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Domestic abuse: Dealing with death

Michele Borboa, MS is a freelance writer and editor specializing in health, fitness, food, lifestyle, and pets. Michele is a health and wellness expert, personal chef, cookbook author, and pet-lover based in Bozeman, Montana. She is also...

Coping with loss from abuse

Did you know that nearly 50 percent of the violent crimes against family members each year are committed against spouses and that 58 percent of family murder victims are female? Domestic violence is an underreported crime that affects not only the victims suffering from the abuse, but also the loved ones of those victims. The knowledge of your mom, daughter, sister or friend being physically and emotionally battered is devastating; you want to help but you aren't sure how or the victim isn't ready to accept your help. And sometimes the offering or accepting of help comes too late.

Woman in Distress

Domestic abuse can be fatal

The shoving, punching, kicking and verbal assaults common in domestic violence don't always stop there. Domestic abuse can have a fatal outcome. Mississippi-based fiction author C.C.Cole knows all too well what it is like to lose a loved one to domestic violence. Overwhelmed with depression, anger and a need to do something about it, she turned to writing as a way to handle the pain of her sister's untimely death and to spread awareness of the perils of domestic abuse in hopes that other women will gain the courage to leave an abusive relationship.

Finding an outlet for pain proves fruitful

Act of RedemptionCole's recent release Act of Redemption is the first in a four-book series that is part fantasy, part reality. In this debut book, the heroine takes center stage to overcome the ultimate battle of good versus evil; something that Cole's sister never had the chance to do. Writing this book gave Cole the closure she needed to go forward after her sister's death. We sat down with the fiction author to learn more about her ability to cope with loss and how creative endeavors can benefit victims of abuse as well as those suffering on the sidelines.

Act of Redemption

SheKnows: What was the inspiration for your book? Is Act of Redemption a true story?

C.C. Cole: The inspiration for Act of Redemption was the death of my sister from an episode of domestic violence. The book is fictional/fantasy/action/adventure, good vs. evil. It is the first of a four-part series.

Dealing with death

SheKnows: How did writing your book help you deal with the terrible aftermath of losing your sister?

C.C. Cole: The creative outlet of fictional writing allowed me to open my mind and thoughts to "breakaway" from the tragedy and focus on something entirely different. The creation of a fictional story helped me find peace and closure.

SheKnows: Besides writing as an effective means of coping with your loss, what other resources have you used to get through the stages of grief?

C.C. Cole: Time and faith helps more than anything else. Supportive family and friends add a lot to getting through a difficult time.

Get "unstuck"

SheKnows: In your book, your main character takes center stage to overcome the battle of good versus evil. Can you explain the connection of good versus evil in relation to domestic violence?

C.C. Cole: Domestic violence often takes place over a number of years, with the ones involved "stuck" in a bad situation. In the story, the main character is a teenage girl also "stuck" dealing with her past actions and striving to overcome evil in her own journey to find redemption.

Connect to your creativity

SheKnows: Connecting with your creative spirit and writing your book has helped you overcome the pain of losing your sister. Do you think creative activities can also help victims of domestic violence?

C.C. Cole: I think a person finds out a lot about themselves in writing, art, music or other outlets. It's like finding out, "Wow, I didn't know I could do that." One never knows until trying. It's gratifying to accomplish anything important to you. Then if you value what you create, others will value it as well. (Creative endeavors can improve your self-confidence and bolster your courage to value and take care of yourself.)

Take a stand against domestic violence

SheKnows: For victims of domestic violence as well as their loved ones who are affected by this crime, what are your recommendations to take a stand against domestic violence?

C.C. Cole: The best stand I know is awareness and education. Everyone of all genders, ages, races and economic levels are vulnerable to this private, disturbing, life-threatening and common situation. People need to understand that they are not alone and are not at fault for what is happening to them and their loved ones.

Final words

SheKnows: What are your parting words to the victims of domestic abuse as well as the loved ones of victims?

C.C.Cole: For the victims, please, get help to get out of that situation before it escalates. For those of us left behind following loss, take time to "look across;" meaning you may find a niche you never knew existed that leads you to recovery.

You can find Act of Redemption at major book retailers and online at Amazon.com.

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