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Healing Books

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The wonderful Mistral suggested that we start a thread in this forum for book suggestions. Please post your healing book suggestions here!

:)

Lis

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Since sexual assault certainly damages the sense of safety, I really enjoyed reading "The Gift of Fear" by Gavin de Becker, which explains how to use instinct to protect oneself.  Novel ideas to keep oneself safe.

In addition, he writes a book for parents called "Protecting the Gift" which gives excellent and surprising ideas about keeping children safe.

Hope people like those.

Mistral

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Two of my favorites are:

After Silence, by Nancy Venable Raine

Telling, by Patricia Weaver Francico

:)

Lis

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Well, although I haven't read much of it yet (I've had it forever) I Can't Get Over It by Matsakis seems to be really good. A long time ago I remember liking a book called Growing Through the Pain.

The thing that is difficult with many books is how triggering they are...

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Secret Survivors is a great book, by E. Sue Bloom. The Sexual Healing Journey, by Wendy Malz is also a good book. Both can be pretty triggering.

I let my partner read them so she could understand a little of what I went through in my past and what I struggle with now. She kept asking, 'You don't think that way do you...?' after she'd read a few sentences.  Unfortunately, most of my answers were, "Yes I do." But I've worked through a lot of those issues and though the thoughts still stick around, they're not as strong as they once were. It helped to have someone there to talk through things with because when I read the books for myself, it was very triggering.

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A good fiction story is The Long road home by Danielle Steel.

The courage to heal is a must.

I read a book called Boundaries too, and that also helped, I just can't remember who wrote it.

Another book I read in Afrikaans, it's called something like Laugh again over tomorrow - it's letters to a survivor, giving advice, etc.

((((hugs)))))for everyone!!

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I have to say "Bastard out of Carolina" by D. Allison.  It triggers badly, but has some of the strongest women characters since Fannie Flagg's "Fried Green Tomatoes"

In terms of just Great reading- Try M. Z. Bradley's Avalon series, Juliett Mariller's "Daughter of the Forest", and Joyce Carol Oates' "Foxfire"---- these are great reads for grrrrrls.

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Recently, I read The Hotel New Hampshire, by John Irving, which I loved.  One of the main characters was raped and learned to survive.

In addition, the book Speak, by Laurie Halse Anderson is about a thirteen year old girl, who struggles through her freshman year in high school after being raped by a senior.

Hugs,

Jes

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Jes suggested I post this here so it doesn't get lost:

Oprah's Book Club book this month is <i>Fall on Your Knees</i> by Anne-Marie MacDonald, which I read about 5 years ago when it first came out. MacDonald lives in Toronto now, but she's from Cape Breton, where I live, and the book takes place in a small town in Cape Breton (I think it's New Waterford, but I forget-- while I'm on the subject, you <b>must</b> see the film <i>New Waterford Girl</i> -- it's incredible).

Anyway, the book is great, although it can be quite triggering. I highly recommend it. I'm gonna reread it and e-mail the Oprah people like they say to, and who knows? maybe I'll get on the show. (Sha, right.)

Another excellent book that takes place in Cape Breton is <i>Strange Heaven</i> by Lynn Coady, although tracking down a copy of it would be much harder for anyone living outside Canada. It's about a 17-year-old girl who winds up in the psychiatric ward of "a children's hospital in Halifax" (actually, it's the Isaac Walton Killam, although which hospital is never stated in the book) after she has a baby, due to depression, and then how she copes when she's out of the hospital.

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"Harry Potter" by J.K. Rowling - No, really! It's about a kid that grows up in a really emotionally abusive environment, but he finds out who he really is and survives and grows and succeeds!

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Great thread and my top picks have already been taken.

"The Gift of Fear" by de Becker really is a must read.  I learned more about keeping myself safe and trusting my instincts.

The Wounded Heart by Dan Allendar is also excellent and is a Christian resource.

If you're interested in the more psychological kind of stuff, Judith Herman's "Trauma and Recovery" is excellent.

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"Coping with Trauma: The Guide to Self-Understanding" The title says it all.. VERY good book..

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Beauty Restored -Finding Life and Hope After Date Rape, by Me Ra Koh was a good book, which may be of interest to Christian survivors as it was a book with very religious themes.

It also presented interesting and well thought out ideas about grieving, anger and forgivess.

Jes

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Mike Lew's book, Victim's No Longer is an excellent resource for male survivors.

Hugs,

Jes

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Just read Charles de LInt's The Onion Girl.

It's a fantasy with main characters that were abused in childhood and the lives that happened after. Very much an entertaining read if you like nature/fey fantasy, not horribly triggering for me, but it is for childhood trauma, prostitution, and life "after".

Worth a look into.

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My first day and already I'm contributing!

Slut!: Growing Up Female with a Bad Reputation

 Leora Tanenbaum

Very precisely explains the effects of the slut epidemic.

After Silence: Rape and My Journey Back

Nancy Venable Raine

PTSD anyone? This woman helped me realize I wasn't going crazy. It's a very detailed books about the symptoms and effects of PTSD. Very factual meat and potatoes kind of book as apposed to...

Still Loved by the Sun : A Rape Survivor's Journal (sadly, out of print)

Migael Scherer

I considered this a "light" read. A chronicle of this woman's first year of recovery. Might be very helpful for SOs and family, my SO found it helpful.

Men on Rape: What They Have to Say About Sexual Violence

Timothy Beneke (not out of print, circa 1983)

The most valuable thing out of this book, for me, was the Rape Language chapter. Now I know why I refused to play darts with the "boys" at work.

The book mostly consists of different monologues by different men. Very educational.

Can anyone recommend a book about relationship/spousal rape? I've read as much as I can read about date and acquaintance rape - it just didn't happen to me. I was raped and tortured within a relationship, right out of high school. Thanks!

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There is a whole series of books by a woman named Louise Hay. I had purchased books on tape so that I can listen to them on the way to work and so on whenever I wanted to. If you want to get the actual book, it is called You Can Heal Your Life. She also has Self Esteem and controlling fears books. Again I get them on audio.

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I recently read a book about a woman who was raped and she is just so courageous. I thought i'd share this with u all, in case anyone wants to read it too, maybe some of u already read it..

It's called: I have life - Alison's Journey , written by Marianne Tamm.

It's about Alison who was raped by 2 men and almost killed in South-Africa, and she just refused to die, and she brought the 2 men to court.

Alison is so brave, she is just wonderful...it was so inspiring to read, the beggining when she tells about the raped its very triggering. But when she talks about her healingproces..it makes me wish i had her strength..

I can recommend it, and just wanted to share it with u..

Love Sophie

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I see a few others here have already read a few of my selections, but I'm going to go ahead and post them anyway ...

After Silence by Nancy Venerable Raine ... Which I have read cover to cover over a few dozen times is proudly displayed on my living room table.  She has inspired me to become more open about my experience with rape, both with others and myself.  It's like recognizing things I knew about myself but was never able to put down in exactly the right words.  It helps knowing that someone else has felt exactly the way I have.

Telling by Patricia Weaver ...Also another wonderful book full of inspiration and courage.  She also has a nice website full of helpful information.

The Other Side of Silence by Christine Carter ... An authentic account of women's narratives on the topic of date rape and its aftermath.  Also deals with society's views on rape as well as how our culture builds and reinforces behavior that can lead to rape.  

Lucky by Alice Sebold ... This was the very first book I had ever read that was a straight no nonsense first hand account of rape. This book really hit home on more than one level ... Perhaps because her rape took place near where I live, I felt an odd sort of connection to her as I was able to visualize her story as it was told.  Alice presents in factual detail both her assault, rape and the events leading up to and after the conviction of her rapist.  I am looking forward to reading her upcoming release entitled, "The Lovely Bones".

These are just a few of the selections I have read though I am hoping to get my hands on more.  It seems however, that in order to do so, one has to utilize the internet to get these kinds of books.  I was extremely disappointed my last trip to Barnes and Noble in Syracuse to find that the shelves that were suppose to contain books on rape offered a very small and inadequate selection compared to the  thousands of other books availble on every other subject.  Hopefully this is not a usual occurrence in other book stores around the globe ...

 

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Oh, I have one to add my own list here. I greatly, greatly needed to read and enjoy "After Silence" by Nancy Venable Raine. And it was "Telling" by Patricia Weaver Francisco that inspired me to try healing my body, as well as my mind.

I'm reading a book now called "Anna: A Daughter's Life", by WIlliam Loizeau (or similar spelling - will check it for you). It's about his own crisis - loving and then losing his first baby, at 5 months old. So many of his reactions to the trauma are relatable - it is finally helping me to connect with the fact my reactions are considered reasonable and normal. And I think that anyone who has lost a child because of rape (pregnancy, abortion, or adoption) could probably feel a lot more connections. It's sad, but inspiring too.

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Ok, now that I've finished my previous reply I'll tell you my top "PICS"...

#1. "THE MYTH OF SANITY" "DIVIDED CONSCIOUSNESS AND THE PROMISE OF AWARENESS."  By: Martha Stout, PH.D.     This is the best book I've read about dissociation... It talks indepth about different types of dissociation... The way I dissociate is rarely talked about in most books (losing time for 3 - 4 days straight without having DID)... This book answered so many of my questions and explained so many things I never understood...  And, it's easy reading...  

The following is a section from the back of her book:

"...Instead of receding harmlessly into the past, the darkest, most frightening events from our childhood and adolescence gain power and authority as we grow older. The memory of such events causes us to depart from ourselves, psychologically speaking, or to separate one part of our awareness from others. What we conceive of as an unbroken thread of consciousness is, instead, quite often a train of discontinuous fragments. Our awareness is divided..."  -Martha Stout

#2. "Secret Survivors: Uncovering Incest and It's After Effects on Women", By, Sue E. Blume... Excellent book if you want detailed information that's easy to understand about all the different issues surrounding csa & sa... If you would like to have the best informatoin rec'd here at Pandy's in a book form this is it...

#3. "I Can't Get Over It", By, Aphrodite Matsakis...  Excellent resource for all the different aspects of PTSD and related disorders. It's also set up with topic related journaling and questions to answer stuff, etc...

I could have put down more, but I stuck with my top three books (and I've read ALOT of them)...

Good Readin'

Mouseisa

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Of interest for those who SI:

"Women Who Hurt Themselves" by Dusty Miller

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My favorite is The Survivor's Guide to Sex by Staci Haines.  It's really more like an instruction manual, but written really well.  It's about csa, but it covers many types of r*pe and abuse, and in general made me feel better about the fact that I like sex now, despite my past.  (Jeez, I can't believe that I just typed that! :o )

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Fluxus- I agree about The Survivor's Guide- i looked through it at Barnes and Noble but I was on my lunch hour and I did not want to bring that book back to work...also it can be triggering if you are not ready for it..so everyone be careful

Also- I have only seen the movie "Bastard out of Carolina"... I had not put the pieces of my own past together yet..but I knew much more about my mother's past...which was that time period in that type of town (can't remember if it is the same town or not) in SC- just as that book was set...it can be helpful, but it is very triggering.

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