About the Author
Saniyyah Mayo has been cultivating a relationship with the written word since a haiku poetry assignment in fifth grade exposed her to the power of writing as a means of healing and self-expression. Several major events in her teenage years threw her life into upheaval: first, the immense grief brought on by the untimely death of her beloved 16-year-old brother, and later, the birth of her first child at the age of 16. Such moments compelled Saniyyah to grow up quickly. In addition to the newfound responsibilities of caring for a baby, the teenage single mother struggled with the insensitive critical judgment of society at large and the lack of emotional support from her family.
However, ever-tenacious, Saniyyah tapped into her own will power and self-confidence and pushed on through these challenges, undeterred, and determined to defy the negative expectations of others. Through it all, writing remained as a powerful ally and method of coping. These experiences would also help inform her writing of Identifying & Breaking the Cycle.
Saniyyah’s strong interest in the social sciences led her to pursue a B.S. in Criminal Justice, in the hopes of working with at-risk youth. She also gave birth to a second daughter seven years after the first, and took up an active role in her church’s youth ministry. These opportunities exposed her to the complexities of family life and the impact that repeated cycles of behavior can have on an individual’s psyche, even if they don’t realize that.
Recognizing the importance of the family unit as both a cause of as well as potential solution for a range of recurring social and psychological problems, Saniyyah expanded her expertise by beginning graduate study in Clinical Psychology (with a focus on marriage and family therapy), for which she received a Master’s degree. This further empowered Saniyyah to make a difference in the lives of families and provided her a solid theoretical ground to pen Identifying & Breaking the Cycle.
Today, Saniyyah resides in California with her husband of 14 years and three children. She looks forward to working hard to making a difference in the lives of children and families in need of liberating themselves from their own adverse cycles of behavior.
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