Book Reviews of I Wish You Didn't Know My Name: The Story of Michele Launders and Her Daughter Lisa

I Wish You Didn't Know My Name: The Story of Michele Launders and Her Daughter Lisa
I Wish You Didn't Know My Name The Story of Michele Launders and Her Daughter Lisa
Author: Michele Launders, Penina Spiegel
ISBN-13: 9780446515870
ISBN-10: 0446515876
Publication Date: 8/1990
Pages: 216
Rating:
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 8

3.6 stars, based on 8 ratings
Publisher: Warner Books Inc
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

4 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed I Wish You Didn't Know My Name: The Story of Michele Launders and Her Daughter Lisa on + 28 more book reviews
At first when I flipped through the book, I thought Lisa's birthmother just used her death to make money, by writing a book about herself. But much of what I read I had never heard about this case before, it truly opened my eyes about what happened in this tragic case.

I am an avid reader of true crime, usually the more graphic, however, there were a few times that I cried reading this story. The conniving monsters that Steinberg and Nussbaum are blantantly spelled out in this account.
reviewed I Wish You Didn't Know My Name: The Story of Michele Launders and Her Daughter Lisa on + 336 more book reviews
"It's very hard for me to sympathize with this woman. I don't like her. I don't feel that she's being honest. I'm getting the impression that she's putting her own spin on things to make them look better. I don't sympathize with her and I should.
It's very hard for me to sympathize with this woman. I don't like her. I don't feel that she's being honest. I'm getting the impression that she's putting her own spin on things to make them look better. I don't sympathize with her and I should.
I don't know some of her words. I've gotten to the number of check marks in the book where I have to start an ongoing review or else I'll forget some of it. This may be small to some but it's not to me. What we say is veyr important. I take what I say seriously and I expect to be able to take seriously what comes from others mouths.
(Direct quotes in quotations)
"...when you never had the chance to hold that child in your arms, to love her, to comfort her, and cherish her?"
My problem with this - she did have that chance. She gave that chance away. I'm not saying she's wrong for that, she knew of nothing in the future. But she did? have that chance. Giving your baby up for adoption is a choice, and one that I'll touch on later that she didn't even have to make although she tried to come across like she had no other choice.
I understand that this was in the 80's, I understand she was young (19), I understand she was scared, I understand her thinking was that these people were professionals, I understand all of that. But from her very own words I'm finding out SO much that should have alerted her to the fact that something was amiss. SO MUCH. Her mother had an inkling and sure, we don't listen to out parents very much at that age. I don't fault her there. I do wish the mother had thought to phone the police. Even just a visit from the police, since there was nothing legally that could be done, would have deterred Bergman and friends I think because there would have been outside knowledge of the baby. That, in itself, would have been all that was needed probably.
On page 41 we find out Dr. Bergman came up with the idea of using a phony name to call Michele so no one would be the wiser. This isn't something normal. My 5 year old daughter would be concerned if her doctor told her this. Well, no, she wouldn't be concerned per se, but she would think it's weird and she would say something - to both myself and him. No, people are different but my daughter is FIVE. This was a grown woman at NINETEEN.
On page 69 we find out she went for her check-ups to Bergman's office when it was closed more often than not so as to "not have to deal with other patients". Okay, that's totally normal. He's just a REALLY caring doctor.
On page 81 we find out that Bergman's helper, Ginny actually went so far as to TELL Michele that something was up. She screamed out, "Whatever I'm getting out of this isn't worth the aggravation your mother is giving us."
Now, what else did she need I have to ask myself? Them to come out and say, "Hey listen Michele, we're going to lie to you, steal your baby, give it to two unfit people who are going to show her a life of cruelty and abuse until finally they murder her with their bare hands." Is that what she needed? Apparently.
So, that's about as far as I am so far and I'm ticked. The writing is fine, flows nicely, no problem with that aspect of the book. But I hate Michele, I'm mad at Michele, I feel like she could have saved this baby by being more aware.
I also should point out that she wasn't "forced" to give this baby up. Once her mother found out she was standing behind her 100%. That doesn't mean she should have changed her mind because of this, but I think she could have slowed down and used her head a little. She waited damn near 7 months to comfirm a pregnancy yet when it's confirmed and the doctor assumes she's going to give the baby up she just goes with it? Are there really people like this in the world? It's like she's going through life brain-dead and blind.
I'm sure I'll have much more to add soon. I may have to break my non-Googling way of life and see what these evil people are doing now. Hopefully rotting in jail.
*I'm sorry, I don't like speaking about someone like this but it's the honest truth and I'm feeling really passionate right now.*
Jesus, I could go on forever. I finished this two days ago and only now have the strength to try to finish the review. This will probably sound very chopped up but I'm not an author so deal with it.
I find it very conveniant that when she wasn't aware Ginny gave all of her wrong information. I've given birth, many people I know have given birth and I've never heard of anyone being so unaware. They don't get your info when the kid is sliding out of you. It's done before. How could she have been so out of it then? Again. Eyes wide shut.
She says that "if they'd given me Lamaze classes.." Even with something as simple as this she laying the blame at someone else's feet. Whose responsibility is it to take Lamaze? Why should someone else "give" them to her?
Michelle's mother said "They should have given ehr drugs. There's no point in suffering through the labor of a baby you're not going to keep." Wow. Wow. Just wow. I guess I see where Michelle gets it. That's a hell of a nice thing to say. Michelle learned her ways of caring for herself and only herself (and by extension Kevin) right from the source it seems.
If anyone needs any more "proof" that she didn't give the baby up for the baby you'll have it on page 107. When, the very first time Kevin pisses her off she slams it in his face that she had given her baby up for adoption. You know, the baby she didn't even give Kevin the chance to make a decision about. The baby that she'd hidden every trace of until that very second. Yeah, that baby.
When the news showed what happened and showed Steinberg Launders didn't "connect" him to the man she knew. Why? Because he looked slightly different and they referred to him with his middle name. Yup. That would throw even the most astute off for sure. Throw the blame Michelle, throw it far!
On page 134 she talks about all the things she never "had the chance" to do. Yet, she did have the chance. She gave that chance anyway. We can ponder and debate the reasons all day and, for the sake of the arguement let's say she had only the baby's well-being in mind, she still gave that chance away. Nothing changes that.
Both mother and daughter, Michelle and her mother, seem to be very self-involved. Everything is always about them. Page 148 for a good example.
Pages 183-184 - more proof of how Kevin was the most important person to Michelle. More important than her own child. Michelle strikes me as the type to always want drama around her (those are the ones who always *seem* to go out of their way to avoid the drama) and she seems to always want to play the hurt role, the sad role, the helpless role. And I think a great many people fell for it.
I know too many women like Michelle to fall for it. I know some of these women very well, one is even in my immediate family. I'm well aware of what that type of woman looks like, acts like, thinks like, etc. And Michelle is that woman. And Lisa had the horrible luck to be born to her.
Blah, blah, blah, she'll stand by any woman wanting an aborition. Hey Michelle, how about standing by women who want their babies to live? Try that for a change.
I hope she reads this because I want her to know that at least one person in this world sees clear through her. I don't believe a word she says. She's a liar, she's either borderline mentally retarded or the stupidest person I've ever had the displeasure to read about, she cares about no one but herself.
My sympathy is all taken up - it's for Lisa. No one else
reviewed I Wish You Didn't Know My Name: The Story of Michele Launders and Her Daughter Lisa on + 8 more book reviews
Excellent book for the true crime fan. I was able to feel Michele's pain and frustration. Steinberg and Nussbaum were grossly underpunished.
reviewed I Wish You Didn't Know My Name: The Story of Michele Launders and Her Daughter Lisa on + 5 more book reviews
This was one book that I could not make up my mind if I wanted to read it or not. But when I finally picked it up I was captivated by it and couldn't put it down till I shut the back cover. It was as I wasn't even reading a book but was watching it as a movie in my head. The way they start out with the back ground of ms.Launder's telling of her story and going in depth of her thoughts and feeling's of a secret she wanted to keep until the unimaginable and unthinkable horrifying crime was committed. She had no control of how it came about. Was not disappointed at all by this book and is definantly a story worth the read.