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The Courage To Heal: A Guide For Women Survivors Of Child Sexual Abuse Paperback – 11 Apr 2002

4.3 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews

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  • The Courage To Heal: A Guide For Women Survivors Of Child Sexual Abuse
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  • The Courage to Heal Workbook: For Women and Men Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse
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  • Breaking Free: Help for survivors of child sexual abuse (Insight)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Vermilion; New Ed edition (11 April 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0091884209
  • ISBN-13: 978-0091884208
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 3.6 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 23,309 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Book Description

The classic self-help book on child sexual abuse

From the Back Cover

If you have been sexually abused you are not alone. One out of three girls, and one out of seven boys, is sexually abused by the age of eighteen. All sexual abuse is damaging and the trauma does not end when the abuse stops.
The Courage to Heal offers hope, encouragement and practical advice to every woman who was sexually abused as a child and answers some vital questions, including:
-How do I know if I was a victim of child sexual abuse?
-Where does the decision to heal start?
-How can I break the silence and who will listen?
-How can I re-build my self-esteem, intimacy and capacity to love?
-What therapy, support groups, self-help programmes or organisations are available?
Based on the experiences of hundreds of survivors and partners, The Courage to Heal profiles victims who share the challenges and triumphs of their personal healing processes. Inspiring and comprehensive, it offers mental, emotional and physical support to all those who are in the process of rebuilding their lives.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Although I was not sexually abused as a child, I come from a household of extreme pysical and emotional abuse. My counsellor recommended this book to me because she thought that it would be useful to me in helping me understand about the complications and effects of secrecy, shame, trust, grief, sadness and also the ability to pick up the pieces and move on.She was right and it has helped me enormously. There was much of this book that was applicable to my circumstances even though the book was not directed at my background specifically, and the section in the back for partners has been incredibly helpful for my boyfriend who has been able to read and understand the impact that our painful and abusive childhoods can have on our lives.
I found making notes as I thought of memories and questions that the book raised to be very helpul and the tasks to do at the end of each chapter to be a good way of noting your progress. If you are already in counselling it's a useful book to follow your progress with too... I found that the first few chapters raised issues and feelings that I had already begun to deal with, and later in the book as it begins to talk about confrontation of abusers, speaking out and moving on, I felt that these were true goals for me to work towards. The womens stories used to portray the varying lifestyles and backgrounds are truly inspiring and you can't help but feel empowered and reassured that we are by no means alone in our despair, anguish, anger and grief.
I would urge anyone who comes from any type of abusive background- physical, emotional or sexual, to pick up this book and give it a go.
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Format: Paperback
Anyone who is a victim of childhood sexual abuse needs to read this book. It is a book for women which for me, made reading it much easier. The 'self help' books I had used before were much more clinical and full of medical mumbo jumbo, but this one was absolutely aimed at the healing woman and the problems she might or is facing.
It contains case studies of survivors who came forward to help with the book. Some are so harrowing, but it just makes you feel stronger, because these women are an inspiration. The writers both suvivors of sexual abuse specifically aim to make the book a kind caring read. I have owned it for a few weeks and it was recommended to me by my counsellor. I am so glad I have it, I am not sure where I'd be without it now. It certainly replaces my bible!
I also think it is a vital read for anyone involved with helping survivors. It contains a wealth of information which no counsellor/therapist/friend/family should be without. It really helps to give you a perspective on how the survivor will heal, the various stages, emotions, self abuse, confrontations and there is also a chapter specifically for counsellors. I cannot recommend it enough and like I said NO counsellor or helper should be without it.
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By A Customer on 19 July 2003
Format: Paperback
I cannot rate this book highly enough! It was recommended to me by another survivor and I found it an absolute godsend from the first page. The book deals with the issues surrounding recovery in a very real, down to earth and practical way. It provides practical tips on how to cope through each stage - but most importantly offers the survivor the welcome reassurance that it is ok to feel as you do during the process of coming to terms with what has happened, and that there IS hope. It is not always easy to read and some of the testimonies are harrowing, but the book has clear chapters which can be dipped into depending on what stage someone is at. The courage of the other survivors shines through, and the book helps to dispel any doubts some may have that what happened 'wasn't too bad'.
This is an amazing book, it has helped me (with the Courage to Heal Workbook) more than any other during my healing process. If you are a survivor wondering whether to buy this book, please do it - it WILL make a big difference. If you are a counsellor or interested in understanding how a survivor feels, this book will help do that.
'Courage to Heal' provides a stepping stone to do just this.
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Format: Paperback
Anyone ready to tackle the problems of childhood sexual abuse will not be disappointed when buying this book. Each chapter deals with a specific aspect of the effects of abuse: flashbacks/trauma, forgiveness, anger, recovery, for partners etc. and gives ideas for working through these issues. At the end of the book there are courageous stories written by women who were sexually abused as children - their stories, while heartbreaking, show the strength and courage faced by anyone who has been subjected to the injustice, trauma and horror of abuse. This is not a substitute for counselling but an aid; a good starting place from which to extract yourself from the mental torment and anguish that abuse unfortunately leaves all survivors with.
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By Bob Sherunkle TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 6 Jan. 2016
Format: Paperback
I got hold of this book because I read “Victims of Memory”, by Mark Pendergrast; this is an encyclopaedic condemnation of the role of false memory in incest allegations. Pendergrast focuses on the impact of “Courage to Heal”, using several quotes to argue his case.

I found it hard to believe the quotes were accurate, so I have gone back to the source and verified them. Here are a few:

“If you are unable to remember any specific instances [of abuse] but still have a feeling that something can happen to you, it probably did.”
“Many women don’t have memories, and some never get memories. This doesn’t mean they weren’t abused.”
“No-one we’ve talked to [elsewhere referred to as “hundreds” of women] thought she might have been abused, and then later discovered she hadn’t been. “
“No-one fantasises abuse.”

I have every wish (who wouldn’t?) for victims to be helped and for abusers to meet their just deserts. However, I ask you to consider whether it is wise to rely on a book based on premises like those I have quoted.

PS: the book advises counsellors: “Don’t have sex with your clients”. This is so obvious that its inclusion is fantastic. It serves to underline the questionable status of "counsellors" who are unqualified and uncontrolled, and who thus are not bound by a professional code.
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