An engrossing memoir of a young boy growing up in a very rural environment of northern Minnesota without friends in a home with a physically and psychologically abusive father and mercilessly abused mother. Despite being ostracized in school and told he wasn’t college material, Tom graduated with academic honors from a highly ranked private university and went on to become a nationally recognized marketer with major Fortune 500 companies. Despite his success, he was clinically depressed from childhood until well into his forties. Only after two years of psychiatric therapy (and a lot of advice from the late actress Betty White) did he begin believing in himself.
Little is left to the imagination as he recaps the harrowing experience of having a loaded rifle pointed at him by his father. He shares details of one of the most horrendous wedding days and nights imaginable. Ever wondered what it’s like to play Scrabble against Betty White? Tom provides the details (as well as provides a play-by-play recap of his young daughter’s food fight with Betty—at Betty’s request). His memoir captures, in vivid detail, the adoption fiascos he encountered on his way to becoming a father of two daughters and then the devastating separation from them. Not once but twice.
Plagued for years by self-doubt, he shares how difficult it can be to distinguish between having luck and having real talent in the corporate world. He recaps, in stunning detail, how, in that corporate world, some of us are more equal than others. For those who believe a corporate code of ethics applies to all, Tom will disabuse you of that notion.
His concluding chapter provides recommendations for couples planning to be married or become parents. Those distinctive insights, provided from a child’s point of view, likely won’t be found in any other guides to a successful marriage or parenthood.