review of “Sybil Exposed” by Lynn Crook
permission from author of review to post
Sybil Exposed: The Extraordinary Story Behind the Famous Multiple Personality Case
This book “reads like fiction” as the cover says.
But is it “fact” as the cover claims?
On page 222 of “Sybil Exposed,” Nathan says, “Roseanne Barr . . . would later describe her twenty alter personalities. They included `Piggy,’ `Bambi and `F . . . . . ‘” Nathan’s cite for this statement is People Magazine, October 7, 1991.
However, there is no mention of any alter personalities in the 1991 article (pp. 84-88) by correspondent Vickie Bane. None of these names are mentioned in the article. Nathan also says that Barr “forgot about it until she entered therapy.” But in the People Magazine article, Barr says she started to recover memories of abuse after her then-fiancé Tom’s telephone call from rehab in 1989 telling her he was molested by a babysitter (p. 85). After she began to recall, then Barr saw a therapist.
On page 225 of her book Nathan says, “The state of Texas closed Peterson’s dissociative disorders unit after determining it had overused physical restraints . . . ” This claim may have originated with Frontline’s 1995 documentary, “Divided Memories.” In 1996, when I reviewed this Frontline documentary for a news journal, I contacted the Texas Department of Health. A spokesperson there denied any such closing of the unit. The review was published in 1996.
Nathan fails to mention that the trial of US v. Peterson et al. on mail and insurance fraud vindicated Peterson and the others of all charges. Here’s what happened in this Houston trial. By February 1999, the federal government had been presenting its case for six months. The government’s first expert, Dr. James Hudson, had just undergone a rigorous cross-examination by Peterson’s attorney. The jury was down to 12 members and the defense was prepared to continue. The government dropped all the charges.