On March 21, 2017, Dr. Phil shook his audience to the core by interviewing a woman known only as Kendall who says she had been a sex slave since birth. Her parents, he says, gave her away to the ubiquitous “man who owns me” (as she refers to her captor) when she was just an infant. During her time in captivity, which she escaped just three years ago, she saw and was made to do incredibly depraved acts, including having sex with children and watching children become victims of murder.
Kendall told Dr. Phil that she was nervous to appear on his show because she thought he would send her back to the “man who owns her.” She felt this is where she truly belonged, as life outside was incredibly difficult, but also said she would rather kill herself than return to his clutches.
While Kendall’s story may have disturbed and shaken Dr. Phil’s audience, he also took the time to interview another woman who was abused and trafficked in the 1970s and 1980s by the name of Dr. Michelle Stevens. Stevens was there both to comfort Kendall and to promote her new book all about her experience, Scared Selfless: My Journey from Abuse and Madness to Surviving and Thriving.
Michelle Stevens assured Kendall that there is life outside of the trauma and horror. Stevens should know: after several years of abuse and trafficking, Stevens has become a Ph.D. and therapist working with victims of serious traumatic sexual abuse. Her thesis for her Ph.D. was on extreme sexual trauma and pedophilia, something she had an inside look into as a child abused and trafficked at the hands of her perverted stepfather.
Dr. Phil assured Kendall that she would be receiving the help she needed to begin recovery, but told his audience that the location she would be sent to would be fully classified information. Dr. Michelle Stevens assured Kendall that she could conquer her demons.
Stevens told Dr. Phil some of her story, the rest of which is in her memoir Scared Selfless. Stevens, unlike Kendall, wasn’t born into child sex trafficking, but instead was forced into it by a man named Gary Lundquist that her mother married. Lundquist is what she describes as a career acquaintance pedophile, having married her mother for the sole purpose of having a child to access at all times.
She told Dr. Phil about how Lundquist took a photo of Stevens the night before he molested her for the first time, asking her if she wanted a picture of her in her pretty pink nightgown. The then-8-year-old Stevens complied, and she cherishes this photo as the last picture of herself as a child. After that, she says, she was forced to grow up quickly.
While her mother was at work, Lundquist often kept Stevens in a dog cage and had her walk around on all fours or assume “slave positions.” He forced her to eat dog food and punished her by hanging her from the ceiling by her extremities.
Lundquist also sold her to men for the sole purpose of raping her. When she was younger, she was forced to have sex with grown men. And as she became a young teenager, the men often paid a premium to act out depraved sexual and kidnapping fantasies with her where she was violated and tortured while blindfolded and gagged.
As a child and young teen, Stevens was also forced to act in pedophilia pornography, where she was raped and tortured on camera.
Stevens has never seen any of the money Lundquist made off of selling her.
As an adult, she suffered severe psychological symptoms, including having to endure multiple personalities that were often destructive. This, she says, was her body’s way of protecting her from the trauma.
Dr. Phil lauded her for conquering her demons and hopes Kendall may be able to one day do the same.
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