Oh my word…. when I found out last week that I had won #SBS I was absolutely thrilled.
It’s taken me 2-3 years to win #SBS for something I am so passionate about and what I set out to do… raise awareness of domestic abuse with my own experiences.
I’m delighted to tell you a bit of my story in this post and I hope you will take a moment to read. I have just spent 30 minutes typing this post up, thinking how I can sum this up
I spent years in an abusive relationship and had no idea that what I was experiencing was wrong, I thought it was my fault. One of the things he did every time I came home from work is question me for hours on who I had spoken to, he was obsessive and to the point some of my colleagues ￼ unknowingly helped his ￼surveillance of me. To keep this short… I reduced my hours to four a week and in the end left.
What happened next is that I set up a business, I thought then he would have no reason to complain as I worked from home. I never expected it to be my safe haven and a way for me to escape mentally. Through networking I gained confidence and in the end I fled.
Of course I met my husband (Rob) along the way and I decided I needed to help others who are potentially going through what I went through. Coercive control wasn’t a crime at the time and I had no help and was in plenty of debt it kept piling up with the solicitor bills.
After having some support and completing a recovery programme I looked around and couldn’t believe I was only just learning about the red flags, what the behaviour patterns are like and gaining that understanding. Why didn’t I hear about all of this sooner? Why aren’t we taught about healthy relationships in school or college?
So I wrote my first book (Isolation Junction) and have never looked back. But there was a decision I needed to make… I couldn’t run OuTFox alongside my writing and public speaking any more. My awesome hubby took it under his wing- a rebrand from its old name helped me move on from why it was set up- the problem was solved. I am still the face of it in a way as everyone knew me via networking, hence why some of you will have met me at the event in my dress.
My main role is my advocacy for women in abusive relationships with my publications (Isolation Junction and Clipped Wings). I travel across the UK speaking about my experiences on domestic abuse. I recently was commissioned to provide anecdotes for a self help book.
Businesses sponsor my Twitter chat – #AbuseTalk where we discuss domestic abuse each Wednesday 8-9pm.
It is certainly a journey and one that hasn’t been easy, recognition like this motivates my way. I would have never of expected both my husband and I to be working from home either, we absolutely LOVE it and don’t want to change.
Lockdown hasn’t been easy with lots of time in supporting others. I bought a stock full of books ready for a bunch of speaking gigs which have been cancelled or postponed, if you want to gift one to a friend or read it for yourself please pop a DM. You never know who they might help.
They are also FREE on Kindle Unlimited, Lucy Round made me a clip to promote this which is fab (thank you).
⚠️ Isolation Junction:
When Rose married the love of her life she was expecting the perfect family life she’d always dreamed of, but before her first child was born her husband, Darren, changed.
Almost overnight Rose’s life is turned upside down and the life she’d envisioned seemed like an impossible dream.
As Darren’s abuse deepens, Rose has 100 reasons to leave but 1,000s why she can’t. Will she ever escape the hellish life she and her children are trapped in?
Can Rose stop her life spiralling further out of control?
Can she find the life she desperately wants for her children?
Stuck at Isolation Junction, which way will Rose turn?
The silent chorus.
Just imagine you thought that you had met the man or woman of your dreams. This person was charming and you thought they were the one or perhaps that this was fate; it was just meant to be.
But as the months go by things start to change. Their behaviour towards you isn’t the same, they are more critical, more particular about your appearance, what you do, how you do it, who you see.
Months and years go by and you feel isolated from your friends and family because that behaviour has now turned into threats, maybe violence and you feel that your identity is all but gone. But still you stay. Where would you go? Who would help you?
The message of this book is one of courage, as with courage comes awareness and an ability to look back on your relationship and see signs you didn’t see before, signs which signify unpleasantness, manipulation, and control.
A group of survivors have written, or been interviewed, about their own experiences.
These accounts – in their own words – show that survivors do have a voice and that it needs to be heard. They show that abuse isn’t unique or strange but that it is, in fact, a surprisingly common problem in today’s society. With their help, we can reach out to educate people about this insidious behaviour.
It is unacceptable, unwarranted, and brings misery and disharmony to so many.
This book shows that survivors don’t stand alone, in fact, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men will suffer domestic abuse and/or coercive control … The problem is very real.
“Together, we bring our stories to you and sing out like a silent choir, to broadcast to the world that with courage comes awareness and with awareness comes the freedom that everyone deserves – to be themselves.”