Brave Lowestoft acid attack victim Adele Bellis fights back with new book
- Credit: James Bass
It was a horrific attack which shocked the community and changed Adele Bellis's life forever.
But while the ordeal of the devastating acid attack two years ago has been the subject of national media attention, few people know the trauma of the abusive relationship that led up to the attack – and the private struggle the 24-year-old has faced in recovery.
Now, Miss Bellis is laying all that bare in a hard-hitting new book due out later this month about the attack, what caused it and how she has dealt with being scarred for life.
Titled Brave, the book is part of her goal to thwart her attackers' attempts to ruin her life and turn what happened into a positive – by giving others who may be in abusive relationships an inspiring message of hope.
'The main purpose of the book is to raise awareness about domestic abuse,' said Miss Bellis, who was born and bred in Lowestoft.
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'Everyone knows me through the acid attack – but there is so much more to it than that. The acid attack is the shortest chapter in the book.
'I want to get the domestic abuse side out there to help people.'
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Each chapter in the book focuses on a different stage and theme of an abusive relationship which many women in similar situations might relate to, such as anger, control and isolation.
The book – published by HarperCollins and due out on Thursday, September 22 – details how Miss Bellis had been in a relationship for six or seven years which she found hard to get out of. She suffered a torrent of abuse which included being stabbed, a black eye, having revenge porn posted on social media and even being imprisoned.
Miss Bellis said she was often asked why she stayed in the relationship but explained: 'If I didn't want to be with him, he'd start threatening me and that pushed me back.
'People sometimes think domestic violence is all about pain. However, 80pc of the time, it's in the head.
'I hope people reading the book will be able to understand what I was up against and that if people are going through it, it might get them to speak out.'
For Miss Bellis, the injuries of the attack by a bus stop in London Road South, Pakefield, on August 14, 2014 are a continuous reminder of what happened. But despite undergoing extensive treatment, Miss Bellis is clear on her life goal – to turn what happened into a positive.
'Some days I want to be a nurse, other days I want to be a policewoman,' she explained. 'However, I definitely want to use my story as a positive.'
Anyone experiencing domestic violence or abuse can call the freephone, 24-hour National Domestic Violence Helpline 0808 2000 247. Always call 999 in an emergency.
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