Primal Wound: Understanding the Adopted Child

Primal Wound: Understanding the Adopted Child

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by Nancy Newton Verrier

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The Primal Wound is a book which is revolutionizing the way we think about adoption. In its application of information about pre- and perinatal psychology, attachment, bonding, and loss, it clarifies the effects of separation from the birth mother on adopted children. In addition, it gives those children, whose pain has long been unacknowledged or


The Primal Wound is a book which is revolutionizing the way we think about adoption. In its application of information about pre- and perinatal psychology, attachment, bonding, and loss, it clarifies the effects of separation from the birth mother on adopted children. In addition, it gives those children, whose pain has long been unacknowledged or misunderstood, validation for their feelings, as well as explanations for their behavior.

Although difficult to read because of the emotion it evokes in all members of the adoption triad, it nevertheless rings true and can be a great help in acknowledging, understanding, and validating the wounds created by the trauma of separation between mother and child. This understanding can help all members of the triad. It can provide validation for the experiences and feelings of adoptees, who have often felt misunderstood; it can bring solace to birth mothers, who have long been denied the truth of their loss; and it can be a source of information for adoptive parents, so that they can better understand and respond to their children.

Since its original publication in 1993, The Primal Wound has become a classic in adoption literature and is considered the adoptees? bible. The insight which is brought to the experiences of abandonment and loss will contribute not only to the healing of adoptees, adoptive families, and birth parents, but will bring understanding and encouragement to anyone who has ever felt abandoned.

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Verrier Publications
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5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.60(d)

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Primal Wound 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
In the last 3 years, both my husband and our oldest daughter have been reunited with their birth mothers, he doing so at 48,she at 23. I will have to say that even though the search/reunion and being in reunion has been extremely intense, it has been the best thing for both of them, and ultimately the rest of our family has benefitted from it. They know, at long last, who they are, where they came from, but more importantly, the answer to their lifelong question, 'WHY did you give me away?' As a pastor's wife, when anyone queries our unique situation, I purchase and give to them, with love, 'The Primal Wound' in an attempt to help them in their journey. I will also say that the relationship we now have with our daughter after her search is absolutely one of God's greatest gifts to us; as is the relationship and love that we now have with my husband/their father. I thought, ignorantly and yet innocently, that if I loved each enough, I could make up for the primal wound---WRONG. I loved them enough to walk through this journey with them, and go full circle, and we have a family unit now that is second to none! Thank you, Nancy, for your book...I will continue spreading it to those in need.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I would like to thank Nancy N. Verrier for publishing the book. The book helped me to understand myself much better. I consider it to be the adoption bible since it helps people understand us adoptees much better. Because of the book, I understood that my feelings and issues were not alone. It should be read by everyone so that they would understand how we adoptees feel and what our core issues are. The book helps people to understand that we should be able to search for our biological parents if we want to. That should be our right to do if we are to be able to heal properly. In my opinion, people, who are not in the adoption triad, should not get involved at all. I can understand the adoptive parents' fear of their adopted ones wanting to search. Once, I asked my mother what her fear is about my wanting to search and she told me that she may lose me to my birthparents. I assured her that my birthparents cannot replace her or my father. My adoptive parents were the ones who raised me and my relationship with them is very strong. Adoptive parents do not have to fear losing their adopted children if the relationship is strong. Adoptive parents, who help search for the birthparents, have a stornger relationship with their adopted children. My adoptive parents are very supportive of my wanting to search, but like other adoptees who want to search, I feel very guilty for wanting to search. I know that I should not feel that way, but I do. My advise for adoptive parents is that if they support their adopted children in searching, the relationship may get stronger. It will prove that the adoptive parents love and care about their adopted children very much. I know that my parents love and care for me very much. I know I can speak for myself. I WILL NOT ABANDON MY ADOPTIVE PARENTS IF MY SEARCH IS SUCCESSFUL. Thank you, Nancy, for publishing the book The Primal Wound: Understanding the Adopted Child. Michael P. Mitchell
Bearerofbooks More than 1 year ago
Everywhere I took this book people of all ages and professions were intrigued. Goes into depth on a biological level, being an adoptee I finally felt as if I could start to understand myself. I recommend this book to any parent, adoptee, or person that feels lost and wants to understand their roots, and why they are feeling the way they are feeling. Validating not only for the adoptee but the birthmother also. A realistic view on adoption not from the people who are adoptings perspective. Be able to keep an open mind and accept how the other sides of the adoption triad feel and think. If you can do that this book will teach you more than you ever could imagine.
Zealan More than 1 year ago
As an adoptive mom and a therapist, this book has helped me look at subconscious parts of my son's actions and reactions. It also helps me better understand the anger and confusion my clients feel who are adopted. Nancy Verrier has a unique insight that most do not share. She is the mother of two daughters; one adopted and one biological. By studying the relationships with her two daughters, she began to see that there is a hole in relationships for many adoptees. What wonderful insight for her practice and ours.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Thank you very much for writing an enlightening and informative and truthful book. I have helped several people who are adoptees in the encouragement of finding their biological parents. I am not adopted but in the work I do as a teacher and a metaphysical counselor, I certainly saw the great need to heal the old wounds. In addition, the focus of all children being abandoned. I recommend this book. Thank YOU, Nancy !!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This eye opening book validated so many thoughts I have had about adoption in general. I felt that although it discusses the irreprable damage done by severing that primal bond between child and mother, it offers hope for healing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a counselor, this is the Best book on adoptees that I have ever read. Invariably, when I hand it to my clients, they read the preface and put it down because it brings up so many emotions. The first 6 chapters or so are tough but it gets easier to read as one progresses. When they have finished reading this book, their comment is something like 'Finally, I have the words to describe the emotions that I didn't even know I had. I knew there was something but I have never been able to figure out what it was.' This is a must read for adoptees, a woman who plans to adopt her child out, and especially for anyone thinking of adopting. It is encouraging to know, according to Verrier, that adoptions can work if we will get realistic attitudes about this issue. I have also found that the issues presented in this book apply to those who were abandoned by their mothers but were never adopted (i.e. live with dad only, foster care, death, etc.) Thank you Nancy Verrier!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
We adopted an infant boy twelve years ago and wish we could have found access to this kind of insite then. We strongly recommend this book for anyone thinking of adopting and consider it a must for anyone who has or has been adopted.PLEASE help inform others now when they can use it. Excellent!!!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a well informed adoptive mother, I only wish we had this book from the beginning and not twenty seven years later. The book articulated some of the things we were all feeling and explained the reasons why. Our family searched found, and was reunited with the birth mom, but the healing continues. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in adoption.