Books about Healing PTSD, Complex PTSD and Dissociative Disorders

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    Self help and Recovery Books

    PTSD, trauma, abuse and dissociation book covers from
    Adoption Healing... A Path to Recovery for Mothers Who Lost Children to Adoption
    Many pregnant women were sold the fairytale of "the right thing to do" but the ensuing tragedy of the loss of their babies has profound effects for many mothers. This book explores myths and realities of adoption, and different methods of healing the mother’s wounds, including inner child work, visualizations, healing affirmations, and anger management.
    Amongst Ourselves: A Self-Help Guide to Living with Dissociative Identity Disorder
    by and

    Amongst Ourselves is a self-help guide written by a psychologist with DID and her partner, and is also available on kindle. This books is for people with DID, and the provides the practical steps you can take to cope, and emerge with greater self-awareness and the skills to live a rich and rewarding life. A partner's view is also included.
    Becoming Yourself: Overcoming Mind Control and Ritual Abuse
    This is aimed "polyfragmented" survivors with OSDD (DDNOS) or DID (those with large numbers of alters/dissociative parts), and assumes you already understand dissociation. Multiplicity is viewed positively, not as a "disorder". It gives practical advice about working with your complex personality system and dealing with programming. The information aimed at internal leaders of your personality system explains how to build a cooperative inner community in which everyone's needs are met, and trauma can be healed. The many contributions from survivors include whether to fully integrate or not. Miller's earlier book, Healing the Unimaginable: Treating Ritual Abuse and Mind Control, is aimed at therapists.
    The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
    A groundbreaking new book from internationally renown Complex PTSD specialist Bessel van der Kolk. This bestselling book describes in detail the theory behind the many responses to, and after-effects caused by, trauma. It then describes the many approaches children and adults can use to heal, including alternatives to talk therapy like sensorimotor therapy, yoga and neurofeedback. This is not primarily a self-help book, the writing style requires good concentration and it is very popular with professionals as well as trauma survivors. Also available on Audio CD.
    The Borderline Personality Disorder Survival Guide: Everything You Need to Know About Living with BPD
    by , and

    If you are living with BPD, this compassionate book offers what you really need: an easy-to-follow road map to guide you through this disorder and its treatment. The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Workbook may also be of interest.
    Coping with Trauma-Related Dissociation: Skills Training for Patients and Therapists
    Skills training for people who have a trauma-related dissociative disorder, and therapists. Topics include understanding dissociation and PTSD, using inner reflection, emotion regulation, coping with triggers and traumatic memories, resolving sleep problems, coping with relational difficulties, and the difficulties of daily life. Includes short educational pieces, homework sheets, and exercises that address ways in which dissociation interferes with essential emotional and life skills. Supports inner communication and collaboration with dissociative parts of the personality. Very popular with people who have Dissociative Identity Disorder or Other Specified Dissociative Disorder (DDNOS)
    Complex Ptsd: From Surviving to Thriving: A Guide and Map for Recovering from Childhood Trauma
    Written by a therapist who has recovered from Complex PTSD, this is a book is a user-friendly self-help guide to recovering from the effects of childhood trauma. It contains practical tools and techniques for recovery, and many examples of his own and others' journeys of recovering. It deeply explores the causes of CPTSD, which range from severe neglect to systematic and extreme abuse. Many people raised in traumatizing families grew up in houses that were not homes - in families that were loveless as orphanages, and sometimes dangerous.
    Dear Little Ones by Jade Miller
    A professionally illustrated book about Dissociative Identity Disorder. This book is written for young alters, to help them understand their experiences as part of a multiple system. Written by someone with DID, available in paperback or on kindle.
    The Dissociative Identity Disorder Sourcebook

    Everything you need to know about: tools for diagnosing DID and courses of treatment, the various stages of therapy and what to expect, therapy interventions (from medication and group therapy to meditation and bodywork), self-help, coping strategies, and survival tips for clients, therapists, family, and friends.
    Got Parts? An Insider's Guide to Managing Life Successfully with Dissociative Identity Disorder
    by and

    Got Parts? is a practical self-help guide for adult survivors of childhood trauma and abuse. It is filled with coping strategies, techniques, and hopes for DID survivors to master real-life issues in relationships, work, parenting, school, time-management, self-care, and medical treatment.
    Healing Developmental Trauma: How Early Trauma Affects Self-Regulation, Self-Image, and the Capacity for Relationship
    by and
    Introduces the NeuroAffective Relational Model® (NARM), a psychodynamic approach that, while not ignoring a person’s past, emphasizes working in the present moment. NARM uses somatic mindfulness to re-regulate the nervous system and to resolve identity distortions—such as low self-esteem, shame, and chronic self-judgment—caused by developmental and relational trauma. Developmental Trauma often results in Complex PTSD.
    Healing Trauma
    As a young stress researcher, Peter A. Levine found that all animals, including humans, are born with a natural ability to rebound from these distressing situations. Levine developed Somatic Experiencing™ to learn how to address trauma and related symptoms at their source - your body. The book includes: How to develop body awareness to "re-negotiate" and heal traumas rather than relive them, emergency measures for emotional distress and a 60-minute audio CD of guided Somatic Experiencing techniques.
    I Hate You, Don't Leave Me: Understanding the Borderline Personality
    by and
    People with Borderline Personality Disorder experience such violent and frightening mood swings that they often fear for their sanity. They can be euphoric one moment, despairing and depressed the next. Other symptoms include a shaky sense of identity, sudden violent outbursts, oversensitivity to real or imagined rejection, brief and turbulent love affairs, frequent periods of intense depression, eating disorders, substance abuse, and other self-destructive tendencies, an irrational fear of abandonment and an inability to be alone. This book offers helps people and their families understand and cope with BPD.
    Multiple Personality Disorder from the Inside Out
    by and
    In Multiple Personality Disorder from the Inside Out, 146 people who have MPD (now known as Dissociative Identity Disorder) and their significant others reveal the complex issues of diagnosis, therapy, and maintaining personal relationships. These writings have been gathered into a compelling and practical volume for anyone interested in improving the support network for individuals with DID.
    Overcoming Depersonalization Disorder: A Mindfulness and Acceptance Guide to Conquering Feelings of Numbness and Unreality
    by , and
    You may feel unreal or detached from reality, even from your own thoughts, as though you are going through the motions of living. This book helps you diagnose the type and degree of your depersonalization, understand why it developed, and cope using a mix of skills including acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT).
    The Primal Wound - Understanding the Adopted Child
    A useful book for adoptees, birth parents, adoptive parents, therapists, educators, and attorneys. This book covers perinatal psychology, attachment, bonding, abandonment and loss and includes suggestions for healing. Adoptees often do not have their pain acknowledged or understood, so this book offers validation for their feelings, as well as explanations for their behavior.
    The PTSD Workbook: Simple, Effective Techniques for Overcoming Traumatic Stress Symptoms
    by and
    This book outlines techniques and interventions used by PTSD experts to offer trauma survivors the most effective tools available to conquer their most distressing symptoms, whether they are a veteran, a rape survivor, or a crime victim. Based on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, the book is accessible and easy-to-use. The second edition features chapters focusing on veterans with PTSD, the link between cortisol and adrenaline and its role in PTSD and overall mental health, and the mind-body component of PTSD. Includes a very good section on Complex PTSD.
    Safe Passage to Healing: A Guide for Survivors of Ritual Abuse
    This survivor-written book is an inspiring, comprehensive guide showing that healing is possible. In a clear and gentle voice, Oksana helps demystify ritual abuse cults and Dissociative Identity Disorder, and offers groundbreaking strategies for recovery. Drawing on inner wisdom and spirituality Oksana takes survivors step by step through the healing process. This book is based on years of research, interviews, and Oksana's own healing journey, which began in 1984 when many therapists had never heard of ritual abuse.

    Abuse, Sexual Abuse and Domestic Violence

    Abused Men: The Hidden Side of Domestic Violence

    Domestic violence support often focuses on supporting women; few people know that 2 million American men are also assaulted at home. This book offers evidence and discussion of the problem, includes the personal accounts of abused men, how men can get help and get free from abuse, and how the abusive or abused woman can come to grips with domestic violence. Men in same sex relationships may prefer Men Who Beat The Men Who Love Them
    Breaking Free: Help For Survivors Of Child Sexual Abuse
    by and
    A manual designed to help both male and female survivors of child sexual abuse. It explains the effects of child sexual abuse which often persist into adult life, and draws on accounts of survivors who want their voices to be heard. It offers an optimistic approach to help survivors break free from the past. Covers guilt and shame, depression and anxiety, eating disorders, fear of relationships and sexual problems. A related Workbook also exists. Related mobile apps are available from author Kay Toon.
    The Courage to Heal: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse
    An inspiring, comprehensive guide that offers hope and a map of the healing journey to every woman who was sexually abused as a child - and to those who care about her. Although the effects of child sexual abuse are long-term and severe, healing is possible.
    Getting Free: You Can End Abuse and Take Back Your Life

    A self-help book for women, first published in 1982. It is written in an accessible style, packed with practical information and answers, special exercises designed to help a woman recognize abuse, and several success stories. Includes sections on lesbian abuse and teenage abuse.
    The Right to Innocence
    As a therapist and someone who has overcome child sexual abuse, Beverly Engel knows that there is probably no trauma a child can suffer that makes her or him feel more alone than sexual abuse. This helpful book offers hope for recovery with exercises, visualizations, and techniques that support you through a seven-step program, that will aid you in: facing the truth, releasing your anger, confronting those responsible with facts and feelings, forgiving yourself, and more healing advice and information.
    The Sexual Healing Journey
    A classic guide to help survivors of sexual abuse improve their relationships and discover the joys of sexual intimacy. Groundbreaking exercises and techniques take you step-by-step through the recovery. Includes first-person accounts of women and men at every stage of sexual healing.
    Victims No Longer: The Classic Guide for Men Recovering from Sexual Child Abuse
    Psychotherapist Mike Lew has worked with thousands of men and women in their recovery from Incest, sexual abuse and rape, violence and emotional abuse. He had created this invaluable resource continues to offer compassionate and practical advice, supported by personal anecdotes and statements of male survivors. Victims No Longer helps survivors to identify and validate their childhood experiences, explore strategies of survival and healing, work through issues such as trust, intimacy, and sexual confusion, establish a support network and make choices that aren't determined by past abuse.

    Combat PTSD & Military Sexual Trauma

    Combat-Related Traumatic Brain Injury and PTSD: A Resource and Recovery Guide
    by ,
    This book offers guidance for returning veterans, families and those testing them. It discusses combat-related traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), outlining the risk factors, and the relationship between the two. The book explains the diagnostic criteria, treatment options, prevention techniques, and barriers to care. Sections include the important role that insurance and health care play, and the support of family and friends.
    An Operators Manual for Combat PTSD
    Written to give the combat veteran a sense of hope and to develop an inner voice to assist in coping with everyday life. We live in two worlds: The physical world around us that we can see, hear, touch, and feel, and the world within ourselves. These essays assist the veteran in learning how to monitor triggers, our cues, and balance the world within with the world we live in.
    Redeployed: How Combat Veterans Can Fight the Battle Within and Win the War at Home
    by and
    A bestseller written FOR combat veterans BY actual combat veterans. A Combat-Infantry Sergeant and a Special Operations Force Recon Marine have joined forces to equip and educate other returning combat-veterans and their families on how to FIGHT and WIN the most common battles they face after returning home from war (PTSD, TBI, Depression, Anxiety, Isolation, Suicide, Divorce, etc).
    Warrior Renew: Healing from Military Sexual Trauma
    by and
    This workbook is designed to help men and women with MST understand normal reactions to MST and how to manage them. Readers will learn how to release the grips of anger and resentment, injustice, betrayal, self-blame, shame, and grief. They will learn how to deal with such physical symptoms as sleep problems and stress and engage in assessment of their own interpersonal patterns.

    Coping Skills

    The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Workbook: Practical DBT Exercises for Learning Mindfulness, Interpersonal Effectiveness, Emotion Regulation, And Distress Tolerance
    by , and
    First developed for treating borderline personality disorder, dialectical behavior therapy has proven effective as treatment for a range of other mental health problems, especially for those characterized by overwhelming emotions. DBT can improve your ability to tolerate distress without acting destructively.
    Getting Through the Day: Strategies for Adults Hurt as Children
    This book enables adults who were traumatized as children to learn new strategies to meet the demands of daily living. While focusing on the effects of dissociation and including specific advice for multiples (people with Dissociative Identity Disorder), Nancy Napier presents dozens of exercises helpful to anyone who finds that unresolved childhood feelings are blocking life's path.
    Women Who Hurt Themselves: A Book of Hope and Understanding
    Filled with moving stories, this powerful and compassionate book is the first to focus on women who harm themselves through self-injury/self-mutilation, compulsive cosmetic surgeries, eating disorders, and other forms of chronic injury to the body.

    Free resources

    Faith-based resources

    Helpful articles and book on healing from a Christian perspective, mostly about Dissociative Identity Disorder, can be found at Christian resources for Healing (archive page).

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    1. American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders: DSM-5. (5th ed.). Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association. ISBN 0890425558.
    2. World Health Organization. (1992). The ICD-10 Classification of Mental and Behavioural Disorders Diagnostic criteria for research. Retrieved November 17, 2014, from
    3. World Health Organization. (2023). ICD-11 for mortality and morbidity statistics (Version 01/2023). Retrieved June 25, 2023.

    Cite this page . Alters in Dissociative Identity Disorder and OSDD/P-DID. Retrieved from .

    This information can be copied or modified for any purpose, including commercially. A link back could be appreciated. License: CC BY-SA 4.0.
    Updated June 2023.