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Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors: Overcoming Internal Self-Alienation

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Personally it made sense to me and clarified reasons for our own behaviour, how I behave with clients sometimes as well.

Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors: Overcoming

After giving up on going into therapy again, after too many attempts that just resulted in day to day life becoming unmanageable while in therapy, Fisher's teachings inspired me to have another go. The mainstream mental health system needs to open itself up to the groundbreaking and evidence based tsunami of information coming out showing that interpersonal trauma is a major contributor to physical illnesses and mental distress of all types. However, having read many books on therapy over the last several years, I’ve come to the conclusion that I find most therapy books patholgizing to some degree (including ones I absolutely love, as I have come to with Healing The Fragmented Selves), which I ascribe to the binary labelling of ‘mentally ill’ vs ‘mentally healthy’ and the lack of systemic awareness as it relates to wellbeing and how we conceptualise of mental/emotional distress and trauma. It can be profitably read by anyone who has friends or family members with complex trauma, or anyone with an interest in the subject. Thankfully, it has helped me to make sense of my previous therapists limited and outmoded approach to trauma and has highlighted so accurately what went wrong within the therapy room - a place where the therapist became unwittingly scared of her client resulting in there being no therapist in the room.The book is, I believe, required reading for anyone in the psychology profession, but is also aimed at survivors of complex trauma, especially by those starting therapy. Although grounded in structural dissociation theory and trauma treatment, Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors offers insights that will enrich the knowledge-base of therapists treating higher-functioning as well as deeply traumatized individuals. I recommend this remarkable book to all psychotherapists, especially psychodynamic ones, who will discover an extraordinary opportunity to expand their clinical horizons.

Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors

Participants will learn how to help their clients observe the parts they have embraced and identified with as ‘me’ but also the trauma-related parts they have disowned and judged harshly.This book resonated with me and provided many insights on what is going on inside a person struggling with fragmented parts of himself. Even when our clients are unable to tolerate emotion, extend themselves compassion, or take in someone else’s caring, they can still learn to feel protective of their younger selves and to finally welcome home these ‘lost souls’ with warmth and compassion.

Healing The Fragmented Selves Of Trauma Survivors: Overcoming Healing The Fragmented Selves Of Trauma Survivors: Overcoming

Dissociation — the fracturing of the personality into different parts — is the easiest, and perhaps the only possible, way of doing this.Fisher also provides detailed examples of how to navigate the different parts of a client and how to interact with these parts to form a cohesive narrative for a survivor. As bonds of kindness and compassion are built internally, the parts’ intense reactivity diminishes, allowing clients to welcome home disowned parts and offer them a safe, loving internal environment. It's like a barrier between you and the world, then a barrier within yourself that you try to overcome so you could function well, and so much more. In this respect, therapy bears a close relationship to philosophy and many religious traditions, in particular those based on meditation and self-reflection. Written by one of the preeminent experts in the field of trauma and dissociation, Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors imparts a vision of hope and validation to those suffering from complex trauma and the therapists who treat them.

Complex Trauma: Dissociation, Fragmentation, and Self

Fisher has been an invited speaker at the Cape Cod Institute, Harvard Medical School Conference Series, the EMDR International Association Annual Conference, University of Wisconsin, University of Westminster in London, the Psychotraumatology Institute of Europe, and the Esalen Institute. Unfortunately, many people dealing with the after-effects of a traumatic childhood have summoned up the courage necessary to start a course of therapy, only to be forced to stop because confronting their repressed, or partially repressed, memories caused a breakdown or personal crisis that made it impossible to continue.This was recommended to me by my therapist so I could understand the concept of internal self-alienation and strategies to mitigate. Step-by-step instructions will help the therapist guide clients from impulsive actions and reactions to mindful awareness and increase their ability to be “with” themselves. My biggest regret with this book is having not read it sooner, when I was working with a number of traumatized, reactive, and dissociative clients sharing space with each other.

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