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65th Wife: Rescued and Restored

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Everyone thinks that once Warren Jeffs was in jail, the FLDS problem was solved. He was the pedophile and now he couldn't get at the young girls anymore, right? The truth about what happened to the FLDS after 2006 is far more complicated and horrifying, and Briell Decker tells that story. She lived through the dangerous power vacuum that followed Jeffs' arrest, then the " Everyone thinks that once Warren Jeffs was in jail, the FLDS problem was solved. He was the pedophile and now he couldn't get at the young girls anymore, right? The truth about what happened to the FLDS after 2006 is far more complicated and horrifying, and Briell Decker tells that story. She lived through the dangerous power vacuum that followed Jeffs' arrest, then the "code" group that took control once he was gone, including their constant intimidation, enforced drugging, physical death threats, and cross-country searches. She endured years of subsequent therapy, retraining, and hospital stays for religion-induced hallucinations. She also found real love and a firm purpose in life as an activist who helps those trying to escape sex-trafficking cults, including other former FLDS. Briell (born Lynette Warner) was married at age eighteen to Warren Jeffs and became his 65th bride. She was taken from her family and the only place she'd known, allowed to eat only food she'd grown with her own hands, and forced to listen to hours and hours of brainwashing "training" by Jeffs. All this after a childhood spent at schools Jeffs was the principal of, where she learned barely a basic 6th grade education before she was made a teacher of younger children herself. Her early teen years, she was not allowed to date or even talk to members of the opposite sex, not allowed to use computers or the internet, nor even to watch television or the radio. But Briell refused to consummate the marriage and fought back in the only way she knew how, by quoting scriptures right back at Warren Jeffs, the prophet himself, about why she wasn't ready to become a wife and mother. Instead of jockeying for power among the other wives of the prophet, she asked to be sent away from the "elite" at the Yearning For Zion Ranch in Texas and go into a repentance house in Las Vegas, and then in Colorado. From the distance, she caught Warren Jeffs in lies and realized that he was not a true prophet, though she believed still that God was protecting her. After Jeffs was arrested, she was physically abused by those who followed after him in controlling the FLDS, then given psychotropic drugs and told she was crazy. Her own family rejected her as an evil contaminant, refusing to help her when she asked. Then she had a chance, one moment when she wasn't being watched, and she took it. She ran from the FLDS to the police she'd been told would rape and kill her--and she asked for help. It took years of therapy and legal help for her to create a new identity, but she bravely returned to Short Creek, the town on the Utah and Arizona border that Warren Jeffs once ruled as "the one man" who could speak for God. She bought the enormous house with 21 bedrooms in it where he had once watched videotape of all the cameras in town to spy on his people, and where she'd been forced to pray day and night, and she began to help both those who still believe in him and those who have long since rejected him, the faithful and the apostates. This is her story.


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Everyone thinks that once Warren Jeffs was in jail, the FLDS problem was solved. He was the pedophile and now he couldn't get at the young girls anymore, right? The truth about what happened to the FLDS after 2006 is far more complicated and horrifying, and Briell Decker tells that story. She lived through the dangerous power vacuum that followed Jeffs' arrest, then the " Everyone thinks that once Warren Jeffs was in jail, the FLDS problem was solved. He was the pedophile and now he couldn't get at the young girls anymore, right? The truth about what happened to the FLDS after 2006 is far more complicated and horrifying, and Briell Decker tells that story. She lived through the dangerous power vacuum that followed Jeffs' arrest, then the "code" group that took control once he was gone, including their constant intimidation, enforced drugging, physical death threats, and cross-country searches. She endured years of subsequent therapy, retraining, and hospital stays for religion-induced hallucinations. She also found real love and a firm purpose in life as an activist who helps those trying to escape sex-trafficking cults, including other former FLDS. Briell (born Lynette Warner) was married at age eighteen to Warren Jeffs and became his 65th bride. She was taken from her family and the only place she'd known, allowed to eat only food she'd grown with her own hands, and forced to listen to hours and hours of brainwashing "training" by Jeffs. All this after a childhood spent at schools Jeffs was the principal of, where she learned barely a basic 6th grade education before she was made a teacher of younger children herself. Her early teen years, she was not allowed to date or even talk to members of the opposite sex, not allowed to use computers or the internet, nor even to watch television or the radio. But Briell refused to consummate the marriage and fought back in the only way she knew how, by quoting scriptures right back at Warren Jeffs, the prophet himself, about why she wasn't ready to become a wife and mother. Instead of jockeying for power among the other wives of the prophet, she asked to be sent away from the "elite" at the Yearning For Zion Ranch in Texas and go into a repentance house in Las Vegas, and then in Colorado. From the distance, she caught Warren Jeffs in lies and realized that he was not a true prophet, though she believed still that God was protecting her. After Jeffs was arrested, she was physically abused by those who followed after him in controlling the FLDS, then given psychotropic drugs and told she was crazy. Her own family rejected her as an evil contaminant, refusing to help her when she asked. Then she had a chance, one moment when she wasn't being watched, and she took it. She ran from the FLDS to the police she'd been told would rape and kill her--and she asked for help. It took years of therapy and legal help for her to create a new identity, but she bravely returned to Short Creek, the town on the Utah and Arizona border that Warren Jeffs once ruled as "the one man" who could speak for God. She bought the enormous house with 21 bedrooms in it where he had once watched videotape of all the cameras in town to spy on his people, and where she'd been forced to pray day and night, and she began to help both those who still believe in him and those who have long since rejected him, the faithful and the apostates. This is her story.

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