Friend and fellow author, best-seller Sherry Gammon, is releasing the third installment in the Port Fare series next Monday, June 9. If you're familiar with Port Fare, you already know Booker through Unlovable and Unbelievable. Unbearable is the story of how Booker finally finds love despite his impossibly high standards that all but guarantee he will never have to be in a relationship ever again.
Enter Tess, everything he says he would never find, a woman damaged, scarred, and nearly destroyed by domestic violence. As she wrote Unbearable, Gammon was worried people would be upset at her fairly realistic depictions of what Tess went through. She considered toning it down, but I'm glad she didn't.
Not because I love violence. Not even close.
Because I have very good friends who have survived this plague on our women, barely escaping with their lives sometimes. Because I've seen the cuts, scratches, bruises on the skin heal, knowing that the scars they bear on their soul might take a lifetime to heal. Imagine being in love with the one who hurts you most, on purpose, to "teach you a lesson" or "keep you in your place." These people (mostly men, although women can do this to men) have a pattern: be perfect, flatter you, make you fall in love. Make you need them. Be there all the time...and then infiltrate every part of your life. Separate you from your friends and family. Control every part of you so gradually that you have no idea you're the proverbial frog in the pot until the water is boiling and he slams the lid on top so you can't jump out.
This is kind of a departure from my usual funny and fluffy post, but it's something I'm passionate about. I keep hearing about misogyny and the war on women, as if the government paying for my birth control is somehow more important than women being killed by the one who promised to love them for life. Brings a very dark and ominous new meaning to 'til death do we part, doesn't it? This is a conversation we need to have. Their stories need to be told, and I'm glad Gammon is giving the victims of the real war on women a little hope through Tess's fight to take back control of her life.
Check out Unbearable when it comes out next Monday, June 9. I'll have links and more information about the Port Fare series on the blog that day. If you know someone in a terrible situation, let them know there is hope, no matter what he says. They can start fresh. It could literally be the fight for their lives, but they can move forward to something so much better. Like Tess, they can rebuild, recover, and get the life they deserve, not the one the abuser has convinced them is all they deserve.
If you know someone who needs a way out, please check this out. It's the victim's assistance website and hotline, and you can start your path to a better life. This isn't a battle our women need to fight alone.