Author of "Escape" Comes to Redlands
March 13, 2009 -
A woman who says she was coerced into an arranged, polygamous marriage to a total stranger 32 years older her senior will share her story during an event at the University of Redlands.
Carolyn Jessop will discuss her experiences Tuesday, March 17 at 7:30 p.m. in Orton Center. The event, which is part of the ASUR Convocation and Lecture Series, is free and open to the public.
Jessop is the author of "Escape," a first-person account of her life inside a polygamous religious sect.
The author says that when she was 18, she married a 50-year-old who already had three wives. She was raised in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, a radical offshoot of the Mormon Church. Most of the church's followers settled in rural communities along the Arizona-Utah border.
During the 17 years after her marriage, Jessop had eight children and says she endured repeated psychological abuse from her husband. She says in her book that the other wives were constantly battling each other, vying for status within the family and for the attention of their husband.
Jessop says her husband decided where she lived, how her children would be treated, and where she would go. The money she earned while working as a teacher also was controlled by him. If she refused to consent to her husband's wishes, she says she feared that her children would be mistreated or taken from her.
In 2003, at the age of 35, Jessop says she grew so frustrated with her situation that she decided to flee, along with her eight children. She now lives in West Jordan, Utah, with her children. She travels the U.S., promoting her book and bringing attention to the mistreatment of women.
Call 909-748-8103 for more information.
Office of Public Relations