Real-life Anastasia Steele warns of the dangers of a Fifty
Shades style relationship after she became slave to an abusive lover
16:05 GMT, 17 July 2012
It's the erotic novel everyone is talking about and women are praising for spicing up their sex lives.
But for one woman, the novel brought back harrowing memories of an abusive ex-lover.
A lady going by the name of 'Sarah' on the This Morning show spoke out to warn women about falling into a real life Anastasia and Christian style relationship.
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'Sarah' came onto the show to warn women against the violence that the novel makes normal
Fifty Shades Of Grey follows the unusual relationship between naive
graduate Anastasia Steele and handsome billionaire Christian Grey, who
introduces her to sado-masochism and bondage.
But for Sarah, the novel conjures up memories from a time in her past which almost destroyed her.
The mother-of-two spoke out on the show today to warn other women not to romanticise the sort of relationship conveyed in the novel.
After splitting with her husband of 16 years, Sarah embarked upon a romance with a businessman named 'Tim'.
The man approached her in a coffee shop and, assuming he was decent because he was 'chatty and well-dressed', she agreed to go on a date with him
But things soon turned sour when Tim insisted on watching a pornographic film after their first date.
Sarah initially felt like the relationship was a bit of fun, until things turned sour and her lover became more abusive
Sarah was 'shocked' by Tim's choice of viewing and made an excuse to leave.
Tim apologised profusely after the incident and naively, Sarah gave the 'charming man' another chance.
Speaking to Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford, she said: 'We started seeing one another more but I was very concerned that he wasn't very affectionate, he was aloof and didn't seem to be very warm.
'I don't know why, because he was very charming, there was an air of arrogance and he was very clever with words. He talked me round.'
E.L. James's novel has become a best-seller but many worry that men are taking advantage of the sex it portrays
When Sarah questioned why he wasn't very tactile, he explained that he had experienced a troubled childhood and asked Sarah to be more patient with him.
'He initially asked me if I had ever been tied up and I said I had never done anything like that.
'It was very gentle to start with, trying new things, it was exciting. It wasn't at all abusive but things gradually progressed and became more and more frightening.'
Sarah was left feeling as though she had led a very naive life and not indulged in what other people did, or so Tim made her believe.
Dr Jo Helens, a behavioural psychologist said: 'Because he was so charming, he lulled Sarah into this sense of “it's fun, it's role play”
'But this man is an abuser, he made Sarah a victim by talking all of the control and making her feel rather foolish.'
Sarah added: 'At first I felt safe but then he asked me to write a contract stipulating what I had to do.
'It was a game, I didn't take it seriously, he made it theatrical.
'But then the games were becoming very extreme and painful and I was afraid.'
Following on from their intimate adventures, Sarah was left in pain for weeks with serious injuries.
It was then that she began to question her relationship with her wild lover.
Sarah felt unable to talk to her friends about what she was experiencing: 'He said other people wouldn't understand, he discouraged me to talk about it,' she said.
Tim's control made her feel like it was an acceptable area of sexuality but when she refused his advances, he couldn't cope and became very violent.
The final straw came when Sarah received a call from another woman who was also dating Tim.
The behavioural psychologist concluded that Tim's charm lured Sarah into a false sense of security
When Tim found out that the two women had been in contact, he attacked her in the street and came to her home and punched her.
The message of the show emphasised how are taking advantage of women who have read the novel and have been left feeling that their sex life is boring.
Sarah concluded: 'I would say, if you know that person well and it is something you are going to try together in a loving relationship then that's fine.
But for someone meeting someone for the first time, be aware that these games can turn into something dangerous and abusive.
'As soon as that control starts to appear and you feel uncomfortable then you have to say no.'
VIDEO: 'Sarah' spoke to This Morning about how the relationship escalated into violence