Related Resources

I’m a fervent believer in sharing resources with everyone – clients, trainees, colleagues, the public. There’s nothing mysterious about how therapists do what we do, and helping people to find the sources that I use is one of the ways that I try to walk my talk about empowering people to be their own best authority about what makes their life work.

Professional resources

I’ve included a very small group of websites, either of organizations to which I belong, or created by trusted colleagues. While there are many other good sites out there, the ones I’m listing are the ones I go to myself.

Resources for readers of Your Turn for Care

Your Turn for CareWhat follows is the Resources appendix from Your Turn for Care. If you haven’t read the book yet but would like to see what I recommend on such topics as trauma recovery, boundaries, or self-care, feel free to check out this list. I only recommend books that either I or survivors of my acquaintance have found helpful. Your suggestions about additions to this list are welcome via the Comments section below, and may be included in future revisions.

Childhood trauma and recovery

Trauma and Memory

Boundaries

  • DeBecker, Gavin. The gift of fear – This is a wonderful book for many reasons. It’s DeBecker’s own post-traumatic growth story, which can be inspiring. Equally as important, it’s permission to listen to yourself and your inner warning signs.
  • Freyd, Jennifer, & Birrell, Pam (2013), Blind to Betrayal. – This excellent book is a powerful and thoughtful analysis of how our early experiences can teach us to ignore betrayal and violation. Essential understanding for boundary development.
  • Spring, Janis Abrams. How Can I Forgive You?: The Courage to Forgive, the Freedom Not To – The title says it all. I’ve included this in the Boundaries section because I see forgiveness or non-forgiveness as a component of boundary development. Spring does a nice job of exploring the complexities of the forgiveness issue, and is not dogmatic in any direction about what a betrayed person should do. Like her other work, more focused on forgiveness after an affair, but applicable to the issues for many survivors.

Compassion and Mindfulness

Attachment

  • Johnson, Sue. Hold me tight: Seven conversations for a lifetime of love – Although this book could also go into the relationships section, I’ve placed it here because the author, a leader in the development of Emotion-Focused Couples Therapy, does such a great job of explaining how early wounds to attachment and childhood trauma affect adults.
  • Siegel, Daniel J. The developing mind – This book does a nice job of reviewing and making accessible for the general reader some of the last two decades of research on attachment and the development of self.

Death and Dying

  • American Association of Suicidology’s Survivor Page – This web resource is one of the best for survivors of suicide. Maintained by the AAS, which is the home for research and treatment in the field of suicide, it offers links to support groups and a list of publications reviewed and recommended by AAS, as well as an on-line newsletter for suicide survivors.
  • Brener, Anne. Mourning and mitzvah – While written from the Jewish perspective, the author makes a number of excellent suggestions about how to create rituals for grieving that could be adapted and applied by people who aren’t Jewish.
  • Didion, Joan. The year of magical thinking – Although this is a memoir, I include it here because it is the most emotionally honest book I’ve ever read about the experience of bereavement.
  • Levine, Stephen. Healing into life and death – This is one of only many books by Levine, who has worked for decades with people in the midst of dying. His work has been the foundation of my understanding of relating to death and grief.
  • Nechama Liss-Levinson – Some helpful books written for children about death, which I’m suggesting for survivors who want a sense of what normal grief might be like, are written by Nechama Liss-Levinson, a psychologist and psychoanalyst. Her complete list of books can be found at her Amazon page.

Relationships and relationship patterns

Faith and religion

Family Care-giving

  • American Psychological Association Family Care-Giver Toolkit – This website, while primarily a resource for psychotherapists working with family care-givers, is full of useful information for care-givers themselves. Contains the work of APA Past-President Carol Goodheart’s Task Force on Family Caregiving.
  • Family Caregiver Alliance – This national organization is by and for family caregivers, and contains many very helpful resource links.
  • Ken Pope’s end-of-life and care-giving web page – Ken Pope is a wizard of finding resources on every possible topic. This is simply one of the many pages on his website; you’ll also find pages there about psychotherapy ethics, animal assisted therapies, caring for special needs animals, and much much more.

Personality Disorders

  • Kreisman, Jerold & Straus, Hal. I hate you don’t leave me – One of the first, and still one of the most accessible, books for non-therapists about the vicissitudes of relating to a person with a personality disorder.
  • Linehan, Marsha. Skills training manual for treating borderline personality disorder – This is the foundational work of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), whose creator, Marsha Linehan, courageously came out in 2011 with her personal story of struggling with self-destructive patterns in life. If you’re a survivor who has difficulty with regulating your emotions, who uses self-harm to soothe yourself, or who has difficult and stormy relationships, the skills in this book can change your life.
  • Mason, Paul & Kreger, Randi. Stop walking on eggshells – This book is a helpful “you’re not to blame” guide for people who have relationships with individuals who are personality disordered. While not specifically focused on experiences of survivors with elders, many of its insights are quite applicable.

Restorative Justice

  • Restorative Justice Online – An excellent web resource on this approach to finding justice in the aftermath of violation. Although RJ approaches are now mostly being practiced in the U.S.the criminal justice system, the model for amends and reconnection between survivors and those who have violated them is one that can inform a survivor who is attempting to navigate relating to abusive elders.

Memoirs by Survivors

Trauma-Related Professional Organizations

  • APA Division of Trauma Psychology – APA’s Trauma Psychology Division publishes a journal and a newsletter, and offers programming at the annual APA Convention.
  • EMDR International Association – EMDRIA is the organization of EMDR-training psychotherapists around the world. A referral link for EMDRIA-certified therapists is available on the site, in addition to information about training for therapists.
  • International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies – ISTSS is a multidisciplinary, international organization that publishes a journal and newsletter, and offers an annual conference as well as on-line continuing education for professionals.
  • International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation – ISSTD is the home for research and training on complex trauma and dissociation. It publishes a journal and an on-line newsletter, and presents an annual conference. It also offers an on-line training program for professionals wishing to acquire competence in the treatment of dissociation. ISST-D has a referral list of therapists.
  • Sidran Foundation – Sidran, in addition to having many written resources for survivors and therapists and offering training for therapists and other first responders, has long maintained a referral network of therapists. You can find information here about Vicarious Traumatization as well.
  • Generation Five – Generation Five’s mission is “To end child abuse in five generations.”

Finding a Psychotherapist

Many state, provincial, or regional organizations of psychologists, counselors, and social workers have referral services that are free to the public. You can find your local organization by typing such search terms as your state, province or city name, psychological association, psychiatric society social work society, or counselor association, into your favorite on-line search engine. You can also use the referral resources provided by some of the trauma-related organizations listed above. In addition, there are many commercial websites today that offer lists of therapists. Please be aware that none of these groups screen the people they list, and that the therapist writes her or his own description of practice.

When choosing a therapist it’s important to find out not only what their credentials are and whether they’re covered by your insurance, but also how it feels to you to work with them, and whether or not they have an understanding of the effects of childhood maltreatment and abuse. Years of experience may be less important than a therapist’s knowledge of trauma and their ability to be connected to and compassionate with you. Pay attention to your gut. Any therapist who tells you that they have a miracle cure that no one else has is misrepresenting themselves, because there is no such miracle cure. No therapist should ever suggest a sexual relationship to you, try to borrow money from or go into business with you, try to make friends with you outside of therapy, or trade your services for theirs. If a therapist sees your best friend or another family member, it’s usually a good idea to see someone else if there are enough other options available to you.

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