The only child of a one-parent family (her father died before she was born; her mother was a career woman, first by choice and then by necessity), Donna (Saunders) was a latchkey kid before the phrase was invented.
Three weeks before her 18th birthday, she married a scholar, continued her education, adopted two children, and divorced. Two more marriages followed -- both to alcoholics. During the third marriage, she came to recognize what constitutes alcoholism.
Once she realized she was not "too good" for Al-Anon, she became an active member. She also participated in four private family treatment programs and various facilitated support groups as well as one-on-one therapy. Also, to further her recovery and expand her knowledge, she attended seminars, workshops, read and studied extensively the effects of alcoholism on "significant others."
She is the founding publisher and editor of Challenges, a monthly magazine that initially focused on codependency; but after that became a pejorative term, the contents were directed to "anyone in recovery from anything." Challenges attracted subscribers from Alaska to the Virgin Islands but not enough advertisers to prevent the red ink from drowning out the black. After eight years, publication ceased in 1998. The contents of its tandem website are again available at:.
Donna has 13,000+ hours of peer counseling experience; she has facilitated "Women Who Love Too Much" groups. Her 35 years' experience as a freelance writer and/or editor includes five years as a coach of memoir and creative writing groups. She reviews theater and symphony concerts.
The basis of her autobiographical book manuscript Stark Raving Sober was the cover story of the January 1993 Northeast Magazine (Sunday edition of The Hartford Courant).
Donna was happily married from 1989 until her husband's sudden collapse (full cardiac arrest) in 1995. Stark Raving Sober focuses on the years 1964 to 1988 when she was the wife of two flawed men, both alcoholics.
To send an e-mail to Donna