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Author Topic: Opening Up; The Healing Power of Expressing Emotions  (Read 6418 times)
« on: July 15, 2008, 01:38:42 PM »

By James W. Pennebaker, Ph.D. ISBN 1-57230-238-0

"This book is the very best that scientific psychology has to offer. Pennebaker has made remarkable discoveries that show how disclosing our deepest secrets can make us well....This works throw open new doors of understanding and offers new hope for gaining control of our lives." -Daniel M. Wegner, PhD, author of White Bears and Other Unwanted Thoughts

"Dr. Pennebaker has demonstrated that expressing emotions appears to protect the body against damaging internal stress and seems to have long-term health benefits." -Daniel Goleman, The New York Times

"Dr. Pennebaker uses numerous studies to back up his theory that writing about their trauma helps people to organize that trauma in their own mind, so that it becomes a more defined story with a beginning, middle and end. This helps people view their traumatic event as an isolated event in their life rather than defining their entire life, which then allows them to become emotionally detached from the traumatic event. Once “downloaded” out of their head, people are freed from thinking and obsessing about their trauma with its intense emotions, which in turn leads to a reduction of stress on the body and thus physical health benefits."    - JL, ADSG forum
Don M
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« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2008, 06:44:21 PM »

Thanks RADishMOM;
   Have you seen anything yet to indicate whether this is focused on the more common trauma which lead to PTSD (one or a few very intense incidents)?

   The other new area which might have a different viewpoint would be frequent and repeated smaller high stress events.  One of the other posters has helped by bringing that up as described as "Complex PTSD".

   I think the main difference I am asking about is that many adoption therapists (not RAD trained) use personal storybooks and scrapbooks as a way to put the picture into a form the child can internalize.

   In my family, we've actually had to hide copies of some photos because they kept being missing or cut into pieces.  The kids would always say they didn't do it or that they just wanted to remember part of the picture.  We don't even have any from the "pre-adoption" periods.
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2008, 10:06:04 PM »

Yes, it definitely mentions PTSD often. In fact, some of the research studies included Holocaust survivors, and vietnam vets suffering from severe PTSD. It makes a lot of sense the way Dr. Pennebaker describes how writing out traumas repeatedly can diminish the emotions attached to them. I am interested in trying it for myself, would love to suggest it to dd18's therapist. I know that was what the therapist tried to accomplish years ago via EMDR.
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