Surviving the Unthinkable

Audrey explains what happened the day her life changed forever:

"Chris was the type of man that constantly accused me of cheating on him. The abuse was emotional. He was a controlling man, he was a jealous man, but he never hit me. I didn't realize that there were warning signs, because it wasn't violent. I left school that day, came home, and then I decided to go for a jog. When I came back to the house, as soon as I opened the door is when he bum-rushed me stark naked, with a butcher knife. He immediately took me into the garage. When he first scooped me up, he accidentally cut my pinky, and that's what put that extreme fear in me, that this was very real. He laid me on the ground first and was trying to rape me, with a butcher knife to my throat. And I was saying to him, ‘What are you doing? I love you. I love you.' I was trying to do anything to pacify him enough to where he would stop, because I had never seen that type of rage in him. He was saying that our oldest son was not his. He kept saying to me, ‘You better tell me who his father is, or I'm going to gut you like a * pig.' He then decided to change from a knife to a hammer. He struck me in the head with a hammer four times, and then he threw gasoline at me, grabbed a candle, and tossed the candle at me, and I went up in flames.

[AD]"In just that fast, I spun up " because I had been praying to God, saying, ‘God, please let me go to heaven' " and then I said, ‘This is not going to happen.' And I began to pray, ‘God, just let me live, just let me live.' I spun up, opened the garage and ran out. And this neighbor ran to me as I was rolling in the grass and hit me with her son's jacket. That was it. He'll never take away my future. He will never take away my happiness. He'll never take away my character. You wanted the beauty? Take it. You can have it."

"Audrey is brave enough to be here today. She's showing her face for the first time on television," Dr. Phil says.

See the powerful message Audrey has for Lorain and Mike.


Audrey senses that Mike is starting to understand. She asks him, "Do you feel different?"

"Well, the realization of looking at you, I don't want that to be me," he says.

"Well, if you love her, you'll get help," Audrey says.

"It just makes me feel awful," he says.

"Don't feel awful for me. I don't want anybody to pity me," she says.

[AD]"No, I'm not pitying you. I'm just saying I think you're really brave for coming out here and letting the people know that that could happen," Mike says.

Audrey tells Dr. Phil, "One reason why I believe the issue is so silenced is because there are not enough people who know how much help is out there."

"That's why we're turning a spotlight on this issue," Dr. Phil says.

The National Network to End Domestic Violence is partnering with Dr. Phil in his campaign. Sue Else says, "We're so excited that you're doing this and about this partnership, because we need to bring awareness to this issue. It should not be a silent issue." She tells the guests, "And stories like yours and yours both are going to save thousands of lives when people hear this."

"That's why I have agreed to do this and to march to Capital Hill and to say what needs to happen here, and we intend to make that happen, true?" Dr. Phil asks.

"Absolutely, we're going to make that happen," Sue says.

[AD]Audrey's insurance doesn't cover all the surgeries she will need and medical expenses she will incur. You can help support her recovery by making a donation to her fund through The Dr. Phil Foundation.


If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, please reach out for help. Call The National Domestic Violence Hotline at (800) 799-SAFE (7233). Help is available to callers 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. For more information and local resources, go to the National Network to End Domestic Violence: