Neile Jones was an anchor in Arkansas, pretty and popular as local TV personalities tend to be. What no one knew, however, was that she was also in an abusive relationshp. This book details that relationship but focuses on how she managed to get out of it and what her life is like now.
This book has excellent advice, both for those who are in this situation and for those who are watching a friend or relative in that kind of relationship. There is a section in the back for journaling or note-taking, and her parents, sister and current husband all contribute chapters.
While obviously no one is as affected by a violent relationship as the person targeted by that violence, this book shows exactly how other people are affected, too, and how hard it is to watch someone you love change and essentially wither in front of your eyes.
It’s a hard book to read (harder still, I bet, for people who know Neile) but it’s an incredibly important book. It shows the excuses you can make (“He really loves me,” “He says he’s sorry,” “It doesn’t happen THAT often, really,”) and the reasons why ultimately you need to save yourself.
I don’t agree with everything (Neile says part of it is her fault but short of killing the guy, I’m not entirely sure what she could realistically have done—it’s an abusive relationship, not just your standard bad one) but this book is so important and could literally save lives.
The most important aspect of this book, however, is that it shows what to do after you leave. It’s not just “You have to go” and then sort of a “Good luck!” message. This explains how to regain your life and what you need to do to keep from falling back into an old pattern.