Tag: domestic abuse

Embrace Your Voice Shavonne Broom of StyleChurch for You Look a Lot Like Me and Tortoise and Finch

The Healing Power of Voice: Giving the Gift of Your Voice – Part Three of a Three-Part Series

Embrace Your Voice Shavonne Broom of StyleChurch for You Look a Lot Like Me and Tortoise and FinchIn this last installment of our three-part series on the Healing Power of “Voice,” Shavonne Broom of StyleChurch shares some of her thoughts on giving (and receiving) the gift of one’s voice. It’s been a pleasure to speak with and learn from Shavonne over these past three months. We are so pleased to have another opportunity to hear more about her philosophy on the healing journey toward self-acceptance.

I believe it’s incredibly important to remind victims and survivors of domestic violence (and all forms of violence) that their voices are powerful and can help others to understand, heal, and change. It can be difficult to believe that when one has experienced any form of abuse. For those who may be reading this and struggling, Shavonne has shared some simple and thoughtful suggestions for getting in touch with one’s voice. I hope you find them helpful and inspiring.

Wishing all of you all the best this coming year and always,


CM: Many people think of this as “the season of giving.” Is that true for you?

SB: Well, funny you ask. This the first year my family and I didn’t exchange gifts. Living from a service-oriented space makes the season of giving an everyday occurrence. I love spending quality time with family and was not affected by the decision to forego the gift exchange. I adore my mother and appreciate all the time she spends preparing for the holidays with great food options, house decorations and perfectly-wrapped gifts. However, the most enjoyable parts of the holidays for me are the time shared with family and friends, making new memories, and great laughs. My love language supports this as I express and receive love most through acts of service and quality time. Therefore, the best gifts I received were always through acts of kindness and/or time shared.

CM: When did you first start to recognize that your voice was a gift—both a gift to receive and a gift to give?

SB: Not too long ago. I mean, over the last year I realized that sharing my story could serve as a gift for me and help heal and encourage others as well. I’ve talked about my love for style during the past two interviews, however, I felt much more connected to the story behind style and how it shaped who I am and how I serve and support others today. My life journey is about self-acceptance, and once I discovered how to connect self-acceptance with style—by embracing individuality and sharing “voice”—I knew I had a gift to share.

My life journey is about self-acceptance, and once I discovered how to connect self-acceptance with style—by embracing individuality and sharing “voice”—I knew I had a gift to share.

CM: Once someone finds or connects with her or his “voice,” what do you believe changes?

SB: Finding “voice” is a journey that evolves over time. When we find our voice, I believe we operate from a much more grounded place.

  • We are open and honest about our stories (courageous and vulnerable).
  • We are clear about what we want in our lives and take consistent action towards goals daily (clarity).
  • We have a strong belief in a greater, more abundant life, visualizing it, and living it (conviction).
  • We show up in the world knowing we deserve to be there (confidence).

CM: How can people start to really conceptualize their “voice” as being something of value to others?

SB: I love this question. I’ll say that we have to practice using our voices more. I encourage others to start with activities or creative projects that feel liberating and give your “voice” away. Share your voice by gifting it to others or donate your gift of voice to organizations and causes that you feel strongly about. You’ll be amazed at how good it feels and the clarity you get by using your voice.

You’ll be amazed at how good it feels and the clarity you get by using your voice.

CM: I have experienced that many victims of domestic violence and bullying feel as though their voices are not of value, or that no one sees or hears them, or cares to see or hear them. Thinking of one’s voice as a gift when one is struggling with those thoughts and emotions can be difficult. Victims may also be afraid to use the powerful voices they know they possess because their emotional, spiritual, or physical safety have been threatened. What would you suggest for those who may be feeling like they have nothing to offer, or who may be afraid to use their voice because they have been told they will be harmed if they do?

SB: I certainly understand how sharing voice can seem impossible in these circumstances. No one should have to be alone in this process. When other creative outlets like dance, writing, or other forms of art are not possible or feasible for a situation, sometimes all we can do is feel, and I believe when we feel, we create space for our wisdom (our higher voice) to speak. Our wisdom speaks from the core and transcends the thoughts or words that have left us feeling lack, pain and fear. Feel, connect to what is, and breathe. Allow the emotion to pass and for the inner voice to guide you back to love. This practice is quite fascinating and will leave you feeling light again.

Our wisdom speaks from the core and transcends the thoughts or words that have left us feeling lack, pain and fear. Feel, connect to what is, and breathe. Allow the emotion to pass and for the inner voice to guide you back to love.

CM: When was the first time you gave the gift of your voice to someone else?

SB: I remember immediately following a salsa dance lesson with my new instructor, Angel S., we sparked up a conversation about the stack of beaded bracelets I wore on my left wrist. From there the conversation led to spirituality. Angel has this innate gift of creating safe spaces for people, as a life coach and dance instructor. Within a very short time, I was sharing some very personal and struggling times with childhood bullying and patterns of failed relationships. We laughed about this later and I’ll even venture to say that the dance lesson was the medium in which he and I were meant to connect. Angel was my spiritual guide.

What I learned most from our time together is, in dance partnerships and in relationships, true connection is never forced. I feel connection lives in the center space between two grounded yet open and receptive individuals. Learning how to release childhood fears of rejection and judgment (because they still show up) and let go of control has allowed me to be more open and to be a better dancer. I know I don’t have to take care of myself by myself. If I allow myself to be supported (and led) I can live life with much more ease and grace and leave space for connection to happen. And this, my friends, is the magic of dance (and relationships).

If I allow myself to be supported (and led) I can live life with much more ease and grace and leave space for connection to happen.

CM: What are some others ways that you and your company, StyleChurch, have given to others through the gift of your voice?

SB: Speaking aloud about my own journey of self-acceptance and supporting other women through theirs. I’ve presented on self-acceptance and powerful presence and offered personal styling services in the for-purpose arena and to transitioning military service members.

My very first speaking engagement was in a classroom at Dress for Success San Antonio. These were a group of women transitioning into the workforce from various backgrounds including: homelessness, drug/alcohol recovery, domestic violence, and incarceration. I shared tips on how to be more confident and to show up every day with clarity and intention. I included tips on building a basic wardrobe and dressing for a professional environment.

I was nervous; however, I was very comfortable in this environment. I’d seen some of their faces before, and even heard their stories, but this presentation left me feeling a bit jittery. I took a deep breath and went ALL IN. It took me a good 10-15 minutes to find my rhythm, but there was a point when the audience became completely engaged. I’m not sure exactly when, but they were asking questions, laughing, sharing personal stories, and having fun. Time was non-existent…

After I concluded the presentation, I was surrounded by sounds of applause, hugs, and smiles. I’ve given two more presentations since then and the ladies still remember me, share warm embraces, and tell me how much they appreciated my speeches. I am always in awe and filled with so much love. This reminds me of the power of sharing voice and how the connection among people and communities strengthen because of it. I love the Dress for Success community.

You Look a Lot Like Me Interview with Shavonne Broom of StyleChurch True Self Expression

CM: What is one suggestion, one simple thing someone can do today, no matter what her/his circumstances, to either receive or give the gift of her/his voice?

SB: Making self-care a priority and incorporating it as a daily practice, like creating or writing, in ways that support their voice. I understand these creative outlets may not be feasible in certain conditions and I’d love to share some other mindful exercises to consider:

  • Reflection: Remembering joy, laughter, and love through our favorite times from the past always connects us back to our essence and the realization that we are more than what’s happening in a given moment.
  • Visualization: This is another creative, yet mindful exercise where you get to let your mind wander a bit. Take yourself to the place you’ve always wanted to be and give yourself permission to receive what that feels like for you.
  • Asking questions: This is a recent practice that is so powerful. Ask yourself “How can I find peace in this moment?” This clears out limiting options and gives your conscious mind the option to seek out and return more viable options. Try this one today!

CM: What are some other suggestions?

SB: Keep moving and stay engaged, be an advocate for the voiceless, support an organization or a cause, or become a mentor/confidant to someone else.

CM: What would you say the gift of one’s “voice”—one’s true self expressed, either through words, or art, or dance, etc.—is meant to do in the world?

SB: When we choose to share our voices, through art, dance, etc., we support the healing process in others in limitless ways. I believe the way in which we impact others aligns with how our voices and stories have impacted our own lives. This is what makes our voices and stories so unique.

I’ll share a bit of my own story. After launching StyleChurch as a personal fashion styling/consulting business, I realized something was missing for me—the piece that separated me from all the other stylists and connected to my own journey. The missing link for me was self-acceptance. My journey to style was my way of expressing my voice when I was afraid to otherwise for fear of rejection, judgment or ridicule. My mission became less about style and more about encouraging others to share their unique voices through creative expression. This business venture evolved into a movement and a way to share with others the power of turning your unique journey, gifts and stories into an expression of love (through self-acceptance). I feel we add a bit more love to the world by first accepting and loving ourselves. There are various mediums to express self-acceptance; style is one that I choose because it combines the use of “voice” with creative expression and encourages me to take bolder action in my life and choose exactly how I want to support others in their journey to self-acceptance.

I feel we add a bit more love to the world by first accepting and loving ourselves.

CM: We’ve so enjoyed having you with us for this three-part series on the Healing Power of Voice and are deeply grateful for all that you’ve shared with our audience. Any final thoughts that you would like to share with our readers?

SB: Wow, Chloé! I love how the process felt so organic.You made it easy for me to say yes! I hope this interview series encourages more men and women to share their stories. The gift of voice is so precious and the medium in which we can begin to heal ourselves and the community around us. Let’s keep our voices alive!

And to my friends, old and new…

You are beautiful.
You are enough.
You are whole.
You are accepted.
And your voice is needed.

Shavonne Broom is the founder of StyleChurch and one of the prize contributors for Tortoise and Finch’s “On Courage” Writing Contest. We are so grateful to Shavonne for making the time to share her wisdom and insights with our audience and wish her the best with her StyleChurch movement in 2016 and beyond. 

To learn more about Shavonne and her StyleChurch movement, or to inquire about having her speak at your next community event, training, or workshop, please visit her website or connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

If you missed parts one and two of our three-part series on The Healing Power of Voice with Shavonne, please click here to read more. We hope you enjoyed this series. Shavonne will be back for more later this year, so please stay tuned. We definitely find her wisdom to be a gift and we hope you do, too!


If you enjoyed this post, please help us spread the word by sharing it with your social circles. Thank you for your support.

The Flaws That Bind: An Interview with Rebecca Leo

October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM). In the coming weeks, all across the country, a wide variety of activities and events have been planned in the spirit of uniting all those who have been affected by and who are working to end domestic violence. In addition to creating a sense of true unity around this serious social problem, Domestic Violence Awareness Month is a time to mourn all those who have lost their lives as a result of domestic violence, to celebrate the lives of those who have survived, and to help raise further awareness of this issue in the U.S. and around the world.

Rebecca Leo

Author Rebecca Leo

In honor of DVAM, I wanted to introduce you to someone I really admire, someone whose work is helping to raise further awareness of domestic violence, author Rebecca Leo. I was first introduced to Rebecca during the Kickstarter fundraising campaign for You Look a Lot Like Me, and over the years, I have been fortunate enough to become acquainted with her writing. Her recently released novel, The Flaws that Bind, is a very important and beautifully written book. I asked Rebecca if she would be willing to share a little bit about herself and her work with all of you. She very kindly agreed.

Hope you enjoy!

Chloé McFeters

CM: I was honored to be able to read and review your new book, The Flaws That Bind. It was such a vulnerable and inspiring account of one woman’s struggle with domestic abuse. Congratulations! How does it feel to have this story set free in the world?

RL: I feel as if a weight has been lifted from my back. The book which I’ve been working on for over fifteen years has now taken flight. What a relief to see it sailing, like a kite! Who knows where it will go? I also notice that I have been smiling more, just feeling happy, more so than before. I have accomplished a long sought after goal, something that I never knew if I would achieve, and now I have. Hurray! It gives me feelings of relief, happiness, contentment, and confidence.


The Flaws That Bind at the Waverly Hospital Gift Shop in Waverly, Iowa

CM: Through our connecting on this topic, I became aware that you, like me, are a survivor of domestic abuse. How would you say that your personal experiences with domestic violence shaped the richly layered characters you crafted in The Flaws That Bind?

RL: I’ve had an adventuresome life, filled with many interesting persons. Some characters in the book were inspired by them. And in several cases, characters were composites of two or more people I’ve known.

CM: Much of the novel is set against the backdrop of Jamaica in the 1970’s. You did an exquisite job of bringing the beauty of Jamaican culture to life on the page, but you were also able to capture the palpable turbulence of the time in a way that allows the reader to really appreciate the frustration and hopelessness that many young Jamaicans were undoubtedly feeling. I sensed a deep respect and affinity for the country in your writing. Is Jamaica a place that holds a special spot in your heart? If so, can you share a bit about that?

RL: Jamaica does indeed hold a special place in my heart. After getting my children away from their abusive father, I did not return for over 15 years. But in the past 20 years we have gone there many times. It continues to draw me back, as if it were my birthplace. I think that is because it is the birthplace of my children, and that makes it my home forever. But it’s not only that, Jamaica is a beautiful island with perfect climate and kind people. I feel so connected with the island that I have considered having my ashes buried there and/or scattered in the Caribbean Sea off the shore of Jamaica.

CM: I fell in love with the character of Jac. What can you share with us about her?

RL: I love her, too…. like a daughter. Sometimes I just want to shake her, knock some sense into her. Other times I applaud her courage. And I agonize with her suffering and sorrow over how different her life has developed from her lofty dream of being a better parent than her own were. Always I root for her, want her to find a safe way out of the very dangerous predicament for the children and herself. I understand her worst fear that either David or she will kill the other and then the children will be sent to foster homes.

CM: You say that sometimes you just want to “shake” Jac. I have, many times now, heard (and witnessed) that same sincere heartbreak and frustration from a loved one, the family member or friend of someone who is being abused. In the past, I personally experienced that frustration from others, and I have also felt it myself when friends I love were being abused. It can be so sad and so difficult to stand by and watch while someone you care about is being subjected to disrespectful, controlling, and often dangerous behaviors, and it can be even harder to understand why your loved one isn’t leaving the relationship, even after you may have offered help.

As someone who has experienced domestic violence firsthand, what insights can you share for those family members or friends who might be faced with the deep desire to help someone they know is being abused, but who might also feel helpless, frustrated, or unsure of what to do?

RL: The subject is/has been so taboo. It’s hard to bring it up with victims because they are generally ashamed of what’s happening to them and/or are in denial. Plus they are afraid that the abuser will find out that they have told. So one could be creating a dangerous situation for the victim.

I think that a concerned friend or family member needs to let the abused person know of their concern for her/his welfare, safety and happiness, and that they are available to listen and to help without making judgments. It would help if that person is able to admit to being in a similar situation. That honesty can open a gate that releases a flood of confessions. But the concerned person should have no illusions that they can fix the problems. The best thing they could do if the victim confides in them, is get her/him to professionals. Connect her/him with the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE). They will refer you to an organization in your area.

CM: Jac’s family life is… complicated. Can you talk about the reality that so many victims of domestic violence face: that sometimes simply going home isn’t an option because that home doesn’t actually exist?

RL: This brings us to the generational component in domestic violence. It’s very real for many reasons, depending on the circumstances. The child may have been physically, mentally or sexually abused, or all three. In any case, home is not a safe place. When that is the case, the child has been effectively abandoned. She (or he) is on her own, without protection, and therefore incredibly vulnerable in the society to anyone who would take advantage. And thus the cycles of abuse are repeated from one generation to the next. When Jac eventually gets therapy she discovers all this and dedicates herself to breaking that cycle. More about that process in the sequel.

CM: As part of her journey, Jac begins practicing the healing art of massage. I found it so poignant that Jac was able to use her hands to provide comfort and relaxation to others at a time when she herself was suffering such brutality at the hands of someone very close to her. Touch requires a certain level of intimacy and trust, precious gifts that painfully eluded Jac for many years. Do you think that massage could/should be more widely used as a healing tool for those who have been victimized by violence?

RL: A good question. My answer is “Yes.” But only at the hands of a very skilled, experienced and aware practitioner. There are many different massage techniques. My favorites are Shiatsu (acupressure) and reflexology. I think they are especially effective in releasing pain resulting from emotional trauma.

Although I have not used it personally, I’ve heard that Reiki is also very good.

CM: In your own life, what were some of the healing tools you utilized after leaving your abuser?

RL: Yoga, meditation, massage, counseling, reading, supportive friends, writing, dancing, and forgiving myself.

CM: I’ve learned in doing this work for more than eight years now that many, many people still view domestic violence as solely physical violence. Why do you believe it might be difficult for some people to acknowledge or recognize other forms of domestic abuse?

RL: Perhaps because the scars are not visible. Essentially any behavior which involves controlling another person through fear is a form of abuse. This can include fear of not being loved, fear of being abandoned, fear of being ridiculed. Exercising control with these behaviors is also used in parenting. This is not something that can be controlled by legislation, but it could become part of an expanded mental health program. As one TV personality recently pointed out, “We take care of children’s physical health and dental health, but not their mental health.” He has become an advocate of adding that to our health services — lifetime mental health checkups and care.

CM: Your story is clearly one that will raise further awareness about domestic violence, as the themes you explore in The Flaws That Bind are still as relevant as ever today. What are some things that you would like to convey to the public about this issue?

The Flaws That Bind

RL: With the publication of this book I have committed myself to be active in the effort to bring domestic violence out of the proverbial closet. It is a hidden crime because of the shame involved. Victims are ashamed, but in hiding the abuse they also protect the abuser. Victims are also afraid, for it is typical of abusers to forbid them to tell anyone, and that includes neighbors, friends, fellow workers, police, and relatives.

My message to readers is to be more aware of signs that someone you know may be a victim in need of help and find a way to reach out to that person. Talking about the abuse is one way to take away the power of the silence that surrounds it.

The quest for equal rights for women began centuries ago. Women were freed from slavery. Then we gained the right to vote, to work, to use birth control, to join the military, but we are still working for the right to equal pay for equal work, the right to have paid maternity leave, and the right to live free of sexual and physical abuse in the workplace and in our own homes.

Essential to this struggle is improved availability of mental health services. Since the widespread closing of mental hospitals in this country decades ago and the dearth of affordable mental health treatment, there has been an escalation of gun violence, and also of partner violence, which includes date rape and abuse. Increased public awareness of the problem is necessary if we are to see an expansion of services to treat perpetrators and more facilities to protect victims and support them in remaking their lives.

CM: I know that The Flaws That Bind is not your first book. What can you tell us about the others?

RL: The first book I wrote (on a typewriter) is titled Loving Touch for Your Child. It has not yet been published. If I were to revise it for publication, I may change the title back to the original one, Spare the Rod and Massage Your Child. I would appreciate feedback on which title is more appealing. Parents of young children are the target audience. The book explains how to use techniques of Shiatsu and Reflexology effectively in dealing with both health and behavior issues as well as for improving school performance. It is well illustrated with professional photos and drawings.

I contributed two chapters to The Revision Process by Robin Stratton. This is an excellent handbook for writers, and to this day I use it as a refresher course to help me write better.

I have also written two screenplays. The Bee Preacher is based on the life and accomplishments of an impoverished and uneducated Jamaican beekeeper. Angered and stymied by injustices of the colonial class system, he emigrates to the U.S. at the beginning of the 20th century and works himself ragged until he becomes a broadcasting pioneer by establishing the first regular broadcast ministry in the U.S. But the toughest challenge is to forgive himself for the secret guilt that haunts him.

Yankee Swap, a comedy designed for winter holiday entertainment, features an extended family gathering wherein guests bring wrapped gifts to exchange in the New England tradition of re-choosing opened presents. When some people are unwilling to give up their gifts according to the established rules, arguments start and hurt feelings soon escalate out of control. One guest whispers to the hostess, “We gotta do something quick, or this family will never recover. It could be the end!”

CM: I read that you used to teach writing in the Boston area. What advice would you give to an aspiring writer who may be reading this interview, hoping to one day publish a novel of their own?

RL: Remember the old saw: Every journey begins with a single step. Likewise, every book begins with a single sentence. Do not be daunted by the enormity of the task. Just start somewhere and allow the story to unfold… one sentence, one paragraph, one page at a time. And then keep going. Do NOT, I repeat, DO NOT get stuck trying to make any sentence or paragraph perfect. That is the beauty of computers/word processors: we can go back and revise again and again and again. Just get the thoughts out there on paper as fast as they pour from your mind.

Perhaps the most important factor in the development of my writing was participation in a writing group. The makeup of my group changed a bit over the years, but we generally met once every two weeks to exchange and critique manuscripts. Three members remained steadfast for at least a dozen years, and since I left Boston we have continued exchanging and critiquing manuscripts via the Internet.

CM: Do you have any treasured writer’s rituals that you can share with our audience?

RL: I can’t think of any rituals per se, except that I generally have a cup of coffee or tea on my desk that I frequently sip on. I also am constantly reading good books. Before I began what became the final rewrite of The Flaws That Bind I discovered that I liked the writing style of Daphne du Maurier a great deal. And so I loaded up on every book by her that I could lay hands on and read them. Sometimes I read aloud, listening to the prose. Thus her style got into my head and gave me confidence as I rewrote Flaws. And throughout the editing and proofreading I continued to read aloud. So many errors can be found that way, by hearing them, but which the eye misses when reading silently.

CM: What inspires you to tell stories? How have those sources of inspiration changed for you over the years?

RL: When I was a young child I enjoyed listening to my mother read books aloud, not just storybooks, but novels like Robinson Crusoe and Tom Sawyer. Later, writing in a diary became a daily ritual. Then I started writing poems and stories, but I really wanted to write a novel. It was the encouragement of my loving husband that finally gave me the confidence to undertake that task. He makes me feel special and supported.

CM: We have both had work published through Big Table Publishing. For me, it was a true joy to work and collaborate with their acquisitions editor, Robin Stratton, who also serves as editor-in-chief of the Boston Literary Magazine. Can you talk a bit about the experience of working with Big Table on this project?

RL: Like you, I am eternally grateful for the direction, support, expertise and resourcefulness of Robin Stratton. She has never wavered in her steadfast professionalism and endless patience and creativity.

CM: I know that you participated in a book signing tour for The Flaws That Bind over the summer. What was that like?

RL: It was rather like a roller coaster ride: terrifying, fun, interesting, exhilarating and also exhausting. Most importantly, it was a learning experience and confidence builder. Now when faced with promotional appearances, I am more relaxed and confident that I can deal with whatever comes up. The most surprising thing to me on the tour was how many women came up to me and quietly told me they had also been victims of DV. I know they were speaking confidentially, that even their friends didn’t know what they’d been through. This made me realize how much shame there is around the subject and how important it is to break that barrier which keeps women enslaved.


Rebecca at an Iowa Book Tour Luncheon sponsored by Cedar Valley Friends of the Family

CM: Will you be participating in any activities or events during National Domestic Violence Awareness Month?

RL: Yes, several are planned: Two at libraries, one at a bookstore, and one at a women’s resource center where I’ll be addressing the graduating class of a new group who have just finished training to be crisis hotline operators.


Rebecca at a Write On Oceanside Event featuring local authors in Oceanside, California

CM: You have become acquainted with a number of domestic violence organizations as a result of working on and releasing The Flaws That Bind. Are there any in particular that you would like to highlight here?

RL: Yes. The two that I have been most active supporting are the Women’s Resource Center in Oceanside, CA (www.wrcsd.org) and the Leap To Success organization in Carlsbad, CA (http://www.leaptosuccess.org), both of which are working to transform the lives of women and children who have been victims of domestic violence. I respect their efforts very much, for the work is dangerous and unglamorous, while also being very rewarding when clients are able to transform their lives and families.


Launch Party for The Flaws That Bind with Dana Bristol-Smith of Leap to Success and Lorna Riley


Rebecca Leo at a Leap to Success Fundraising Event
Raising funds to empower women recovering from domestic violence

CM: The Flaws that Bind was released not too long ago and we want to be able to tell people how they can get their hands on a copy. Please tell us where to find your book.

RL: Signed copies can be purchased on my web site: www.RebeccaLeo.com. Unsigned copies and Kindle versions are available on Amazon.

CM: Where can people go to learn more about you, your work, and any future projects?

RL: Again they can go to my web site (see above), or they can check on my Facebook page which is at: https://www.facebook.com/RebeccaLeoAuthor.

On Thursday, Oct. 16, at 7 pm, at the Upstart Crow Book Store in Seaport Village, 835 W Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101, Rebecca will be talking about how she survived extreme abuse and reading passages from her recently published memoir-based novel, The Flaws That Bind. The book takes place largely in Jamaica, West Indies. She will then answer questions and monitor a discussion about combating and preventing these insidious crimes. Signed copies of her book will be available for purchase.

On Saturday, Nov. 1, National Authors’ Day, Rebecca will be at the Mission Branch of the Oceanside Library, 3861B Mission Avenue, Oceanside, CA, at 2 p.m. where she will talk about surviving domestic violence, read excerpts from her novel, and answer questions. Signed copies of her book will be available for purchase.

For more information on DVAM events around the country, please visit the website for the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence (NRCDV).

For more interviews, updates, and more, please join our mailing list today, and don’t forget to stay connected on Facebook and Twitter.

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Our Official Release

Just wanted to take a quick moment to thank everyone who pre-ordered the two-disc special edition DVD of You Look a Lot Like Me, as well as the Movie Companion Book for the film. The response has been amazing and we are really hopeful that this film will do what we hoped it would when we started this journey nearly seven years ago.

Some of you have e-mailed to share your feedback, which we really value and appreciate. Thank you for sharing your stories with us and for letting us know what the film meant to you. That was the reason so many individuals came forward to talk about their experiences on camera—they wanted to make a difference. We told them they would and it seems that they have.

As many of you know, today was the official release date for the film, so You Look a Lot Like Me and the Movie Companion Book will now be readily available for purchase through our storefront.

Thank you, again, to everyone who worked so hard to make this film a reality, from everyone on the crew, to our amazing and generous Kickstarter donors, to the incredibly talented artists who have shown their support for this project in a variety of ways.

We also want to express our appreciation to all of the organizations who were involved in the film and movie companion book, as well as those who took the time to help us with input and support, locating survivors to share their stories, statistical and other research, distributing flyers and additional information about the film, etc.

Most of all, we thank the many, many individuals we interviewed for the film and the book. We are all deeply humbled by their courage and wisdom and we hope that they find the final version of this project worthy of their time and trust.

Thanks again to everyone for your support and enthusiasm and for helping us to raise further awareness about the issue of domestic abuse.

If you enjoyed this post, please help us spread the word by sharing it with your social circles. Thank you for your support.