The Complex PTSD Workbook: A Mind-Body Approach to Regaining Emotional Control and Becoming Whole
Abreakthrough moment in psychotherapy can be an insight or a shift toward adaptive resolution of a disturbing memory; or it can occur in an early therapy session, or even prior to the first session, when the client makes the brave decision to pick up the phone and make an initial appointment. This book is written for individuals who are at the initial point of turning the corner on their long-standing problems and have questions: “I know generally what psychotherapy is, but what would it be for me, and how could it really help me?” “There are so many different kinds of therapy—which method would be the best fit for me?” “What would an actual therapy session be like for me, with the difficulties I have?” This book contains concise, accurate, and accessible answers to these types of questions.
The theme throughout the chapters is one of normalizing the problems of people with difficult and extensive trauma histories—those individuals who might be described within the categories of complex PTSD and/or developmental trauma disorder. Dr. Schwartz makes it clear that complex PTSD is a normal response or adaptation to non-normal life conditions that may be in a person’s history. This in itself is a very useful perspective, especially for those clients who have been struggling with emotional problems for a long time, and, as a result, have much reduced self-esteem. The comprehensive and compassionate descriptions of the many different manifestations of complex PTSD are likely to be helpful for those clients who have feared, erroneously, that they are too unusual or “weird” to be helped.
Throughout each of the chapters, the reader is invited to respond in writing with information from their own life experience. This volume then becomes more than just a book off the shelf, but instead a more real and interactive experience.
The chapters provide comprehensive coverage of a range of issues related to the treatment of complex PTSD: the importance of attachment patterns (as a sometimes hidden element of an adult’s emotional problem); an overview of different models of treatment, with enough information about each method so the reader can make an informed choice regarding which approach might be the best fit; and potential obstacles to successful treatment—obstacles that can be identified in advance so that an appropriate treatment plan can be constructed. With these issues in mind, the therapist and client will be better able to form a roadmap for therapy, a contract listing therapy goals, and the likely best path to reaching each of those goals. This book is a valuable resource for all those affected by complex PTSD, allowing them to be informed and active as partners in the therapeutic healing process.
JIM KNIPE, PHD
CHAPTER ONE Understanding Trauma
CHAPTER TWO Treating Complex PTSD
CHAPTER THREE Renee’s Story: Healing Avoidance Symptoms
CHAPTER FOUR Daniel’s Story: Healing Invasive Symptoms
CHAPTER FIVE Kathy’s Story: Healing Depressive Symptoms
CHAPTER SIX Supporting Long-Term Growth
About the Author
About the Foreword Author
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