Are You Susan?

Are You Susan? A Memoir by Sue Haines

    Sue Haines in her memoir : Are You Susan? presents the  embodiment of restorative justice, which is a system of criminal justice focusing on the rehabilitation of offenders with victims, and the community at large.

    Sue’s story  in many ways is every person’s story in this 

materialistic society. Success is  seen as having a nice home,  nice clothes, a good education and getting a good job, but underneath there lurks a sense of futility.

    Her father was a closeted alcoholic, who committed  suicide,  her mom kept the secret of the suicide and his alcoholism hidden for years,  her ex husband was a drug user and dealer, who tried to have her killed by hiring  Dale, a drug user and career criminal paying him  $5000.00. The ex-husband was never convicted and remained in her life through her children, and Dale was convicted of the crime. All of this lead to a dysfunctional life. All were victims in one form or another.

    Through the restorative justice system Sue ceased being a victim, through forgiving, and finding forgiveness with the perpetrators.

    This book is her story and her victory turning her  role as a victim, into a life of forgiveness, and as an   advocate of restorative justice.

    The mentality of our justice system, and of society is that of punishment, and when completed a lack of forgiveness. Most offenders wear a “scarlet letter” reminding people they committed crimes.  Restorative justice seeks to bring “victims” and “offenders” together to bring a healing in those relationships. For our society to truly be free, we too need to experience  healing.

    Sue’s life is a shining example of restorative justice. Her life as a victim was transformed into one of service, and of  healing.  She found wholeness through the forgiveness of her ex-husband who hired the offender to kill her, and  Dale, who made the attempt; Sue  found healing  in forgiving her father and her mother.

    Susan Haines exemplifies the Christ who says to us: “You shall love the Lord your God with all of your soul, mind, and strength, and your neighbor as yourself.”

“Wasn’t I real before,” asked the little Rabbit. “

“You were Real to the Boy,” the Fairy said,

“because he loved you. Now you shall be Real to everyone.” (Margery William, “The Velveteen Rabbit”).


Sue’s book is self-published. You may buy a copy, invite her to speak through:

Cost is $17.95 plus postage

or call me: 415-305-2124


Father River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min., D.S.T.

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164




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