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Publisher's Summary

Come to terms with your past while moving powerfully into the future.

The Courage to Heal is an inspiring, comprehensive guide that offers hope and a map of the healing journey to every woman who was sexually abused as a child - and to those who care about her. Although the effects of child sexual abuse are long-term and severe, healing is possible.

Weaving together personal experience with professional knowledge, the authors provide clear explanations, practical suggestions, and support throughout the healing process. Readers will feel recognized and encouraged by hundreds of moving first-person stories drawn from interviews and the authors' extensive work with survivors, both nationally and internationally.

This completely revised and updated 20th anniversary edition continues to provide the compassionate wisdom the book has been famous for, as well as many new features:

  • Contemporary research on trauma and the brain
  • An overview of powerful new healing tools such as imagery, meditation, and body-centered practices
  • Additional stories that reflect an even greater diversity of survivor experiences
  • The reassuring accounts of survivors who have been healing for more than twenty years
  • The most comprehensive, up-to-date resource guide in the field
  • Insights from the authors' decades of experience

Cherished by survivors, and recommended by therapists and institutions everywhere, The Courage to Heal has often been called the bible of healing from child sexual abuse. This new edition will continue to serve as the healing beacon it has always been.

©1994 Laura Davis (P)2013 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about The Courage to Heal

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Detailed and inspiring

This book had already helped me a lot in the understanding of the process of healing.
There are so many stories of women who overcame severe abuse. A word of caution, the stories are graphic, no sugar-coating, which is at times difficult to listen to.
However, I think it also goes a long way towards normalizing an open dialogue for survivors on things they have never spoken of before.
A must- read for survivors and anyone wanting to pursue counseling for survivors.

8 people found this helpful

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Helpful in general, but explicit accounts of abuse

I wish there had been warnings before the book went into first person accounts of rape and molestation. I would have glossed over them right now, because its too much to hear. Its upsetting to start hearing accounts of child molestation before you can get to Audible and fast forward, or to fast forward farther along in the account to some other explicit and overwhelming detail.

4 people found this helpful

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Tough content

The subject of sexual abuse is very tough to read about, hear, discuss. This book takes a no nonsense approach to the topic. Many parallels between sexual, physical, and mental/emotional abuse exist, making this a good resource for anyone who has been abused in any manner. The authors take care to give clear definitions to terms and symptoms seen in abuse. Even if you have never been subjected to abuse, this book may be a good read for you, providing you with an understanding of behaviors you may have seen in other people, around you.

4 people found this helpful

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Disappointed

I was really looking forward to this book based on the other reviews. I listened to several hours waiting for some type of value and it never came. I’m honestly not sure what the point of it is? It is just a bunch of fragmented survivor stories but no tangible healing steps.

3 people found this helpful

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Powerful healing book

This is the book it took me the longest to read because it was triggering and I needed tome to stabilize but it was worth my time.

2 people found this helpful

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Be ready for whiplash with lots of narratives.

Part of this book was okay with “helping” but honestly-you will hear all kinds of Me Too re-encounters. I have whiplash from pedophilic descriptive scenes that could have been just as powerful. I’m not sure if the intent was to really drive home the fact that the reader is not the only one to have survived. I get it.

This doesn’t help me feel better. It has made me feel worse. Most of the book talks about multiple survivor stories in graphic detail. It may be worse than what you experienced as a survivor and really doesn’t help to gift you healing strategies.

Would not recommend for sensitive survivors. Unless you would like to hear over and over and over again about specific incestuous experiences with no resolve other than “now I’m an adult and still struggle.

Best advice I have been able to filter out of this book is working with a qualified therapist, mourning the loss of relationships you may never rebuild, and learning to be okay with talking opens about your experiences.

That’s it.

I don’t appreciate a lot of this book and will not be recommending to other survivors.

2 people found this helpful

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A gift to victims & mental health practitioners

This book was thorough and practical, with useful tools that you can employ immediately. It's a long read but worth it.

2 people found this helpful

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absolutely recommend

well read, excellent material for its target audience. i was skeptical, but this book has changed my life for the better.

2 people found this helpful

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Good content, but...

This is a very helpful book. However, it’s very annoying when the authors/ narrators change speakers mid-sentence. At least finish the sentence before switching speakers.

1 person found this helpful

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I'm so glad I found this book

very triggering, so be advised!
very good narrating and as for the content- is very comprehensive and include every aspect of the subject I could think of

1 person found this helpful

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  • Dave
  • 09-05-20

Absolutely brilliant

I didn't think that anything could help me understand what I was going through. I thought that everything was my fault and I was the bad person. Listening to other people's stories, how what happened to them and how it affected their life and relationship with their partner and family, opened my eyes that the person to blame for everything was my abuser.

I would recommend this book to anyone who has been sexually abused. I have seen psychiatrists and been to help groups but they didn't work. This book should be classed as the BIBLE for survivors of abuse.

I give this book 10 out of 10 for content, understanding how to help yourself to heal from your ordeal.

3 people found this helpful

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  • liz
  • 07-05-21

Triggering: contains graphic details of assault

Please be aware that this book will, without warning, tell you graphic details of sexual assaults towards children and women. I understand this was written before a time when PTSD retriggering and vicarious experiences of abuse was not being aware of. But please be careful when listening. the vocal performance is great, contents can be terribly traumatic to listen to. I dare say this is outdated according to current trauma treatment models and social needs.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mauricio Castellanos
  • 07-30-20

Inspiring

It has all the components necessary for healing.
I loved the meditation part. Very useful