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Ansonia Resident Turns High School Humiliation Into Inspiring Book Of Essays

by STAFF | Jun 8, 2017 10:05 am

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Posted to: Ansonia, Navel Gazing: The Valley Indy Podcast

Decades after publicly humiliating a high school girlfriend about the smell of her body, Kwame had second thoughts. He finally apologized.

The former girlfriend, Stacy Graham-Hunt, found that the incident still hurt long after she had grown up and become a writer.

So she “processed the pain” by dubbing the incident “Vaginagate” and publishing the story, first as a Facebook post, then as part of a series of poignant personal essays collected in a new book called Processing Pain.

She has a book-signing scheduled at the Westville’s Mitchell Branch Library in New Haven on Saturday, June 10, beginning at 2:30 p.m.

Graham-Hunt’s stories about growing up in New Haven and Hamden and moving on to college have struck a chord with other people who have lost cherished friendships, felt guilt about a grandfather’s death, wrestled with difficult relationships with their parents, had an abortion, experienced the cluelessness of white people trying to make white visitors to their homes feel “comfortable,” or been humiliated by a teenaged first boyfriend like Kwame.

Even Kwame (his name has been changed to protect the guilty) ended up seeing his actions in a new light after Graham-Hunt revisited them.

In an interview on WNHH radio’s “Dateline New Haven,” Graham-Hunt, who is 34 and now lives in Ansonia, revisited how telling that story and others have helped her move past the painful moments in her life, and how the act of publishing them has led her and others to see them in a new light.

Click play above or below to hear what she has to say about the “Vaginagate” fallout.

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