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John Jalsevac

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Mom of rock-star Steven Tyler’s aborted baby breaks 3-decades silence - is now pro-life mom of 7

John Jalsevac
John Jalsevac
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(LifeSiteNews.com) – When Julia Holcomb was sixteen she and a friend contrived to meet Steven Tyler, the frontman of the multi-platinum-selling band Aerosmith, and now co-host of American Idol.

Holcomb’s gambit was more successful than she could have imagined. She and Tyler met backstage after an Aerosmith show, and what followed was a passionate and drug-fuelled three-year relationship that nearly culminated in marriage, even though Holcomb was a full decade younger than the rock star. But the affair eventually spun out of control and ended explosively after Holcomb was pressured into aborting Tyler’s unborn child.

Until now the few known details about the relationship have come from Tyler and his band mates, as found in the band’s memoirs, Walk This Way, or Tyler’s recent autobiography, Does the Noise in my Head Bother You?

For her part, Holcomb has conscientiously maintained a several decades-long silence, leaving many wondering what ever became of her. The last public word about her fate appears to have come from one of Tyler’s subsequent girlfriends, who spoke of “suicidal phone calls” from Holcomb to Tyler while he was on tour. But now she has broken her silence, in a brief 5,000-word memoir published by LifeSiteNews.com in cooperation with Rachel’s Vineyard Ministries, a ministry for post-abortion healing.

Holcomb’s story is at turns astonishing and disturbing - but, for her at least, has a happy ending. Unbelievably, from the young, confused girl who once spent three years living with a rock star, Holcomb has since become a devout and happily-married Catholic mother of seven children – and is fiercely pro-life.

But the journey from the dark years of her late teenagehood to the present is one that she says she nearly didn’t survive.

“I became lost in a rock and roll culture,” she recounts. “In Steven’s world it was sex, drugs, and rock and roll … I didn’t know it then, but I would barely make it out alive.”

Holcomb, who is publishing her memoir under her maiden name to protect her family’s privacy, explains that she chose to tell her story after her relationship with Tyler received renewed attention through Kevin Burke’s recent National Review article discussing her abortion, as well as Tyler’s newly-published autobiography.

“I decided it was time to tell my story honestly, to the best of my memory, hoping to bring closure and peace to this period of my life,” she writes. She says that she is seeking not only to correct what she calls the “gross exaggeration” in Tyler’s accounts of their sexual escapades, but also hopes that her account of her abortion, and the painful aftermath, will help those who have had abortions to find healing and peace.

(Click here to read Julia Holcomb’s complete memoir, The Light of the World)

Young and confused

The topic of abortion comes up more than once in Julia’s story: she herself narrowly escaped being aborted.

Her mother found out she was pregnant with Julia in the midst of a volatile marriage with an unstable and philandering gambler, who abandoned his children when they were toddlers. Family members encouraged her to get a (then-illegal) abortion.

“Thankfully she gave birth to me and later to my younger brother, and was a loving mother,” says Julia.

An alcoholic stepfather followed the gambling father. And then tragedy struck when a car accident killed Julia’s younger brother and grandfather, and injured Julia, her sister, and her grandmother - an event that eventually landed her stepfather for a spell in a mental institution, and precipitated a divorce.

Whereas prior to the divorce Julia’s mother regularly brought her children to church and prayed with them, after the divorce she seemed “wounded and disillusioned with life,” says Julia. She took up with another man, Julia’s second stepfather, with whom she did not initially get along.

Feeling unmoored, 15-year-old Julia drifted away from her family, making new friends at the local Teen Center.

Meeting Steve Tyler, and the pregnancy

One of these new friends was a 24-year-old woman who had access to backstage passes for rock concerts. Julia described this friendship as “pivotal” and “one of the most dangerous friendships I ever formed.”

This new friend “quickly taught me to dress in revealing clothes to get noticed and use sex as a hook to try to catch a rock star.” Evidently Julia learned well, for she caught Tyler - hook, line, and sinker.

“I fell hard. And I fell heavy. And I fell so in love.” That’s how Tyler describes what happened after he met Julia, in his autobiography.

So thoroughly was Tyler smitten with his 16-year-old beauty that he began to consider marrying her, and even convinced Julia’s mother to grant him guardianship over her, so that he could take her with him across state lines.

After a few months together, Tyler confided to Julia that he wanted to have a child. “I was touched by his sincerity and said yes,” she writes. “I wanted children, and began to believe he must truly love me since he had made himself my guardian and was asking to have children with me.”

Tyler threw Julia’s birth control pills over the balcony of their hotel room, and within a year she was pregnant.

The fire and the abortion

But things started to fall apart after Tyler announced his intention to marry Julia to his parents. After his parents and grandmother expressed their reservations, due to Julia’s youth, the couple had a fierce argument, and Tyler changed his mind.

Within weeks he was back on the road touring, while she was left back home in his apartment “alone and pregnant … with no money, no education, no prenatal care, no driver’s license and little food.” It was also around this time that Tyler reportedly took up with Playboy model Bebe Buell.

Then came the fire.

One day, says Julia, while on tour Tyler sent an old highschool friend and former bandmate to the apartment to bring Julia shopping. The next thing she says she remembers is waking up in a dense cloud of smoke. The apartment was on fire.

Julia narrowly escaped with her life, in near-miraculous circumstances. After finding all exits impassable, Julia suddenly recalled fire safety advice from a Bill Cosby commercial, and crawled into an unused fireplace over which hung a picture of Jesus inherited from her grandmother.  Tyler later returned that picture to Julia, telling her it was the only thing in the apartment that survived the fire.

Julia was rescued from the burning building by firemen, and landed in the hospital with severe smoke inhalation. Tyler was told that she might not make it. But she pulled through, as did her unborn baby.

That’s when the pressure began.

According to Julia, Tyler came into her hospital room and told her that she needed an abortion “because of the smoke damage to my lungs and the oxygen deprivation I had suffered.” But Julia said no, repeatedly. She wanted the baby. Plus, she was already five months pregnant.

At that point, Tyler relented and told her she could go back to her mother and have the baby. But Julia says she was concerned that her family wouldn’t want her to have the baby either. With no money, and no expectation that Tyler would help provide for her and the baby, she gave in to his wishes.

Julia describes the abortion as “a horrible nightmare I will never forget.” Tyler was with her throughout the abortion, but was doing cocaine the whole time, and therefore seemed “emotionally detached,” she says.

She would learn, however, that Tyler was not as detached as he might have appeared.

In Walk this Way, he remembered the traumatic event: “You go to the doctor and they put the needle in her belly and they squeeze the stuff in and you watch. And it comes out dead. I was pretty devastated. In my mind, I’m going, Jesus, what have I done?” However, Julia writes that Tyler told her after the abortion that, rather than coming out dead, their baby had actually been born alive, and then allowed to die.

“My baby had one defender in life; me, and I caved in to pressure because of fear of rejection and the unknown future,” says Julia. “I wish I could go back and be given that chance again, to say no to the abortion one last time.  I wish with all my heart I could have watched that baby live his life and grow to be a man.” 

A new life

After the abortion, “nothing was the same” between Julia and Tyler. Eventually she moved back in with her mother, “a broken spirit.” She says she couldn’t sleep without having nightmares of the abortion and the fire.

But she soon came to realize that her second stepfather, whom she had previously disliked, was trying to be a good husband and father, and came to respect him. Julia started going to church with them – a United Methodist church in the area – and began participating in youth events at the church.

She soon went to college, and it was there that she met her future husband, Joseph.

“Today,” she writes, “I am a pro-life Roman Catholic, the mother of seven children, and this year my husband and I will celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary.  Joseph and I have six children of our own, and I give thanks for each of them, as they are truly a gift from God.” The couple are also legal guardians to a young girl, who was born from a difficult pregnancy, but whose mother decided to choose life.

Julia describes her husband as “my true hero.” “He has been a loving husband, a generous father, and hard-working provider for our family. My husband loves me and has forgiven me from his heart and has not let my past define his understanding of who I am as a person.”

Julia and her husband converted to the Roman Catholic faith in 1992.

Abortion never the answer

Julia says that she holds no bitterness for Tyler: “I pray for his sincere conversion of heart and hope he can find God’s grace.”

Mostly, however, she says she just wants people to know that abortion is never the answer.

“Someone may say that my abortion was justified because of my age, the drugs, and the fire,” she says. “I do not believe anything can justify taking my baby’s life. The action is wrong. I pray that our nation will change its laws so that the lives of innocent unborn babies are protected.”

She concludes with these powerful words:  “Our nation’s young girls, especially those like me, who have experienced trauma and abuse, and are vulnerable to exploitation should not be used as sexual playthings, scarred by abortions to free their male partners from financial responsibility, and then like their unborn children, tossed aside as an unwanted object.

“Marriage and the family are the building blocks of all virtuous societies.  I learned this lesson in a trial by fire that taught me to trust God’s plan no matter what occurs.  I pray that our nation may also find its way back to God by respecting the life of unborn children and strengthening the sanctity of marriage.” 

(Click here to read Julia Holcomb’s complete memoir)

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Dr. Miriam Grossman speaks to large audience in Mississauga, Ontario Steve Jalsevac/LifeSite
Lianne Laurence

VIDEO: How DO you to talk to kids about sex? US sex-ed critic gives practical tips

Lianne Laurence
By Lianne Laurence

MISSISSAUGA, ON, August 27, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – Talking to their children about sex is “anxiety provoking to say the least,” for parents, says American sex-ed expert, Dr. Miriam Grossman.

“Some people just can’t even do it, and that’s okay,” the New York-based psychiatrist told the crowd of 1,000 who packed a Mississauga conference hall August 18 to hear her critique of the Ontario Liberal government’s controversial sex-ed curriculum.

After Grossman explained how the Liberal sex-ed curriculum is dangerously flawed and ideologically driven, she used the question-and-answer session to give parents much appreciated and sometimes humorous practical advice on how to teach their children about “the birds and the bees.”

“If you feel you can’t do it, maybe there’s someone else in the family or in the constellation of people that you know you can trust that could do it,” said Grossman, author of “You’re teaching my child WHAT?” and an internationally sought-after speaker on sex education.

A child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist with 12 years’ clinical experience treating students at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) clinic, Grossman said explaining sexuality and procreation to children is “a process,” that “shouldn’t ideally happen all at once. A child is not a miniature adult, and absorbs…new information differently than adults do.”

And parents need to be sure just what their child wants to know.

To illustrate this, Grossman referred to her earlier story about a father who gave his son every detail on human procreation after the boy asked him, “Dad, where do I come from?”

After the father finished, his son replied, “Well, that’s funny, because Johnny told me that he came from Montreal.”

“Try to find out what your child is really getting at, and, don’t give it all at once,” Grossman said. “You start with a little bit at a time…and you know, there’s so many variables here, and people have their own traditions and their own ways of explaining things, and something that might be right for my family might not be right for your family.”

She also advised that, when confronted with a four, five, six or seven-year-old asking about a pregnant woman, or where babies come, a parent can ask, “What a good question that is. What do you think?”

And parents can also legitimately put off the discussion when appropriate, telling the child, “That’s really not something you need to know about right now.”

“Wow, what a novel idea: Telling a child that they could wait until they’re older to discuss that subject,” Grossman said, adding that parents wouldn’t brook a six- or even fifteen-year-old child asking how much money they made or had in the bank. “Excuse me? Not every subject has to be an open book.”

However, the time will come when a child needs to know “about how her body’s going to change, about reproduction, about how a new life is created.”

That time, Grossman advised, is puberty, or “as puberty is beginning,” and this is especially so for girls, who, if unprepared for the surprise onset of menstruation “might think [they’re] dying.”

“The actual nitty-gritty about the birds and the bees and intercourse” can “be told in bits and pieces, or it can be told all at once, if you feel it’s necessary,” she said, adding that it’s beneficial if the parent acknowledges his or her awkwardness, because the child will think: “This must be such an important subject that my mother or my father is sitting there squirming, but he’s doing it anyway. I’m really loved.”

“And the children need to understand that as you grow up, you change a lot, not only physically but emotionally,” Grossman said, “and what may seem odd or disgusting when you’re ten years old, or whatever age, it becomes something very special and beautiful when you’re older and you’ll understand it later. You don’t have to understand it now.”


Know your child and guard your home

But as an essential foundation for this discussion, parents must both know their children and guard their home from the encroachments of a culture that Grossman described as “very, very sexualized” and “really horrible.”

“Children need parents who are loving but are also firm and authoritative,” she asserted.  “They don’t need best friends. They need us to guide them, to know what they’re doing, to be on top of what they’re doing.

So parents need to be aware of whom their child is “hanging around with, and what kind of movies are they watching…what’s going on with your child.”

“You need to know that anyway, even if it’s not about sex education,” she pointed out. “Try and know your child. Every child is different.”

And Grossman emphasized that it is “extremely important to be careful about what your child is exposed to in the home, in terms of television and Internet, obviously.”

Children need to understand that “just like you have garbage you take out of the house, you put it in the garbage bin, it’s dirty, it smells…there are other things that also don’t belong in the house.”

And children learn quickly what is, and is not, permissible inside the home, Grossman said. “Me, I keep kosher…If I go into a store, my kids know from a very young age, we don’t eat that.”

So they are used to the idea of “the world outside and the inside world, of inside your home, and inside your heart as well.”

Parents can also convey this by telling their children that “the world is an upside-down place, and sometimes the most special, holy subjects are…just thrown in the gutter. And that’s a bad thing. In our family, in our tradition, we don’t do that.”

“Sexuality is one of the subjects that in this upside-down world, it is sometimes just in the gutter,” she said. “And so I want you to tell your child to come to me when you have questions, I will give you the straight story about it.”

Grossman herself is “not even sure,” as she stated in her seminar, that sex education should be in the schools: “I believe sex education should be at home for those parents that want to do it.”

She also noted that parents “can make mistakes. We all make lots of mistakes but it’s okay, you can always come back and do it differently,” adding that this is “another wonderful message for your child. You know what, it’s okay to make mistakes, you can always go back and try and fix it.”

Grossman urged parents to visit her Facebook page, website and blog. “I have so much information you can get there that you’ll find useful,” and added that she will be publishing books for children, and has posted her critique of New York City’s sex-ed curriculum, which is similar to Ontario’s.

The parental backlash to that sex-ed curriculum, set to roll out in the province’s publicly funded schools this September, has been “amazing” Grossman noted.

Grossman’s seminar was sponsored by Mississauga-based HOWA Voice of Change along with the Canadian Families Alliance, an umbrella group representing more than 25 associations and 200,000 Ontarians opposed to the curriculum. The report on her devastating critique of the sex-ed curriculum can be found here, and the video here.

Ontario readers may find information and sign up for a September 2 province-wide protests at MPPs offices here. So far, there are protests planned for 92 of Ontario’s 107 constituencies. The parents’ movement seeking removal of the curriculum is urging all concerned citizens to join this special effort to influence individual Ontario legislators.

See related reports:

Ontario’s dangerous sex-ed is indoctrination not science says U.S. psychiatrist to large audience

Videos: US psychiatrist tells parents “stand firm” against dangerous sex-ed

See the LifeSiteNews feature page on the Ontario sex-ed curriculum containing nearly 100 LifeSite articles related to the issue

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Pete Baklinski Pete Baklinski Follow Pete

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Did the pope just endorse a gay children’s book? Of course not, says Vatican

Pete Baklinski Pete Baklinski Follow Pete
By Pete Baklinski

ROME, August 28, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) -- While mainstream media is gushing with news today that Pope Francis allegedly praised a children’s book that promotes gender theory, the Vatican is decrying what they called the "manipulation" of a cordial letter from an official in the Secretariat of State to suggest that the Vatican is promoting teachings contrary to the Gospel.

Italian children’s author Francesca Pardi was reported by The Guardian to have submitted a parcel of children’s books promoting the acceptance of homosexuality and gender theory to Pope Francis in June after Venice’s mayor Luigi Brugnaro publicly banned the author’s newest book, Piccolo Uovo (Little Egg), from children’s schools. The book was criticized by pro-family leaders for promoting non-natural family structures of two men and two women.

In a letter accompanying the books, Pardi wrote: “Many parishes across the country are in this period sullying our name and telling falsehoods about our work which deeply offends us. We have respect for Catholics. ... A lot of Catholics give back the same respect, why can’t we have the whole hierarchy of the church behind us?”

The Guardian is reporting that Pardi has now “found an unlikely supporter in Pope Francis,” who through his staff has responded to the author and is presented as “praising her work.” It quotes the following from a July 9 letter to Pardi from the Vatican.

“His holiness is grateful for the thoughtful gesture and for the feelings which it evoked, hoping for an always more fruitful activity in the service of young generations and the spread of genuine human and Christian values,” wrote Peter B. Wells, a senior official at the Vatican Secretariat of State, in a the letter The Guardian is reporting it has seen.  

While the letter gently calls the author to use her talents to spread “genuine human and Christian values,” The Guardian takes it as the pope’s endorsement of gender theory.

“Pope Francis sends letter praising gay children's book,” the paper’s headline states. “Italian book that explores different family types including same sex was banned by mayor of Venice, but pontiff becomes unlikely supporter,” reads the subtitle.

In a press release that Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi sent to LifeSiteNews on Friday, the vice speaker of the Vatican, Ciro Benedettini, made clear that the friendly reply letter to the author in no way approves of attitudes or positions that are contrary to Catholic teaching and the Gospels.

The Vatican's statement also says that in the original letter from the secretariat of state Wells merely "acknowledged receipt" of the materials sent by Pardi, and also made clear that the letter was private and not meant for publication. 

"In no way does a letter from the Secretary of State intend to endorse behaviors and teachings not in keeping with the Gospel," says the statement, decrying the "manipulation" of the letter.

Benedettini said the blessing of the pope at the end of the letter was meant to be for the author herself, and not to affirm positions concerning gender theory that are contrary to the Church's teaching. Using the letter to this end is erroneous, he said.

Pope Francis has strongly condemned the notion of “gender theory” on numerous occasions, saying that it is an “error of the human mind that leads to so much confusion.”

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Lisa Bourne

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Poll suggests most US Catholics wrongly believe Pope Francis backs gay ‘marriage’

Lisa Bourne
By Lisa Bourne

August 28, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) -- A considerable majority of U.S. Catholics are in conflict with Church teaching on abortion and marriage, a new study says, and a startling number of those also believe Pope Francis backs homosexual “marriage.”

Despite Church teachings, Catholics in America also closely parallel the general populace in their support for abortion and homosexual “marriage,” falling short in the Biblical call to be “in the world but not of the world.”

The findings suggest what many Catholics have said is a climate of confusion in the midst of the Francis pontificate. Concerns over that confusion prompted a coalition of pro-family groups to respond with an international petition effort asking the pope to reaffirm Church teaching, drawing more than a half-million signatures.

The survey, conducted by Public Religions Research Institute, found that 60 percent of all U.S. Catholics favor legalized homosexual “marriage,” compared to 55 percent of all Americans. Likewise, 51 percent of Catholics think that abortion should be legal in all or most cases, with 53 percent of the general population holding this view.

The Catholic Church teaches that marriage is a sacramental union between one man and one woman, mirroring Christ and the Church respectively as bridegroom and bride.

The Church also teaches that life begins at conception, that each human life possesses dignity as a child of God and is to be afforded protection, making abortion an intrinsic evil.

Catholics, accounting for 22 percent of adults in the U.S. population, have a favorable view of Pope Francis, the study said, but they are very confused about his take on homosexual “marriage.”

Of the Catholics who back homosexual “marriage,” 49-percent also think the leader of the Catholic Church backs it along with them. Fifteen percent of those Catholics who oppose homosexual “marriage” also mistakenly believe Pope Francis supports it.

Pope Francis has made numerous statements in support of life, marriage and family, but the confusion remains.

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"After Ireland and the U.S. Supreme Court both approved same-sex 'marriage,' a strong reaffirmation of Church teaching could save the sacred institution of marriage, strengthen the family and dispel the lies of the homosexual revolution," TFP Student Action Director John Ritchie stated.  "Young Catholics -- even non-Catholics -- look to the Church as a beacon of morality and stability in our Godless culture, but some of our shepherds have issued confusing statements."

TFP Student Action is a part of the lay Catholic organization American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property, and is part of the alliance behind the Filial Appeal, the petition asking the Holy Father to reinforce Catholic teaching at the Vatican’s upcoming Synod on the Family in October.

Ritchie explained how the confusion was aiding the Church’s enemies, and warned of the potential consequences.

"This prayerful petition asks Pope Francis to clear up the moral confusion that's been spreading against Natural and Divine Law," he said. "If the enemies of the family continue to chip away at holy matrimony, the future of the family and civilization itself will be in even more serious peril."

At press time more than 500,000 signature had been gathered for the appeal, including five cardinals, 117 bishops and hundreds of well-known civic leaders.

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