It's hard to know what to do when someone you care about is in an abusive relationship. Do you ask about it? What if you're wrong? Do you offer to help? Even at the risk of interfering?
If any of the following vignettes resemble a situation involving someone you know, "The Family and Friends Guide to Domestic Violence" is a must read.
"One of our sorority sisters has a boyfriend that is making her miserable. Whenever we try to tell her she’s much too good for him, she gets angry with us and tells us we don’t understand. We want to help her, but if this is the way she wants to be treated, is it even our business?"
"My daughter is engaged to be married. When my wife and I met this guy, he acted sweet to her and polite to us. Now I’m starting to see him treat her in ways that don’t seem right to me. How do I get her out of this marriage without sounding like an overprotective father?"
"My best friend at work came into the office with a bruise on her cheek. She says she tripped over the cat…but she doesn’t have a cat. This isn’t the first time she’s had an unexplained bump or bruise. I suspect her husband, but what if I’m wrong?"
“My brother’s wife and I have become very close. Now she has started to drop hints that all is not right in their house. She hasn’t ever said that he hits her, but she seems afraid of him. I’m worried about her and about my three nephews. But if I support her, isn’t that being disloyal to my brother?”
This very accessible book, by renowned author, Elaine Weiss (“Surviving Domestic Violence: Voices of Women Who Broke Free”), can make an enormous difference to someone who is trapped in the web of domestic abuse. Used as a guide, it explains what you can do to help someone you love.
Jewish Women International has run a great piece on this book. To view the page devoted to Elaine's book, go to: Also by Elaine Weiss, Ed.D "Surviving Domestic Violence: Voices of Women Who Broke Free"
About the Author:
Elaine Weiss is a professional educator and writer. She has interviewed hundreds of women who survived physical and psychological domestic abuse. Her first book about domestic violence, Surviving Domestic Violence: Voices of Women Who Broke Free, tells the stories of twelve women who successfully escaped from an abusive relationship.
Dr. Weiss is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Utah School of Medicine, in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine. There, she teaches medical students and faculty how to recognize and support patients who are victims of domestic violence.
She has made presentations to thousands of people across the country. She speaks to professionals who help abused women directly, including physicians, nurses, social workers, therapists, and shelter staff. She also conducts training sessions for parents, teachers, teenagers, college students, religious groups, law enforcement personnel, and business leaders.
Her essays and articles have appeared in local and national publications, as well as on domestic violence web sites. They have also been incorporated into the teaching and counseling programs at a number of battered women’s shelters.
Elaine and her husband, Neal Whitman, divide their time between Salt Lake City, Utah, and Pacific Grove, California.