Leslie Morgan Steiner was in “crazy love” — that is, madly in love with a man who routinely abused her and threatened her life. Steiner tells the story of her relationship, correcting misconceptions many people hold about victims of domestic violence, and explaining how we can all help break the silence.
Why did I stay? The answer is easy. I didn't know he was abusing me. Even though he held those loaded guns to my head, pushed me down stairs, threatened to kill our dog, pulled the key out of the car ignition as I drove down the highway, poured coffee grinds on my head as I dressed for a job interview, I never once thought of myself as a battered wife. Instead, I was a very strong woman in love with a deeply troubled man,
Steiner currently writes a weekly column, “Two Cents on Modern Motherhood”, for Mommy Track’d. She is a contributor to On Being Fearless by Arianna Huffington and The Huffington Post. Her 2009 memoir Crazy Love, about surviving domestic violence spent three weeks on The New York Times Best Seller list. Steiner is currently working on The Crazy Love Project, a documentary profiling abuse survivors, and is the author of the above popular TED Talk which tries to explain why victims stay with abusive partners. Her third book, The Baby Chase: How Surrogacy Is Transforming the American Family, was published by St. Martin’s Press in 2013, and is the subject of a 2014 TEDTalk about the ethics of global surrogacy.
I was able to end my own crazy love story by breaking the silence. I'm still breaking the silence today. It's my way of helping other victims, and it's my final request of you. Talk about what you heard here. Abuse thrives only in silence. You have the power to end domestic violence simply by shining a spotlight on it.We victims need everyone. We need every one of you to understand the secrets of domestic violence.Show abuse the light of day by talking about it with your children, your coworkers, your friends and family. Recast survivors as wonderful, lovable people with full futures. Recognize the early signs of violence and conscientiously intervene, deescalate it, show victims a safe way out. Together we can make our beds, our dinner tables and our families the safe and peaceful oases they should be.