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From the Publisher“In an age in which traumatized clients are often misunderstood, maltreated, or rejected by the mental health system, this book is required reading for every clinician. It opens our eyes to the mind shattering effects of early childhood traumatization that take place within dysfunctional attachment relationships – relationships in which children are utterly dependent on their caretakers. Moreover, it powerfully describes the way in which clients who come to us for help are caught in an unbearable conflict between attachment needs and the intense fear of entering a therapeutic relationship. Shattered States highlights what traumatized individuals need from therapists in order to heal and what it takes from the therapists to meet these needs, including the ability to bear witness; therapeutic skills; boundaries; patience; kind firmness; compassion; understanding; and the capacity to mentalize.”
"I found this work especially valuable because it spoke to two important themes: one about how the early experience of hostility from caregivers causes a type of disturbance in the mind which is profound and long-lasting and needs to be looked for at assessment; and also about the importance of using psychological techniques that speak to the meaning of experience, irrespective of diagnosis. This may mean some modification of traditional technique; but all the authors described clinical material that demonstrated in a most moving way, the need for people in desperate mental states to be listened to as people with minds, not just carriers of disease. As research into these disorders, and their attachment roots continues, we should expect to keep learning new ways of thinking and working with people who are frightened by their own minds; and these authors have provided us with powerful learning tools."
“This is a fascinating and important collection about the central significance of human relationships both in the generation of severe psychological distress and in its relief. It is essential reading for all those concerned with working with survivors of early trauma.”