Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Book Review: Good Morning, Monster: Five Heroic Journeys to Emotional Recovery by Catherine Gildiner

Dr. Gildiner is a psychologist and had a thriving practice for decades in Canada. Now, she's looked back on her patients and collected here the five cases that most stood out to her as "heroes."

Each of these five clients went through horrible, awful times, and fought like mad to come out the other side. Often they'd done a majority of the hard fighting before they ever came to her--they all on the outside appeared to be functioning adults with careers and personal lives. However, each of them had massive childhood trauma--abuse, neglect, and I don't even know how to classify the First Nations man who was taken from his parents, beaten if he spoke his language, sexually assaulted by teachers he trusted, and eventually couldn't even communicate with his own parents. There needs to be a whole new word for that. And that childhood trauma is what they need to work through and process with Dr. Gildiner in order to have a happy and fulfilled life.

The main draw for a book like this, naturally, is voyeurism. However, I believe for most people that's just the reason they pick the book up. Upon reading it though, it normalizes therapy, shows it's not a traumatic experience, and hopefully it makes the whole process less scary. But also, wow, some people's lives are much worse than yours!

This book is published by St. Martin's Publishing Group, a division of Macmillan, my employer.

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