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Customer Review

on November 20, 1999
I have been interested in the field of childhood trauma for ten years and found Toxic Parents to be one of the most direct and practical things I have ever read. I think it will be transformational both for individuals who are trying to move beyond a difficult past and for therapists who want to grapple with a remarkably simple and direct approach to psychological healing. The more I think about this book, the more I realize how strange (and telling) it is that the author's approach is not already standard in the fields of self-help and psychotherapy. I suspect it will be before long; it's just too good, too real, and too direct not to become so. There really isn't much else I want to say about this book; read it and decide for yourself. If you're miserable, order it by One-Click.
There are several other books that, like Toxic Parents, go to the core issues. For the typical self-helper, these books will be a more challenging read than Toxic Parents, but I think many will find them worth the effort. For therapists and intellectually sophisticated self-helpers, these books are essential. The books I refer to are (a) anything and everything by Alice Miller (including Prisoners of Childhood [read the original text, currently available only in hardcover], For Your Own Good, and Banished Knowledge); (b) Betrayal Trauma by Jennifer Freyd; (c) Making Sense of Suffering by J. Konrad Stettbacher; and (d) Soul Murder by Morton Schatzman. Note that this last book is inexplicably out of print; don't confuse it with an in-print book of the same title by Leonard Schengold; you can get Schatzman's book from libraries or via interlibrary loan.
Toxic Parents, plus the other books just listed, should be considered core reading for anyone serious about psychological healing. There might be some others that I haven't "discovered" yet (emails welcome!), but these are pretty darn great. In my view, the world is stuffed full with facile self-help books and bloated psychological trash. If some magical spirit could wipe them all into a big, green, smelly dumpster, and replace them with the books discussed here, the world would rapidly become a much happier and healthier place.
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4.3 out of 5 stars