Surviving Saturn's Return: Overcoming the Most Tumultuous Time of Your Life [NOOK Book]


The definitive guide to turning thirty . . .

Women approaching the big 3-0 have a powerful force to contend with. The panic of this age is universal— wrinkles inexorably appear, careers and ...

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Surviving Saturn's Return: Overcoming the Most Tumultuous Time of Your Life

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The definitive guide to turning thirty . . .

Women approaching the big 3-0 have a powerful force to contend with. The panic of this age is universal— wrinkles inexorably appear, careers and relationships crash like out-of-control aircraft, and the biological clock is ticking louder than ever. This phenomenon is the Saturn Return, the first major milestone of adulthood.

Surviving Saturn’s Return is just what you need to survive this profound, provocative, and sometimes chaotic journey.

Sherene Schostak and Stefanie Iris Weiss combine their psychological and astrological expertise to teach you:

  • Where Saturn lives in your own personal chart—and where it’s headed next

  • The twelve most important lessons including how to discover your true self, when to form a plan for your future, and how to cope with relationship trauma

  • How Saturn affects career, money, love, friendship, self-esteem, and fulfillment and how to work with Saturn’s messages to improve these areas in your life

  • And more, including real-life stories culled from dozens of women before, during, and after their Saturn Returns

Surviving Saturn’s Return is the first book of its kind to answer the earth-shattering questions that arise at this quarter-life crisis. Whether you’re about to turn thirty or have already crossed the threshold, this book is a life raft in the sometimes-stormy sea of aging.

Stefanie Iris Weiss, M.A., is a New York City-based writer, an adjunct professor of writing and gender studies, and a professional astrologer. She is the author of five self-help books for young adults.

Sherene Schostak, M.A., is a New York City-based psychotherapist and professional astrologer, and the creator of Zodiac Dance: The Work-Out DVD.

For more information and individualized charts, visit the authors' website:

"Fun, funky ... an addicting read for any astrology junkie [that] packs a wallop for anyone approaching her 30th birthday."

--Bust magazine

“Saturn Returns! Sherene and Stefanie bring a contemporary view of the "coming of age" issues that young women around the age twenty-nine and a half encounter. Focusing on common experiences that arise during the rite-of-passage into full adulthood, this book offers a glimpse into those challenges - with humor and in plain language.” – Erin Sullivan, author of Saturn in Transit

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Professional astrologers Schostak and Weiss write for women in the 25-35 age bracket who "are probably freaking out." There is a reason for their turmoil and depression, however: the planet Saturn's return to the original location in the astrological birth chart. Personifying the planet as a grumpy, nasty dictator who challenges readers to overcome their failings, the authors insightfully describe the characteristics of the zodiac signs and then catalog Saturn's effects on them. Free of jargon and with a clear format, this succeeds as an astrologically based tool for self-analysis, but the brief "survival skill" sets provide only rudimentary how-to. Convincing, humorous writing (containing soft profanity) uses anecdotes and stories to good effect, though it is occasionally dramatic. Similar to Elizabeth Rose Campbell's Intuitive Astrology: Follow Your Best Instincts To Become Who You Always Intended To Be, this is an optional purchase for large public libraries. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780071770088
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education
  • Publication date: 12/22/2003
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 416,680
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Sherene Schostak, M.A. is a psychotherapist and professional astrologer.

Stefanie Iris Weiss, M.A. is a professor of writing and a professional astrologer.

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Read an Excerpt

Surviving Saturn's Return

Overcoming the Most Tumultuous Time of Your Life


The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Copyright © 2004 Sherene Schostak and Stefanie Iris Weiss
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-07-177008-8





Keywords/Issues: initiative, activity, enterprise, aggression, drive, impulse, adventure

Ruler: Mars

Symbol: The Ram

Element: Fire

Modality: Cardinal

Opposite: Libra

Archetype: The Emperor

Key Phrase: I Am

Aries rules the head

Aries is associated with the first house

For one who knows Reality, the whole world is her wealth. She cannot see anything different from her own Self.

—Mata Amritanandamayi

Aries is the very first sign of the zodiac, and you better watch yourself when she comes around with her torch. This is where you find the screaming infant, straight out of the birth canal, ready to march forward into life. She is red, burning with radiance, fierce, and passionate. If you were born into the Saturn in Aries lesson, you probably feel this intense, ecstatic burn deep inside, this need for action. But Saturn here has a way of making you feel as if you can't stand the heat. Rather than propelling you forward into the mighty fires of initiation, when Saturn lands in Aries, you could, instead, end up feeling a bit burnt out. We don't suggest you get out of the kitchen, firewoman. Instead we invite you to put your lovely hand over the flame and risk getting a little bit scorched. It won't hurt nearly as much as you think.

If you were born with Saturn in Aries or Saturn in the first house, or if Saturn is coming around the mountain to smite you in this area of your chart, you might ask yourself the following questions:

• How are you at first impressions?

• Do you spend enough time getting to know who you are?

• Are you afraid of being called selfish?

• Do you suffer from low self-esteem or harbor repressed rage?

• Do you have major issues with the way you look?

• What would you do if there were no more mirrors?

• Do you find it difficult to assert yourself?

• Are you ever your own worst enemy?

• Do you wear a mask to protect yourself from the outside world?

The Saturn in Aries lesson is about your mask, your persona, and the image you project to the world. When you are consumed with self-image, it's hard to separate the outside and the inside. When your ego is assaulted, your heart is, too. You could tend to turn your frustration into a self-consuming conflagration. Please don't become a martyr for Saturn and immolate yourself on his altar. We will guide you out of the burning building of your Saturn placement. Follow us and remain calm.

Hit Me With Your Best Shot

One of the fundamental aspects of this lesson, if you were presented with it at birth, is that you are likely to be on the defensive much of the time. You may feel that an assault is always imminent (Aries is the warrior) and keep your spear ready at all moments. Conversations can be battlegrounds, because you often expect people to throw daggers your way. Instead, you're apt to shoot first, come what may. This might get you into a fair amount of trouble some of the time. With this lesson, though, you are seeking true and natural self- confidence, not false ego posturing. A bit of pugilism is probably part of your package. You've got a little Muhammad Ali in your soul, girl.

She's So Shy

If you were born into this lesson, another possibility is that you're terribly shy and have created a serious shield so that those you meet will never know that you're shaking inside, lest they discover the true you. This is just one of the dangers of avoiding your Saturn lesson—if you don't work on distinguishing the inside from the outside, being honest about it, and loving both halves of yourself, you could become so overidentified with the persona that you'll forget who you really are. Saturn in Aries sometimes makes you feel that cultivating the persona is the sole focus, and a lot of inner growth can be lost to the art of external excellence. This shyness can be severe and might start early in life. People could interpret your shyness as arrogance. And you may have even built some actual arrogant armor around you so that others won't be able to peer inside. Do others experience you as a bit of a snob? Even if you're the kindest girl on the block, open to all types, with not an obnoxious bone in your body, you could be perceived as a world-class snot. When people drink in a first impression of you, it could very well be that you think you're the greatest. You may project that kind of vibe because you're just a little scared and shy, and you really, really want everybody to like you. (And to like you the best.)

First Come, First Served

If you were born into this lesson, you are learning to be first, and to feel good about it. Secretly, you may yearn to push ahead and cut to the front of the line, but you might find yourself deferring, deferring, deferring to the needs of others rather than taking up space at the table yourself. This can cause all sorts of physical problems, headaches in particular. Try not to destroy yourself slowly by repressing your natural anger and aggression. The healthiest solution for you as the Saturn in Aries woman is to let yourself feel the anger, but that's easier said than done. The polarity that plagues you concerns your thwarted need to lead the parade. It bucks up against Saturn's constant naysaying. Your deepest instinct may be telling you to rush into the fray, but Saturn is apt to layer some heavy-duty, death-defying guilt over that urge to charge over all obstacles. The cure is to just do it. This should be your slogan, not Nike's.

Why Me?

If you were marked by this lesson at birth, you could feel as if the world is always against you, but if we sliced open your psyche with our magical psychological paring knife, you'd probably see clearly that you have waged war against yourself. There might be a sense that you are surrounded by selfishness at every turn. Why, you may wonder, am I attracting such self-absorbed people into my life? In reality, you may be the true control freak. What sucks is that the folks that we attract into our lives have a lot to tell us about who we are, what we need, and what we are likely to become—not fun to acknowledge when your buddy is being an asshole. But next time your friend pisses you off because she's too busy thinking about herself, take a look in your nearest mirror. What is she teaching you? For you, especially, it's important to measure the natures of those that you are close to, because they are careful barometers for your own needs. (The Saturn in Libra lesson has a similar effect.)


Power, or lack thereof, could be a fundamental theme in your life. Because you are learning to embrace your inner warrior, you might find yourself entangled in constant power struggles, learning to assert your will in all of your relationships, major and minor. Your domestic struggles can reflect this inner need as surely as a battle waged with the checkout person at the supermarket. Saturn is constantly testing you, trying to get you to see that you are truly, beautifully powerful, in healthy ways. He'll also show you where you fight too hard and exhaust yourself needlessly, all in the pursuit of safety. You may feel as if you were born to be a battering ram, and this stance can inform every one of your interactions. You may even have some violent tendencies. You don't want to turn into Hannibal with a manicure. Be careful. Mostly you contain yourself, but there are things that can send you over the edge, particularly if you've been holding it in too long.

Question Authority

This may be your favorite bumper sticker. And it's a healthy attitude, if not taken too far. But you may have at least once broken rank and yelled right into your boss's face, just to make a point. You might be terrified of being controlled. And this can set you up for failure, or at least what you perceive as failure. You may carry quite a chip on your shoulder, and this chip can grow in size so much through your lifetime that by the time you reach your SR, it could very well topple you over. You might feel as if you always fail. If this is the case, perhaps you set yourself up for failure, because you can't figure out how to believe in yourself. The moment that you get that you are talented, beautiful, smart, and capable is the moment that the world will agree with you. The praise and promotion you seek will fall into place like a set of shiny dominoes. Pretending to be OK on the outside while throwing a raging temper tantrum on the inside, all because you don't think you're good enough, will keep your dreams at a distance.

I Feel Pretty

Are you willing to endure pain to be beautiful? The Saturn in Aries lesson is all about self-image. It teaches you how to really like yourself. But before you get there, you may go through a crucible of self-hate that is hotter than hell itself. Saturn here is notorious for making your body into a punching bag for all of society's very favorite "beauty" treatments. Do you use Botox? Do you undergo liposuction? Do you suffer through dermabrasion? For some women born into the Saturn in Aries lesson, no procedure is too painful to preserve external beauty. You might feel as if you are nothing without your face on.

The other possibility, and one that makes us sad, is that you could be the sort to starve yourself or become bulimic to attain perfection. All body image issues are common here—just about anywhere on the continuum. Body dysmorphic disorder, a disease in which you see physical flaws in an exaggerated and somewhat pathological way, is a possibility. This could be your cross to bear, and at the SR, a crisis around this issue might just make you wake up and stop being mean to yourself.

I Think I Can, I Think I Can ...

Astrologer Bil Tierney calls your syndrome "stage fright of the soul." It can cause you to suffer from deep depressions from time to time. Some Saturn in Aries women have chronic bouts of depression. When you are constantly fighting with your inner nature, your desire to take off like a flame and go forth, the result can be sadness and longing. The energy of Saturn and the energy of Aries are really at odds with one another. Saturn tells you to sit down and calculate, to measure, to take it slow. Aries tells you to charge off into the wilderness, screaming all of your desires to the wind, or to anyone within listening distance. It's not an easy fit, and it can make you feel as if you're being taken on a nausea-inducing ride.

You might carry around an anxiety about spontaneity that causes you to plan everything out. You could be afraid to move and change, even to make changes that you know will be good for you. You're likely to constantly question yourself and have trouble accepting that you'll be able to follow through and complete any project. Those born with their sun in Aries are notorious for starting eight projects at once, on a whim, just because. Then the projects are abandoned just as quickly in favor of the next new thing. But with Saturn here, you may find that you're afraid to even get started. You may not be able to wrangle yourself out of the gate, let alone start running. This can cause a self-resentment of sorts to build in you. It would do you well to repeat, "I think I can, I think I can ..." like the little engine that could. This is the perfect mantra to help guide the Saturn in Aries lady through the dark nights of her soul.

Close to Me

Another problem wrought by this lesson is the inability to get really close to anyone who wants to know you well. How could you possibly do so, when you feel like the ugly duckling inside? You are number one when it comes to building walls to your inner world. You might do whatever it takes to blot out any indication that you feel inadequate, trying to convince paramours and friends that all's cool with school. Really, you are likely convinced that the school needs a new principal and all the teachers should be fired tout de suite, but you're not apt to make this announcement over the loudspeakers. Instead, you smile your best disarming smile (while inside you criticize yourself that it's lopsided) and hope that your companions don't notice the bricks spilling out of your supporting walls. It's hard for people to know who you really are inside. When you do allow people to get close, it's usually because you've inoculated yourself against their judgments, or they've somehow proved to you that they are not the sort that would judge at all. A lot of folks might find you a bit standoffish, but this is the classic protective shyness. You are dying for adulation, for some-one to tell you that you are really all right, but it's hard for you to let anyone get near enough to you to see what's underneath the facade. You probably have trouble asking for what you want, because deep inside you feel as if you don't deserve it.

Father Issues with Saturn in Aries

Did your daddy have a bad temper? Or did he repress his rage most of the time, until the moment that it erupted like Vesuvius? Was he egotistical? Did he bang the table to demand his dinner? Was he loud and brash and sometimes embarrassing? Did he make you feel as if being pretty was the most important way to please him? When born into the Saturn in Aries lesson, little girls often deal with dads that fit this mold. Fathers are often impulsive, impatient, and too fiery for their own good. Saturn in Aries daughters sometimes carry tremendous stores of repressed anger toward their dads for their various offenses. If he was unavailable, many of your life lessons might be built around your fury at him. Or maybe you want to get back at him for all the times he yelled at you. Often Saturn in Aries dads are the type that consciously or unconsciously make you feel very insecure. This type of dad might make you feel less than beautiful or suggest subtly that your course through life would be greatly enhanced by working on your good looks. He may have evaluated you on your physical qualities, causing this issue to rear its head over and over again throughout your life.

On the other hand, maybe he spurred you on to success. Perhaps he was behind you all the time, lighting that fire under your ass. He may have urged you, perhaps too hard, to be number one. Was he your cheerleader? He may have donned those dad pom-poms one too many times for your liking. Maybe he meant well, but you may have felt undue pressure. Did he push you to be a self-starter? Was he disappointed when you weren't first? Did he chant "You're number one. You're number one."? If you came in second, did he give you guilt? He may have treated you a little bit like a burgeoning boy. Did spending time with him ever feel as if you were training for a marathon? If he pushed you, you may have resented him for it. And anger management may have been a big issue for your dad, and for your relationship with him. Whether he kept it in or let it out, his anger issues are likely to have created a legacy for you. Letting out your fury toward your dad, if you're harboring any, could be just what you need. Beat a pillow and give him your best hyena howl. There, there. You might find, though, that confronting him directly, if possible, whether through a letter or another means, is the only thing that really releases you from his hold.

Facing the Saturn Return with Saturn in Aries

Once you hit your SR, your crisis could feel quite volcanic. Years of wearing masks, hiding your feelings, and repressing your anger can catch up with you. Often, at the SR, Saturn in Aries women experience an issue with an authority figure that grows out of hand. You might decide that you can't take it anymore and give it to your boss. You might start to feel ready to confront someone or something that you feel has been holding you back from your true glory. You might break down and start to long for the deeply buried beautiful treasures that you blocked from view. But this usually happens through some sort of seemingly external source that first seems to wreck you. Criticism of your performance at work, a thinly veiled critique of your looks, or some other experience can feel like an attack from a monster whose only interest is to bring you down. This monster is called Big Daddy Saturn, and what you must know is that he doesn't really want to bring you down. He wants you to see the silver hidden under years of tarnish. This is your opportunity to break out the polish and get to looking for your true reflection in that self-hating knife of yours.

This could diminish your vitality, and depression could result. Another possibility is that your confidence will be rocked by a loss of prestige. Sometimes Saturn in Aries women lose jobs at the SR, those that were all glitter and no substance. You may have seemed to have it all together at the top of the heap, but Saturn could storm in at the SR and show you the superficial cracks in your job armor. You may realize that that fancy office is not all you thought it was at first. Instead, you may start to reevaluate and find that appearing attractive and polished is less important than you thought.

Power struggles are also apt to play out at the SR. If you are giving all your power away in a relationship, or playing the role of sadist yourself, you may find that the SR won't allow your soul to sustain the imbalances. Someone who has lived idly under your thumb is unlikely to allow this to continue. If you've been letting someone control you for way too long, you may not be able to stand it anymore when your SR comes along. You can take back your rightful power now and recognize if you've been hoarding it.

Excerpted from Surviving Saturn's Return by SHERENE SCHOSTAK. Copyright © 2004 by Sherene Schostak and Stefanie Iris Weiss. Excerpted by permission of The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents




CHAPTER 1 Persona          

CHAPTER 2 Attachment          

CHAPTER 3 The Mind          

CHAPTER 4 Home          

CHAPTER 5 Creativity          

CHAPTER 6 Purification          

CHAPTER 7 The Other          

CHAPTER 8 Transformation          

CHAPTER 9 Higher Mind          

CHAPTER 10 The World          

CHAPTER 11 Community          

CHAPTER 12 The Source          



Additional Reading          


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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2004

    The Bible for Women in Their Late Twenties and Early Thirties

    This is a must-read book for women in their late twenties and early thirties. Even if you've never read a word about astrology and don't really believe in it, it has a lot to say about surviving the transition into the thirties and becoming an adult. It's very funny and accessible, and there's a great companion website ( that you should check out. All-in-all, I'd say that the book is likely to become a bible for women 'of a certain age.' And it's actually called 'Surviving Saturn's Return: Overcoming the Most Tumultuous Time of Your Life'. I don't know why B&N has it listed wrong.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2004

    Finally, a decent book about turning 30!

    insightful, funny as all get-out and brutally honest. you don't even have to know what a planet is to benefit from this awesome book!

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    Posted September 14, 2011

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