Waking up, Alive: The Descent, the Suicide Attempt and the Return to Life

Waking up, Alive: The Descent, the Suicide Attempt and the Return to Life

by Richard A. Heckler


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"Sometimes I feel like crying, but the tears just don't come...."
"I had no idea there was a state of mind like this. Everything turned black...."
"It was a zombie place where I just couldn't be a part of anything...."
These are the words of survivors who have lived through one of the most insidious conditions of our time: the desire to die. Five million Americans have attempted suicide. Every seventeen minutes, one of them succeeds. And the numbers continue to grow.
Through fifty startling interviews with suicide survivors of all ages and backgrounds, psychologist Richard A. Heckler takes us into the very heart of despair, documenting the varied paths that lead to that crucial place where one's world seems to stretch, tear, and then break apart. In these intimate accounts we begin to understand the determination and clarity of that fatal choice. But after the failed attempt, healing is possible. For the first time, with great care and penetrating insight, Heckler traces the heroic patterns of recovery. By offering clear, profound portraits of hope, this extraordinary and unprecedented book attests to the resilience of the human spirit, by bearing witness to those who stood at death's door, and found the courage to live.
"It's hard to imagine a hopeful or inspiring book on suicide until you begin reading the astonishing Waking Up, Alive."
—San Francisco Chronicle
"In this sensitive book, Richard Heckler brings compassionate light to a shadowy corner of our psyche."
—Ram Dass
Author of Journey of Awakening
"These moving accounts, written with a great heart of compassion, have a deeply healing effect on the ocean of human tears. This isa wise and ultimately life-affirming work!"
—Jack Kornfield, Ph.D.
Author of A Path With Heart

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345400352
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 02/06/1996
Edition description: REPRINT
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 5.16(w) x 8.01(h) x 0.70(d)

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Waking Up, Alive: The Descent, the Suicide Attempt... And, the Return to Life! 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
ReadsEverything2 More than 1 year ago
This was the first and is still the best book that HELPS.  For you or someone you love.  Wish like crazy Williams had had it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"Waking up Alive" engages with great sensitivity and fearless honesty the human experience of pain and suffering. In his book, Dr. Heckler provides us a window into the world of people whose tumultuous life experiences have reached a deep level of despair, hopelessness and isolation. Reading the interviews provides us with a pathway to listen to people who believe they cannot overcome their turmoil, who are walled off from the world and sliding toward the brink of choosing death over life. His book provides insight and understanding regarding the slow road to recovery. Dr. Heckler shares some very direct and poignant interviews showing how people rebuilt their lives and made connections to the world. An excellent read for anyone and a must read for mental health professionals. Harry Seltzer LCSW
Anonymous More than 1 year ago