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The Secrets We Keep is a book series that is personal to me.  In this story, we get to know several different characters, who are all tied to the main character, Callie. Although at this time, no one knows they are tied together or how. We get to know the characters, see how they deal with different stages in their lives despite the trauma they have encountered. We see how they deal with the after-effects of abuse, the effects their trauma has long-term and short-term, and how they heal, live, and love, all while helping each other tough times and discovering their connections to each other.

Each of the characters in the series has had their share of abusive relationships.  It is this trauma that brings them all together in the Manor.  The girls all take time to heal in their own way, while still trying to engage in “normal” activities. 

Just like in the real world, these characters realize just because they have left, survived, and/or escaped their abusive relationships, the effects of their trauma have just begun.  They never know what will trigger them, or when.  They survived the abuse, now they must survive themselves after.   

My goal with writing this series is to show that surviving an abusive situation is great!  However, that is only the beginning.  Every activity, job, hobby, relationship, etc. has the potential of bringing up triggers.  How does one deal with the everyday effects their abuse had on them?  It is not something you forget, only learn how to live with.  You learn to deal.  More importantly, you learn to heal.  

My hope is that through this series, people will see the lasting effects abuse can have on a person.  As well as, how those effects affect a person day to day.  Maybe this story will give someone a glimpse into the mentality of how some survivors cope, heal, and live.  Maybe it will help survivors see there is light at the end of such a dark tunnel.  Maybe this story will help survivors realize what they are experiencing afterwards is pretty normal. Maybe it will show there is no one way to heal, no speed at which you must go, and no one path to take.   Progress is progress.  My hope is simply that this series helps others understand more of how trauma affects a person through all aspects of their lives.   

I hope you enjoy the journey with these characters as they learn about the secrets they hold inside of them; how those secrets will also bind them together for life.

Come escape into my/our world!

A.G. Ballard

***Disclaimer…I feel this needs to be said. I am not a mental health counselor or therapist. If you are experiencing mental health symptoms of any kind (suicidal thoughts, triggers, panic attacks, etc), please reach out to the appropriate person(s).