Helen Coleman Gennari, MSW, LCSW, left home at age sixteen to find work in the city to help pay bills accumulated by her abusive father. When she joined a religious order of nuns a year later, she did not realize that she brought with her the childhood turmoil and pain that she had successfully buried.
Twenty-five years later, the trauma of her violent childhood caught up with her and she was hospitalized, deeply depressed. Thus began her journey of discovery and healing which included eventually making the painful decision to leave her Congregation. Her inner work required her to face and embrace the self she had abandoned. In time, she married the man who would become her best friend, and was devastated when he died of cancer ten years later.
Through her work as a licensed clinical social worker, psychotherapist, and advocate for abused women, Helen has taught and counseled many women toward self-empowerment. She continues to offer compassionate guidance and hope for healing, especially to women who have grown up with family violence. She believes that we can be more than survivors—that we can return to our true selves, replace the patterns that kept us imprisoned, and thrive as whole, happy persons.