Louise McOrmond-Plummer, partnerrapebook.org, co-author of Real Rape, Real Pain: Help for Women Sexually Assaulted by Male Partners
I will qualify my review by stating that I am not a Christian; I am a long-time feminist advocate and supporter of women experiencing domestic violence. I say this in the interest of “fair disclosure” – I am less educated about and indeed less concerned with theological issues than something that is truly helpful. All too often, those of us in the field hear appalling stories of abused women seeking help from religious leaders, who are told to “submit”, “pray more” and be tolerant until the abusive partner is “saved” – to say nothing of narrow views of what is abuse, and denial of rape in marriage. Inadequate, dangerous, and often insufficiently-trained for couples counselling may be offered. The presiding value here seems to be saving marriages rather than women’s safety, or making blanket statements about divorce, instead of the abuse, being sinful.
Yet it is just so important to many Christian women trapped in relationships of abuse that they find safety without sacrificing their faith, and they often ask about Christian-based resources. Most of us know that any resource needs examination before recommendation – there are books that profess to be helpful but are in fact full of blame and condescension. Ms. Roberts’ work gives no such cause for caution; she has provided an excellent text that I have no hesitation in recommending to Christian survivors. Along with Rev. Marie Fortune, the work of women – and survivors – like Ms. Roberts is revolutionary and essential.
Thank you, Barbara, for promoting to abused women a God who loves them and does not want them to continue to suffer violence.
(Louise’s review was first published on Amazon USA.)