew up in a nightmare and work disaster zones because I'm level headed and calm in a disaster. But I have a hard time when the adrenaline is not cranked up. No one really understands the strength of character and the beating your emotional self takes to work in these places. But you know not just anyone can do it. So you go. It's been a long time since I've read something without the gloss and bull crap created to ease the tender feelings of the pretenders in the world. Thank you.

  • MichaelMancha

    Dear Journalist,

    WTF! This is one of the most facsinating, emotionally brave, psychology disturbed, borderline out-of-control snapshots of human trauma I've ever read! Savagely written would be an understatement in trying to describe this.

    If this is genuinely real experience being described in this piece, there only one thing to say:
    Get the hell out of that particular place in journalism! You don't have to live mere breaths away from destruction and madness to either be alive or make an impact on/in the world. For those of us who didn't choose being in danger but were born there, I've gotta say it sounds like some deep Catholic/guilt ridden bs run amok in the thinking.

    But I hope you realize that with the courage you have (to write that piece whether it's real or not) you could do a thousand other things of equal significance and not be killed. Are you kidding, just fighting for journalism's soul to survive the corporate market machines' plan to murder it and leave Western culture voiceless is a life-time and worthy cause!

    Just a suggestion- Get some help, fightgirl... And get better while you're young enough to reinvent. Happy New Year.


  • doghacks

    Iv gotta say, it's surprisingly common for people to go this way, I'm very involved in much bdsm play and I have met many girls whos interest in violent sex spurs from previous abuse.

    I myself also come from an abusive upbringing, I feel myself that violent sex has allowed me to challenge many emotionaly charged feeling about my past. Although I found it on the opposite end of the violence

    Fortunately I have a girl who has much trust in me to still respect and care for her wellbeing even though I very much humiliat and dominant her during sex. She much like you has emotional trauma from a previous event and found it difficult to be touched by someone, also like you she found being forced upon was easier to handle

    Thanks for the story. It really is something of a taboo subject which many people are not comfortable admitting and many think it's nuts

  • TammyJo Eckhart

    While I applaud you, your therapist, and your friend being willing to do this, it was a dangerous strategy for you all. What protections did Isaac have in place if you had freaked out and called the police afterwards? Did he get therapy or have someone he could talk to afterwards? That's a dark place he had to go and I can't imagine it not affecting him deeply. Did you go to therapy afterwards?

    • doghacks

      As much as I can see your consern. In all retrospect the police would have little to do.. What was happening was consented (meaning there is nothing they could do unless she denyed it)

      Although I questions if safety words were used I very much think that the point of them being there may of killed the intent of the whole thing for some (although I still think it would of been a good idea)

      Isaacs mental stability is most likely intact. If he was to of been extremely challenged by what he was doing he probably would of not allowed himself to go as full on as he did or would of hesitated by the time he was throwing punches

      Just my opinion