Out of Control
Couples, Conflict and the Capacity for Change
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Publisher: SPCK Publishing
Number of Pages: 288
All of us will be familiar with supporting friends, family and colleagues through the ups and downs of relationships. But could some of the more difficult times of argument and conflict be more than general relationship issues? Is there something more sinister going on? Over the course of a lifetime, 30% of women and 16% of men will be subjected to abuse by a partner, yet so many of us are unsure exactly what constitutes domestic abuse, and wouldn't know how to react if we, or one of our friends or family, found ourselves in a relationship with an abuser. Natalie Collins is the perfect guide to lead you through this subject, amassing over a decade's experience leading workshops, raising awareness and capturing national media attention in her work against domestic abuse. Highly readable, invaluably insightful and steeped in theological insight, Natalie starts right from the basics, exploring what domestic abuse is, why it is perpetrated and the impact it has on children and adults. Filled with case studies, including Natalie's own story, this book offers much-needed advice on how we can address domestic abuse, both as individuals and as a church community.
No-one who has met Natalie Collins will be surprised at this book. It is authentically hers, full of energy, insight, quirks and personal narrative. Few people can pepper a serious, even scholarly, book on domestic abuse with comments that leave you laughing out loud! But finding humour in tragedy is Natalie’s great gift, as is her refusal to be cowed by what she has gone through. This book is both realistic and hopeful, opening a window on abusers and abused, not least by Natalie’s personification of the ‘tactics of torture.’ The profiles of abusing partners, and the struggles of those who suffer will be soberly familiar to many. Written with Christian wisdom and vigour, Natalie’s up to date, well-researched, and ‘must-read’ book challenges us all to work ever harder towards the eradication of violence against women. - Elaine Storkey, Theologian, Philosopher, Broadcaster and Author Out of Control is a call to action; at times funny, touching, insightful, challenging and profoundly disturbing… without doubt this is a must read for every church leader. - Kate Coleman, Founder and co-director of Next Leadership When I first began to review books, two decades ago, I was a jobbing pastor, and took a vow that I would never write ‘every pastor should read this book’—the life is too busy, and too varied, for that ever to be true. Or so I thought. Today I repent: every pastor should read Natalie Collins’s book, and should give it to their leaders to read as well. Domestic violence is an enormous hidden plague that infects every community, and every congregation, in the land, and Natalie exposes the reality of this, and points to practical steps we can all take to help. Even better, Natalie communicates out of deep expertise, but simply, even colloquially. And all her passion, all her hope, all her joy, all her humour, are present in this book. It is a magnificent achievement, and it matters. Read it! - Dr Stephen Holmes, Senior Lecturer in Systematic Theology, University of St Andrews