Most people only know Pattie Mallette as Justin Bieber’s mother, but in “Nowhere but Up”, Mallette shared her painful past of drugs addiction, sexual abuse and teen pregnancy.
Mallette, 37, has laid bare her past in her new book “Nowhere But Up: The Story of Justin Bieber’s mom”, recently published through Revell. It’s a powerful, plainspoken story written in collaboration with A.J. Gregory, a mother herself.
Mallette was 2 when she watched her alcoholic, abusive father walked out the door. At three years old, she was first sexually abused by someone she knew. Although she does not disclose the names of her molesters, the last words of her book’s acknowledgements speak volumes: “To my abusers: I forgive you.”
“I was sexually violated so many times that as the years went by it began to feel normal”, wrote Mallette. She said “the void of having a father in my heart” led her down rough paths, including drinking and drugging to oblivion, beginning at age 14. To support herself and paid for her bad habits, she turned to petty crime and pot-dealing. She started a toxic, on-and-off relationship with Jeremy Bieber. She ran into the road and almost got hit by a truck. Fortunately, she was safe and sent to a mental ward.
Mallette shared in her book that the reason she survived then was because Jesus sent down angels from heaven to rescue her from darkness and awaken her soul. Her faith in Christ helped her to turn away from fear and confusion.
Unfortunately, Mallette's faith was shaken, and she decided to go out with Jeremy Bieber again. She was pregnant when she was 18. She resisted the intense peer pressure to have an abortion. “I knew that I had to do what it took. I just couldn’t abort him.” She was living at a home for young pregnant moms when she gave birth to Bieber, a boy she thought she would name Jesse, whose first cry sounded like a beautiful song.
After Justin Bieber was born, Mallette had to work a several part-time jobs to support him. With the help of a kind neighbor who paid for a year’s worth of daycare, Malette slowly obtained her degree followed by college training in website design funded by scholarship.
Meanwhile, her son’s gifted talent in music slowly developed. Performing on the street was something that she said she would have never thought of doing, but this has earned Justin Bieber thousands of dollars by the age of six. Moreover, she recorded her son’s singing on Youtube and was planning to send to a relative of hers. She did not expect that there would be millions of viewers nor did she expect to receive a call from Scooter Braun, a manager who launched Justin’s career at barely 13, fresh out of junior high school.
Today, the 18-year-old Bieber has become a superstar, the third largest in the world of “Forbes” magazine.
Writing this book is part of her healing process, Malette said. Perhaps Mallette puts it best when she notes early in her book-about her motivation of sharing her good and bad experiences.
“I decided to tell my story not only for my own healing from a difficult past but also to help bring healing and liberation to those of you who may have suffered in similar ways.” It is a book which deserves attention, especially by those who have gone through painful childhood and sexual abuses.