Cover Image: Aftershock


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Member Reviews

Utter does a great job on educating the reader on trauma and going through the basics of how to help the self, as well as steps in finding yourself a therapist. I am finding it helpful that literature is speaking more to the effects of trauma from 'everyday life', or the little t's.
I would have loved a little bit more information on types of treatment for trauma, somatic, EMDR, etc, and was surprised as a therapist that she did not go into that further. This is definitely a primer!
Thank you to Netgalley and Health Communications Inc for the ARC!

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The initial idea was that “ordinary, normal” events, e.g. relocating to a new city, divorce, or parenting, could be traumatising. So, do not trivialise your own feelings. Get help. That idea is great. That is why there is 1 star in this rating.

Then, came the term, “post traumatic growth.” The idea was that trauma could bring about “positive psychological change.” That it “gives meaning to the challenges we have suffered.” And that this suffering “provides opportunities for extraordinary growth that we would never have been afforded otherwise.”

STOP brainwashing people into accepting trauma as “beneficial.”

The author even stated that trauma was “part of life,” that everyone was bound to be traumatised at some point in their lives. (??!!!!)

NO. Just. No.

It’s more than insensitive for a therapist to say to a victim of horrendous trauma, “Hey, that’s part of life. You should be GRATEFUL!”

A therapist saying THAT to a victim of child sex slave trafficking, a victim of rape, a victim of domestic violence, a victim of drunk-driving car accident, a victim of random mass shooting, a victim of war, a veteran who lost his legs from being sent to an active war zone…?!

No. Traumatic experiences are NEVER ok.
No one should ever “expect” to become traumatised at some point in their lives. NO ONE.

Reading this book was both triggering and traumatising.

(I received a free review copy from NetGalley.)

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Aftershock is a helpful, easy to read book that explores the often delayed impact of trauma on our lives. Childhood trauma is explored through the author’s experiences, which were marred by addicted parents, marital chaos, childhood neglect, and uncertainty. Having known suffering, she has also helped many patients navigate through similar terrain. She explores damaged people’s quest to heal through the lens of her professional work as a therapist. She deals with patients who are terrorized by bullies, people who whose needs go unmet, and those who do not feel they belong. When traumatic events happen too quickly and too soon, or too young, survivors often cope by numbing feelings and going about usual routines, only to realize much later what happened. The delayed processing involved to heal can be difficult to address and make sense of months or years after the events. The author offers. various strategies to cope, and walks the reader through the steps of what to expect from professional therapy. She explains the road to healing after trauma is drawn out and non-linear.. Having a trusted other, like a compassionate therapist, can help us deal with confusion and pain, and help get us past the haunted memories that plague us. Survivors build resilience by gaining self-insight in the aftershock.

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This book is a well-written and informative book that provides awareness of what the author has observed in her patients and calls Aftershock, highlighting the effects of events that may not seem like major traumas, but they can still have a significant impact on our emotions and overall mental health. She offers that aftershock is a subclinical level of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) that can manifest in a variety of ways, including anxiety, depression, irritability, and difficulty sleeping. The causes, symptoms, and treatment options are shared along with case studies from patients. It would be a good resource for anyone who is struggling to cope with the aftermath of a major life change.

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Definitely recommending this to my therapist to share with other clients! We have had this conversation in my therapy sessions, so this was a great way to dig deeper into trauma staying in our bodies and brains!

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