25 book recommendations by partners of trauma survivors

What do partners of survivors read?

Over the past year, I’ve had the pleasure of interacting with many partners of survivors. What I’ve learned is that partners are avid readers. We read for inspiration. We read for information and we read to find strength in the midst of overwhelming life circumstances.

I’ve also learned the following about partners, reading, and books:

1. Many partners are already self-educated about trauma. In the quest for understanding, partners have read books about trauma, recovery, neurobiology, attachment, and more.  Almost every partner I’ve asked has read The Body Keeps the Score.

2. Many partners are already engaged in a journey of personal growth, which includes reading books on this topic. Partners read about wellness, mental and physical health, mindfulness, contemplation, spirituality, and more.

3. Partners are curious and eager to learn about areas of interest that support self-care. Many of us engage in hobbies and interests that require learning new skills. The post 50 Proven Self-Care Solutions for Partners provides examples of self-care activities for partners.

What do partners read?

As you can see, partners read a lot. What do they read?

Here is a list of 25 books as suggested by partners. Each book on this list was read by at least one partner, with the last section of books mentioned by several.

(Links are to  Canadian Amazon. No affiliate links.)

Books for Inspiration:

The Gifts of Imperfection. Brene Brown, Ph.D., LMSW.

Daring Greatly. Brene Brown, Ph.D., LMSW.

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life. Mark Manson.

The Checklist Manifesto: How To Get Things Right. Atul Gawande.

Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness. Jon Kabat-Zinn.

King, Warrior, Magician Lover: Rediscovering the Archetypes of the Mature Masculine. Robert Moore and Doug Gillette.

Women who Run with the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype. Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Ph.D.

Man’s Search for Meaning. Viktor Frankl.

The Prophet. Kahlil Gibran.

The Little Book of Love. Kahlil Gibran.

David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling. Malcolm Gladwell.

The Seasons of the Soul: The Poetic Guidance and Spiritual Wisdom of Herman Hesse. Herman Hesse.

The Four Agreements. A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom. Don Miguel Ruiz.

When the Past is Present: Healing the Emotional Wounds that Sabotage Our Relationships. David Richo, PhD.

Resilient: How to Grow an Unshakeable Core of Calm, Strength, and Happiness. Rick Hanson, Ph.D

The Choice: Embrace the Possible. Dr. Edith Eva Eger.

Books on Trauma, Mental Health, and Relationships:

The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma. Bessel van der Kolk, MD.

8 Keys to Safe Trauma Recovery: Take-charge Strategies for Reclaiming Your Life. Babette Rothschild.

Healing from Trauma: A Survivor’s Guide to Understanding Your Symptoms and Reclaiming Your Life. Jasmin Lee Cori, MS, LPC.

Hold Me Tight: Your Guide to the Most Successful Approach to Building Loving Relationships. Dr. Sue Johnson.

Love Without Hurt: Turn Your Resentful, Angry, or Emotionally Abusive Relationship into a Compassionate, Loving One. Steven Stosny, Ph.D.

Depression Fallout: The Impact of Depression on Couples and What You Can Do to Preserve the Bond. Anne Sheffield.

When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times. Pema Chodron.

Allies in Healing: When the Person You Love Was Sexually Abused as a Child. Laura Davis.

The Sexual Healing Journey: A Guide for Survivors of Sexual Abuse. Wendy Maltz.

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash