I’ve been looking forward to writing this book review for quite a while. My goal was to read this book before meeting Lisa Taylor (the author) at a conference in April. Although I didn’t quite have it read before we met – I was able to finish the book literally the day after. (I’m always running about a day late, yah know?!)
I’ve corresponded with Lisa via email for a good year now and then prior to April I was able to meet her via a video conference when she interviewed me for a video she was working on for her blog. I mentioned it in this blog post and there is a link to the video there as well.
Something you must know – Lisa is one of the sweetest women. She is so warm, grounded, confident. She is the REAL deal.
She and I have a special connection in that neither of us are licensed therapists. We don’t have a bunch of random letters after our names (I think she might, actually, but I don’t.). I have certainly worked through my insecurities related to this, especially because I came from a profession where I was highly educated and prideful because of it.
Oh how God allows us to work through our junk when he strips us of the things we hold in high esteem. Oh yes.
Okay, so let’s get to the review –
Name of the Book: Beyond Betrayal: How God is healing women and couples from infidelity by Lisa Taylor
Trigger Level: Low. Read more about trigger levels here and why I think it’s important to be careful especially early on in the process.
What I Liked About the Book: Almost everything. Truly, too much to list here. At the least, let me give you a glimpse into a couple of the things that really spoke to me –
- Lisa’s drunken driver analogy – Lisa is driving home (no pun intended) the point that a lot of recovery programs tend to blame the wife and care for the husband. This not only happens in recovery programs but also in churches and in families. Lisa then gives the following analogy – It would be like if a drunk driver ran over a pedestrian and instead of tending to the injured pedestrian, everyone ran to the aide of the drunk driver – consoling and assisting him – all the while yelling at the pedestrian. Wow. So true.
- Lisa shares a stat that she heard at the IACSAS conference in 2015 that 4 out of 5 men won’t engage recovery until their wife gives them an ultimatum. Wow (again). This doesn’t surprise me and I want more wives to realize that although they can’t change their husband, they can raise the bottom that their husband’s need to hit.
- Chapter 9 – The Last to Go – I’ve read the first couple of paragraphs in some of my groups because I feel like it really gets to the heart of the matter. It’s so important for wives early on in this process to understand that oftentimes, the lying, is the last to go. And time and time again, so many women say the lies are the most damaging and the one thing that they know they can’t live with. They can look past some of the other character defects – but the lying – no way. Love, love, love this chapter.
- I was so fascinated by the section Lisa did in Chapter 10 on Spiritualizing. In it, she mentions a verse that oftentimes is misused. It’s Ephesians 5:22, “Wives submit to your husbands. As to the LORD.” She then goes on to share a bit about the context of this verse. I couldn’t get enough of it! So often, us Christian wives feel confused. I can hear it now, “But I’m supposed to submit to my husband.” Or even a husband saying, “She should be submitting to me and having sex whenever I want it. Ephesians 5:22.” Grasping the context of this verse puts it in such a different perspective. Too much to explain here, but if you are intrigued – pick up Lisa’s book!
I could go on and on, but hopefully that gives you guys an idea.
What I Didn’t Like About the Book: I don’t think there is a page in this book that I didn’t like. It is so well written.
There is one section that I’d like to offer my personal perspective on. It’s in regards to the pharmaceutical debate Lisa mentions in Chapter 3. She shares the stories of several women that experienced set backs related to prescription medications. The stories are scary.
Lisa does a great job of sharing her personal bias that she prefers the natural route as well as stating that “every woman’s choice on this matter must be respected.”
With that being said, here is my personal experience related to medication. First, know that I never thought I’d need any sort of mood stabilizer. Especially after what Jason and I went through – I guess I felt like I was good to go.
But that wasn’t the case. Two summers ago, as you guys know, I hit rock bottom. And part of my self-care plan involved medication. I received resistance from those I loved as well as from myself. It was a really hard choice to make.
But I did it. And I don’t regret it.
This was something I wanted to hide from the world. Honestly, I think I judged myself for being on medication.
So I bring it up here often. Because there really is no shame. It’s a choice I made because I was suffering and I needed help. The end.
And that’s where I’ll end this book review. Love you ladies and hope you’ll add this book to your short list. xo-Shelley