The Courage to Heal – Third Edition – Revised and Expanded: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse

The Courage to Heal is an inspiring, comprehensive guide that offers hope and encouragement to every woman who, was sexually abused as a child — and those who care about her. Although the effects of child sexual abuse are long-term and severe, healing is possible. The authors weave personal experience with professional knowledge to show the reader how she can come to terms with her past while moving powerfully into the future. They provide clear explanations, practical suggestions, a map of the healing journey, and many moving first-person examples of the recovery process drawn from their interviews with hundreds of survivors.

Definitive in scope, The Courage to Heal speaks directly to the survivor in a warm and personal way:

  • TAKING STOCK — outlines the effects of child sexual abuse and the ways women cope over time.
  • THE HEALING PROCESS — explores each stage from the decision to heal and remembering through breaking silence, knowing it wasn’t your fault, nurturing the inner child, and grief and anger, to resolution and moving on.
  • CHANGING PATTERNS — offers in-depth guidance for shifting self-defeating patterns in specific areas of one’s present life, including self-esteem, feelings, intimacy, sexuality, and dealing with families.
  • SUPPORTERS OF SURVIVORS — provides insight and strategies for partners of survivors, family members, and counselors.
  • COURAGEOUS WOMEN — profiles survivors who share the challenges and triumphs of their own healing journeys.
  • HONORING THE TRUTH — a substantial new Afterword that refutes the “false memory” argument and presents a thorough and enlightening response to the backlash.
  • RESOURCE GUIDE — fully updated for this edition — informs readers about therapy, healing activities, recommended reading, support groups, self-help programs, and services and organizations.

$ 10.50

Comments

  1. 344 of 377 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    A wonderfully supportive and helpful book!, July 28, 1999
    By A Customer
    This review is from: The Courage to Heal – Third Edition – Revised and Expanded: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse (Paperback)
    This book has gone a long way in helping me to begin the long journey to coming to terms with the sexual abuse I suffered as a pre-teen. For most of my adult life, I’ve been reluctant to attribute any of my problems (such as depression, self hatred, unhealthy sexual relationships with men, a general disgust about myself, etc.) to being molested by my stepfather. Within the past couple of years, however, I’ve begun to examine my feelings about it more and more. I bought this book rather hesitantly, but ended up reading the first few chapters in tears as I read so many of my own feelings and experiences echoed by the other abuse survivors. I had thought that I was all alone and that there was something intrinsically wrong with me for feeling the way I did about myself, and it was an overwhelming relief to find others who feel the same after having similar childhood experiences. The reviews offered here referring to the “memory” issue misrepresent the focus and intent of the book. These readers seem to want to keep abuse survivors quiet to save the “sanctity” of the family. So many of us have done this for years; sacrificing of our emotional well being. They belittle the profound hurt and damage caused not only by the abuse, but by the silence as well. At the very least, this book has helped me to feel human and has given me hope that I may one day feel whole. I highly recommend this book as an invaluable resource.

    Addedum: It has been 7 years since I wrote the above review… I had forgotten I had written it until I ran across it in amazon’s profile section. After reading a couple of the negative reviews below, I feel compelled to add something regarding the “repressed memory” issue. First, this book spends very little time even discussing the idea of repressed memories. Secondly, some people seem to be under the misguided impression that adults who know they were abused have obtained this knowledge through digging up these “repressed memories”. Nothing could be further from the truth. Most sexual abuse survivors grow up remembering the abuse… these memories are not somehow buried. We grow and develop emotionally and psychologically with the knowledge that we were molested emblazened upon our psyches. This painful past shapes who we are, how we feel about ourselves, and our ability to have healthy relationships with others.

    This book was invaluable in my healing process… almost a decade after having read the book, I can honestly state that I have moved on from those painful memories and I have been able to realize that the abuse was not somehow my fault. If you’ve never been abused, you will never understand how profound that realization is. If, however, you have been a victim of sexual abuse and are searching for a way to process it and go forward, this book is a great start.

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  2. Ann E. Nichols says:
    61 of 67 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Don’t buy into the bad reviews, August 7, 2009
    By 
    AMG

    This review is from: The Courage to Heal – Third Edition – Revised and Expanded: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse (Paperback)
    I am really put off by the bad reviews here. I did have repressed memories of my abuse. They came back one day when my mother told me that my sister “accused” my father of abusing her a long time ago. Of course, no one believed her. I then realized that these faint memories that seemed like dreams I had a long time ago were real. I read this book and it helped me tremedously. I ended up confronting my father in front of my entire family and telling him if he does not admit to what he has done – I will never speak to him again. HE DID ADMIT IT. Those repressed memories were not a farse. Don’t minimize how much this book can help someone. Who cares that they are not doctors – they tell you that in the very beginning of the book. They have years of experience dealing with victims and did much research with victims to come up with this book. Just look at how many 5 stars this book got compared to 2 or 1 stars. Please! And I hate to tell all these 1 star reviewers who comment on how this book spews hatred towards men, but guess what? When someone you trust rapes you as a child YOU DO WISH THEY WOULD DIE A HORRIBLE DEATH. Of course you hate their guts. Obviously those who think this is uncommon never dealt the the trauma of rape (which is what molestation is).

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  3. Anonymous says:
    196 of 229 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    This Book Helped Me as no Clinical Article or Book Did, June 9, 2000
    By 
    Ann E. Nichols (Sierra Vista, AZ United States) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: The Courage to Heal – Third Edition – Revised and Expanded: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse (Paperback)
    [I was] sexually abused me from ages 8 – 12. Until I took over the medical library at Fort Huachuca, AZ, I had no name for what happened to me. For nearly 9 years I read my library’s professional articles and books on child sexual abuse and former abuse. I acknowledged, with intellectual interest, that many of the adult patients’ symptoms applied to me. What I learned didn’t prompt me to seek treatment for the incest. In fact, I ran away from therapy when my therapist wanted me to deal with the incest instead of just my depression. Then, in 1990, our Community Mental Health Service ordered THE COURAGE TO HEAL. While I was checking to make sure all of pages were there, I started reading the book. Yes, CMHS unknowingly had to wait two or three more days to get their order because I *HAD* to get through this book. Its first-person accounts affected me in a way those clinical reports never had. [After reading the book] I knew I could no longer deny that the abuse was still affecting me. When I got to work the next day, I asked for help. I got it. It wasn’t easy. The authors are correct to use the word “courage.” Working through the abuse was the hardest thing I ever did. I think I shed 30 years’ worth of tears in the second year of therapy. I won’t pretend I’m the person I would have been if I’d never been abused, but I am stronger and better than I would have been if I’d gone on pretending it was all in the past. I’ve learned to fight for myself. If ever I forget how much I’ve changed, I have only to read my old diaries to know I’m not the whimpering mouse I was. I’m so glad I read this book. I’m also glad that I have such ready access to professional resources on child sexual abuse. That’s how I know I don’t have to fear that I was mislead by what THE COURAGE TO HEAL showed me.

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