A Cry For Justice

Awakening the Evangelical Church to Domestic Violence and Abuse in its Midst

We were wrong to pass on links to a free PDF of Lundy Bancroft’s book

Recently we ran a post that had links to a free PDF of Lundy Bancroft’s book Why Does He Do That?

We have now realized that we were unethical to publish those links, because we hadn’t first checked with Lundy to verify that he had authorised the PDF being uploaded to the Internet. We’ve been in touch with Lundy and he’s told us that he did not authorize the free PDF. We have apologised to him and he has been extremely gracious. We asked him what he would like us to do to rectify matters and he simply asked us to remove our post. So we have removed that post and its corresponding post on our FB page. Lundy says his publisher will work on blocking the links so that the PDF is no longer freely available.

Jeff and I want to make it clear that TWBTC was not responsible for the mistake: she ran the idea of the post past us and we both approved. Why?  All I can say is that we were asleep at the wheel, ethically speaking.

We are most grateful for Lundy’s gracious response to our error. And we would like to encourage our readers to purchase his book. It is published by Berkley (an imprint of Penguin USA). Here is the book at Penguin; from there you can select which retailer you might want to purchase it through.


Praise for Why Does He DO That?  — by our reader StandingFirm

The Lord used this book three years ago to bring me out of the fog. I stopped at a bookstore one day and was walking down an aisle and the cover on the book just kind of jumped out at me. I purchased the book not really knowing much about it.

As I started reading with highlighter in hand, the anxiety started welling up in me. The pit of my stomach was as tight as a knot and my shoulders tensed terribly. As I was reading, my mind was blown away that all the behaviors had names and Lundy clearly explained why the abuser uses these tactics. I was astonished. Back in the late 90’s my female Christian counselor (who worked with me and the abuser) had told me that the husband was mentally and emotionally abusing me. I did not know the dynamics (nor did she) only that she said our marriage was like a roller coaster. Up then down.

As I kept reading Lundy’s book I would have thought that this author was with me all through the marriage and witnessed all that hurt me to the core. I was in complete awe that another person could describe the hurtful behavior with pin point accuracy.

I have re-read Lundy’s book about five times (and still use it for reference). The more I read the book the less and less the pain in my stomach and shoulders. I felt empowered for the first time being able to understand all the behavior that made no sense to me at all. The saying “knowledge is power” is so true.

After digesting the book many times I was able to emotionally disconnect myself from the abuser. I now know him for exactly what he is, and for the very first time in three decades I can keep out of his mind twisting traps and out maneuver him.

At Lundy’s website you can see all his books, including his companion book, Daily Wisdom for Why Does He Do That: Encouragement for Women Involved with Angry and Controlling Men.  


  1. Bought the book a year ago. Read it 5 times cover to cover. Could have skipped ALL the “marriage help” books and saved myself a LOT of time and pain and confusion. An absolute MUST HAVE to really help you come out of the fog! I studied for years to become a teacher. Now I am studying to become truly free from bondage on so many levels. Life without confusion is so calm and this book helped me get there.

  2. moderndaysamaritanwoman

    Lundy’s book saved my sanity and my life! the Lord used Lundy’s great knowledge and understanding to shine a light in the darkness of my abusive marriage…but, I want to add that my then husband was told by his abusive brother to read the book..at the time my brother in law was admitting that he, too, was an abuser…since that time, he has since relapsed back into his abusive behaviors and is now divorced….he decided that he wasn’t the abuser,it was the wife. My then husband also used Lundy’s book as a weapon against me…

    I highly recommend his book….I read it the first time, weeping with relief. I have read his book several times, it is now pretty tattered, highlighted, underscored, written in…praise God for the Lundy’s, Jeff’s and Barbara’s out there! thank you too all who are gifted writers and speakers telling the truth about abusive behaviors…

  3. Marcia

    I give Lundy credit for my wake up aha moment. I had just read the case study where the shouting husband, when asked by his wife to stop shouting, replied with “I’m not shouting. But I’ll really shout if you want me to”. In my mind I immediately went into excusing mode; he doesn’t realise he’s shouting, that’s not really a threat, it’s just that he believes he’s not really shouting etc etc etc. at that very moment my ex -h came through the front door, bellowing at some of our children, so I tried a small experiment. I asked politely could he stop shouting please. He turned on me with such coldness in his eyes and said……. You guessed it “I’m not shouting, but I’ll really shout if you want me to”. Believe me, I got the threat then. My heart went into overdrive, I thought it would pop through my ribs.

    That small incident was enough for me to finally objectively evaluate my situation, and start distancing myself from the games. I now live somewhat free of him for the last few years with my children. Single parenting is tough, but no way as tough as living with abuse. I think this is something that particularly religious men don’t get; they make living with them so miserable, that living an at-times tough, trying, single parenting life, is absolute bliss in comparison. I thank God for Lundy’s book, and this website, for all the encouragement and support that is so sadly lacking elsewhere. Bless you all

    • Mine came a restaurant. The previous evening we had an actually enjoyable 27th anniversary dinner (we were in the honeymoon phase of the cycle but of course I had no idea what that was even after 27 years of the same cycle!). I had finished eating so I began to casually pick up stray trash from our table so it would be less messy and less to clean up later. H began to get irritated saying I was “rushing him.” I apologized and stopped picking up stuff and assured him I was not rushing him, only trying to be helpful. Finally finished, he left to go to the restroom and since I didnt want to “rush him” I waited to finish clean up (“I must get permission to do the simplest task” days). He began berating me for not picking up and “leaving it all” to him and the more I tried to explain, come on ladies, say it with me, the more he got angry and began yelling at me in front of the entire restaurant. I’m glad though because something snapped that day. I just looked at him and I thought “This is not going to change” and I accepted it for the first time. And that was when I separated.

      It took a year apart and H has made big changes (I know that rarely happens). Lundy’s book gave me a LOT of help in recognizing all the signs that were so obvious but only if you know what to look for (and stop making excuses/self-blaming etc) as well as how to really tell if his changes were REAL or crocodile tears designed to manipulate.

    • For Too Long

      Marcia – Your comments made me smile because, I too, have used the things I’ve learned in Lundy’s book to “experiment” with whether I could predict my husband’s behavior. Sure enough – he’s done exactly as I thought he would in several situations! It’s been eye-opening, no longer the mystery (or should I say “misery”) his behavior once was to me.

      You also mentioned single parenting. In some ways I’ve been strangely blessed; in essence I’ve been a single parent all along, but especially for the past eight years or so. Our divorce should be final in a few months, but at least I’m not feeling intimidated at the aspect of single parenting. The financial hardships, yes, are a little intimidating to think about – but single parenting without him around does sound like bliss!

      I also want to thank everyone here for all the support and the just-knowing-someone-else-is-going-through-what-I-am! Jeff, Barbara, and all the readers here have been such a blessing.

  4. Annie

    Sometimes it seems almost unbelievable that Bancroft’s book exists. After reading so many books over the years it seemed unlikely that yet another would be all that helpful or on point for me. I think I highlighted almost every page! I’d say at least 80% is highlighted with notes everywhere. Sometimes I wish I could just show it to people as proof. Someone needs to do a documentary with his book.

    Thank you for doing the right thing. I feel strongly about not taking someone else’s work for free. But I rarely say anything any more because so many people seem to feel equally as strong that they have a right to anything they find on the internet for free.

    • Someone needs to do a documentary with his book.

      What a great idea!

  5. RomansEightOne

    I bought this book in kindle form. For me it was safer than having the actual book that my husband could see and read and badger me about. I don’t have a kindle, but I use the kindle app on my tablet. Also, I created a separate personal amazon account that is mine only, to purchase kindle books, so that husband cannot track purchases or read my kindle library. I am so thankful for this book. God has used it more than any other resource to give me clarity and to set me free from so much guilt. Well, that is before I knew about this blog, which is also validating and strengthening me.

  6. Stillblessed

    Mistakes happen. But thank you for your admission and willingness to made amends. So many people nowadays would just let it slide rather than openly admit it. This just further shows your level of integrity and honesty, and gives reassurance that you are trustworthy.

    This is a very eye-opening book. I need to re-read it, since it’s been awhile. When you read about situations you have personally struggled to understand and deal with, and then have those situations explained as ‘abusive’ and ‘crazy-making’, it’s somehow validating and oddly comforting to know that it wasn’t really you that was the problem after all. Understanding the truth of the situation is extremely freeing, and this book helped my understanding immensely.

  7. Song of Joy

    I’ve purchased 2 copies of Lundy’s book (one for myself, one for a sibling) and I’m planning a third purchase soon for someone else. It think this book is excellent. It’s a relief to read descriptions of abusive behavior in black and white; behavior that is so baffling and mysterious and hard to fathom when you are in the fog of surviving as a family. Even if someone has a pretty good understanding of abuse and its effects, I think they will learn something new by reading “Why Does He Do That?” Children of an abuser can learn from this book, and also men who are abuse victims can gain some insight into abusive behavior in general. Highly recommended.

    • braveandstandingstrong

      Song of Joy.. You said,

      .”children of an abuser can learn from this book.”

      Yes, I read this with my older children to help them understand how their abusive dad operates and to help them see red flags in the people we all encounter everyday!

  8. Christy

    This book is one of the BEST tools I’ve found for identifying what’s happening with a controlling, manipulative spouse. I highly recommend reading it if you think you might be dealing with someone on this scope.

  9. KayE

    I bought four of Lundy Bancroft’s books after hearing about him here. Worth every cent.

  10. Bitter But Getting Better

    Lundy Bancroft was the first human that put the word abuse in my vocabulary for what had happened to me for almost 40 years. He has a kindness and supportiveness that is so rare in our world today. I am enormously grateful to have found “Why Does He Do That”. I have tried to share it with several women but unfortunately they seem too afraid to acknowledge the truth.

    When I was seriously considering suicide, the Lord, finally led me on a trail that started that morning on another blog. She had a story about ________ ; it was there in the closets of that blog that the Lord led me to Lundy & COFJ. I left my unhusband for one year & then returned for financial reasons & “the cycle” but right now I am sitting surrounded by the boxes that I will be taking with me as I leave for the final time. I tend to collect stuff but I gave 90% of it away & am so looking forward to the new life I am going towards. Unhusband, in a desperate attempt to make me stay, admitted that he stole my life & that he was indeed an abusive and horrible man. It was too little too late. But I am glad he admitted it.

    So here, in the ashes of a stolen life, I am forever thankful to God for the day I heard the name Lundy Bancroft. It was the beginning….

    • braveandstandingstrong

      Yes! Bitter but getting better, you said

      “So here in the ashes of a stolen life, I am
      forever thankful to God for the day I heard the name Lundy Bancroft. It was the beginning…”

      I was in an an abusive relationship with my unhusband for 30 years. I can relate to what you have said. So happy you are getting away from.him for good and starting a new life. It is wonderful to be free!

      Lundy holds retreats. If you can go to one, they are excellent. Life changing! I highly recommend all of Lundy’s books. I keep rereading them. I tell everyone, “God and Lundy Bancroft saved my life!”

      • Bitter But Getting Better

        BRAVE&STANDINGSTRONG, Thanks so much for the encouragement. It is scary but an absolute necessity to leave. I am re-reading the book now as I prepare, to undergird me and keep the focus on the truth.
        It sounds like you got yourself free….Cheers for you!!!!
        Thanks for the heads up about the retreats as well, will check that out. Blessings to you!!!

  11. Greater Glory

    LOVING Lundy’s “Daily Wisdom” book even after having come out of the “fog”. Highly recommend it!

  12. Innoscent

    Well.. I am also guilty of downloading the pdf book when I should have listened to the small voice telling me something was not quite right… 😦 I’ve just deleted it from my machine.
    I’ve just checked on my library’s website and they have got a copy! 🙂

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