Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Vera Schey - June 10, 1994

Talking About Experiences

Did you talk about this when you got to the United States?

Not very much. I--you know, the best example of that is Leslie's parents who had left him in Hungary in the middle of all this. For years they didn't know if he was alive or not. Finally we come, and I thought there would be days and days of nothing but talking and talking. Nothing. It was such a shock to me that they didn't ask. And they had--I mean, they asked a few questions, I'm not saying they didn't ask anything, but. If, I can't imagine if it was my kid that I wouldn't have asked a million questions. And they didn't. And I think that kind of made us realize that really nobody's interested in that. I don't think we talked about it. My kids say, and I don't remember, but they say that they didn't, that they didn't know. They knew we were living through this and they knew that, but we never told them anything about it. I didn't realize it 'til a few years ago that, that we didn't. And I remember when Les...when Tommy uh, our son first went to the Holocaust Center to listen to Leslie. He, he was absolutely flabbergasted. He says, "How come you never talked about it?" I don't know whether we wanted to, not forget, because you never want to forget, you never want to forgive. But I think we wanted to live a more normal life and, and live the life what's here and, and live it to the fullest and not really talk about it or, or whether we thought that people weren't interest, I don't know. But I remember the first few times I went to the, in our Hidden Children meeting and I said to them after a few meetings, "I can't--I don't want to do this anymore. It has been too many years, we have had a wonderful life, we all made ourselves a good life here. I don't want to dwell on this. If this Hidden Children organization wants to do something uh, worthwhile, let me know and I'll be there" Which you know I am now. But just to hear the stories, I didn't want to ??? myself, and I didn't want to tell mine and I, I started--as I say, never forgive, never forget. But I don't want to dwell on this. Not anymore. Is that unusual?



Is that a normal thing to do?

Sure. But you're talking now.

Yeah, yeah, now. I mean, really only bef...be...uh, since I became uh, involved in the Holocaust Education Coalition, that I find such a worthwhile thing and I feel that really as long as we didn't talk about it and now we all talk about it. We won't be here to talk about it. And unless we teach our youngsters about it that, this whole thing will be just forgotten. And it's different if I want to forget it. I don't want the world to forget it.

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn