THE REPORT.

Please forgive me for putting aside the story from the previous blog.  I will settle it in the future.

A few weeks ago I sat down in a beige interview room in the legal district of Leeds City Centre. I thought it was going to be easy. The man sat behind the table opposite me had been appointed by my lawyer. He was neither friendly “we’re going to be five hours at least” or unfriendly “There’s a lot to get through.” He clicked his ballpoint pen and the psychological interrogation of my life began.    Mid way through the interview I broke down.

Many have committed suicide while bringing their case against the social services. Last night Delma Hughes of Siblings Together   told me   “12 care leavers died in one tribunal in Wales. Two died in suspicious circumstances and 10 committed suicide.”.

 

 

 

This week I received The Psychologist’s Report  via my lawyer. It is 25 pages long. He  said it brought him to tears. He wants me to read it. I haven’t. Yet.   I’ve received some powerful advice from from facebook friends on how to read the report and I’d like to thank everyone. The  comment  above is from Reuben Webb. Reuben is   the  Creative Director EMEA at Stein IAS .It’s a powerful  statement of belief. 

I want someone to read the report to me.  I want to do it on stage so that I will hear it for the first time in front of a live audience.  One reader. One table. And me.  It will be called The Report.


114 thoughts on “THE REPORT.

  1. Oh Lemn gosh this really hit a nerve, for so many years I thought of taking the SS to court also the police but I really don’t think I have the strength and I don’t think my siblings do either. Can I make a suggestion if the report is read out on stage a few people do it rather than one because it will probably require a huge amount of strength. Sending you a vast amount of love and stay strong. You really are a hero xxxx

  2. And everyone who hears it with you will share your pain and share love and support with you also. The strength that has got you through life this far can only get stronger. Shed light upon evil.

  3. Dear Lemn
    Your courage is an inspiration to all who suffer or have suffered at the hands of a society which places responsibility for the well being of others in the hands of professionals who sometimes do not care enough . The subsequent , untold damage experienced by those for whom these paid professionals have taken responsibility for caring for and “looking after” is enormous and sometimes life long .
    Your journey and your reporting back to us all gives great hope to those who continue to suffer.
    You are a shining ⭐️ in a world which is often too hard , too uncaring , too inadequate.
    Your life story brings very real hope to us all.
    Keep up your truly valuable work . Your insight and teachings affect real change in the hearts and minds of those who hold paid posts and responsibility for our children and young people within our “Care ” system and our wider society.

    I believe that Your story changes how it will be for future young people who are placed into the care system , each and every time you share your experiences.
    Thank you Mr Sissay . You are most definitely a man I don’t meet every day.
    A saint you ain’t but a very bright shining ⭐️ ,; you most definitely are.

    Wishing you all the very best ,always.

    Éilís Ní Mhurchú

    • I totally agree with what you have said and couldn’t have worded it better.
      This will bring greater awareness and understanding, give support and courage for others to follow the path you lead and bring changes that should have been made along time ago.

      I send you lots of love and healing. I know you have the strength and courage within you as that has brought you to where you are today.
      Many more are waiting to see your light of inspiration. Xxx

  4. Oh Lemn gosh this really hit a nerve, for so many years I thought of taking the SS to court also the police but I really don’t think I have the strength and I don’t think my siblings do either. Sending you a vast amount of love and stay strong. You really are a hero xxxx

  5. All the above and more. On a stage being read too? Brave boy. You are a performer. And your life is being lived live. This is a new life. A new way of living. The audience are your family, just as books were mine. My family were silent words in my head. Your family will shout out their love for you. It seems right for you dear Lemn. Though I would want to hug you so hard.

    • Tankyou ROSIE. Whoop whoop. Let’s doooo this. I know it’s scary. And that’s Ok. I’m good with that. As you know.

      • WHOOP WHOOP!!!! Anne-Marie has clinched it, dear Lemn. “I want to applaud what this may come to represent, for you and for others.” Me too. You have turned the lives of care leavers on their heads. You are a beacon of goodness. Your work is outstanding. Thank you. xx

  6. I want to say ‘game-changing’ but recognise that for you this is not a game. I want to appreciate the vulnerabilities that will be exposed, but acknowledge that you have always been open and willing to share. I want to applaud what this may come to represent, for you and for others. I want to commend the risk-taking, but valour has never been absent from your armour. I want you to be able to laugh, cry, rage and sit with all that will come from this… unimpeded by the presence of others who may punctuate the reading with different responses. I want this to be cathartic for you. Not an ending. Not closure. Another step, another stop, along this road called life. Bravo.

  7. I totally agree with what has already been said and couldn’t have worded it better.
    This will bring greater awareness and understanding, give support and courage for others to follow the path you lead and bring changes that should have been made along time ago.

    I send you lots of love and healing. I know you have the strength and courage within you as that has brought you to where you are today.
    Many more are waiting to see your light of inspiration. You really are a guiding star. Xxx

    – See more at: http://blog.lemnsissay.com/2017/03/20/the-report/#sthash.Jwk13Z4u.dpuf

  8. Go with your gut Mr Lemn. You have a good and wise gut. This will be a real epiphany for you. Imagine the liberation this can bring. You have indeed been waiting your whole life for this. xxx

  9. Dear Lemn,

    Have this read to you in front of an audience. Film it. Shout it. Let them see what they did. What they do.

    Love,

    Maria.

  10. I think you know what is right for you. It will be a different experience doing it this way- I’d guess there would be more distancing from your responses as you will be aware if the audience as well as yourself, but that’s maybe not a bad thing. Also the audience will a force that have your back as you read something that has a potential to dominate / make you feel powerless/ vulnerable. There isn’t a right or wrong way to do this. Doing it “your” way is in itself a powerful statement back to the report!

  11. I’m not sure if you want an established person to do this, if so I’d highly recommend Eddie Mair! He’s gentle but incisive, he’s understanding but questioning and I find his interviews really “therapeutic. If you’re stuck for a volunteer then I’m in. As long as it’s on radio as I haven’t the face for TV

    If you need post interview back up then I’m there for you!

    Patrick

  12. Dear Lemn,
    only you could think to have the report read in front of an audience.
    I was shocked for a moment. It will be hard. But you can do it. You must do it, for all care leavers who don’t have the same strenght and possibility.
    I want to be in the audience to hug you and cover you with love

    Antonella

  13. Dear Lemn,

    I am scared for you, and for the reader.
    Who will the audience be?
    Will you choose who is there?
    It is your choice to make.
    Take good care of yourself,
    With love and concern
    Judith

  14. Wow it’s a lot to take. You are going to relive those years while the report is read to you. Lots of crying and anger will follow. After the reader reads the last sentence and …Pauses.. I wish you have a mirror Infront of you and look at yourself​ and say ” look where I am now and how many people I have inspired”, and move on with what you do best. Hard but you can do it.

    All the best
    Stay healthy!

    Shewit

  15. To be an artist is to break rules. Be uncomforming – bohemian. Say and do the unexpected yet all with sincerity. This is a milestone – a turning point. How do we face a challenge that could break us – surely with all the Strength we can summon as well as accepting the weakness that makes us. Lemn – honestly, I felt weak at first reading. I was considering how much one person can give. You are a giver of your trueness and creativity sharer of vision *and* the journey.
    But you are connected – you do what is needed and that is selflessness, kindness!
    Many have attached themselves to your story – and that surely, is family.
    I can only and always wish you the best strength and love. ✌

  16. Lemn, you are quite a youngman with a big heart. You are strong, you are a teacher, and you have a mind like no other. I admire you and feel that you will come out of it a victor. The sun and moon in you will weather it. We got your back!

  17. Oh Lemn ,you are a very strong,caring man,I’ve so much respect for you .you are a hugh inspiration to so many young people who have been and continue to be treated so badly in care .
    I’m very pleased you are going to do this on stage ,it will be difficult for you but also healing ,and it will give strength and encouragement to people who continue to suffer for the treatment they revived in care .
    Love and strength to you.
    Absolutely gorgeous baby x

  18. This is just the bravest thing I have ever heard. You can do it you have such strength inside and outside. Your friends and fans will always support you and hopefully it will be a healing experience. Challenge the expectations and realities. Love and support to you xx

  19. OK cards on the table im a social worker so far from objective.
    You say yourself that this process can hurt harm
    or even destroy people.
    Everyone on here wants it to be positive for you.
    To leave you a stronger more impowered person.
    I dont know and you dont know what impact it will have on you – that day and on the days after.
    You need to surround yourself with love and care.
    Were talking about a national treasure here

  20. You are very courageous to consider this, it stands as one phenominal conclusion to a long, difficult, emotional expedition. A couple of things sprang to mind, if you arrange the audience in the round, you would feel their love surround you as you recieve the content of the report. Have them seated as close as you dare. And cameras, why not record this, it could help others in many ways.
    You may have someone in mind to read the report to you. It is a huge undertaking and worth considering more than one person read it.
    The place you choose will matter too. You seem to have a few places that give you a feeling of belonging. Where it all takes place will matter to you.
    I hope whoever made the report saw every aspect of you as a person, not just a client.
    Will this contribute to your incredible ability to heal? I hope so.

  21. This is one of the scariest things I’ve ever heard of but if anyone can do it, it’s you, Lemn. You’ll hear how you claimed back the boy that others tried to colonise and control. You resisted and triumphed. Your life is the freedom that inspires the lost child in all of us. Your words are strength. And we’ve all got your back.

  22. Lemn….You are BRAVE/STRONG/GENIUS-what a journey,what you’ve been through, how far you’ve come…inspiring soooo many….. you are one and only one like your name….a HERO/SHINING STAR.
    Wishing you all the best.
    Lots of LOVE,
    Frehiwot

  23. Covering you with prayers and love so you will find the strength to do this your way.
    Love from a far away place
    Sebli

  24. I admire your approach to this terrifying ordeal with all my heart. You have such courage. Yes to hearing it on stage. Yes to knowing words have power but that the power of love and friendship is even greater. You give so many others courage so I applaud you for allowing friends, supporters and fans to give you the courage to do this extraordinary thing. Yes to having your reaction witnessed and shared by people who are wishing you nothing but well. I know you only through your words but I am cheering you on from the sidelines. You can do it Lemn. Love and strength.

  25. Blimey Lemn, I’ve just stopped crying enough so that I can see the screen!
    This is such a brave idea – like standing at the very edge of a deep chasm and looking down! It will be charged with emotion but your audience will help to keep you safe because they are one with you. A very strong person will be needed to read it because it will be so hard to do – it almost needs that bland institutionalised voice to reflect the general disregard felt through young minds in care.
    Best wishes from your ‘stalker’. xxx

  26. Hi Lemn I read your blog this morning and it’s been on my mind ever since. So many people have replied. What concern and love and support here is for you. Mind blowing. I think it would be amazing for you to have the report read to you. And a privilege to maybe be a part of this. I tried to imagine who I’d want to read me such detail. One person came to mind. A psychologist friend of mine – a truly good man who cares for others in a way rarely seen in other psychologists. I think you should have the report read to you by a stranger. Just my view. Someone you won’t see again. Who can embody the report, share it, take the responses and then leave. Some one who can hold such emotion and importantly someone whose feelings you don’t need to and must not consider. For this is about YOU ! I pray and hope that the person who wrote the REPORT saw you. Heard you. And importantly validates you. That awful stuff did happen. You were there. It was not your fault. None of it. That is the story. That is the truth. Whatever is in the report is only one persons view of you. I get that this is so important as its part of your journey to reclaim yourself. But – You are bigger, stronger, more real and more meaningful than the Report. If by any chance you want me to tell you more about the person who I think could read it to you please just ask. Audrey X

      • Hi Lemn I can only think about this if it were me. I would choose another psychologist ( being one myself and having worked with kids but also since the report is written by a psychologist ( and as yet we don’t know his opinion. ) I’d want to hand the responsibility to a psychologist. But to someone who can be trusted. To take the reactions of you and the audience ( for there will be huge reactions). My psychologist friend is the most decent man I know. Huge social conscience and really truly cares for the people he works with. I could imagine him reading this as a psychologist but with immense care and respect for you. Then you could go your separate ways ( but I suspect the experience will bond you forever). I know I’m changed just ay the prospect of this. I don’t want to name him here but he’s up north and I could sound him out if you wanted me to. I’ll also be in London morning of sat 1st April and if you’re free at all maybe meet for coffee if you think helpful to talk more. Just let me know herd or via Facebook. Take care. X

          • No problem. What you are about to do is simply amazing. Thank you for that. It will change lives. Yours too I guess. Do let me know if you want to talk more. I know you have many truly dear friends but sometimes those of us with more distance can offer something too. I would love to be alongside you in some way. Best wishes

          • No problem. If you want me to send you more info about my friend I can do it via FB messenger. But don’t want to inundate you with messages. What you’re doing is truly amazing. It will change lives. But ( if I may) this is your life ( sadly without Eamonn and his large red book – old enough to remember that) and I’m so glad you’re doing it your way – because NOW YOU CAN ! Take care.

  27. Hi Lemn,
    You have immense courage to follow this path. I can see that it is part of your healing. My message to you is please take care of yourself and have support around you at all times. It sounds very exposing, I hope it won’t be too much. Take care all best wishes Anna

  28. There’s nothing to be scared of any more – I hope you find your peace – in a room full of friends – in a book – screaming to the wind from the top of a hill – the secret is to find it and remember how to get back there – even if it takes your whole life it is worth the journey

  29. This is an amazing idea. The audience and every single care-experienced person will be right beside you. Make public what they would hide and put their antics and the effects of them on stage. Good luck!

  30. Well, that’s the most exciting and terrifying idea! It’s inspired.

    I keep thinking of a stage, lit with a single spot and in its light, not you and your particular pain, but instead ‘the system’, in all it’s grotesque cruelty.

    I think we need to see that, I think it’s completely necessary.

    In this way, I don’t quite understand how, but I feel it, you hand it all back to them. You make the system, those people take responsibility for their actions.

    It’s breathtakingly clever. Can’t wait.

  31. Reading all these comments I am sure you will feel all the love and admiration others have for you.You may not have it yourself but believe me the waves of affection , sympathy and pure love will help you as you listen reflect and realise what has made you the person you are today.You words open minds and hearts .Take carexxx

  32. Lemn you are a leading light on forgiveness ..don’t let the past snuff out the shinning soul that you are . You inspire so many and in doing so save lives in more ways than one. This report is going to be tough but you know that you have been through so much already , you are a survivor and because of you and your past many are living with new courage and hope. Bless you for all that you do and are about to do x

  33. This is one strong and fantastic idea you have grown! I’ve worked with the system and also been a victim of the system and just despaired of anything ever changing, then along comes Lemn. Remember a psychologist’s report is just that – a written view or opinion of one person who is working within certain guidelines and may have insight into who you really are or maybe so off mark it may hit the moon. Only one person knows the real you Lemn, and that is you. The strength and courage you have shown all your life is priceless and may get shaken by another’s perception of you, but be a cocktail Mr Lemn – shaken but not stirred. I am not a religious person but the spiritual love and sharing you seem to have ignited around you I share deeply. I do not know you but feel care and compassion from what I have learned about you from your work and blogs. What you are doing will help so many others and eventually hopefully WE WILL change the system. And I mean CHANGE it, not have meetings,conferences,agendas, issue a statement of promises or look the part, I MEAN CHANGE IT.
    I would be excited and honoured to be part of the Report unveiling to give you support and PUNCH the secret ways of the system. Can I ask you a question please, I have read your blogs and I am familiar with a psychologists report and the damage or otherwise it can do, but in this instance What is it you personally want from it? What are your expectations? Do you believe it can have any power to further damage you? May light always be in your life Thank you x

  34. can I just add that I think it is a great idea for someone else to read it either a single person or a few but not yourself. As the words hit you they will impact in many ways, I am sure your professional enough to carry this but if they are unexpected words therefore unexpected impact and emotions then if the words are delivered by someone else it gives you time to process them a little. Even a few seconds is precious without having to concentrate on your speech delivery. Just my thoughts 🙂

  35. Lemn – I remember meeting you at that Hotel near Hyde Park, it was the night before you were off to Ethiopia to make the first documentary. I still remember how scared I felt for you, I remember thinking ‘he is going to jump’ and you have been jumping and flying ever since and it is a sight to behold -you circulating above us with your all seeing eyes -wide awake! You are that super hero you have conjured from deep within you -we mere mortals can only look up and watch and marvel. I am still afraid for you but unspeakable proud of all you do and make and change. When I read my brothers adoption papers I did not even recognise anybody within them, I felt utterly sick about how those words had ruined lives and cause pain still everyday. As always take care Lemn-we need you.

  36. Will you please answer another question when you speak at the report revealing. I am working through your videos and work to get a better understanding of you as your poetry speaks to me on a deep level and for you to have lived through the childhood you did, basically alone existing in a space of your own you created a box of protection around yourself . As you say you live in the present moment or you would die. So my question is the Report will take you back to hell so why have you chosen an open audience rather than trusted friends? I would hope 100% of love and support is offered to you but human nature is not like that, your opening and offering yourself on a plate, making yourself very vunerable without knowing what wolves hide in that audience. Maybe wolves from that very same past. Do you still have the protective box around you? Having never received love as a child are you capable now as an adult of receiving it or giving it? Very personal questions which you may or may not choose to answer in time. I just wanted to ask.

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