The last book we’re reading before the summer break is The Haunted Self: Structural Dissociation and Treatment of Chronic Traumatization by Onno van der Hart, Ellert Nijenjuis, and Kathy Steele. (Norton, 2006) We’ll meet on June 22 to discuss it and I’ll do my review.
Here are some books we’re considering for next fall and winter:
Trauma and the Body, Ogden, et al.; The Neuroscience of Psychotherapy, Cozolino; Parenting from the Inside Out , Siegel (an easy one, for a break); Mark Dworkin’s book EMDR & the Relational Imperative; Waking the Tiger, Levine and others.
If you know of a book that has helped you do better therapy, please comment and let us know. We’re reading about affect, body/mind therapies, trauma, psychoneurology, attachment, and techniques. Our favorite book, so far: Diana Fosha’s The Transforming Power of Affect.
You need to get into therapy, good therapy.
Don’t get a referral from your consultant.
Dr. Melfi, find out what it feels like to attach and become vulnerable with someone who is capable of meeting and matching you. Experience what it is like to begin to trust and relax into the relational and emotional containment that a good therapist can provide. Learn how to appreciate the pain and inherent shame in being solidly, respectfully and compassionately known and confronted, and learn how to follow that pain as it resolves into new emotional freedom and life possibilities. Develop respect for your own therapist’s bravery and vulnerability as he/she wades into your traumas with you. Notice that your therapist isn’t perfect, but is a good listener, is flexible and adaptive to how you learn best. Observe how your therapist is resilient in self correction and relationship repairs. And notice the safety you begin to feel as you come to realize that your therapist will maintain their integrity and boundaries as you and they collaboratively address your issues and concerns.
As you embody your new personal therapy experiences, you will have deep knowledge, a reference point, for how to be with your patients.
Barbara Jo Hinsz, MSW
Join Robin’s reading group.