“Jenny Tomlin’s childhood was brutal and miserable as she grew up suffering extreme poverty, domestic violence and sexual abuse from her father, and neglect from her mother. Her only allies at home were her brother and sister and their great aunt, who would often provide a temporary comfortable home. From the age of four, Jenny and her siblings would scavenge for food and rarely receive a decent meal at their home. Their father started conning benefits from the welfare state and would earn extra money by selling the children’s birthday presents.
As Jenny grew up she gained more confidence in fighting her father’s tyranny and found warmth in her circle of friends, but also became aware of how some men would see her, as an object. Her father’s abuse became increasingly worse, including molesting her in a pornographic video. When she was sixteen she became engaged to a kind young man who gave her the affection she had never gained from her father, but they separated after their daughter ( who was later to become Martine McCutcheon) was born. Her third husband is still with her today.
In her young adult life, Jenny’s father died without apologising to his family for his behaviour and her mother was no better. Since then, the children had learned to cope with each other’s love without their parents.”
-Dengan Kekuatan Cinta dan Air Mata Kami Bergandeng Tangan-
Saat itu aku bersama keempat saudaraku tumbuh dalam sebuah rumah, di mana tak seorang pun marasa aman di dalamnya. Mama selalu menyerah pada tuntutan Papa. Terlepas dari segala hal yang dilakukan Papa pada anak-anaknya, Mama selalu menderita kekerasan yang paling kejam. Mama peduli pada kami dengan caranya sendiri. Aku merindukan kasih sayangnya. Aku ingin meringkuk di pangkuannya yang membuatku hangat dan aman. Namun, tidak pernah ada kesempatan. Bila aku mencoba memeluk dan menciumnya, Mama menolak dengan halus. Satu-satunya ungkapan di antara kami hanya setelah Mama menderita pukulan Papa. Saat itulah mama memeluk kami sejenak. Cuma itu.
Kisah nyata ini menceritakan betapa Jenny, adik perempuannya Kim, dan Kakak laki-lakinya Laurence, tidak hanya bertahan, tetapi akhirnya melesat hingga menembus keterpurukan harga diri nan tak terbayangkan. Dengan kekuatan cinta, kecerdikan, humor paling menyindir dan percaya diri yang kuat, akhirnya Jenny terbebas dari masa lalunya.
Penulis Asli : Jenny Tomlin
Penerbit Asli: Hodder and Stoughton
Penerjemah: Tantie Kustiantie
Penerbit versi Indonesia : Elex Media Komputindo
Bahasa Asli : Inggris
Terbit : 2005
Tebal : 253