This complex tale of a Michigan boyhood illuminates a subject of universal concern: the shocking number of American men—an estimated one in six—who have been sexually abused as children. New York actor Patrick Husted digs deep into his own past to reveal how such abuse can occur and how it can affect a male victim well into adulthood. Told with compassion, devastating candor, and doses of humor, his story offers hope to millions of men and their loved ones. It begins in the small town of Ionia. For a small boy with a big imagination, Ionia is a place of wonders. Its woods are enchanted, its houses full of treasure—crystal balls, flying carpets, magic potions. As time goes by, however, Patrick begins to wonder if what goes on in his own house is normal. Life at home has been deteriorating ever since his mother married George, a factory roustabout with a violent temper. Hardly a day goes by without George’s violence. When his mother starts working the night shift, leaving George in charge, it is Patrick—the youngest of three boys—who becomes his special victim. To protect himself, the child must remain hyper vigilant, and at the age of seven he becomes “a private investigator, working secretly for myself.” But the effects of childhood trauma endure, and at age forty, Patrick is still struggling to make peace with his past. The final chapters propel the reader through a series of stunning revelations to the heart of this excavation.
“Patrick Husted tells a story of innocence derailed in an era when the topic of child abuse was verboten. There’s nothing sugarcoated here. Raw and sometimes brutal, Excavating Pieces evokes a 1950s boyhood with childlike simplicity, revealing moments of both wonder and horror. Ultimately, this is a survival story—one that inspires with its telling of how hope, creativity, and art can lead us to resolution and forgiveness. It’s the story of an indomitable spirit that insisted on the truth.” ———- Margo Martindale October 2013
A MEMOIR I RECOMMEND.
Excavating Pieces is a quietly touching memoir of growing up in a home under the thumb of a rageful, sadistic, and sexually abusive stepfather. Written with understated grace by Patrick Husted, I highly recommend this book. Patrick is a former patient and when we worked together, I was often amazed and moved by how he survived the abusive landscape of his childhood with both resilience and dignity. I hope you’ll give yourself the opportunity to read this touching life story.
Eli Zal November 2013
Ethan has guest starred in countless TV series and has appeared in numerous films. He is best known for his portrayal of Pete on the hit series Benson, and Neelix on Star Trek: Voyager from 1995 to 2001.
“What would you do if you reached middle age and knew without any doubt that the accumulation of childhood trauma had made it impossible to continue on? Would you have the courage to dive into your murky past and painstakingly unearth and examine all the twists and turns, the wounds and the demons which had dismantled your very life? Patrick Husted does just that in this heroic memoir of almost unfathomable abuse. In clear and honest prose, Husted fearlessly faces the ugly truth of his boyhood and by any means necessary, peels away all the scabrous secrets one by one and in the process saves his very life. It is a powerful lesson, a story of personal triumph, funny, fabulous, and so forgiving.” —— actor/playwright Ethan Phillips November 2013
A James Gray Film
Patrick is featured in the New James Gray film The Immigrant, starring Joaquin Phoenix and Marion Cotillard, coming out in theaters in early 2014. The film has been screened at the Cannes Film Festival and The New York Film Festival.
1921. In search of a new start and the American dream, Ewa Cybulski and her sister Magda sail to New York from their native Poland. When they reach Ellis Island, doctors discover that Magda is ill, and the two women are separated. Ewa is released onto the mean streets of Manhattan while her sister is quarantined. Alone, with nowhere to turn and desperate to reunite with Magda, Ewa quickly falls prey to Bruno, a charming but wicked man who takes her in and forces her into prostitution. And then one day, she encounters Bruno’s cousin, the debonair magician Orlando. He sweeps Ewa off her feet and quickly becomes her only chance to escape the nightmare in which she finds herself. To read a review in Variety, click here.